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To wonder why anyone would start a magazine part-work model?

(24 Posts)

I just caught a TV ad for a new magazine part-work - a model of the Mallard locomotive. The first part is only 50p - but subsequent parts cost £7.99 - and you will complete this stunning model in a mere 130 parts!!

This is a total cost of £1031.21 for a model train! shock. Now I get that some people enjoy building models, but surely there are far cheaper ways of getting a decent model kit for a locomotive/boat/submarine etc?

Why would anyone sign up for something that is going to take two years and a half years to complete! at a cost of over £1030??

Chasinglemons Wed 27-Aug-14 15:45:55

Hah! I always thought it must be a super scam but never seen the actual figures... Wow.


MrsTerryPratchett Wed 27-Aug-14 15:47:08

People aren't very good at thinking. Or maths.

Ididntseeitsoitdidnthappen Wed 27-Aug-14 15:51:24

Because some of the magazines are quite good

I've not done any as an adult but as a child I made a dinosaur and it's skeleton from those magazines, earned one a week for pocket money. When I had built it they attached trading cards to them. I learned loads about dinosaurs from them

Can't remember any of it now mind but as a child I know loads

Ididntseeitsoitdidnthappen Wed 27-Aug-14 15:51:47

But yes you are better off buying an airfix kit!

RedRoom Wed 27-Aug-14 16:14:14

I also made a dinosaur from a weekly magazine when I was about 11. It was a plastic glow in the dark thing. One bone per week. 99p for the first bone and about £4 for each of the other 50 bones. I got half way and gave up.

Greyhound Wed 27-Aug-14 16:17:41

Totally agree.

About 20 years ago I bought a dolls house part work. It came to about £200 in total and was such poor quality that I ended up throwing the actual house away and buying a proper dolls house kit for about £60 total - I still have it.

There were some good books and accessories with the kit but it was still a massive rip off.

5Foot5 Wed 27-Aug-14 16:20:32

A few years ago DD and I subscribed to something called Real Robots where you got to build a robot - a new component every fortnight.

It was actually quite good fun and the magazine provided a fair bit of background information. I don't know of an equivalent model kit we could have got to provide the same experience.

I can't remember now how the costs worked out but I don't think it was anywhere near as pricey as the example up top. We eventually gave up when basically all the robotty things had been done and the parts were just things to add on to customize the look of it, e.g. spoilers and things to make it look like a car. We thought that a bit pointless and called it a day then.

DoJo Wed 27-Aug-14 16:23:48

Because some well-meaning friend or relative buys the first part (because that's the one with the most appealing section of whatever you're making on it) and then you feel obliged to fork out a squillion quid for the further pieces even when this week's piece is just a cog or a rubber band.

Lightheartedindeed Wed 27-Aug-14 16:25:12

DH completed the f1 car against my better judgement. It ended up costing more than my first car, faithful wee Peugeot 106.

The car is currently on a shelf in the bedroom and the million odd magazines are under the bed. hmm

DoJo that really is the present that can be called a white elephant, isn't it! It's almost as bad as buying a child a drum kit or moonsand!

taxi4ballet Wed 27-Aug-14 16:33:57

These are right up there on the daft idea list, along with "collectors limited-edition" plates & figurines etc.

Bogeyface Wed 27-Aug-14 16:40:04

There was something in the papers a couple of years ago where a granny started buying the Titanic thing for her grandkids, so 2 magazines each. Then the price went up and she was complaining about the cost (despite it being advertised as the first 2 issues being on special offer) and about the number of mags she needed to buy (again, advertised). I think it was the DM that ran it, complete with sad face photo hmm

Some people really are too stupid to be allowed out alone!

5Foot5 Wed 27-Aug-14 16:43:14

Apart from the fact that have outed myself up thread as someone who once did and enjoyed a part work, I have to admit I love looking to see what the latest ones are because they often are quite crazy.

My all time favourite was when we were on holiday in Italy a few years ago and there was a part work for sale where every edition you got a new saint. The magazine for that part came with a little statue of the saint and then the content was presumably all about them. We speculated that it probably started off with some of the major players like St Francis or St Nicholas, but by the time you got to the 20 somethings it was probably the obscure ones hardly anyone had heard of - St Scholastica, St Margaret Clitherow.....

SevenZarkSeven Wed 27-Aug-14 16:45:05

The main company who do those mags got warned by the advertising whatevers as they weren't making it clear that it was only the first issue that was 8p and every one after that was £2,600 with issues weekly for the rest of time.

They got their slap on the wrist and now have to say in the ads in a comprehensible format how much the mags go up to and (I think) how many you will need to do it.

There, I am a mine of interesting information.

As for who buys them? No idea. I agree it is probably a granny buys the first one and poor old parents get lumbered with the rest. My FIL would do that, come to think of it.

ShatnersBassoon Wed 27-Aug-14 16:48:29

I thought exactly the same thing when I saw the advert for the Mallard one yesterday. Who is that keen and dedicated that they'd spend thousands of pounds and years of their life collecting each bit?! Just go to the National Railway Museum for free, look at the real thing and buy yourself a tidy little model of it.

5Foot5 Wed 27-Aug-14 16:56:22

Just go to the National Railway Museum for free, look at the real thing and buy yourself a tidy little model of it.

But some people like making things. The fun is in the construction more than having the finished thing. However, I agree that for something like a well known train you can probably get a good Airfiz kit for a fraction of the price.

Thisvehicleisreversing Wed 27-Aug-14 16:59:51

I've never had a 'build something' one but as a young teen I collected the Tree of Knowledge magazines which I think were fortnightly.

They were brilliant and so useful for homework. I learnt all about the bubonic plague and different planets from that magazine.

I wish it was published again.

atticusclaw Wed 27-Aug-14 17:03:26

It is crazy but then again I allowed the DCs to do the panini world cup sticker book and have regretted it ever since having worked out that it will cost over £100 to fill. Never again. Their grandparents then bought them a Harry Potter sticker book which went straight in the bin.

Ahh - but as a dedicated Chalet a school fan, 5foot5, I have heard of St Scholastika - pronounced in the Swiss way, with a soft sch, of course. blush

5Foot5 Wed 27-Aug-14 17:05:33

This was what we built. I just checked and it was �3.99 every fortnight. This would be at least 12 years ago so, yes, it was quite pricey I suppose.
However, the first 20 or 30 issue were pretty good. We bailed after we had a basic functioning robot and when they seemed to be just spinning it out a bit

JennySense Wed 27-Aug-14 17:33:19

There's some deep rooted psychology behind part works. We are hard wired to want to complete something which is why marketers create them.

Pipbin Wed 27-Aug-14 17:38:05

I heard of one newsagents that would work out the total price for anyone who took out a regular order for one of these part works.

londonrach Wed 27-Aug-14 17:38:26

Dsis got the discovery set. Used a lot for gcses (before internet). Think she still got it. Makes you realise how much you spend on magazines if you bought them. (I don't anymore as mostly adverts)

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