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Showing posts with label United States. Show all posts
Showing posts with label United States. Show all posts

Bricklink Seller Review - Britton's Brickhouse

It took me a while to ketchup but I finally mustard the strength to finish. I mayo may not continue at this pace but I don't relish the idea much anymore. I've been in a bit of a pickle and the Mrs. wants to lettuce rest. I concur.

Profile
Seller: Britton's Brickhouse
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=rbritton31
Feedback (at time of writing): 2752
Feedback Ratio: 99.9%
Location: United States, West Virginia
Prices: Average

My Order
Order Size: 340 items in 15 lots
Condition: 60% New
Shipping Charge: Actual which includes tracking
Other: no extra charges
Final Cost per Part: $0.06

Timeline
Order Date: Apr 4
Invoice Date: Apr 4
Payment Date: Apr 4
Shipping Date: Apr 6
Delivery Date: Apr 10

Order Details
Why this store: Needed about 100 of a specific part. Seller was one of very few who had it at a good price with reasonable terms and other things I needed as well.
Packaging: All lots individually baggied then placed in a Duncan Hines cake mix box. Brilliant!
Communication: none
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: none

Recommendation
Some fun tidbits sitting in the corners. I got some of the single piece molded Bionicle minifigs because why not. They were less than a quarter each and just helps build my collection of interesting LEGO bits.

Bricklink Seller Review - Recycled Brick

The final push. Full steam ahead and damn the torpedoes! Ain't nothing gonna stop me, not even a piece priced out of my comfort zone. When it gets close to go time, nothing else matters. Git 'er dun at all costs. I suppose that's the benefit of being the last seller to a convention builder who is frantically finishing. Twice the price? Whatever, I gotta have it and this one's got it! Hmm, might need these and these and these. Not enough of those, I'll buy something similar and see which I like best. Yeah. Poor timing is one buyer's loss and another seller's gain. Not that I'm bitter at all. Hey, it was me who got lazy until the end. I'm just glad someone had my back.

Profile
Seller: Recycled Brick
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=RecycledBrick
Feedback (at time of writing): 2684
Feedback Ratio: 99.92% positive (two neutrals ever)
Location: United States, California
Prices: Average

My Order
Order Size: 115 items, 35 lot
Condition: 76% Used
Shipping Charge: Actual which is pretty amazing for a California seller.
Other: none
Final Cost per Part: $0.21

Timeline
Order Date: Feb 16
Invoice Date: Feb 17
Payment Date: Feb 17
Shipping Date: Feb 17
Delivery Date: Feb 22

Order Details
Why this store: This was the second frantic final order before Bricks Cascade. Plus there were a lot of neat parts to finish some older sets.
Packaging: Parts cordoned smartly into zip baggies then gathered and mummified in bubble wrap, then in a bubble mailer. Business card included.
Communication: polite
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: missing one Modulex brick which was inconsequential. Seller chose to refund plus send a variant in its place.

Recommendation
Notable because of the exact shipping and no fees for a California seller. Something about sellers from that state results in a large percentage of them putting a fat thumb on the shipping scale. This seller also has Modulex which is a fun addition to any order and rare for a US seller. Great communication, selection and speed puts this on my favorites list.

Bricklink Seller Review - Plastic Packrats Palace

Tell it like it is. Call it what it is. Some of us pomp it up, others downplay. If it's a spade, call it a spade. Wait, is that gardening or cards? Because if we're talking cards, I'm not telling you anything. But if it's gardening, that's easy. Spade, shovel, wheelbarrow. Seeds down, plants up. I like to make my gardening as easy as possible. Drop the seeds, let nature water, eat what comes up. If anything else tries to eat it before I get to, exclude that beastie. If it wins, dispatch it. I'm not about to let my not so hard earned lettuce get eaten by a little dirt dweller.

Profile
Seller: Plastic Packrats Palace
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=Plastic_Packrat
Feedback (at time of writing): 1274
Feedback Ratio: 99.92% positive (one neutral ever)
Location: United States, Minnesota
Prices: Average or less

My Order
Order Size: 341 items, 38 lot
Condition: 94% Used
Shipping Charge: Minimum $3.50. So up to $1 surcharge for smaller orders.
Other: none
Final Cost per Part: $0.24

Timeline
Order Date: Feb 16
Invoice Date: Feb 18
Payment Date: Feb 18
Shipping Date: Feb 20
Delivery Date: Feb 24

Order Details
Why this store: I don't remember now but this was a frantic final order before Bricks Cascade. Plus there were a lot of neat parts to finish some older sets.
Packaging: Tall ziplocs sealed as lots were put in, nestled in large bubble wrap, all in a box. Packing slip included.
Communication: none
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: none

Recommendation
Yep, it's another Bricklink store. Ordered pieces, paid some money, got my parts. Timeframe took a little longer than most other stores with a 2 day response time after ordering and paying. Don't go here if you're in a hurry. Otherwise it's decently stocked with newerish stuff.

