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Massdrop is an online retailer that utilizes a 'loophole' by calling these 'massdrops' to avoid some fees and taxes. They make money on these 'deals' as does Amazon. Clearly Amazon is a bulk buyer and may get these at the same volume discount (the lowest the manufacturer is willing to go) - they (massdrop) then has overhead costs (just like amazon) - distribution facility - shipping/receiving employees - website - normal 'office administration' etc.
And they'd LIKE to make some profit on what they sell - they ain't in it for the glory! Therefore, they are a competing vendor just like every other vendor out there whether it be wallyworld, the bullseye store, or online vendors. What you have to do is ask yourself: Where do I WANT my money going? To a multi-million (billion) corporation or to a small group of entrepreneurs doing their best to save you money?
The difference here is Amazon has the capitol to buy in bulk - store the 'goods' at their distribution facility and make a profit (remember they charge 14% to resellers - if it's their own distribution line they gobble up all the profit).
So yeah - sometimes you CAN (and will) find things cheaper - it's your money Kart you spend it as you wish. Me, I'll keep supporting massdrop...knowing I might spend a buck or so more here and there to get involved with the deals where I can save significant numbers and/or have access to unique things (like the ergodox).
We gotta 'vote with our dollars' and support those company's that benefit us in the long run. I'm not saying not to support Amazon - I utilize them like crazy - but to think every deal is going to be the best of the best just isn't going to happen.
Remember too that Kershaw already is in some regards a 'budget knife' manufacturer. There's a very good bet there's only a percent or two they make off these units.
enlightening response! thank you very much buddy.
I'd like to add a little to that.
As an international buyer, comparing Amazon against Massdrop cost-wise, I pay less on Massdrop because shipping is usually low-normal. Buying on Amazon more than doubles the price for me, because of high shipping costs (I leave to the side all the stuff that they just do not ship at all).
So, not only do I "have access to unique things", but it costs me less too.
I think you're forgetting the part where Amazon ships next day and Massdrop takes weeks. People wait for group buys because they're supposed to save money. If anything on Massdrop is the same price as Amazon, it's simply not a good deal.
And Kershaw is hardly a "budget knife" company. They are owned by KAI USA, a subdivision of Japanese company KAI Group($41 billion worth of sales in 2008), who also owns Zero Tolerance and Shun knives. While the ZT brand took over most of the pricey designs, there have been many expensive Kershaw models as well like their 40th anniversary knife - http://kershaw.kaiusaltd.com/knives/knife/the-ruby
I'm not at all forgetting that Amazon ships next day - I didn't feel it was relevant - unless you want to assume that Amazon pays the same for next day shipping that you do at the counter (hint: they don't - they have volume deals with UPS, USPS, FedEx and others, of course). All vendors are going to pass on ancillary costs to the end user - massdrop is no different - they just cannot afford 'next day' (as you call it) like amazon can. I assure you the shipping costs are just buried in the cost of the drop if it's not specifically listed - it's an 'overhead' cost.
And utilizing a limited run knife does not a good example make. I'm sure you're more knowledgeable than I am regarding unit costs and production runs and volume production - so I'll not waste your time. And with regards to 'budget' - I didn't say they didn't make good knives but you must understand that there are such things as 'branding' and 'brand recognition' and 'customer expectations'. Just because a parent company owns multiple brands doesn't put them on the same level of quality or customer expectation. Or are you going to tell me that EVERY kershaw is the same quality as EVERY Shun?
And since I suspect you either own stock in Kershaw or expecting of precise communication: I'll offer this: Kershaw produces great knives at affordable costs (which is, of course a subjective term). To some a 50 dollar knife is 'too expensive' to others 200 dollars is not a surprise.
Or, if you can - please share with me how this knife compares with others to put it in the same league - or rather not a 'budget' knife. This knife, I assure you - is not a 'quality' knife in the same league as others with different materials and craftsmanship. One of my favorite knives is a $5 dollar counter impulse buy - but only because I don't care how abusive I am to it...that certainly doesn't make it a quality knife. And just because Kershaw produces a 25 dollar unit doesn't make their quality lower. I could stick a diamond on the side of my $5 dollar knife and it will make it more expensive but not a better knife.
Knifes are machines that have varying levels of quality due to a number of factors. This knife is stamped and handled (most likely - I'm absolutely assuming here) primarily by machines and assembled and packaged with cheap labor.
So I meant no insult to Kershaw...and I'd like to point out that Zynga games makes a lot of money too - that doesn't mean that I'm going to be buying their games. Just because KAI makes lots of money and Kershaw makes some 'expensive' knives doesn't change the fact that: In my opinion Kershaw is a budget knife producer.
I guess I just don't understand why you expect sympathy from the buyers towards Massdrop. It's not the consumers concern whether MD has the capital to keep inventory or has bulk shipping deals with shipping services. At the end of the day it's the same product for the same price, but much slower from one seller than the other. You can choose to support MD if that's your preference, just as someone could buy this knife at $40-50 at a local knife store to support small businesses, but I think it's safe to assume most of the people coming to MD are specifically doing so to save money over commonly available retailers like Amazon. For people who don't share your brand loyalty , deals like this simply makes no sense.
Also your point when you referred to Kershaw as a budget knife company was not regarding the quality of the knives, but the amount of discount they can offer due to their status of being a budget company knife.
"There's a very good bet there's only a percent or two they make off these units."
I took your comment to imply that Kershaw was small in size, not low in quality, which is why I referred to the parent company. They are making a lot more than a percent or two off of one of these and can certainly afford to discount more if they wished to.
I do understand the point of view that Kershaw is a budget knife company if you aren't familiar with what the company has been doing beyond the past few years. Without getting too deep into it - Zero Tolerance is basically Kershaw(same facility in Tualatin, OR for US made models), the most popular Kershaw model ever is the US made Ken Onion designed Blur, and KAI just announced 3 US made automatic knives at the 2015 Shot Show under the Kershaw branding.
Does Kershaw offer budget knives? Yes, just like Benchmade, Spyderco, Buck, SOG, Boker, etc.
In my opinion they're not a budget knife company, but a large knife company with a wide selection.
An excellent reply - thanks for the additional info.
Most of my knives are Kershaw, because they're in my price range of what I'm willing to invest into this type of tool. I think they're an exceptional company for $$vs product. I should have used 'value' instead of budget I guess.
And I wasn't expecting sympathy - was just sharing my thoughts on the OPs comment about massdrop being equal in pricing compared to Amazon. That's all.
And it should be pointed out that I'm not participating in this drop either (for a lot of reasons).