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    Avatar photoMike

    Why do you buy from who you buy from?

    They are the only ones that sell it?
    They sell it the cheapest?
    They ship very quickly?
    They have great communications?
    They like the same TV show as you?
    They are your pals?
    Their site is easy to use?
    Other things and more..?

    Do you have any reasons, or is just because?

    Avatar photoGeneral Slade

    These days nearly all my purchases are from Paul and Teresa Bailey at Keep Wargaming http://stores.ebay.co.uk/The-Keep-and-WRG

    Their service is exceptional, their prices are great and their postage is incredibly cheap.  But mainly it’s because they stock Minifigs and I like Minifigs.

    Avatar photoNot Connard Sage

    ‘Orse & musket stuff

    My 28s are from Front Rank, because they sell individual figures, in a style I like, at a price I like.

    My 6mm figures from Baccus. Large range.


    Obvious contrarian and passive aggressive old prat, who is taken far too seriously by some and not seriously enough by others.

    Avatar photowillz

    Crann Tara 18th century, excellent 28mm figures, excellent service.

    Warrior Miniatures 18th century, excellent 28mm figures, excellent service.

    Irregular Miniatures 18th century, excellent 28mm figures, excellent service.

    Ian Hinds / Hinchcliffe various 25mm figures, excellent service, excellent at selling, swapping or exchange.

    Spencer Smith 25mm figures and equipment, some would argue not the best figures but I love them.  Peter provides an excellent service and his figures are as cheap as chips.

    Colonel Bills various figures and equipment, excellent service.

    Redoubt Enterprises 18th century large 28mm figures , excellent service.

    Warbases as it says on the tin, excellent services.


    Avatar photoSane Max

    ‘cos when I type ‘Norwegian War of The Sucession 1552’ into google their web page comes up first, and they have pictures of the figures.

    I really am that easy to please.

    Avatar photoA Lot of Gaul

    Miniatures: 18mm Caesarian Romans, Gauls and Germans from Blue Moon Manufacturing, because of the sculpting style and quality, the excellent prices (especially with the 40% Old Glory Army discount), and the outstanding customer service provided by Russ & Connie Dunaway and Teresa Gregory.

    Miniatures: 18mm Balearic, Cretan, Numidian and Gallic skirmishers by Xyston Miniatures, to fill in the gaps in my Blue Moon armies. Normally I like to buy directly from the manufacturer, but these I purchase online from Noble Knight Games, because of their discount prices and because they are a US distributor, I don’t have to pay the exorbitant overseas shipping costs to the US from the UK.

    Paints, brushes and basing supplies: Army Painter Warpaints and related products, because I find they suit my painting style better than my old standby, Vallejo Model Colors. I purchase my Army Painter products online from The War Store, because of their discount prices and US shipping rates.

    Bases: 2mm MDF bases from Minibits, because of their excellent quality and low prices.

    "Ventosa viri restabit." ~ Harry Field

    Avatar photoRod Robertson
    1. Quality of the miniatures.
    2. Only producer for what I want or one of the very few.
    3. Price of the minis.
    4. Quality of service/speed of delivery.
    5. Cost of shipping.
    6. Ignorance of other options until it’s too late.
    7. Whim.

    These are my motivators in descending order of importance for buying from whom I buy.

    Cheers and good gaming.

    Rod Robertson.

    Avatar photoSteve Johnson

    Pendraken because:
    They have an excellent range of products at a good price.
    Superb customer service.
    I can order individual figures at no extra cost.
    They listen to customer requests for new ranges and additions to existing ranges.
    They are thoroughly nice chaps.

    Angel Barracks because:
    I love the quality of the miniatures.
    I love the variety of buildings on offer.
    Excellent value.
    Michael (and family) are thoroughly nice.

    Avatar photokyoteblue

    I try to buy from my FLGS , but buy for Scale Creep or Rebel Mini when I can’t. Er 15mm all the way !!!!

    Avatar photoNoel

    A large part of my decision to buy something gaming related comes from whether or not my friend, who owns a flgs, can get a hold of it.

