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Thread: HAMMER (Felder) news

  1. #1
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    HAMMER (Felder) news

    I know there are lots of Hammer customers here, so wanted to share some news from Felder KG:

    -Lead times continue to be a challenge but I found this very interesting: Austria hired something like 100 more workers for the production line, specifically for Hammer machines. Believe this or not, Felder broke all sales records for Hammer machines (A3's, in particular). So, "yes", desite the pandemic, we outsold any previous year. Most of that was to mainland Europe. Folks are stuck at home so what do they do? Their hobbies.

    -Most of the lead times we are seeing here in the US are not because of anything internal. Felder has the personnel. The issue is the raw materials such as plate steel, fasteners, electrical components, etc. I don't need to explain to anyone how hard-hit Europe has been but that is the real bottleneck for us.

    -THERE WILL BE A PRICE INCREASE ON MARCH 1st. All the promo pricing that appears on the E-shop (or open quotes if you have one) will be nullified and new pricing goes into effect. The factory has been holding off for as long as possible on raising retail prices but it's unavoidable due to continuing logistics and raw material cost increases to us. If you are on the fence about any Hammer machine, I would strongly suggest finalizing something with your rep before the end of this month. I have creative solutions for helping customers with stuff like this, as I imagine our other US reps do, but those conversations need to be settled before the end of this month if you want to avoid the price increase.

    On a more positive note, I am told that they are adding some new machines to the Hammer lineup this year. Not sure what but the new HS950 sander has been a huge hit, so I'm optimistic it will be something with same performance/value proposition. Also, I'm told that a new E-shop platform is in the works. This is very exciting, since using the current version is like the "netscape navigator" of online shopping experiences. Not sure when but that's definitely something to look forward to.

    Erik
    Felder USA Territory Representative: Central & South Texas

  2. #2
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    Thanks for keeping us updated.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pat Rice View Post
    Thanks for keeping us updated.
    Sure thing, Pat. One thing I have noticed is that due to this whole situation, there seems to be steadier stream of updates coming to us from Austria. The situation is so dynamic that they are pretty much forced to maintain an ongoing conversation about the logistical side of things. I expect it to be rough (as far as lead times) for at least the first half of this year but my sense is that in the long run, we will actually see an overall improvement in Hammer lead times compared to how it was, beforehand.

    Erik
    Felder USA Territory Representative: Central & South Texas

  4. #4
    Thanks for the update Erik! I am one of those people on the fence. My situation is complicated by the fact we will be relocating from the mid-west to CO. I can order the unit but may not have an address to deliver the saw to!!! So need to think of some creative options. All the best.

  5. #5
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    As Iím sure youíre aware, youíre not alone. As consumers, we will continue to see price increases due to logistics issues. Many of the manufacturers I work with have, or will soon, raise prices to cover at least some of the logistics/supply chain cost increases.
    They can just no longer absorb the added cost.

    In some cases, manufacturers I work with have initially indicated the increase in cost would be passed on to the retailer while keeping down consumer pricing. But, as a retailer, we canít continue to absorb that and survive. Margins are already tight. Aggressive push back by retailers has convinced many of our manufacturers to raise UMAP pricing.

    And like you, in spite of - or because of - Covid lockdowns we had a record year. Part of our product line up is office chairs/sit stand desks..and we canít keep them in stock. Fortunately (knock on wood), we have not experienced any major delays in product availability or order to delivery times...yet.

  6. #6
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    Phil, that makes sense: Everyone WFH. I built a sit-stand desk (my own top on a Jarvis frame) around the middle of the year and love it.

    Erik
    Felder USA Territory Representative: Central & South Texas

  7. #7
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    Yes, sales of monitors, headsets, office furniture etc are through the roof.

    I was on one call that included people outside of the company I work for, and I was in the shop.

    10 minutes into the meeting it's "hey Rod, are you in your shop?" with me saying yes, followed by "could we have a tour?". So a 5 minute interruption in the meeting as we go through the machinery and other stuff. It was a nice break.

    The past year has been a lot different..........Rod.

  8. #8
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    Quick update with more interesting news out of Austria: Apparently, the demand for Hammer machines is so strong that Felder KG is looking at breaking ground on a new facility in Tirol, specifically to handle this product line. No clue as to the "when/if" but that is promising news in any case. We had a company-wide zoom call last week. My request to Felder was that we use the pandemic as an opportunity to revisit general lead times on A3's. It seems unlikely that we will ever get to the point where we have a bunch of un-sold ones just hanging around our warehouses but if we can get the usual lead times down to a month or so, that would be awesome. And they seemed to hear me.

