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The price of quality

1725 Views 24 Replies 18 Participants Last post by  Andy Marquis
This is a bit of a weird question really, but how many of us have tried to save a few quid in buying a cheaper alternative and have actually realised it has let us down when we needed it the most?

What it boils down to with me as an angler and as a retailer is I want the best for the money, which is ovviously 99% of what everyone is looking for when buying tackle. I get asked quite regulary if I can get people a cheaper alternative, and I do try, but I also try to find cheaper products that will actually do what is needed at the crunch moment.

I have been asked recently by a couple of forum members to obtain cheaper soft plastics, which I know I need to stock. The thing is is there are thousands of options so I am currently waiting for some "different" ones to arrive shortly. Hopefully they will be very good for the money.

I have also been asked to get some jig hooks, the ones you need if youre making your own jig heads. I have found some Owner ones, they are top quality and I know they will do what is needed of them, but they are 20p each and I gotta buy them in 360's. Now I mentioned this to the customer (its the squid by the way) and he said they are too expensive, as places like Do-It-Moulds sell Eagle Claw ones for like $10 for 100. But, I have also heard people recently saying that some jigheads come with hooks that have totally let them down to the point where they have binned them.

So what do we do? Now I aint buying inferior products in to sell them on, I try my best to never do that in any of the tackle I buy in. I suppose all I can do is explain my situation and my opinion and hope the customer appreciates it.
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stay at your habits...
Dont change your behavier or habits in choosing the goods you are going to trade. You have to sell em and only satisfied buyers are going to come back to your shop to buy a second, third ... time.

Its a hard one that mick, you & Doug have never sold anything but top quality gear :clap:

So stay as you are sell the best f**k the rest mate , cheap and cheerful not always the ways to go ,

And thats the TRUTH BECAUSE HE SAYS SO :aarrg:

Stick to what you do best, I shop with you for good gear, sound advice and nothing else. If I want other stuff I will go elsewhere, there is one thing I have learnt the painful way and that is “Buy Cheap, Buy Twice” ;)
A very honest post as ever Mick.

I confess I own an articulated jig head mould, but I wouldn't say I make more than a few dozen jig heads each year. Bear in mind I probably lose between 10 and 20 jig heads per trip on average. Some days are worse than others depending on the ground, some days its murder but if the ground holds fish then he who dares wins...

What I can't work out is how many jighead you would need to make and lose before the whole exercise started getting cheaper than buying the ready-made item? And with so many different styles and weights to try, not to mention new developments, why would you want to limit yourself to one type? Plus you cannot get the quality of an Owner JH-66 or a Storm jighead with a holographic finish out of your own garage.

I am not a fan of texposer style hooks with an angled rather than round gape. In fact the opposite! I always cut away the collar of lead and spike on the hook shank of fixed jigheads with side cutters as it buggers up delicate or thin SPs and doesn't do anything a drop or two of superglue can't do. Might even prolong the life of the SP when it is wrenched away from the weighted end, who knows. The best SP hooks I have used on jigheads bar none are the VMC 7356 BN standard on Storm articulated jig heads but they are expensive to buy separately even in bulk. There are also some Sakuma semi-circles that come a very close second that are great VFM.

I don't envy you the balancing act between quality and volume at all, but reckon your gut instinct is right.
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Eagle Claw hooks aren't bad Mick.

Do It moulds...

There are a few of us perusing over what to get now..
We are going to need hooks, drop shot swivels, hitch-hikers and maybe powder coat.

It is real easy to go through a dozen jig and worm rigs in a few hours.
Wrassing or Bassing, matters not, SP's work can and does EAT gear.

I personally don't mind, I like the good gear, it catches more fish when you have an
area sussed. However, on exploratory missions, chuck and chance it with a £5 rig
a cast isn't practical or very cost effective.

I use lots of SP's from the states too which work out at around £4 for 20. They are
specific to a task and I have to outsource them due to cost and lack of local availability.
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You've been more than successful when it comes to retailing/promoting modern lure fishing, so surely it's a case of carry on regardless. If it ain't broke, don't fix it?

I'd stick to what you've been doing, mate. Purchase products based on what works, rather than cost. There are plenty of retailers selling more cost effective products, which also have their place and rightly so. When it comes down to it, don't we all just want to use proven products that work and enhance the thrill of catching predatory fish?
At the end of the day Mick, if i want to buy "cheap" products i shall go to other sites or shops that i know stock them, but if i want to treat myself to some "TOP" end gear,, i contact you...

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Mick. There is a reason you are where you are with the rep that you have. And it ain't selling tubs of cheap jelly worms at £5 for a hundred.

On the mould front, I have 3 Do-it moulds now, 1 lead and 2 lure type, cost a lot to get them here from the US but hey, I wanted the best and they are without a doubt the best and easiest I have used. I use the Eagle Claw hooks and never had an issue with them.

Keith - Powder Coat... Soo cheap on ebay and it's all the same stuff isn't it??

I used it with my last batch of light hot lips jigs for bucktails (the 6 in 1 mould from 1/8oz to 3/4oz) and it's OK but takes some work with the small jigs, they have to be hot enough for the powder to stick and then you need to heat them some more to get the finish right. Problem is with a 1/8oz jig they are prone to suddenly getting to heat and go too far and bang leads on the floor and got to re-mould. So it's tricky but if you're doing a batch then you get a system going and losses are minimal. Whole different ball game with a 2oz one though!!
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20 pence is one hell of a saving. I could easily lose £20 worth of pre-made jig heads in one session, making my own with 20 pence hooks means I would have to lose 100 heads before it cost me £20.