    I am much more likely to order something through him than through other places.  If there is something that I want and he can’t get it, but can get a similar product, then I will probably go with what he can get.

    When it is something that I would like that he can’t get and there is no acceptable alternative to me, then I will order from someplace I trust through experience or that has a good reputation.

    I value reliability and customer service over price or even speed.

    Avatar photoNorthern Monkey

    I buy from all over mainly because of point 1 in the OP, points 2,3 &4 in the OP also influence me. I wont buy from company’s that are very very slow and don’t communicate well.

    My attempt at a Blog: http://ablogofwar.blogspot.co.uk/

    Avatar photoirishserb

    Assuming a company has something that I need, it comes down to price, quality, and my experience in dealing with the company, whether it be through conventions, forum discussion, or previous orders.



    I purchase from suppliers that I know give a reasonable turnaround time, are easy to deal with and have well illustrated products. Those removing VAT for non UK buyers is also considered if I just need general troops.

    Avatar photoAngel Barracks

    I get my paints from Blackhat because I used to stock them and am happy to keep with what I know, the fact he normally gets things to me the next working day is of course a massive bonus, especially when I open a pot and find it has run out or suddenly gone hard and need it nooooooow!!

    Decals from Minibits, fast and good price.

    Counters from Doug at EM4 cos he is nice and bought me a coffee once. 😀

    Avatar photoPatrice

    Because I have seen nice/useful miniatures on their website.


    Avatar photoMartinR

    Because they have stuff that I want which fits in with what I already have at a price I am willing to pay (both financial, time spent assembling/painting and long term storage costs including risk of potential breakage).

    Other than that, it is very hard to be precise.

    "Mistakes in the initial deployment cannot be rectified" - Helmuth von Moltke

    Avatar photoNic Wright

    I have to say I am very pragmatic – a company has to sell a product that fits within my current vision for a project. If there is a choice after that (and there rarely is), I will generally base my decision on the price/quality matrix in which postage costs play a major factor.


    Avatar photoAnother Wargamer

    Decision order.

    1. Scale.  I only have 25-28.
    2. Need (gaming period, do I need more models for game)
    3. Customer service (reliable; $ for product, responsive; answer email questions in timely manner 1 business week, fair business practice; if you ship me the wrong thing, don’t have me ship it back at my cost or at least reimburse me)
    4. Quality of product
    5. Shipping (cost, loose/broken products that could have been prevented during packaging, timely; if there is a delay, email me and I will understand, UK to US beyond 2 months is excessive.)
    6. Fair business practice (bad mouthing your competitor directly or indirectly to gain more sales is bad marketing, better off focusing on your own products)
    7. New product advertisement from various vendors I regularly purchase from can easily inspired me

    With that said, I regularly purchase from Perry Miniatures, Saxon Miniatures and Gripping Beast.  Once or twice a year from Footsore Miniatures, Foundry, North Star, Crusader Miniatures and 4Ground.  Looking forward to see some advertisements from said companies here as The Wargames Website grows.


    Avatar photoIvan Sorensen

    An okay price, a site that will let you me use paypal and reasonable assurance that they actually are a living human being that responds to inquiries.

    Avatar photoAnonymous

    3mm Decals from Dom (who else?,) planes from Picoarmor,  Horse and Musket in the future ditto Picoarmor.  Service, price, reliability.

    6mm eventually I suspect I will return to Baccus for more fantasy units.  Service, especially to my non-war game wife in the past, and because he and Dom keep me reminded that international postage is <b>sometimes</b> worth it.

    15mm – Rebel Minis, Khurasan, Splintered Light, and  Clear Horizon pretty much supply my needs and wants.  Still check Brigade Models but not ordered in a while.  Price/postage, good service.  If I ever add more 15/18mm historical probably Blue Moon.

    Legacy 25mm – Ral Partha and ClassicMiniatures.net (for Der Kriegspieler) because they cast the miniatures I need to complete my legacy armies.

