MrCRskater wrote:Well, I think any way you spin it, any kind of offering from TLG of retired sets - short of full-blown market production - is not going to be cost effective for them. If they did break down and begin a program of some kind for after-market production, it would have to be at the expense of further product development. So while you could get your Main Street, Mos Espa Podrace, or Exoforce, it would also mean you'd only be getting 5 or 6 new sets each year in any given line. I'm not sure LEGO or the fanbase (largely non-collector children under 14) are willing to make that compromise.
Further, it seems that the most collectible sets are those under a license, like Star Wars, Indy, Shell, Batman, etc. It's a virtual certainty that there are parameters in any given license limiting the number of sets/minifigs (and therefore parts) can be produced. In other words, if LEGO thought they could make a dime by offering up the old UCS Blockade Runner, they'd have to get permission from George Lucas. And THAT is unlikely because George knows that his bread-winner right now is the Clone Wars, so a Blockade Runner isn't going to promote that. You have to realize that all the LEGO's, action figures, lightsaber toys, etc. are all advertising for the Lucasfilm product, advertising that Lucas is not only not paying for, but is getting paid for.
Archangel wrote:On the license issue, I could see that having more of an impact, if there were production limitations involved. However, if TLC were to sell OOP kits from a licensee's range, I am sure that said licensee would still receive a percentage of any sale made in this way. . .
Lucas' focus on the CW is immaterial, as if it were that imperative, Lego would only be putting out CW kits, and nothing from the other films in the SW genre. At the end of the day, no matter what gets produced, it all promotes the SW brand.
Draykov wrote:While I'd relish the idea from a collector's standpoint, I don't think it's feasible. Parts for production runs at LEGO manufacturing are cyclical. If you're not actively putting those parts to be sold into sets, you have what's known as Pick-a-Brick (though, Pick-a-Brick draws parts largely from what's available in Factory sets) If you are actively putting the elements you use into sets, then you need them for current sets that are shipping out the door. Anything not getting produced for active sets or Pick-a-Brick goes out of production until you need it again. Making that part available in the future at a cost effective price means a lot of logistics and planning need to go into the next batch of sets to come out and what elements they include.
Anything beyond that and your talking about additional production runs of parts, instructions, stickers, boxes and keeping them all in a warehouse or production facility somewhere. The bottom line is that it's not feasible to create an "on-demand" environment. If you're busy expending your resources trying to get new product out the door to satisfy retailer demands, you probably don't have the time, money or other resources to concentrate on making retired stuff available to whoever wants it whenever they want it. Plus, there's the whole issue of retired molds. I don't know how many people I've heard complain about newer style helmets on the Classic Space dudes that have been made available in the Vintage Minifigure Collections.
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