Bricklink Seller Review - Everything But the Kragle

Cover your assets. What do you do when you screw up? Hide your head in the sand? Look the other way? Find a rug? Owning up is hard because of the cost. But how do you measure that cost? There's the monetary cost. Then the return customer cost. Social equity and confidence also play in. One mistake could end up costing not just 100% of the cost, but 10,000% if you play your cards wrong. You can always improve your game. And when you do you can reap 10,000% of the investment.

Profile
Seller: Everything But the Kragle
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=paulkremer
Feedback (at time of writing): 291
Feedback Ratio: 100% positive
Location: USA, North Dakota
Prices: About average

My Order
Order Size: 113 items, 18 lot
Condition: 94% New
Shipping Charge: States no handling fees but I was charged an extra 40c above postage.
Other: none
Final Cost per Part: $0.15

Timeline
Order Date: Feb 6
Invoice Date: Feb 6
Payment Date: Feb 6
Shipping Date: Feb 8
Delivery Date: Feb 14

Order Details
Why this store: Specific printed tiles for a specific project
Packaging: Almost every lot separated, used parts baggies labeled, all in a Bubble mailer
Part condition: Very Good
Communication: Polite
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: Shorted me the ONE part I came in for. Irony? Sorted it all out with pleasant and humorous communication to boot. See, it can be done!

Recommendation
The extended shipping time has to do with when the initial package was sent compared to when I received the missing parts. Since they were tiny tiles I suggested how they could send it via letter post instead of spending another $2.60 for three tiny parts. They were pleased to do so. Well sure, wouldn't you save over 75% on a mistake if you could? Just one of my many tips on this blog and in my ebook. As for the store itself, sure, I'd have no problem going back.

Bricklink Seller Review - Kaye's Creations

The secret menu. Ever been to In-n-Out? Yeah, what's the deal with the sparse menu? Is this all there is? I don't see what all the fuss is. Ah, sounds like you don't know about the (not so) secret menu. Here you can find choices galore that you've never heard of before. I'll bet you can even mix it up some more off of the top of your head. The point, my friend, is that the answer to an unasked question is always "no".

Profile
Seller: Kaye's Creations
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=Kaye
Feedback (at time of writing): 660
Feedback Ratio: 98% positive
Location: USA, California
Prices: About average

My Order
Order Size: 4 items, 1 lot
Condition: 100% New
Shipping Charge: Simplified as stated, will also honor reasonable requests
Other: none
Final Cost per Part: $0.50

Timeline
Order Date: Feb 1
Invoice Date: Feb 1
Payment Date: Feb 1
Shipping Date: Feb 3
Delivery Date: Feb 6

Order Details
Why this store: A small bulk amount of sticker sheets from 76039 to dress up my Dag Bricks.
Packaging: Inside a folded piece of paper, then an envelope with a first class stamp
Part condition: Very Good
Communication: Polite
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: none

Recommendation
Without any other parts that I needed at the moment, I asked about first class envelopes for a few sticker sheets. Since I'm writing this post, you can be sure that the communication was positive and agreeable. Great service without the upcharges that many other California stores seem to apply, I highly recommend.

Bricklink Seller Review - A Lot of Bricks

I've talked about store names that have to do with the inventory itself. Or with quantifying their inventory. Some of these are very clever while others are straightforward. But how obscure could you get? Maybe call your store Sundry? Plethora? Overkill? As long as it's true. But those sound way better than Marginal, Limited and Sparse. I suppose in marketing that there are some things that matter. Would you rather buy from "Crapload of Bricks" or "Highly Curated Supply"? Hmm...



Profile
Seller: A Lot of Bricks
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=pdx1rdr
Feedback (at time of writing): 30084 (One of only EIGHT members with a dark tan feedback brick!)
Feedback Ratio: 99.95% positive
Location: USA, Oregon
Prices: About average

My Order
Order Size: 354 items, 39 lots
Condition: 70% Used
Shipping Charge: Listed in table, approximately electronic postage plus $1. International fees seem to be off.
Other: $6 order minimum
Final Cost per Part: $0.12

Timeline
Order Date: Jan 12
Invoice Date: Jan 13
Payment Date: Jan 13
Shipping Date: Jan 13
Delivery Date: Jan 15

Order Details
Why this store: Good selection of various deco tiles. Also some other parts in long sought after quantities.
Packaging: Lots mixed into baggies with a little separation. Bubble mailer.
Part condition: Very Good
Communication: Polite
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: User name has 'pdx' but they're not in Portland. Bugger, oh well.

Recommendation
With a huge selection, decent prices and lots of experience this is definitely a keystone seller on Bricklink. I prefer stores that have unique little parts stashed away in corners looking to be found. There's not a ton of that here but there are plenty of used and older parts in the mix. Thought the transaction was fairly unmemorable it's worth another visit.