    Avatar photoMcKinstry

    A happy coincidence of the stuff I like being sold by genuinely good to deal with folks. Whether Tumbling Dice, Navwar, Baccus, Adler, Total Battle, Dom’s Decals, Scale Creep or Old Glory, the folks in my gaming buying are genuine pleasure to deal with.


    The tree of Life is self pruning.

    Avatar photoPatG

    RAFM – VSF/Colonials They still have the Space 1889 line and other figures and pieces in 25mm.
    RAFM – 15mm SF – Most of their casts are old Traveller models. I still have a few figures from my first real job at a hobby shop 30+ years ago. Much nostalgia.

    It’s also a Canadian company and I try to support “local” business. And they are nice guys too,

    6mm Ancients and Fantasy Baccus. Great product good price and cheaper than ordering it from the States, Fewer customs hassles as well.

    20mm WWII plastics – two FLHS. One has been around forever the other tries to support gamers as well as modellers and the RC crowd. Both carry Airfix et al which make for cheap armies Funnily enough, my classic FLGS carries very little in miniatures apart from FOW and WarmaHordes.

    Avatar photoVictoria Dickson

    I tend to impulse buy, and the main decider on who I buy from is how easy it is to complete the purchase before I have time to think ‘do I really need this’ or ‘can I really afford this’.  So if you have pretty pictures of your figures, a shopping cart and the option for me to check out with paypal I’ll probably end up buying.

    If you just have a text listing of what’s available, require me to register with you before I can checkout and want me to go and dig my card out of my purse and type in the number and expiry date then I’ll probably have had second thoughts long before then.

    And as for those companies who make me write down what I want as I go through their lists and then type it all into an email or phone them up and read it all out to them, way too much time for me to think better of it.


    Avatar photoIain Fuller

    In no particular order:

    Fighting 15’s – for AB 15mm Napoleonic and 20mm WW2. Apart from the fact that they are the bet figures available for both scales/periods it is a joy to deal with Ian and the service is truly 1st class (sometimes the figures are here the day after ordering!).

    Blitz/Battlefield – for 20mm WW2. Figures run AB’s for a very close second and Stuart is again a great chap to deal with with excellent service and turn around times.

    PSC – brilliant products and fantastic customer service. They once sent me the wrong scale vehicles, no problem in replacing them and they chucked in a single vehicle sprue to say sorry.

    Warbases – why would you use anyone else for your basing and marker needs, if you ask them to make something they will more than likely be able to do it for you. Friendly efficient service to boot.

    Heroics & Ros – price, range of vehicles and, again, fantastic service from Andy. Some of the newer kit being produced is also really, really good.

    Scotia – for the stuff that H&R don’t do and for having the balls to make some of the more obscure modern kit that weirdos like me can use for imagi-nation or alt-history armies. Customer service is good too.

    So, in a nutshell: as long as what is on offer is what I want or need and the customer service is good, why shop anywhere else?


    Avatar photoDeleted User

    Quirky Time (or a reply from ochoin)…..

    Being exclusively 1/72-20mm means acquiring figures for nearly any period takes a certain amount of ingenuity.


    EG the Seven Years War for which there is not a lot. We just finished staging a mega game for a local show. This means lots of digging around, conversions,  creative thinking etc. to assemble the 1600 figures we used.


    So, the first Port of Call is the FLHS. Then various online retailers of extant or OOP plastic sets. I have friends who own various old metal moulds (Hinton Hunt, Douglas etc), sculpt &/or have vast collections.  There are a few 20 mm metal figure suppliers too. EG  Newline.


    All in all, the hunt is as much fun as the rest of the hobby.




    Avatar photoRhoderic

    I buy that which strikes my fancy. It’s rarely a case of me looking for a specific type of figure, vehicle or terrain piece and comparing manufacturers that all sell it in some form or another. Rather, what happens is I see something new that I like, my mind starts whirring about all the tabletop adventures and stories I could craft around that thing, I mull over the expense for a day, a week, a month or a year, and I either buy it or I don’t. Sometimes this entails taking up a new project which means committing to future purchases from the same manufacturer or other compatible manufacturers for the sake of the project.

