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Has Kimber raised their prices beyond the value of their product?

Discussion in 'Handguns: Autoloaders' started by george burns, Nov 23, 2016.

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  1. george burns

    george burns Member

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    As many of you, I have watched the past 10 years as these guns have increased in price, and multiplied in configurations. Most of their guns are exactly the same other than the color or grips used on each model.
    Is it just me or do they have far too many models of the same guns, along with new lines that overlap?
    The idea of spending over a grand on a 380 that is really nothing other than a copy of a 1911, that doesn't even function the same as a 1911, hardly seems justified, yet they keep going up. The same for the 9mm that now have a dedicated mico 9 line aside from the regular 1911 that also comes in either 9 or 45 in most models. I just don't see 13-1500 for a gun that isn't even a custom gun or a semi custom gun, that comes with 1 magazine.
    The single mag thing always bothered me, especially if you are charging over a thousand dollars for a gun, give the client 2 or 3 mags. It's not the money it's that elitest attitude.
    I can't help but think that the majority of people who buy chromepurple and green and white guns, are new or very old.
    Most times at shows I have noticed older men who didn't really know guns, buying a 15 hundred plus Kimber, because of the price, since more money must make them a better gun right?
     
  2. buck460XVR

    buck460XVR Member

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    Kimber makes some nice firearms, but in MHO, their retail rice is a tad high for what they are. One only has to look at the back cover of any recent gun rag and see a full page glossy ad...there's probably one or two on the inside also. They are big into marketing and that cost monies. The market they pinpoint does not care that the guns are over priced. Folks have a right to buy what they like at the price point they are willing to pay. Kinda what Capitalism is all about. If one looks at Ruger's catalog, you see by the prices shown they are mighty proud of their guns too, but MSRP and actual selling prices are quite different. Most Kimbers around here are like Rugers.
     
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  3. Sunray

    Sunray Member

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    Lotta companies have been marketing on their name for eons. Colt, Smith, Browning, Winchester, Weatherby, etc., all do it. MSRP on a Colt Series 70 with poor sights is $979. Kimber at least puts some effort into it and sells 'em with sights you can see.
    "...The single mag..." The mag is the most engineered part.
     
  4. Old Dog

    Old Dog Member

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    All I know is, Kimber is still selling metric butt-tons of pistols. And in my region, it actually appears that Kimber has come down slightly on some models. The Custom TLE-II hasn't gone up in price, nor have some others.

    Also, at comparable prices, at least Kimber, unlike Colt, puts excellent night-sights on its pistols as well as pretty doggone good front-strap checkering. One may argue which brand makes better pistols, but Kimber does pay attention to the features, fit and finish. Whatever you think about Kimber, the company makes some pretty pistols.
     
  5. anothernewb

    anothernewb Member

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    I will add my .02, in the $1500 range - between my Grand Raptor and my DW silverback - OOTB the DW wins hands down. Although I love them both. The kimber is fantastic now, after some work. After a little gunsmithing, they are on par with each other, in terms of function, and accuracy.
    In construction, I'd have to give the DW a nod. I think the parts are fitted just a little better, notably the slide to frame. the DW just feels so smooth.
     
  6. reddog81

    reddog81 Member

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    You complain that the product line has too many models that are close duplicates and then go on to complain that they offer other guns that don't function exactly like a 1911...

    I don't pay any attention to Kimber's offerings other than what I see occasionally in magazines. They look neat but I'm not about to pay an extra $500 so I can have some special serrations on a gun. There are almost too many 1911's (maybe all guns) in the $500 to $1500 range. Makers have to find some way to differentiate themselves. Maybe having the best looking 1911 on the block isn't a bad way to try and market your product.
     
  7. jmr40

    jmr40 Member

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    That depends. For you it appears so. For others probably not. Most of their handguns have always cost more than they are worth to me. But to be honest I've not kept up with Kimber handguns all that much. I have a Custom II in 45 that has been a bargain for the money, but I bought it years ago. Not sure what that gun sells for today. I've never felt I could justify any of their other upper end handguns.

    I'm more familiar with their rifles and they are often criticized for being over priced by people who don't understand what they are paying for. You can buy a upper end Winchester, Sako, or Remington for about the same or less than a Kimber rifle and arguably get a better rifle. But a Kimber will weigh just over 5 lbs vs 7-8 lbs for the other rifles. If someone WANTS a 5 lb rifle a Kimber is a screaming deal at about $1200. Anything else in that weight range will cost you at least $3000. With Kimber you're paying a premium for a 5 lb rifle, not for higher quality than a $700 gun. If someone doesn't want a 5 lb rifle, don't buy a Kimber.
     
  8. Taurus 617 CCW

    Taurus 617 CCW Member

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    I too believe value is in the eye of the beholder as others have said. Kimber makes fine guns but I don't consider them a working man's gun. They are too tight/expensive to fill a combat role. I saw a customer's Crimson II have failure to cycles because there was too much carbon (not enough lube) in between the frame/slide rails. I tried pulling the slide back and it felt like someone had tried to glue the frame to the slide. I will stick to guns with more room between the slide and frame. I loved my Mil Spec Springfield 1911 A1 when I had it. Never had a failure with it.
     
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  9. X-Rap

    X-Rap Member

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    There are many $500 guns out there that are probably more reliable than many that cost more than $1500. I spent over a thousand on a Pro Raptor and it wears a 22 conversion 99 percent of the time. I paid about the same for a PARA Limited that needed to go back before it was reliable. Personally I'd take a couple G19's any day.
     
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  10. entropy

    entropy Member

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    Has Kimber raised their prices beyond the value of their product?

    In my eyes, long ago.
     