Bricklink Seller Review - A Brick World

I'm sure you've got a friend on Facebook who posts nothing but clickbait and memes on their wall, maybe even tags you in them. I don't, I've unfriended all those people. For instance, did you know that if you watch the Original Trilogy you can swap out "the force" for "the pants" with hilarious results! May the pants be with you! Ha! lulz! I was reminded of this when I started subconciously doing another swap out and realizing eerie similarities. It starts out. "I'm a bricky girl, in a bricky wo-o-orld..."



Profile
Seller: A Brick World
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=abrickworld
Feedback (at time of writing): 11283
Feedback Ratio: 99.96% positive (1 negative ever)
Location: USA, Georgia (peachy)
Prices: Above average

My Order
Order Size: 331 items, 18 lots
Condition: 100% New
Shipping Charge: Actual plus 50c to 90c
Other: $6 order minimum
Final Cost per Part: $0.12

Timeline
Order Date: Dec 31
Invoice Date: Dec 31
Payment Date: Dec 31
Shipping Date: Dec 31
Delivery Date: Jan 4

Order Details
Why this store: Who else has (had) mass amounts of dark pink wedges?
Packaging: Lots mixed into three baggies, all in cardboard box. Apparently they didn't have a bubble mailer big enough. I checked and a 6x9" just didn't quite make it. The box increased the shipping by 2 more ounces.
Part condition: Very Good
Communication: Polite
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: Uses the term "legos" in their Drive Thru notice and "Lego's" on their business card. :-)
Issues: none

Recommendation
Prices were a bit high. Even with a 25% discount. At regular price I don't think I'd shop here. But the selection was good and the discount made prices reasonable. Mostly. There were some things I wanted that even at 25% were higher than average. So I passed. Coupled with the handling/packaging/whatevering charge and liberal lot mixing I'll likely not be back. Sorry Terminator.

Brick Owl Seller Review - Genteel Frog

Words that sound like other words and maybe even came from those words and almost mean the same thing but don't. Shouldn't it be "Gentle"? Like Gentlefrog? I guess it depends on the subtletly you want to convey. Or how discrete you are. Or is that discreet? Do you supply material or materiel? One might get you a government contract. But you'll have to be both discrete and discreet. Being gentle may not get you very far, being genteel will get you further and being a Gentile is most likely irrelevant.



Profile
Seller: Genteel Frog
Store: http://genteelfrog.brickowl.com/
Feedback (at time of writing): 203
Feedback Ratio: 100% positive
Location: USA, California
Prices: About 6 month average.

My Order
Order Size: 147 pieces, 14 lots
Condition: 100% New
Shipping Charge: High. Starts at $3.50 for first class, quickly goes to $4.50. That includes a $1.50 handling on top of electronic rate postage
Extra Fees: none
Other: none
Final Cost per Part: $0.16

Timeline
Order Date: Dec 31
Invoice Date: Dec 31 (Instant Checkout)
Payment Date: Dec 31
Shipping Date: Jan 2
Delivery Date: Jan 5

Order Details
Why this store: Started with a seed part, was the last remaining store who could continue providing items I wanted.
Packaging: Lots combined in 3 larger baggies, wrapped in bubbles then in a Tyvek bubble mailer (double bubbles)
Part condition: Very good
Communication: polite and responsive
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: None

Recommendation
Shipping charges differed by a bit between BrickOwl and Bricklink. When I asked they stated laziness at updating the Bricklink prices in light of the upcoming USPS changes. I could have rebuilt my cart at Bricklink to save a little in shipping. Instead I reduced a few items from my cart until I got back down to the lowest shipping amount and called it good. Prices are reasonable, selection is reasonable, service is reasonable, shipping is excessive. Sure, maybe I'll try again for some other items but only if I can get the shipping to be within 15% of the order value.

Bricklink Seller Review - C & N BUILDERS SUPPLY

Do you know your TLAs? Even harder and less sexy are 2LAs. Seems I've run into a small string of them. I wonder if anyone has ever tried to figure out which ones aren't used? I bet you'd have some great ones out there that could be real money makers. But they should be relevant both in long hand and short hand. My mother tries to make TLAs out of everything. "You're the WGD!" she'll say. "What?" "A BLB!" Is that a sandwich? "TD" "OK mom, stop!"



