Update On Fine Detail Plastic Pricing

Discussion in 'Official Announcements' started by avim, Apr 23, 2019.

  1. TrentTroop
    TrentTroop Well-Known Member
    Moving away from sprues is nonsensical if the srpue-costs aren't dropped across the board. I'm already doing multiple versions of each model for scale. I offer my customers all versatile print options, the HP, and smooth detail for pretty much every item, with certain items being offered in metal as well (which requires yet another single-sprued version of each item, since you can't srpue in metal and the multi-part cost is crippling there)

    Now I'd have to have sprued versions for the other materials, and non-sprued or limited-sprue versions for smooth detail.
    crashtestdummy likes this.
  2. ecs_norway
    ecs_norway Well-Known Member
    Does the pricing model take into account the different-sized bounding boxes of separate parts in a model?

    Let's say I have a ship that, printed as a single piece, is about 2cm thick and has bits projecting up and down in various places by 2cm each, but are only 1cm wide.

    So I cut the model into parts, separating out the various extrusions, and part it out into two models - the main hull, and the add-on bits, the latter sprued together into a single object about half the size of the main hull in each x, y, and about 3/4 of it in z.

    So, can the pricing model account for this as two parts, one of an a by b by c bounding box and one of a 1/2 a by 1/2 b by 3/4 c box, or would it treat the entire thing as one bounding box of 1.5a by 1.5b by c?
  3. MitchellJetten
    MitchellJetten Shapeways Employee CS Team

    I'm not sure if I follow your question 100%.
    But if you split parts, they all get their own little bounding box, made to fit those parts.

    So one will be the bounding box for the little parts sprued
    The second bounding box will be for the main hull
  4. ecs_norway
    ecs_norway Well-Known Member
    That was what I was asking, yes, if each separate part was treated as its own bounding box when pricing the model. It makes parting a model out easier as we don't need to try to jam everything together to minimize total size -- that particular exercise in Tetris is left to the poor guy building the print platter. Yes?
  5. daj600bp
    daj600bp Member
    1/700 scale ships are now more expensive in FUD than resin kits with PE details. The REASON I shop with Shapeways is that these models are not available (yet) and I could have them now at a reasonable price. Besides the 1/700 accessories and aircraft, all ship models are OUT-OF-RANGE for this modeler.
  6. adbinc
    adbinc Well-Known Member
    A report on how the new pricing has affected our shop.

    Prices for Smooth Fine Detail Plastic went up by 30% or more.

    Sales have dropped by 30% or more (praise be for our customers who order in Versatile Plastic). This is our new third worst month. One of those "worst months" was the month when we opened our shop mid month.

    I have told my customers that using any sort of rush processing appears to be unnecessary at this point as I am seeing orders for Smooth Fine Detail Plastic being produced in little more than a week.

    Maybe this is what Shapeways wanted. I cannot see that they will need to "farm out" printing if our orders are any indication. Keeping production in house would certainly cut down on their expenses.

    crashtestdummy likes this.
  7. railNscale
    railNscale Well-Known Member
    Well luckily the price changes were not as horrible as predicted initially. Of course it is typically SW not to provide any useful tools to work-around the price changes. You have been telling so many stories about proper calculations, and tools.
    Nr. 1 problem: You do not ommunicate properly. etween the price change of October 22nd, 2018 and the final price change of May, it was basically not possible to introduce new kits due to the horrible prices.

    Nr.2 problem: You do not provide tools. Uploading the corrupt csv-documents does not work. Therefore you have to dig in the individual models and change prices accordingly. This is far from ideal.

    Nr.3 problem: You always introduce new problems. Just noticed while changing my mark-ups that a well known kit becomes 'private'. I get the notice: “Your model ids currently set to private pending review by the Shapeways team. We will notify you when it is ready for sale.” Sorry, a kit that was sold almost 130 times since 2014 needs to be reviewed by you???? I don't like these kind of interruptions, and really reminds me that SW is not customer friendly.

    For your information. It is possible to adopt my price settings to get more-or-less back to the previous customer prices at the cost of mark-up. Unfortunately the sales are less than previously. That means that SW is attracting less-and-less customers. That is not a good sign. Also I notice few customers complaining that the market place is not visible or that the search function at SW is not working properly.

    It is a pity that a 'professional' company like SW is not able to maintain their activities on a workable level. Of course in the normal world one would expect impriovements over time. But that appears too much to ask for....

    crashtestdummy and srnjm420 like this.
  8. This is insane. I was unable to work on the shop for the last month, knowing I'd return to a new pricing algorithm. What do I find? An absolutely MESS.

    Prior to the last pricing change, we had retooled our entire line of multi-part models to include sprues. Under the older pricing algorithm this was _absolutely_necessary_ in order to bring the price down. We spent a couple of MONTHS doing that work.

    What do I find under the new pricing algorithm?

    Sprues don't matter. Number of parts don't matter. The multi-part models with the same bounding box size are the same price with and without sprues. WE WASTED OUR TIME.

    But the larger sets that we sprued together? Are now significantly more expensive. For example, one of our better selling products in Smooth Detail went from 26.83 to 38.60 cost. 43% increased cost. Adding sprues increased the height by a few mm and the small increase in the bounding box increases the price 43%...seriously?? Returning the old unsprued model to service costs less in Smooth Deatil. It now has a new cost of 27.35.

    You're going to say, so use the old models. Except the prices are reversed for every other plastic. The new model costs significantly less sprued then unsprued. For example, in white natural versatile the old unsprued model costs 30.00 while the new sprued model costs 9.83.

    That's more than a 300% pricing difference.

    And to add insult to injury, the unsprued version can be printed in Smoothest Detail while the Sprued version cannot, under the newer super restrictive size restrictions that were introduced when you changed from Ultra Fine to Smoothest Detail.

    So what? We are supposed to have both sprued and unsprued versions of the same models so we can reduce the costs in each plastic separately? So now we are supposed to support TWICE AS MANY MODELS just so we can have the minimum price in Smooth Detail and the minimum price in everything else?

    We are a small shop that does this more as a hobby then as a business. We simply don't have the time to spend months rebuilding our models every time you make changes like this. Not only are you completely opaque about calculating the costs, but you make changes with little forward notice that are causing us wasted time and effort. Further, you are now making us jump through hoops in order to provide the lowest pricing for the SAME MODELS in different plastics.

    Reading through this topic, and many others, I have this deep-pitted sinking feeling that is telling me to give up, this is not going to work, that Shapeways doesn't give a rats *** about our shop and our trying to make something from it. You're responses do not take into consideration the time and effort that we've put into building these models, as if our time is worth nothing at all. "Just spend hundreds of more hours doing it all over, it's ok!" Yeah screw you. I can't calculate the costs offline... the U.S. President is more transparent then you are.

    At this point I'm really considering just leaving the shop and giving up. My modeler is going to absolutely lose his mind when he finds out that you just caused him to waste hundreds of hours of time retooling the models for sprues on the majority of our multi-part models, something that he does in his spare time.

    Choose your response carefully. It's costing you creators like me.