    It might be relevant to point out that the majority of my purchases are sci-fi or fantasy, so I rarely have issues to the effect of “which of numerous manufacturers do I want EIR legionaries / French hussars / SdKfz 251s from?”.

    Even though I haven’t been in the hobby for nearly as long as many other people in the online hobby community (a bit less than two decades, the first five-or-so years of which I was – to my present shame – a puritanical GW fanboy), I’ve probably ordered from between 50 to 100 manufacturers or re-sellers by now and have rarely experienced unsatisfactory service. I generally assume that whoever I order from (with a few exceptions), the service will be excellent and the people on the other end very pleasant to deal with. So I don’t have favourites in that respect.

    All that being said, an expedient webstore tends to make purchases more likely for me. In the past couple of years, for the first time, I’ve begun to take advantage of the fact that some webstores offer discounts or free shipping for large value orders.

    Avatar photoCameronian

    I’ll buy from anyone who gives me:

    Value for money,

    Fair P&P

    Good service

    Reasonable turn round

    Has complete ranges (the hard one)

    A fair few of those mentioned give all or most of the above.

    'The time has come" The walrus said. "To talk of many things: Of shoes--and ships--and sealing-wax--Of cabbages--and kings--And why the sea is boiling hot--And whether pigs have wings."

    Avatar photozippyfusenet

    I just re-ordered steel figure bases from Jeff Lista at Wargame Accessories. He’s been reliably selling product I need for many years, has a good website.

    I buy 1/285 airplanes, painted and unpainted, decals and rulebooks from I-94 Enterprises, because Dave Winfree brings van-loads of such great stuff to my regional conventions, *and* stages games, *and* sometimes lets me win…I just can’t leave empty handed.

    I buy paint, glue, magnets, wood and the occasional Toob of toys from Michael’s, ‘cuz they’re convenient, well stocked, and they email me discount coupons all the time.

    I systematically pillage convention flea markets and trading boards like the one here. I’ve learned not to buy shiny newly released figures. In six months or  a year, you’ll sell me the set that you bought, now that they bore you, for a fraction of the price. Oh, yes you will.

    You'll shoot your eye out, kid!

    Avatar photoMike Headden

    Starting point is – do they produce/ stock something I want? If not then all the customer service and great prices in the world won’t get me to buy from them.

    But if they do, then a combination of quality, ease of acquiring them, customer service, price and breadth of range come in to play. It’s often a trade off, akin to speed/ armour/ guns for tanks or battleships!

    Mainly I use Pendraken, Baccus, Rapier and Tumbling Dice for my current gaming interests.

    There are 100 types of people in the world, those who understand binary and those who can work from incomplete data

    Avatar photoPiyan Glupak

    In no particular order:

    • Do they have the figures that I want in the figure size that I want?
    • Do they give reasonable service?
    • Are the figures reasonable in terms of casting, accuracy and not being too unrealistic anatomically? – I don’t need wonderful as I am not a perfectionist painter.
    • Are the figures within (or ideally below) normal price range?
    • For 15mm and smaller figures I have a strong dislike of gluing weapons and shields on.
    • I avoid figures that tend to fall over when you try to glue them to strips of wood for painting, or to the final bases, Essex please note.
    • Ability to order small numbers of figures as part of a larger order is an advantage.  Thumbs up to Donnington!
    • Pictures on the website help reassure me.  I don’t get to many wargaming shows to see the figures ‘in the lead’ now.

    Edit: Serious scale-creep puts me off a manufacturer, especially if it makes basing to established standards difficult.

    Avatar photoWilliam Jones

    I have sort of a default decision tree.

    1.)  Buy direct from the manufacturer if practical because I want them to get the full profit.  If I like their minis I want them to stay in business.

