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#2420 - 03/10/99 02:29 PM mercantile woes
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
I just spent a mind numbing 15 minutes on the phone ( their nickle at least) with the tin box company trying to secure pocket tin containers." Why don't you want bugs bunny? he's very popular, and we have a sale. Thats such a LITTLE box,We have hershey bar tins in a lovely 12"X9", and it's hinged! You want to store what in OUR boxes? Why don't you just call the police like everyone else?" Finally, I get connected to Mr. Wrong Wei, who I am told was a military man."Why don't you just buy a kit?IM TRYING TO MARKET ONE! Well, are you so very sure we can't paint an image on the cover( sound of calculatorticking off profits)?" "YES, I WANT THE DALAI LAMA ON IT, YOU DO MAKE THESE IN BEIJING,RIGHT? Dial tone. I am now slowly hitting my forehead with my tobacco tin. The strike anywhere matches ignite inside. I drop it into my 32oz. coke from the convenience store.

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#2421 - 11/04/01 01:49 AM Re: mercantile woes
Anonymous
Unregistered


first the horse passes out from the nail polish and now you're trying to set the place on fire. I have days even weeks like that. BTW whats up with the date of your post is your computer doing some kind retarded y2k thing

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#2422 - 11/04/01 02:18 AM Re: mercantile woes
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
I noticed the date thing too. I wasn't worried about Y2K a year ago, and Im still not. I still have my first BOB with a can of yellow chiles,soda crackers and peanut butter,A big liter bottle of Mountain Dew, hollow handled survival knife bought on EBAY ( rare and unique, a real man's knife as the ad said, with 131/2 usefull accessories),a box of paper matches and Soldier Of Misfortune back issues for tinder.

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#2423 - 11/04/01 07:59 PM Re: BOB
Anonymous
Unregistered


No first aid kit or sewing kit in your BOB? smile

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#2424 - 11/04/01 08:38 PM Re: BOB
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
This was the kavanaugh Mark 1 BOB. Mountain Dew will flush wounds,chili peppers sterilize anything and peanut butter makes an expediant poultice. In the Rambo knock off there is 6' of monofilament line for fishing and a harpoon for Stellar Sealions which doubled as a sewing kit. The mark 11 kit is now waterproof, thanks to a box of emergency candles that melted. My current, mark 111 unit is under review.

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#2425 - 11/04/01 08:52 PM Re: BOB
jet Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 03/06/01
Posts: 220
LOL!<br><br>Oh man, this is the most entertaining thread I've read on this forum yet!<br><br>Sorry to hear about your woes, Chris, but thanks for the laughs!

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#2426 - 11/10/01 03:18 AM Re: mercantile woes
Anonymous
Unregistered


Chris: What size tin are you looking for? Something like an Altoids tin? If there is a product on the market that uses the same size tin perhaps you could sell just the contents and have the buyer provide their own tin. Some amateur radio kits use this approach.<br><br>Chris

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#2427 - 11/10/01 04:21 AM Re: mercantile woes
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
I thought of that. Kits are a hard sell to the general public anyway. If I accomplish this, it will have to be idiot proof. What ever I fail to do,the user most likely won't bother either. This has been a learnng experince if nothing else. Even if I provide extreme minimal gear ( small liquid compass, sparklite and tinder, strike anywhere matches , bottle of water purification tablets, whistle, small,full tang Mora knife, SAS GEM edition book, fishing supplies, snare wire and minimal first aid) ,my outlay is allready well over $65-$75. As you can see, there are several items left out allready. To make any profit would send this well over the many "survival in a can examples already. Im still noseing out alternatives.

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#2428 - 11/10/01 05:06 AM Re: mercantile woes
Anonymous
Unregistered


My own kit would cost that much or more. I figure my life is worth it Chris. Your kit would be the one others are compared to.