Profile
Seller: C & N BUILDERS SUPPLY
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=cjoh73852
Feedback (at time of writing): 553
Feedback Ratio: 99.6% positive
Location: United States, Michigan
Prices: About average

My Order
Order Size: 359 items, 53 lots
Condition: 74% New
Shipping Charge: Stated as actual
Other: $1 fee for orders under $25, $2 for orders under $10. Also, lot limits.
Final Cost per Part: $0.08

Timeline
Order Date: Dec 17
Invoice Date: Dec 17
Payment Date: Dec 17
Shipping Date: Dec 21
Delivery Date: Dec 24

Order Details
Why this store: I don't even remember anymore. Some part seeded a buying spree.
Packaging: Random bagging of parts and lots. All secured in a large ziploc, wrapped in bubble wrap then placed in a Tyvek mailer.
Part condition: Very Good
Communication: Prompt and respectful
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: Made their own bubble mailer. Typical?
Issues: none

Recommendation
Lot limits are in place of $1 per lot or risk unilateral cancellation. I had a bunch of stuff in my cart when I saw this and so mentioned to the seller that I would like to purchase a large lot order but wasn't hitting the $1/lot limit. I emptied out lots when it was feasible but still couldn't attain their standard. Theey weren't too worried about it and mostly just wanted to avoid large orders with one item from as many lots. Communication is key! My order was processed without a hitch. On top of that, shipping was free due to a promo that was being run. Otherwise they appear to charge actual ELECTRONIC rate. Amazing.

Bricklink Seller Review - PJ'S BRICK EMPORIUM

One nice thing about being known as the AFOL geek amongst your friends is the advice (solicited and un) that you can offer. I had a friend who wanted a retired set. He only knew to check Ebay and Amazon but wasn't willing to spend the $30+ there. Using my LEGO Ninja skills I checked around the LEGOwebs and found a nice complete used set for a nice price. Extra finder's fees were offered but of course I refused. How could you charge your friends for stuff like this?



Profile
Seller: PJ'S BRICK EMPORIUM
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=pjwladybug
Feedback (at time of writing): 1150
Feedback Ratio: 99.9% positive (1 neutral ever)
Location: United States, Connecticut
Prices: About average

My Order
Order Size: 25 items, 7 lots
Condition: 84% Used
Shipping Charge: Stated as actual plus 75c packaging fee. I was charged a flat priority rate with no excess.
Other: $1 minimum order
Final Cost per Part: $0.05

Timeline
Order Date: Dec 17
Invoice Date: Dec 17
Payment Date: Dec 17
Shipping Date: Dec 18
Delivery Date: Dec 21

Order Details
Why this store: Used set in complete condition.
Packaging: Set well packed with pieces separated into brnad new baggies by color.
Part condition: Very Good
Communication: Prompt and respectful
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: none

Recommendation
Store terms are brief and straightforward. Seller was very polite and helpful when I inquired. No surprises. After getting a quote by physically bringing items to the post office, I was told I would only be charged a certain amount and seller would cover extra. Nice touch. :-) Everything arrived beautifully and in good time. While part selection was low on what I would usually order, I would not hesitate to shop here again!

Bricklink Seller Review - Heart Bricker

As a child of the 80's there are certain phrases that trigger certain memories. Of course my fellow 30-40 year old AFOL's may also be thinking of Dream Makers and Love Takers right now. Hit me with your best shot, what's your store's name inspired from? Business can be a battlefield but come fire or ice we're all looking for a stranger to treat us right. At least we can be a temporary hero to someone who has anxiety over their next order. (I worked in seven the hard way, can you find the bonus?)


Profile
Seller: Heart Bricker
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=Heartbricker
Feedback (at time of writing): 7245
Feedback Ratio: 99.9% positive (1 neutral ever)
Location: United States, New Jersey
Prices: About average

My Order
Order Size: 586 items, 145 lots
Condition: 100% New
Shipping Charge: Stated as exact. Charges counter rate and then prints cheaper online label. A nice built in ~90c handling fee!
Other: $1 for orders under $10, $2 for orders under $5. Extra $2 for overseas orders.
Final Cost per Part: $0.05

Timeline
Order Date: Dec 8
Invoice Date: Dec 8
Payment Date: Dec 8
Shipping Date: Dec 9
Delivery Date: Dec 12

Order Details
Why this store: Good assortment of several needed parts at decent prices. Decent shipping.
Packaging: Small lots packed together, larger lots packed by themselves. All in a larger Tyvek bag and Tyvek mailer
Part condition: Very Good
Communication: Prompt and respectful
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none (but uses gloves and washes hands frequently when packing orders...)
Issues: Charged 13oz rate for a 12oz package

Recommendation
Parts and prices are very good. Selection is phenomenol at over 1 million parts. I actually had to put some stuff back before checking out since I didn't have the money. And it wasn't frivolous stuff either! That's the minor inconvenience of running a debt free hobby on my end. When I asked the seller about the discrepancy in the postage rates they were quick and friendly in their response. They explained that payment via mobile does not always allow them to take advantage of the electronic rate. They were happy to refund the $1.10 difference between the invoiced and actual shipping. I unveiled paypal.com/shipnow to them to get the electronic rate on every order and they were all fired up. It's a starfish thing.