I'll still have the hooks. Although I'll need 1/0 as well now..

Chris, you can have the Mustad hooks I bought for my do it mold if you like? I was just going to bin them..
Good topic ... for me its always you get what you pay for...stick with what you are doing as its the right approach ;)

Its a fine line between hobby / obsession and in your case a business that supports your family in which you have to make the right choices and cater for us lurealholics and people who want 50 x mackie feathers once a year ...

you have to cater across a broad spectrum - I like tackle but I can't see me buying 3 new Tenryu's a year (hmm actually I can!) but at the same time you build relationships that keep your customers ;)

Think I am going off piste a bit! ah well ... back to my work!
Mick - I look at a company like Ultimate and what they have done. As a fishing tackle company they have basically gone completely against what most other people do, and that is to stock/distribute all kinds of gear at all kinds of prices, with rods from cheap to expensive, etc. - I am sure they decided to stick their neck out and go for it, believing that they could make a go of it aiming at the high end.

And from what I know, they seem to be doing well via their chosen business model, but I imagine that there was a certain amount of the fishing retail and public having to catch up with their way of doing things. Takes guts in my book.

You are creating a fantastic name for yourself as one of THE places to go for proper lure gear, and the fact that there are knowledgeable, human voices at the end of the phone of the keyboard means a huge amount to many anglers. It is never going to be possible to provide all gear for all anglers. Keep trusting in your own judgement.
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Quality is the way to go..........Totally.
Its a must,especially with lure fishing.
There is way to much cheap shi*t tackle around for my liking and I have always believed that it "cheapens" our sport.
Most of this rubbish comes from 'china' where they make things out of micky mouse materials or just copy someone elses product etc,and I have had enough of it.You only need to look at that Sea fishing mag and look at some (most) of the gear they advertise including rod reel and line plus baseball cap for £19.99 (you know what I mean).
I know that not everyone would want or could afford a Branzino :wackit: :wackit: or a TP sw or Stella sw but their is a very good market out there for quality gear.
Keen and experienced anglers want the best that they can afford and today you can buy 'real' quality rods and reels for £100ish that will make the angler feel good and last a long time.
I think what 'Ultimate Fishing' have done is brilliant and this sort of thing will only push the sport forward etc. :)
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Buy cheap .....Buy Twice (never lasts)
Buy quality.....Buy Once
Henry Gilbey said:
the fact that there are knowledgeable, human voices at the end of the phone of the keyboard means a huge amount to many anglers.
Agree 100%.

Andy Marquis said:
On the mould front, I have 3 Do-it moulds now, 1 lead and 2 lure type, cost a lot to get them here from the US but hey, I wanted the best and they are without a doubt the best and easiest I have used. I use the Eagle Claw hooks and never had an issue with them.
Yea, they are good. I love alot of the pre made's. It's quick, easy and the hooks on the decoy and Xorus heads are very good. I just find
them a little short for 6" and above slugs. worms aren't too bad due to the collapse properties but slugs..The jury is out on the balance between
shank length, bend out threshold and soft bait movement.

Nigel Gullon said:
Buy quality.....Buy Once
In principle, yes, you are generally correct. Everything has a useful life but it's the quality
of that life you are, or should be paying for imho.

Like I've said elsewhere, £400, £500 or more for a fly rod..most guys have at least a couple who are serious. I have
around 10 fly rods that went over that price threshold for fly gear. Reels, again, £300 -£750, people used to baulk. Not so
much now. Beach/Casting rods have NEVER been cheap on the scale of things. A top quality Zziplex, Century or Conoflex
has never been a throw away purchase. Yet, the beaches and tournament fields are full of them.
Lure gear too is going through an emergent phase. Those complaining about cost don't have to buy it. I was getting
sick of reading the "cheap lures catch as many fish" threads and, "my cheap rod casts this far"...

So what. There may be some truth in that. But given the chance to choose between a mini and ferrari I know what
most of those guys would choose. So do they.
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Good post Mick!
I learnt the hard way a long time ago that cheap tackle costs more money in the end. I have high end Daiwa reels that are over ten years old and still excellent, Rods from many manufacturers that are perhaps now dated but still excellent quality. The cheap rods and reels I bought at similar times have been binned years ago and then had to be replaced.
Even with lures, I will still seek out cheaper alternatives but now I am very wary about buying them unless they are proven. there are exceptions out there which are great value for money but a cheap item of tackle is never made to last or perform to the same standard of a higher end piece of kit. If it fails or doesn't perform who are they going to blame? Who are they going to come to for a refund or exchange? Who will be left with a load of rubbish stock that can't be shifted? The tackle dealer.

You have made your reputation by selling top end tackle that does the job it is intended for, don't compromise that.
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graham_hk said:

Here is what I do for diving (I distribute high end dive equipment in SE Asia). If there is something new I am interested in I buy a few for myself at retail and try them. If they are worthy (cost is not always an indicator of performance) then I start to find out about trade.

Great way of doing it :clap: :clap:
Chris, you can have the Mustad hooks I bought for my do it mold if you like? I was just going to bin them..[/quote]

Liam, I will bye them from you.
Looknig at Do-It-Moulds, etc - website the hooks they match to there moulds seem a very good bye even if you have to pay 40% postage.

I am in the process of making a mould for jigheads that presant the SP tail up. Will let you all know how I get on.
Just been talking to Keith for an hour or four, seems I may have been wrong about the eagle claw, he seems to think they are sound. I can get the actual Decoy hooks they use in the Bachi heads, but alsa they are 40p each!! So what I am going to do is ask the owner guys if they can just send me a sample or two of their hooks and see if I can get them to fit in the Do-It molds.
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