    2.)  If I have to shop around I look first for price point, postage, availability and efficiency.  Price and good customer relations are largely fungible.  If the source can chat with me about gaming, rules, trends or micro-breweries and MMORPGs and they charge slightly more, they will get my trade over a dark, dour source that shaves a few percentage points off of cost.

    In the past couple of years I have had to buy more from domestic US sources than direct, because postage is brutal.  I used to buy tons of minis from Donnington, old and new, present owners and previous owners, and Donnington is at its best right now for quality and service, but the postage makes me cry.  Postage has caused me to pass on many direct purchases from the UK and Europe.  The Russian Alternative doesn’t even charge postage; I wish vendors in other nations were able to do this too, and if they could I am sure they would.

    Rarely, some secondary source will be able to provide minis for fraction the cost of the manufacturer.  Game Zone and Coolminiornot come to mind.  At that point, in present circumstances, I will go for the cheaper source.

    Deceit, substitutions, irregular or inadequate service can become deal killers.  That has not happened in a long time.



    Avatar photoMike

    1.)  Buy direct from the manufacturer if practical because I want them to get the full profit.  If I like their minis I want them to stay in business.

    Interestingly this is not always a good thing.
    Let us say I stock BOBs tanks.
    You want a tank from BOB so buy direct, it is £10.00 a tank and BOB gets his full tenner.

    However if you buy from me you pay the same and I get the sale.
    I have of course previously bought it from BOB for say £6.00.
    So in an isolated sale BOB is down £4.00.

    But then you need to consider I will need to replace that model you bought.
    BOB is canny and won’t sell me a single model at trade price.
    To get trade price I have to spend £350.00 with BOB.

    So your £10.00 sale with me has made me have to place a £350.00 order with BOB.

    Now clearly it is not always that cut and dry, but there are often reasons to go via resellers…

    Avatar photoNathaniel Weber

    I do my purchasing from a pretty broad set of sellers.  My “big” scales, where I do most of my gaming, are 15mm sci-fi, some 15mm WWII, 6mm WWII, and 1/600 WWII air combat.  For those, I buy from:

    Pico Armor (15mm sci-fi and most of the air combat)—-Pico has great service, ships fast and cheap. They have good stock of Oddzial Osmy stuff. I occasionally order from Tumbling Dice, who I have 0 complaints about, but only when I need a plane I can’t get from Pico because Oddzial doesn’t produce it. (I prefer the Oddzial minis.)

    15mm sci fi—I’ve bought from most of the producers, I think, and have no complaints about any of them. I most commonly buy from Darkest Star and Ravenstar, both of whom ship nice and fast and have cool minis. I had bought a lot from Khurasan but the whole internet drama around their company left a bad taste in my mouth about them so haven’t in a while. I also have 15mm.co.uk (great service) and Rebel Minis (also great service).

    6mm WWII—the odd ebay sale, but mostly Heroics and Ros. H&R let you buy single tanks, unlike GHQ; ship pretty fast for being in the UK; and are very inexpensive. I like their infantry, being a good balance of detail and resilience.

    I rely on eBay for lots of my hobby supplies (paints etc.) and try to buy most of my Hordes stuff at the local gaming store, to support them.

    Avatar photoWilliam Jones

    “So your £10.00 sale with me has made me have to place a £350.00 order with BOB.

    Now clearly it is not always that cut and dry, but there are often reasons to go via resellers…”

    It might. But I’m not going to know that as a rule. And if traders have set up reciprocal or agency arrangements to their mutual satisfaction, that is cool too. Still, I’m going to assume that the vendor will do better on balance with direct purchase, and I will less often be disappointed with an ‘out of stock’ delay.

    That said, I won’t bat an eye to purchase from a vendor if the price, time and postage factors indicate that is the best way to go. I just bought some Game Zone figures from Coolminiornot on that basis. They had the items in stock, language is no barrier, and the figures seemed much more affordable from that source. Brookhurst Hobbies has long been a source of UK minis and books for me for the same reasons. But if it’s six of one, half a dozen of the other, I will still purchase from the source manufacturer first, as a rule.

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