Bricklink Seller Review - Timeless Toy Bricks

It's a trifecta! All three of these words nail the essence of what this about. Popular Toy Bricks wouldn't have the same ring. It may even give the impression of being temporal. Timeless Plastic Bricks would feel sort of industrial or impersonal. Timeless Toy Blocks would make me think of wood. When avoiding the trade name for legal purposes, we tend to land more in the 'plastic' and 'brick' category. So lots of you have stores with names like "So-and-so's Plastic Bricks" or just "Somebody's Bricks" (guilty here). But it's true. What would you rather call them?


Profile
Seller: Timeless Toy Bricks
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=edk
Feedback (at time of writing): 7245
Feedback Ratio: 99.8% positive (somewhat snarky responses to the 11 non-positives)
Location: United States, Michigan
Prices: Above average

My Order
Order Size: 63 items, 15 lots
Condition: 86% Used
Shipping Charge: Stated as exact plus $1 domestic, $2.50 int'l. Priority higher.
Other: $1 for orders under $10
Final Cost per Part: $0.18

Timeline
Order Date: Nov 29 (third and final batch put through)
Invoice Date: Nov 29
Payment Date: Nov 29
Shipping Date: Nov 30
Delivery Date: Dec 2

Order Details
Why this store: Announced a blowout of old General Mills racers in the forum. One bulk lot.
Packaging: Small lots packed together, larger lots packed by themselves. All in a larger bag and Tyvek mailer
Part condition: Good
Communication: Quick and brief
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: None

Recommendation
The proprietor was very gracious in letting me remove some items that I had ordered and adding a total of two more batches to my original grab. The removal is not something I test often but most sellers have beeen amenable. A few state in their store terms that they won't allow it. The premium on Priority shipping seems a little high so I curated my order to come in at 13oz and stay within the first class range. Overall selection is very good even if the prices feel a touch high.

Bricklink Seller Review - Cleator's Bricks

If you're a seller, what sort of market factors determine your longevity? Obviously determination and mental stamina to maintain a position for a long time. But other things as well. If you have employees you want them to be stress free. You want to make wise business decisions and try not to spend more than you make. Your pricing structure plays into this. Besides supply and demand you've also got acquisition. Then there's cost of processing. Of course, it's always wise to turn a profit. But it's also wise to stay near the market average unless you can justify a different bracket and sustain that level. How long can you sustain it? I'm always jealous of long time sellers with great feedback who can continually turn a profit with low prices. In the case of this business model, 2 out of 3 IS bad.



Profile
Seller: Cleator's Bricks
Store: https://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=thecleator
Feedback (at time of writing): 685
Feedback Ratio: 99.9% positive (one neutral for slow shipping back in 2013)
Location: USA, Georgia
Prices: Below average

My Order
Order Size: 435 items, 8 lots
Condition: 100% New
Shipping Charge: Exact electronic rate plus $0.50. Very sound.
Other: none
Final Cost per Part: $0.04

Timeline
Order Date: Oct 1
Invoice Date: Oct 2
Payment Date: Oct 2
Shipping Date: Oct 3
Delivery Date: Oct 5

Order Details
Why this store: Searching for a needed part in large quantity, seller had it for a lower than average price. Another needed lot in large quantity as well.
Packaging: All lots in their own baggies, loose in a bubble mailer.
Part condition: Perfect
Communication: Great!
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: none

Recommendation
Initially I got a fairly high shipping quote so I inquired the reason. Box instead of bubble mailer? Apparently the seller accidentally confused me with another one of his buyer's and corrected the problem in short order. He reissued a new invoice and I had my package within 3 days. Just for kicks I audited the order and found all weights and shipping prices to be right on the new invoice. I see no reason why this seller shouldn't become an anchor store and reach 20,000 feedback at some point. The only question is how soon?

Bricklink Seller Review - Constructibles LLC

Have you ever heard of a Honda Insight? I'll give you a hint, it's not a motorcycle or lawnmower. It's a long standing competition to the Prius. So why haven't you heard if it? Probably marketing. Is it worse than a Prius? Not at all! Was it late to the market? No, in fact the Prius FOLLOWED the Insight into the market. The issue came mostly from reviews that were likely worse than they should have been. But apparently if you're 90% of the benchmark, you're nothing.



