American TF Shopping

Discussion in 'Transformers Toy Discussion' started by Diem, Nov 17, 2008.

  1. Diem

    Diem Active Member

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    This is my first post here so sorry if I'm posting in the wrong part of the board!

    Over Christmas and the New Year I'll be staying in Los Angeles, specifically Torrance (and a few days in San Fransisco). It'll be my first time in America (I'm an Englishman living in Tokyo).

    What I want to know is: which are the best chain stores to visit? Are there any American exclusives I ought to get? Does anyone know of any stores that sell rare/vintage TFs in the Torrance area? And are there any good sales between the 24th December and the 4th January?
     
  2. Solscud007

    Solscud007 Banned

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    I am originally from Socal. Lived there for 26 years. Here are the places you should go, if you have a car or a ride.

    Frank & Sons Collectible Show. Open Wed and Sat Every week. Check the website for hours. There are a lot of vendors there. But in terms of vintage only a few
    [-----Frank & Son Collectible Show-----]

    Big Lou's Toys in Culver City Sort of like what they have in Tokyo. Consignment display cases.
    BIG LOU'S TOYS & COLLECTIBLES

    there are more but I cant think at the moment. got to go to work.

    Check out Animepunch.com/forums that is where all my Socal friends hang out. Sign up and post. Im sure they will be more than happy to make new friends and english speaking contacts in japan haha.
     
  3. Diem

    Diem Active Member

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    That's excellent, thanks.
     
  4. Tim Formas

    Tim Formas Old Man Administrator

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    Regarding chain stores, the best chains to hit for Transformers would be Walmart, Target, and Toys 'R Us. Which store will have the newest selection available when you arrive is up in the area. Each chain seems to have a run of getting new items in first, so you never know who will have the best chance of having the newest items come the beginning of the year.

    Exclusive-wise, the Target exclusives will be the newest exclusives out. Being as how they are starting to come out now, I'm not sure how many will be left after the Christmas shopping season. May be some left, maybe not. Otherwise, Toys 'R Us still has a lot of their movie repaints from the summer (Jetstorm, Wingblade, Inferno, Mudflap as well as Titanium Grimlock and Prowl.
     
  5. Sol Fury

    Sol Fury The British Butcher Administrator News Staff

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    You can also check out the Sightings thread for the area. Have a look at where everyone seems to be finding what you want and go from there. That should at least give you an idea which local chain stores are getting the stock in.
     
  6. Diem

    Diem Active Member

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    Thanks everyone!
     
  7. Solscud007

    Solscud007 Banned

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    To be honest though, major chain retail stores in SoCal is a pretty big waste of time. Granted you should go just to get a flavor of large american retail stores.

    The reason I say that "going to stores is a waste of time" is due to the fact that SoCal is infamous for their toy scaplers/hunters. these people make a living from hunting and selling toys. they know the days of distribution, restocking etc. They make connections with the stocking people at these stores. So it is extremely difficult to find exclusives or short packed items in SoCal. you can always get lucky, as I have and many of my friends but it is difficult and extremely time consuming. Since you are dealing with a short amount of time I suggest Frank & Sons is a MUST SEE mecca of toys that any tourist toy collector should take time to go see.

    Dont forget that Toys R US exists in japan and in comparison, as a Mecha Fan and japanese culture enthusiast, USA TRU will look very boring depending on what floats your boat. But anyway Target and TRU are rather prevalent in the southland. However there are very few to no Walmarts in the Los Angeles area. there are a few outside LA but they require a decent amount of travel to get to any of them.

    Also, something I just realized, is that Diem might be looking for TFs that we take for granted as "general release" items but are not so prevalent in Japan. I know that when I was in HK, US releases sell for more than retail. Same goes for japanese TFs sell for more than retail stateside.

    In regards to the idea of "sales" after christmas it is pure speculation. But already we are seeing price drops on Deluxe and Leader class figures. Walmart and some targets i have seen sell Deluxes at below $8. Recently Leader class figures are $28.47 at Walmart. Also given the fact that the economy is doing so poorly, it has been speculated that people will be less inclined to buy toys this christmas season, resulting in larger overstocks and potentially more sales and clearances after christmas.

    Depending on your itinerary and transportation, it wouldnt be terrible to stop by Target or TRU to see if they have anything good. but be prepared for a LOT of traffic.
     
  8. Diem

    Diem Active Member

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    Wow, you guys are really lookin' out for me! This is all excellent.
     
  9. Seawing

    Seawing Lurker of the depths Moderator

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    In San Francisco there aren't a whole lot of options. There's Jeffrey's Toys but they are usually overpriced. Japan town probably has tons of stuff you can already get in Tokyo. Unfortunately, Toys R Us closed down all of their stores in SF a few years ago and the Targets and Walmarts aren't in the city limits; you'll have to go to Colma or Daily City to find the nearest Target and even further to find a Walmart. There are a couple of good vintage toystores in San Jose (50 miles to the south) that sell G1 figures and accessories. I can give you directions if you are planning on heading down to Silicon Valley during your visit.
     
  10. Diem

    Diem Active Member

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    That's great but I'll only be in SF for three days so I could only really see anything that's within the city.
     

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