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#2429 - 11/10/01 04:55 PM Re: mercantile woes
Anonymous
Unregistered


Okay. I've looked at Nalgene bottles, rice boxes, etc. for my own kit and finally ended up with a tupperware container for my hiking kit and an altoids tin for my smaller kit. I don't suppose either of my choices would be very marketable but they work for me.<br><br>Chris

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#2430 - 11/10/01 05:26 PM Re: mercantile woes
Neanderthal Offline
newbie member

Registered: 08/29/01
Posts: 130
Loc: Pennsylvania
cthompson01 : www.otterbox.com Nice waterproof containers. Various sizes reasonable prices. Chris : no doubt your kit would set the industry standard. When one considers the expense involved adding to one of the currently available units as well as replacing inferior components, your price might represent a bargain. My only question is size of the market. Are there enough of us out there that take this thing seriously enough and are knowlegeable enough to spend that kind of money ?
_________________________




PROVERBS 21:19

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#2431 - 11/10/01 11:17 PM Re: mercantile woes
Anonymous
Unregistered


I take it this isn't going to be a pocket kit. Good choice on the knife. A little big but you can't beat the quality for the cost

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#2432 - 11/11/01 02:42 AM Re: mercantile woes
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
Yes, It hopefully will be a pocket kit. The SAS GEM book and Mora would obviously be items outside the box, which is how Im trying to think. I've come to the conclusion that only sharp knives and accurate compasses are interesting. The Mora isn't as robust as I d like. The model I hope to include does have a half guard, full tang and sheath. I can get these at a modest price. I figure it's miles ahead of the erzats SAK or cheap folders usually included. Hopefully the GEM ( and plug for EQUIPPED) will move the buyer forward without regrets for my kit's assembly. Meanwhile Im still looking at containers.

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#2433 - 11/12/01 04:38 PM Re: mercantile woes
Anonymous
Unregistered


I admire your pursuit of the idea of marketing a kit. It sounds like you are worried about hitting a price point that typical buyers are going to find acceptable. That's really the essential challenge here. How do you assemble something of the quality and calibre of one of Doug's kits for anything like a reasonable cost of production? It's almost impossible, which is why so many other commercial kits have fallen short. Eventually they have all had to make serious compromises in quality of components, packing methods, etc to meet the challenge of mass production and acceptable pricing. Also remember that retail pricing is typically double the wholesale price (and the wholesale price is marked-up from the cost of production). If it costs $75 dollars in materials, it's going to have to retail for at the very least $200 in a normal distribution channel, unless you direct-market it.<br><br>Right off the bat, if it were me, I would market the kit, the knife, and the survival manual separately. That will allow a buyer who already has a knife and/or a manual to get the kit at the lowest possible price point without wasting money. Also, what two people ever agreed on a knife selection? Even if somebody buys all three, the perceived price point will be lower, because the prices will be considered separately, not together.<br><br>As far as the container goes, I can see that is going to be a challenge to work out. One idea (that is off-the-wall and has some drawbacks), but costs only a few pennies per unit and is waterproof, compact, lightweight and has secondary uses as a water container or as tinder-- a vacuum bag. I have been vacuum packaging my survival items for a while now, and I am very happy with this as a packaging method and I think it has commercial potential. The vacuum pressure really consolidates the items into a solid mass, so there is no shifting of contents and no wasted space or weight. The main drawback is that the contents can't be removed and examined or switched by the purchaser without breaking the seal. It's purly an "open in the event of emergency" package. The clear bag would allow easy viewing and inspection of the contents, though. This would probably be best suited to smaller kits that do not contain expiration items. The problems of cost, supply and getting the perfect size container would be eliminated. It would allow you to get a good assortment of items to market at minimal cost in a ready-to-go package. <br><br>The lack of a rigid container might be seen as a drawback by some, and for those people, you could provide instructions on how to acquire an appropriate tobacco tin (or whatver) and possibly even market that as a separate item if or when you can get them. This would probably be an acceptable solution to that kind of buyer anyway, since the kind of person who would bother to change the container would also probably change or add to or subtract from the contents anyway, necessitating a different sized container.<br><br>Good luck!

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#2434 - 11/12/01 05:15 PM Re: mercantile woes
Chris Kavanaugh Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 02/09/01
Posts: 3824
I find myself eliminating items rather than compromising on quality. I can't see a roll of candy or a bullion cube saving a life. The button compass has become another issue. Aside from just acquiring any, I can't see the value. If a survivor is going to travel ( usually not recommended anyway), something better than "squint, watch the mini needle wobble between N-N/W is needed. So I am looking at small base plate units. I can offer a very basic Mora ( 51/2" rockwell 60 carbon)for @ $ 6 wholesale. Aside from actually possessing a sharp blade,this is the only reliable knife for sparking on natural flints, My THIRD fire source. So thats my plan; increase quality,decrease quantity. If I can hold retail down to a reasonable markup I will make the unit attractive on that illogical level.

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