Profile
Seller: Constructibles LLC, formerly Dad's AFOL
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=DadsAFOL
Feedback (at time of writing): 20076
Feedback Ratio: 99.9% positive
Location: USA, California
Prices: Above average

My Order
Order Size: 1348 items, 5 lots
Condition: 100% New
Shipping Charge: Seems to be exact. Bonus points for their own shipping estimator and checkout!
Extra Fees: 99c for orders under $5, 49c for orders under $10.
Other: none
Final Cost per Part: $0.12

Timeline
Order Date: Sep 24
Invoice Date: Sep 25
Payment Date: Sep 25
Shipping Date: Sep 26
Delivery Date: Sep 28

Order Details
Why this store: Mentioned a 20% off sale in the forum AND had two lots that I desperately needed.
Packaging: All lots in their own baggies, loose in a bubble mailer.
Part condition: Perfect
Communication: Great!
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: One lot shorted

Recommendation
For the longest time I avoided shopping at Dad's AFOL. I'd browse the store occasionally but never commit to buying. One of the biggest issues was the multiple lots of the same item. It seems like Jason has finally figured a way to consolidate his lots and still keep his accounting correct. Another issue has been the partial attention paid to part variants. Since his policy and mine don't agree, I'm not willing to take a chance and buy parts when I'm not guaranteed a variant that I need. Third has been the price. It seems like store prices have increased since I've kept an eye on the store. Even at 20% off, several lots were still priced above average. Yet he must be doing something right to have gotten to 20,000 feedback, have employees, and pay for his own backend programming. Maybe it's the backend programmer that paved the way for the other benchmarks.

I could take or leave this store. The prices are high ("But we offer outstanding customer service!"). The customer service and packaging were fabulous but no better than dozens of other stores I've shopped at. In fact, I've even gotten little bits of candy, stickers, and surprise parts from other sellers. I thought it humorous too that my first order was missing pieces. Not that that should have any overall bearing but it certainly didn't ice whatever cake there was. If you like them you like them. But do your own diligence on whether or not this should be your go to shop.

Bricklink Seller Review - Quarky Bricks LLC

What's your favorite flavor, strange or charm? Does your strange go up or your charm go down? That might make your quarks quirky. I don't necessarily like the fact that the color of quarky bricks can be arbitrary. Although it would make for a dynamic build, especially with a color like anti-green. There's some beauty in that truth.



Profile
Seller: Quarky Bricks LLC
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=QuarkyLLC
Feedback (at time of writing): 203
Feedback Ratio: 100% positive
Location: USA, Virginia
Prices: Below average

My Order
Order Size: 729 items, 11 lots
Condition: 100% New
Shipping Charge: Exact counter rate postage
Extra Fees: $1.50 for orders under $10. $2.50 extra for international orders under $10.
Other: 6% sales tax charged to fellow Virginians
Final Cost per Part: $0.03

Timeline
Order Date: Jul 15
Invoice Date: Jul 15
Payment Date: Jul 15
Shipping Date: Jul 15
Delivery Date: Jul 18

Order Details
Why this store: Made a sale announcement in the forum and had enough 3L Technic pins at a penny to make an order worthwhile.
Packaging: All lots in their own baggies
Part condition: Perfect
Communication: Quick
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: None
Issues: None

Recommendation
Invoicing happened in less than 30 minutes. That tells me that the seller is like me, has learned to accurately estimate based on the weights of his packing materials. While he does have his store scale turned off, he was quick to reply when I asked what my total order weight was. He told me about 10.3oz. But like other sellers, he charges retail rates and then makes profit from the postage by purchasing it online. Still not pleased with that practice. Might as well add a 50c packing charge and be more upfront about it.  When I received it it came in at 9.5oz. At least the label said 11oz and I wasn't taken for another 20-ish cents. Maybe the ol' estimator is off a bit. All in all a good store with some room for better shipping efficiency.

Bricklink Seller Review - Melissas New and Used Bricks

Buying has been very low lately. Mostly I'm getting to be able to pull from my own stuff, but I'm also having fewer incoming orders which means less money to but other people's stuff. I think it's the time of year. I HOPE it's the time of the year. My inventory has never been higher and I'm even running a 10-15% sale on most parts. But some sellers run their stores a bit differently.



Profile
Seller: Melissas New and Used Bricks
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=Melissa
Feedback (at time of writing): 1217
Feedback Ratio: 98.9% positive (a few old negs and neutrals)
Location: USA, Washington
Prices: Around average

My Order
Order Size: 18 items, 12 lots
Condition: 89% Used
Shipping Charge: Exact over the counter postage. Actually goes to the PO.
Extra Fees: $1 for packaging, +$1 for rush orders
Other: $5 min buy
Final Cost per Part: $0.66

Timeline
Order Date: Mar 28
Invoice Date: Apr 3
Payment Date: Apr 3
Shipping Date: Apr 3
Delivery Date: Apr 6

Order Details
Why this store: Mentioned in the forum that all inventory was 50% off. Clearing out inventory for a fresh start. Another buyer had beaten me there but left a few little pieces including a trans-blue Emporer Palpatine microfig for only $3.60!
Packaging: Duplo mostly stacked, 11 tiny parts in a big plastic Wal-mart shopping bag.
Part condition: Fine
Communication: Speeling erros.
Feedback left: None, not worth the negative, not worth the positive.
Odd telltale signs: Large Wal-mart bag for a handful of tiny parts, mediocre penmanship on the label (Wot, no printing?) Seller is quite concerned to note that her pieces do not get to see light.
Issues: *sigh* none, technically. I got one extra Duplo piece, another marketed as plain actually has a spider (printed) on it.

