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Beer Tent The general discussion forum, and the place to start a new "beer-tent-like" Piping Related discussion...

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Old 08-31-2015, 12:20 PM   #1
d_lairson
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Default Wholesale supply

I couple of my friends and I were kicking around the idea of opening a bagpipe supply store. The area we are in has a good number of customers and no physical supply store within 4 hours drive. It was a kind of joking thing but it got me thinking.

Are there any wholesale suppliers out there for the bagpipe odds and ends? I know for a lot of the major things like reeds and pipes, etc, its just a matter of dealing with the manufacturer. I'm thinking about the little things, hemp, wax, cords & bags, chanter caps, that sort of thing. Just from looking at the different suppliers at games it's obvious that a lot of this stuff comes from the same place, the packaging is the same.

I thought I would look around and see what start up costs would be and to see if it is something that could actually be done.
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Old 08-31-2015, 12:28 PM   #2
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Default Re: Wholesale supply

Quote:
Are there any wholesale suppliers out there for the bagpipe odds and ends?
I've never dealt with them, but

http://maddogpiping.com/


seems to be a wholesaler..

-Matthew
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Old 08-31-2015, 12:32 PM   #3
Andrew Lenz
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Default Re: Wholesale supply

As long as you go in knowing that you are doing it mostly for fun. I wouldn't expect to make a living from it. Margins are relatively thin and the market is small.

If I were to pick a business to go into, it surely wouldn't be retailing piping supplies! And definitely not if I were to have to pay rent on a retail storefront!

On the upside, you get to meet/correspond with a lot of people, initial investment isn't super high (maybe a few thousand dollars), you can usually run the business out of your house, and you get to work with something that you are interested in.

Andrew
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Old 08-31-2015, 02:09 PM   #4
d_lairson
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Default Re: Wholesale supply

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Originally Posted by Andrew Lenz View Post
As long as you go in knowing that you are doing it mostly for fun. I wouldn't expect to make a living from it. Margins are relatively thin and the market is small.
.

Andrew
This totally is not a business to live from. The idea is just to make a convenient local source for supplies. I know I like to be able to actually look at something before buying and I'm assuming others like the same thing.

I already have a business that I make my living with and figured this is something I could run out of the same location.

Like you said, it's a great way to meet people and to do more with something I love.
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Old 08-31-2015, 02:10 PM   #5
tbrown747
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Default Wholesale supply

I think a lot of retail piping suppliers do wholesale for select bands, they just don't necessarily advertise that fact.

And that's really what you're talking about. Besides reeds (which you've already excluded), the only other bulk item is hemp. I don't think you're likely to pick up the sort of bands that order 30 sheepskin bags.

For the other stuff, it's really just retail.
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Old 08-31-2015, 02:15 PM   #6
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Default Re: Wholesale supply

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Originally Posted by d_lairson View Post
This totally is not a business to live from. The idea is just to make a convenient local source for supplies. I know I like to be able to actually look at something before buying and I'm assuming others like the same thing.
If you just intend to run a part-time retail shop it's quite doable. My cousin did so a few years ago. Many manufacturers will give you wholesale pricing quite readily, although often with minimum order. (At least that was the case 6-7 years ago)
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Old 09-01-2015, 04:39 AM   #7
classicbagpipes
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Default Re: Wholesale supply

There are a few wholesale suppliers out there. I know the late Jack Ironside, besides being a huge retailer, was also a big wholesaler to the smaller shops.
Today I believe Henderson Imports does the same sort of thing. I am sure you can call or email them to make some sort of arrangements. They are pretty much a full service business and they would have the stuff that you would need in the smaller quanities you would want as well.
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