View Full Version : I have to ask
02-15-2006, 05:31 PM
I have been reading in some other threads, about the Hot Wheels guys. Is there really such a huge demand for Hot Wheels? What excatly are they looking for, that they are there when stores open up. I had no idea there was such a demand for these things, because they are everywhere. (unlike waves of star wars). I am that naive about them? Just was curious what you guys knew about them, not that I am ever going to get into that, I have enough with Star Wars.:whip:
02-15-2006, 05:37 PM
The Hot Wheels guys generally search for any toy that is of value. They don't really collect Hot Wheels they just buy the Treasure Hunt cars and from what I've known of them they sell most everything they buy on eBay or they run a comic shop that jacks the prices up. So if there is a toy that is short packed or tough to find you'll see a Hot Wheels guy close by to get it.
02-15-2006, 06:22 PM
some of them even rent out tables/booths at collectible shows to sell all their cars/figures/mcfarlane sports picks/collectibles. heck, i've even seen some scalpers in the parking lot of my local TRU selling stuff out of the trunks of their cars.
02-15-2006, 06:43 PM
There are a lot of car afficianados out there so it's not surprising to see such high demand for die cast toy cars. From what I understand, there are a lot of short-packed chase cars and different lines to collect. Car collectors probably keep tabs on hot toys from other lines and grab 'em if they find them. They can use them for trades or just sell them to finance their hobby.
I loved die cast Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars as a kid but no longer care for them. I've never been much of a gear head though.
I have been collecting Star Wars for the last 20 plus years and have also collected Hot Wheels since '95. I do not buy just to sell or "scalp" at flea markets. I have over 10,000 cars in my collection. As far as Treasure Hunts go, they are hard to come by because some people do everything they can to break the rules and go through cases on pallets. And yes, SOME turn around and put them on Ebay. I can assure you that most hot wheels collectors keep their cars. Would i grab both of them if i saw two on the pegs? Yes, just like you would take both of the Ultimate Bounty Hunt figures if you saw them on the pegs. Because i collect so much i do grab the extras because i use them to trade for other stuff i need. Besides,if someone wants to get up at stupid-o-clock in the morning to go through toy cars or figures then power to them. Just because you don't want to put in the same kind of effort,don't rag on other collectors that are willing to. I personally don't search stores in the wee hours of the morning. I buy my figures online. I save gas,money, and headaches by doing so. If there was a way to buy hot wheels the same way then i would do that also. But most hot wheels distrbutors mark the cases up BECAUSE of the treasure hunts. So the only way to find new cars is to search the pegs regularly. I have found only two treasure hunts on the pegs in the last two years. I have traded for the rest. So yes the hunt is tiring in some respects but don't take it out on other collectors. If you really want to take it out on someone take it out on the companies producing such limited,chase figures/cars. If they made them in sufficient quantites then everyone could get what they wanted. I personally hate chase items of any sort because of the headaches involved in trying to secure them. I have helped several other collectors i met in the stores find what they were looking for. If a hot wheels collector is looking through pegs the same time as me and i find two hunts, i will ask if he needs one and i have had others do the same for me. Just the other day i made a huge trade of Star Wars figures for some hot wheels. It was the largest trade i have ever made. It worked out great for both of us. So you might want to think about befriending the next hot wheels collector you see rather than ragging on them. Sorry for the long vent.
02-15-2006, 08:58 PM
Why do you think Hasbro is catching on with the "Bounty Hunt" figures, and the "Treasure Hunt" Titaniums? It's good marketing I suppose. They know the Hot Wheels guys are a ravenous sort. I usually will take a quick look at the Hot Wheels after first going to the Star Wars. Though I don't collect them much anymore, I have quite a few HW from days past, and even picked up a few older Treasure Hunts/ limited ed. HW from local toy shows or flea markets at reasonable scalper prices. Though there are alot of scalpers, there are also alot of collectors, who won't part with any of their HW. At under a dollar a piece, it's a cheap way to satisfy that Hunter-gatherer insinct.
02-15-2006, 09:41 PM
Sometimes when I go shopping I'll glance at the HW section to see if they have any cars that I like. I have purchased a few because the cars are awesome and I really like them, i.e. Ferrari Enzo and the Saleen S7. I might have half a dozen HWs. Not many. I don't collect them at all, I'll just buy one if it looks real sweet and I like the ride.