Recommendation
Don't bother. I can't help but wonder if the inefficiencies make this harder fort he seller than it needs to be. First, seller sent via priority instead of first class because the Duplo pieces were "bulky". Hmm. I loaded my order into an 8x10 envelope just fine and it weighed in under 7oz. Since the seller charges exact shipping (and goes to the PO) this charge should have been around $2.80 (plus I'll assume an extra $0.90 for buying a tracking number plus the assumed $2 for buying a bubble mailer at Wal-mart). Maybe it came out a wash. But having to buy a bubble mailer for every order and physically going to the post office do not give a store a competitive edge. The only thing that made it worthwhile was the 50% sale. Could definitely benefit from my upcoming book,"Insider's Secrets to Funding Your LEGO® Hobby". Pro-tip: Get a $40 printer and buy your bubble mailers in bulk.

Corporate Seller Review - Target

While I'm still waiting for an overseas order to arrive (and unable to order from Bricklink until they revert their last "fix" fixed), I thought it might be interesting to review some of the more corporate places I order from.

The links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link. Call me a sellout if you wish. :-O

Target has been one of my top three choices for orders from faceless corporations, and probably even in my top two. Maybe even my top. The others are LEGO S@H and Toys'R'Us. Toys'R'Us is more of an accident. I don't order more from S@H probably because of their limits. Of course other retailers have limits too but the S@H limits just send me to Target.com. More likely Target.com could be my top choice because they place more items on sale than S@H does. S@H seems much more cautious with their sales. The only drawback to Target is that they don't include promo items to get you to buy. Not that I've ever seen at least.

I like ordering online. I don't need to physically inspect the LEGO items, I already know what I'm getting. It's not like a blender or an ink pen. I can use any of the online databases for more information on the parts included (which is really why I'm buying). I don't have to get out of my chair, go to the store, deal with other shoppers and over zealous associates (How are you today sir!!!) or drive to the other 30 Targets in my metro area looking for more items. Purchases are brought to my doorstep within a week or less. In a stroke of marketing genius, someone decided to make your packing slip downright cheerful. "hello! Let's do this again sometime." (sic). It's not pushy, but friendly. My orders have always been correct, complete and unmolested.


The only drawback might be in the shipping, the less than instant gratification. Amazon is largely responsible for the biggest experiment in social engineering ever, the Death of Patience. Of course I have options. But paying for express shipping only cuts into my profits way more than several days' wait ever will. So I'm happy to stay in my house. (Not my mum's basement, let's get that one straight right away).

Target probably ranks as my number one choice because they offer their RedCard. A corporate credit card in and of itself is nothing special, almost something to avoid. The marketers at Target realize this and they have upped the ante. Not only do you get a reasonable finance charge (0% if you pay it off every month), but the bonuses of being a RedCard holder are much more. The biggest perk is that the RedCard gives you 5% off every purchase, online and in store. Plus there's free shipping on every purchase, an extended return policy, and they'll donate up to 1% of your purchase to the school of your choice. It's for the kids! In return, you just give them your sales information so they can profile you up the wazoo. I don't think it works because I don't get LEGO coupons from them to encourage me to come shop more.

The only real complaint I have about the RedCard is the online interface. Logging in is decidedly more difficult than other sites. It's only one of two sites that Firefox cannot auto-fill my credentials for (and I think the other one fixed that). They also don't allow you to reuse one of your last 17 or so passwords. At least the symbol is not required.

For US dwellers, I'd recommend Target. For Canadians, sorry man, that experiment failed.


If you have complaints about Target, please redirect them to some sort of consumer protection agency where more people will see them. If you have complaints about me or my blog, well, post them here I guess.

Brickowl Seller Review - ALLEGORY

I had almost forgotten about the quote until years later I saw shirt with a Raptor and the words "Clever Girl". Now it's stuck in my head like a meme. As you may know, The LEGO Company is very protective of the use of their name in any product but their own. Even unintended uses like palegoats.com will raise their suspicions. While it's not a URL (that I know of) ALLEGORY plays the clever girl card with the use of the name inside another common word, using all caps nonetheless. Of course the caps make sense because the proprietor uses the letter tiles from the Business Card set to create his logo. A step too far, IMO, is further using extraneous characters and fonts on the shipping label as seen below. Yes, the point is still taken, but is your service good enough?


Profile
Seller: ALLEGORY
Store: http://allegory.brickowl.com/
Feedback (at time of writing): 2248
Feedback Ratio: 100% positive
Location: USA, North Carolina
Prices: Higher than 6 month average.