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  11. jmorris

    jmorris Member

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    That's a really easy question to answer. If they stop selling them at asking price and don't lower their price, they will go out of business.

    If they lower the price so much they can not pay the bills, they will go out of business.

    If they are still in business, assuming not on the way out, they are OK.

    Myself, I would pay more for one of their older pistols (never liked external extractors on 1911's) than current production but having only owed a few, not really their target market anyway.
     
  12. Walkalong

    Walkalong Moderator Staff Member

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    They went back to internal extractors a few years ago. I have one of them made since their external extractor disaster. Great pistol. I have no idea what they sell for today though. It wasn't cheap then though. I put a forged thumb safety and slide stop in it.
     
  13. SigP229R

    SigP229R Member

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    I have always thought Kimbers were over priced. That can also be said for Sig and H & K. I own two sigs, a P229R and a P6 and an H &K P30. However I have heard that Kimber has had a lot of QC problems in the last few years but, understand that they now have all these problems ironed out.
     
  14. Snyper

    Snyper Member

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    No, they haven't raised them beyond the value.
    They've always been beyond the value.
     
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  15. Tirod

    Tirod Member

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    The local Black Friday ads have Kimber .380s running $499 to $549. They aren't going for $1,000 - they are selling about the same as a SIG P238.

    Now, is that too much? No. Metal framed 1911 style guns are about $180 more than polymer. Take out the expense of the metal frame, machining, etc and you get $369. Which is what my son just paid for a Remington RM380. Which has a metal frame.

    Now add the social cost of entering into the Kimber/SIG club vs Remington. Guns are priced by their ranking in society and how well the company maintains their elevated status. It's no different than Rolex vs Seiko - a Submariner is a good $500 watch but there are Seiko high end models that much more accurate and which have nicer looks. Yet - that price tag on the Rolex means the average guy out there will genuflect toward the Rolex owner and ask the Seiko owner if he got it at the drug store.

    In other words, if you can't afford the Kimber you can buy the cheap run of the mill Remington. Goes to your value as a human being and how much status you deserve. Or so some on the gun forums would have you believe.

    Guns are priced to keep some people from buying them. Money is being used as a discriminator and that is how men rank themselves in order of importance. It doesn't have much to do with utility value of the gun, it's about status and ornamentation.

    It's why I won't ever open carry because there will be aggressive players who then get worked up that I might have dissed them - people rate physical prowess and then compare the symbols they exhibit to substantiate things. I could be a state level pistol champion but they would rag on about having a gun that appeared to rank higher than I look. At the age of 63 these stupid games get tiresome.

    Buy what you like. Spend as much as you want. You only need to impress yourself, there will always be somebody who disagrees with your choice and takes umbrage you made it. Guns are NOT priced by their cost plus markup. They are priced by status. BTW there's a Black Friday sale on a 1911 for $369. Notice how those are getting sorted out by Brand, too? Real men pay $1100 for one.
     
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  16. Rodentman

    Rodentman Member

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    Please let me know where I can get a Rolex Sub (MSRP $8,550) for $500.
     
  17. Fine Figure of a Man

    Fine Figure of a Man Member

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    I have a Kimber and it is a fine gun. Compared to other quality 1911's Kimbers are over priced. They are priced by what the market will bear as they should be.
     
  18. Cannibul

    Cannibul Member

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    I own 13 1911 pistols. None of them wear the Kimber name.

    Three have external extractors. Two S&W 1911's, one of which is my EDC. The other is a early Sig GSR, right around the 125th ever made, it had problems, which is why I got it for dimes on the dollar. Sent it to Sig and they updated the extractor and the problem was solved.

    I've got a family member who worked for Kimber for a number of years. I could have had one at employee pricing. I chose to put my money somewhere else after talking to my family member.

    At their core Kimber is a marketing company that happens to make firearms.
     
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  19. Lycidas Janwor

    Lycidas Janwor Member

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    I had a friend who had a Kimber and he was very disappointed with it. He took excellent care of that gun but it never worked reliably (he could not get it to stop rusting). He let me shoot it and I was not all that impressed. It kicked like a mule and really was not fun to shoot. If I'm going to shoot a pistol that kicks that hard, I want it to be a .50 cal desert eagle or something.

    Here's the good news: he ended up selling it and getting a nice chunk of change. Like Kimbers or not, they hold their value and people will pay to own one.
     
  20. shlike

    shlike Member

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    Very insightful and, IMHO, accurate post. I agree completely.
     
  21. HKGuns

    HKGuns Member

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    Yeah, about 20 years ago. All show and no go. In addition, I don't like buying crap from Communist NY.
     
  22. kcofohio
    • Contributing Member

    kcofohio Contributing Member

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    So, can I assume you don't make purchases of the guns referred in your username? Or in any of the other countries across the pond? :)

    I have purchased 2 Kimbers and we are pleased with them. As was pointed out in earlier posts. A person has to determine for themselves if the price is too high or not.

    But then, I work with guys that will buy a truck for $50k + because it has a diesel. And only drive to and from work with it. To each his own.
     
  23. HKGuns

    HKGuns Member

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    You can assume what you want.
     
  24. Zerodefect

    Zerodefect Member

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    Yes.

    Kimber makes a fine $800 1911. Too bad they're charging $1300+. That's DW territory.
     
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  25. gotboostvr

    gotboostvr Member

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    I bought my Custom II LNIB for $600 and I've been perfectly happy with it.

    If it cost 1k, as I see them advertised at Gander Mountain and Field and Steam I would have bought something else. Probably an XSE Colt.

    20160223_162646.jpg

    I really need to get a better picture of it one of these days!
     
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