PRODUCT AVAILABILITY & STOCK STATUS
1. I saw an item on your website yesterday, but today it's gone!
No, it's not! We don't remove any items from our database, even when they're discontinued and no longer available. But items that are "discontinued" or on "order stop" status are no longer available for order, so they don't show up when you search using the Quick Search from the top page of our site. Even when you're searching for available items, the Advanced Search is a powerful engine that allows you to search using many criteria including keyword, manufacturer, availability, product type -- even the item code if you know it. Give it a try!
Don't forget to check your spelling when you're searching, using either the Quick Search or the Advanced Search, to ensure that you're using the search function accurately! And be sure to select "All items" in the "Availability" section of the search page. That'll trigger the search to include discontinued items.
2. I have been waiting a long time, but my items are always on backorder. When will my items come in?
Unfortunately, this is one of the most frustrating things about working in the Japanese hobby industry. Most of the time, we simply have no idea when additional stock of products will be coming in. However, here are a few guidelines to help give you a rough idea:
- If you're waiting for a newly-released, standard plastic kit, we will probably have more within a month or two.
- If you're waiting on a kit that was originally released more than a year ago, you may need to wait several months or longer before it comes into stock.
- If you're waiting on a garage kit (resin or soft-vinyl item), we don't have any idea at all, but if the kit is a character-related item that was released more than 18 months ago, you may want to look elsewhere for the item.
More complete information about availability in the Japanese hobby industry is posted to our availability page.
3. I want to know if you have stock on certain items before I place my order.
Our stock status system allows you to check the availability of an item from within the item's page.
Here is what the stock status terms mean on our item pages.
The following are all orderable conditions:
"In Stock": We have stock of the item here in our warehouse. Current ordering trends indicate we should have enough for a while. Of course, if you are interested in multiple pieces, it might be a good idea to write in to firstname.lastname@example.org to see exactly how many are left.
"Low Stock": We have stock of the item, but current ordering trends indicate it may go out of stock soon. Better grab it quick! Again, please write in if you want more than one.
"Out of Stock": We do not have stock of the item here, and there are no current orders for it, but we can probably get it from our suppliers if you place an order. If no orders are placed for it, it will remain as "Out of Stock"...so don't just wait for it to change it "In Stock," since it probably won't!
"Backordered": We do not have stock here, but have ordered more from our suppliers. Order if you would like to get the item too, since we may only get enough to cover existing orders. Backorders generally take between 4-6 weeks to come in from the time you place your order. Sometimes shorter, sometmes longer.
Preorders: Usually shows "March Release" or similar, meaning the item will be released in March (or whatever month is shown). These items obviously will not be in stock until the month shown, but can be ordered now. Since sizes and weights are not known, shipping estimates cannot be shown for these items.
IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT PREORDERS: HLJ only accepts preorders for the amount of stock promised by the manufacturer or supplier. If there are shortages from the manufacturer or supplier after orders are taken, we will fill what orders we can in chronological order.
Restocks: Previously discontinued or out of stock items that are coming back. Month of restocking will be indictated, such as "Nov. Restock." Please note that even you place an order for a restock item, it may go to "Backordered" once the item comed in due to a large number of orders being placed. It also may go to "Out of Stock" once stock comes in but all pieces are spoken for, so if you want the item, order as soon as possible to avoid any delays.
Only the following two are non-orderable conditions:
"Order Stop": We have taken all the orders we think we will be able to fill for these items, but there is still a chance we may be able to secure more stock, so orders are temporarily stopped until we can confirm that. If we can get more stock, orders will be reopened. If we cannot get more stock, the item will go to "Discontinued" status. (NOTE: Previously placed orders are not affected. Just not taking new orders! )
"Discontinued": This means we do not have any stock, and currently cannot get any more stock of the item from our suppliers or the manufacturer. It is no longer available, and we know of no plans for a re-issue. That doesn't mean there won't be a reissue later, of course! There's always hope. But for now, there is no information.
Many items we don't regularly stock (for reasons of size, cost, or low demand) are available from our distributors and we get them quickly when we place an order for them if a customer requests one. Also, an item we normally stock may just be temporarily out when you happened to check it. This, too, means nothing about whether we can get it quickly for you or not.
Please just go ahead and place your order. You can then check the stock level of what you've ordered using My Account on the web site. We will shop at our distributors for items ordered by customers that are not in stock until we either find it for you, or become convinced the search is futile. If you are worried about missing a chance to acquire the item, and want to place another order with another company, go ahead and do so. You can always cancel your order with HLJ if you find the item elsewhere first.
4. I'm interested in getting something that's not shown on your web site. Can I special order it?
We are always on the lookout for attractive new products to carry. If you have an idea for something you cannot find on our web site, please send your suggestion to email@example.com and we'll take a look at whether we can get stock of the item and/or if it is something appropriate for our catalog.
Keep in mind that not everything you see in Hobby Japan or other magazines is a product on the market here. Some are original sculptures -- one-of-a-kind items. Others may be pieces that are only available at certain events, like Wonder Festival. And in some cases, smaller manufacturers will not sell wholesale to places like us, preferring instead to deal directly with retail consumers only. Obviously, in cases like these, we cannot get you the item.
5. Can I order parts for a model kit or toy? How do I do that?
For info on parts and support, please click here.