02-15-2006, 09:53 PM
I have met older retired couples that travel the country in motor homes and hunt all the Wal-marts for the Teasure Hunts.
02-16-2006, 12:08 PM
I have not collected matchbox/Hot Wheels since I was a kid, but my son,who is 2, loves cars. I have picked up a few, but moslty Fast Lane at TRu because they are so cheap. What exactly are the "treasure Hunt" cars. Are they the ones with the treasure chest on them? I just thought it was some gimmick to sell more cars. Didn't realize it was such a big deal with some people.
02-16-2006, 12:57 PM
Welocme ot the boards Jal.
I am sure there are a few exceptions to the rule like with any. 95% of the people(non kids) that I run into that collect Hot Wheels openly admit they are selling them on Ebay for a profit. They do get up at ??? in the morning and rush the aisles to get them. It is a quick buck knowing they can scavenge them all and collect them. Those arent collectors though. They do it with HW, SW, and whatever else is hot for collectors of any sort. It is a rough world when not only do we compete with other collectors in what ever area we live in, buit also scalpers and such. It all started with the Treasure Hunt cars and then it moved ot everything else in the toy section. I am sure no one is singling you out personally, I hope you dont feel that way, but it is mostly people who get HW, and then SW and buy em all to sell on Ebay for the quick buck that tends to be a collectors biggest pet peeve.
I hope you have fun and stick around for awhile Jal.
Treasure Hunts started in '95. Mattel wanted a gimmick to keep people chasing for the cars. That year they were limited to only 10,000 randomly inserted into cases. Also note that a treasure hunt has special tires that aren't found normally on the mainline cars. In '96 that production number was upped to 25,000. It has grown gradually each year as the number of collectors has grown. Mattel will no longer release production numbers on treasure hunts so its anyone's guess as to how many a year are produced. I would say at minimum they are putting out around 150,000 treasure hunts worldwide per year now compared to over a million of the regular mainline cars. The other thing that keeps collectors searching is variants. If you think Hasbro is bad for doing variants then look out. Each car can have different colors, different tampos applied, different color interior, different color base, different color windshields, and different wheel types. So you are constantly searching for the "new" variation. This year it seems Mattel wants to capitalize on those variants and are changing up the mix every other month. Throw in the search for treasure hunts and you have a endless hunt to find the newest cars out there.
Kidhuman, thanks for the welcome. I have regularly visited the site for several years. I just never took the time to register. But when i saw the post about hot wheels guys i had to jump in. LOL I know there are some out there that take everything that isn't nailed down. But i have been to several hot wheels conventions and for the most part, they are a great bunch of people. Liek i stated before, i place blame on the companies making such limited items in the first place. If there weren't treasure hunts or variants or chase figures then everyone would be able to get what they wanted and there would be no fuss. Some people have a mindset that they can retire one day off of hot wheels or Star Wars stuff. It's not going to happen and they are deluding themselves. The best way to stop scalpers is not to buy from them. I don't buy anything from a scalper. If i can't find it myself or trade for it then i generally do without. I mean, look at the past and see what limited availabilty has done. Playmates basically lost the rights to do Star Trek toys because of their limited 1701 figures. If you can't get the whole set then whats the point,right? Another example, the Masters of the Universe line. They shortpacked certain characters to the point where everyone said to heck with it. How about the Batman line that had the chase versions of Freeze? Same thing. And it looks like Star Wars may follow suit if they keep up this bounty hunt mentality. I would hate to see that too. I've been collecting Star Wars since '77. It would be a shame to see it end simply because of greedy marketing ploys. I feel like i give Hasbro/Mattel enough of my money already. So why should i have to go "chase" for figures that should have been released so that everyone could get them? Other than that, i think Hasbro has a nice line-up for this year, especially this being a non-movie year. Gentle Giant is one of my favorites too. Awesome stuff there. Anyways, thanks for welcoming me in. I will probably chime in more often now that i am registered.
02-16-2006, 07:18 PM
There are also Brick and Mortar stores that send out their scouts to scour the pegs of HW and Star Wars etc.. Paid Mercenaries on the hunt. Even some Comic Stores have HW as well as alot of chase figures. The Local Mall here just had a collectibles store open right next to a KB's. You can guess where KB's good stuff is going. They offer to buy collections, figures, posters, etc. to resell at higher prices.
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