    On another very positive note: Felder is actually gearing up in 2021. Our January 2021 sales were better by a fair margin than our January 2020 numbers. In other words, we are very optimistic about the upcoming year! In other good news, we apparently have been budgeted to hire quite a few more employees. Service will get some of those slots but the part I am most excited about is that we are going to be hiring for inside sales support personnel. Exciting stuff.

    Erik
    Felder USA Territory Representative: Central & South Texas

  9. #9
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    Erik, I think that Felder/Hammer and other similar manufacturers are also benefiting by the growing number of folks who are realizing the advantages of J/P machines in the small shop scenario. Forums like this are certainly not hurting demand generation, either. But that market isn't benefiting from long waits. So I do hope these companies do find ways to increase production so distribution points can be more likely to serve from stock or from near-term arriving inventory to take advantage of the growing demand.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  10. #10
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    Jim, I think you're right. This is funny: When I started with Felder in 2003, if we got a sales call for a Hammer machine, we all drew straws to see who would have to take it. None of us wanted to talk with customers about an A3 back then: Funny colors, straight-knife cutterhead that was proprietary, and still not inexpensive. It was more of a curiosity back in those days. Man, how things have changed. If I'm looking into my crystal ball, there will probably come a day here in the US where we have reps whose only job is to handle Hammer orders. If anyone in the Sacramento, Los Angeles, Dallas, or Philly areas has someone like a recent high school or vo-tech grad who wants to start out in sales support, then work their way up into possibly a full-time sales role in this industry, we want to talk to them.

    Erik
    Felder USA Territory Representative: Central & South Texas

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Shree Vasan View Post
    Thanks for the update Erik! I am one of those people on the fence. My situation is complicated by the fact we will be relocating from the mid-west to CO. I can order the unit but may not have an address to deliver the saw to!!! So need to think of some creative options. All the best.
    I wouldn't worry about your not having a place to put it. I ordered my machine (paid down-payment) over 8 months ago. Still haven't heard any shipping news to California. Even if you order now, probably a 6 to 8 month wait!

  12. #12
    I just joined Sawmill Creek forum. Any idea how much the price increase will be starting in March?

  13. #13
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    Appreciate the updates, Erik. I ordered some inserts and table extensions for my A3-31 on January 5th. Still no word on shipping. I sent them an email yesterday asking for an update. I was really hoping to have the parts by now because the work I'm doing would be a lot easier.

    Thank you for keeping us informed.
    ďTravel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness..." - Mark Twain

    Diapers and Politicians need to be changed often... Usually for the same reason.

  14. #14
    I was told that my machine (originally scheduled for December, then February, will now leave around April...

  15. #15
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    Gang, sorry about the late replies. Austin got hit pretty hard with the storms last week. Between the power being out and dealing with plumbing repairs, just haven't logged in. Here goes....

    Quote Originally Posted by William Leong View Post
    Any idea how much the price increase will be starting in March?
    William, no idea. That's all controlled by Austria. We (sales team) don't know, ourselves, until they actually update the pricing on the E-shop and an in the quoting software we use.

    Quote Originally Posted by Julie Moriarty View Post
    Appreciate the updates, Erik. I ordered some inserts and table extensions for my A3-31 on January 5th. Still no word on shipping. I sent them an email yesterday asking for an update. I was really hoping to have the parts by now because the work I'm doing would be a lot easier.
    Julie, unfortunately, Sales works in a different database than Logistics, so we don't have much visibility into the when's of customer orders through the E-shop. My suggestion would be to email US Customer Service directly: customerservice (dash) us (at) felder (dash) group (dot) com

    Quote Originally Posted by Rod Wolfy View Post
    I was told that my machine (originally scheduled for December, then February, will now leave around April...
    Rod, here is the situation: We have entire batches of machines that are mostly complete but basically parked on standby, waiting on miscellaneous small parts like electrical stuff, aluminum extrusions, fasteners, etc. Again, Felder is not the bottleneck: We have the personnel. The ongoing Covid situation continues to slow down the supply chain for lots of the downstream stuff. Wish I had a better answer but that's the honest truth.

    Erik
    Felder USA Territory Representative: Central & South Texas

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