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Merry Christmas from Action Figure Supplies!

It’s that time of year again when we gather round the TV and eat our own body weight in mince pies (if we’re lucky enough to be able to afford food and electricity this year!) and we’d like to take this opportunity to say thank you for your custom this year, either through this site or our ebay store.

We started the year with a lot of ideas and moving the site to a new software system back in June was part of those plans, along with writing at least one blog post a month. But here we are, just before Christmas, writing our second blog of the year! However we did achieve at least one of our goals, adding a new or improved 3D printed reproduction part to the site every month. Of course we have plans for many more to be added next year and we’ll certainly feature them in this blog. We also have plans for bigger projects so watch this space or our Twitter or Instagram accounts. We plan to be a lot more active next year on all our channels.

It’s been a strange old year, we’ve had some great highlights such a new Action Man figures, the 40th anniversary of Action Force and some amazing stuff from fellow fans to celebrate that milestone and some truly mindblowing products like the new Roboskull on the horizon. But there’s been some challenges too. Like all of us we’ve seen the cost of everything increase this year and thankfully we took some steps earlier in the year that’s helped us survive, such as changing our site’s hosting and software to something more cost effective. We also stopped buying in new stock from manufacturers such as Hasbro and Mattel. These lines were unfortunately proving to be no longer cost effective for us, especially as Hasbro opened their own ebay store and expanded Hasbro Pulse to Europe and the UK and undercutting nearly everybody who sold their toys in the past. I expect Mattel to follow suit shortly and fully embrace the direct-to-consumer model that Hasbro are using. We’re still going to stock some new lines such as Action Man but our focus is firmly on vintage toys now, not vintage toy lines.

Action Man Action Soldier 4th Generation

Finally we’d like to say that we’re sticking with Royal Mail for deliveries and we hope the striking Posties get what they’re asking for, they deserve every penny they earn and deserve better working conditions. That isn’t to say the strikes haven’t been inconvenient for us, they have, and the industrial action has had an effect on sales, especially this week in the run up to Christmas. Normally this week is one of our busiest as people buy last minute gifts and need them to arrive by Christmas Eve but this week has been very quiet as Royal Mail strike today and tomorrow, denting that last minute rush. Of course there are several other factors at work, such as the cost of living crisis, that are also contributing to a slowdown in sales so Royal Mail are not totally to blame.

We did, of course, try different couriers for our parcels this year but none were as reliable as Royal Mail. Evri (Hermes) were their usual rubbish selves, failing to turn up to collect parcels 2 days running and failing to communicate any reason why there was no one collecting. In the end we cancelled the labels and went with Royal Mail. Yodel were atrocious and “too busy” to collect from us and our local courier was too lazy to knock on the door when I had a delivery from another company. Twice, as we sat and watched him through the illuminated windows, he unbolted our side gate and left the parcel down the side of the building rather than knocking on the door. He could clearly see we were in the premises to receive the parcels! DPD, also too busy to collect and way too expensive. Anyway, rant over.

We’ll be open between after Christmas to dispatch orders and we hope you have a safe, warm and Merry Christmas and we look forward to helping you add to your vintage toy collections in the New Year!