My Order
Order Size: 305 pieces, 19 lots (freaking huge)
Condition: 100% New
Shipping Charge: USPS e- rates + $0.20
Extra Fees: none
Other: $4.95 minimum lot average
Final Cost per Part: $0.11

Timeline
Order Date: Feb 26
Invoice Date: Feb 26 (Instant Checkout)
Payment Date: Feb 26
Shipping Date: Feb 27
Delivery Date: Mar 2

Order Details
Why this store: Needed a few more parts for a commission. Had most of them.
Packaging: All lots in their own baggie, packed extremely well into a larger baggie, then in a bubble mailer. I'm guessing seller was used to meeting RoyalPost dimensional limits when he lived in the UK.
Part condition: Very good
Communication: Very good
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: Font style happy. :-)
Issues: None

Recommendation
The prices are a touch high and the shipping has only a base fee added but the service and communication are phenomenal. Phenomenal! Graham is very customer oriented and doesn't skimp. When I ordered and cleared out an entire lot, I got an extra part on one or two of those lots.

Bricklink Seller Review - abrew's e-bricks

Brain chemicals are a lot of fun to play with. I'm talking naturally, of course. You can accidentally or even purposely increase your levels of serotonin, adrenaline and dopamine. While you can obviously use other chemicals to do this (such as ethanol, cannibas, or caffeine), you can change your circumstances, or have them changed to accomplish similar results. Push down harder on the accelerator and watch your adrenaline rise.  Beat your previous high score in Galaga and watch your serotonin rise. Dopamine, well, I don't know how it works. Anyway, the point is that I was so excited to build that I forgot to take a picture of my order.

[I'm so embarrassed. I was in such a thrill]
[to get building that I never took a snapshot]
[of the envelope and packing. Sorry abrew!]

Profile
Seller: abrew's e-bricks
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/store.asp?p=ricka
Feedback (at time of writing): 13111
Feedback Ratio: 99.92% positive (a few old neutrals)
Location: USA, Colorado
Prices: Around average

My Order
Order Size: 236 items, 19 lots
Condition: 100% New
Shipping Charge: States exact postage. I was charged $3.22 (exact counter rate) for 8oz of commercial base rate postage ($2.59). Deceptive.
Extra Fees: None except for the postage racket
Other: $3 min buy
Final Cost per Part: $0.11

Timeline
Order Date: Feb 9
Invoice Date: Feb 9
Payment Date: Feb 9
Shipping Date: Feb 11
Delivery Date: Feb 13

Order Details
Why this store: Something about arches and bricks and a few loose ends.
Packaging: All packed well in baggies, then in a bubble mailer.
Part condition: As stated
Communication: Professional
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: none

Recommendation
Even though the order was packed well and all parts were present and nice, the postage thing really gets me. To say that exact postage is charged but then mean two different things by it is not appropriate. Did I agree to the postage? Yes. Should I be done with it and move on? Yes. I just like to be a little more holistic and not encourage sleight of hand. While I won't avoid this store in the future, I won't purposely seek it out either.

Bricklink Seller Review - The Mitten Brick Company

So I'm guessing parts aren't packed by clad hand.  Maybe it's really cold there?  Maybe there's a custom design that looks like handwear?  Or maybe there's a geographical feature at play here.  And if you know that much, you'll probably know about da U.P. and da trolls.  Obviously this guy's a troll.  Because he lives below the bridge.  Ah well, if you think I just insulted him, you're obviously not a Michigander or a Cheesehead, or know anything about your FIBs.  Thankfully, I have a buddy that's kept me informed about all of those.  Me, I'm just a hippie tree huggin' buffalo huntin' Oregonian.



Profile
Seller: The Mitten Brick Company
Store: http://www.bricklink.com/memberInfo.asp?u=mittenbricks
Feedback (at time of writing): 262
Feedback Ratio: 99.6% positive (one neutral from someone using it is a communication portal)
Location: USA, Michigan
Prices: Around average

My Order
Order Size: 576 items, 33 lots
Condition: 99% New
Shipping Charge: Three tiers for domestic shipping, plus good (still unstated) priority rates
Extra Fees: None, worked into reasonable shipping tiers
Other: Min buy $5
Final Cost per Part: $0.08

Timeline
Order Date: Jan 16
Invoice Date: Jan 16
Payment Date: Jan 16
Shipping Date: Jan 20
Delivery Date: Jan 22

Order Details
Why this store: Large light bley plates drew me in, good prices kept me
Packaging: Lots separated or combined well, all in a Tyvek bubble mailer.  Awesome logo sticker on the outside.  Also included a little card and some LEGO stickers.
Part condition: Very nice
Communication: Very friendly and prompt
Feedback left: Positive
Odd telltale signs: none
Issues: Might have been an extra tiny piece.  I lost count.

Recommendation
The Mitten Brick Company combines old-fashioned service with fresh new pieces.  That and they have nice business bling. The stickers are a nice touch.  Only two other sellers have done this and I almost remember who they were. :-)  This is definitely someone to come back to.