Tamiya customer service Rip Off in the UK

Hi all,

I thought I would share with you experience with trying to get a replacement part and the decal for it, here in the UK.

I lost the ammo can that fits on the side of the 50 cal machine gun on my Tamiya M113A2. I cont the Tamiya agent in the UK and they said that the couldn’t supply the individual part but that would have to purchase the entire spruce and decal sheet. there would be charge for postage and packing as well. This would cost me a total of £21:95

On eBay I can buy an entirely new kit with free postage and packing for £24:83.

I have emailed the UK Tamiya agent asking them to justify this fee, I’m not holding my breath for a reply.

A big thank you to Panzer_Modeler for sending me the part free of charge from the USA


Selling the entire sprue instead of just the part is pretty standard for a lot of companies, especially Tamiya. Tamiya USA does the same. since you lost the part, rather than it being damaged or missing (which would be they’re fault), it is normal to charge for the replacement. That being said, they’re total fee does look excessive to me. At least you were able to get help, thats what groups like this are for.


Thats a shame, Ive only had really good customer service from Revell and Minicraft.

I got a Minicraft 1/144 B-52 secondhand that was missing the wings and Minicraft sent them FREE OF CHARGE!

Hobby Co by any chance?
They don’t know the meaning of customer service.
Had the misfortune of dealing with them a few years ago over a set of rotten DS tyres in a Dragon 25pdr gun. Got sent a replacement set that were equally as bad. Called up to complain and they claimed the tyres were perfect when they left and I must have done something to them and was trying to swindle them out of a free kit. Was not very happy about it.
Luckily I was able to get a refund from the shop I bought it from, who also lodged a formal complaint on my behalf.

@Panzer_modeler I have had free stuff from Revell of Germany and Finemolds as well and they have magnificent service.

I don’t mind paying for the parts/sprue but this is a blatant rip off.

@phantom_phanatic yes indeed it was hobbyco and I shall never use them again. I half a mind to email them a link to this very post.


They’re a rotten company to deal with.
They could learn a lot from Airfix. Their spares service has always been amazing. Revell are also very good.
The company I most impressed with was Heller. Bought a 1/72 Mirage F1 and it had the canopy missing. They wrote back explaining it was out of stock, but promised to send one just as soon as they did. About a year and a half went by, when a small package arrived from France with the entire sprue of clear parts. They could quite easily have forgotten about it, but they delivered! That’s how you look after a customer.
Unfortunately, some distributers and importers don’t seem to value the customer or care about reputation.

I wonder if there’s a way to contact Tamiya direct? Worth a shot.

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@phantom_phanatic I had a similar experience with finemolds, they sent a whole sprue free of charge for my millennium falcon.

I was thinking of contacting tamiya and telling them how bad thier agent is here in the UK.

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for the last two or three years every time I buy Tamiya anything; I open the box before leaving the store. If it’s missing parts I always seem to find it! This started with two BF109 kits that had the props and spinners neatly clipped off the spru’s. Sent them email after email with no reply. The latest folly (for me any way) was I unsealed a brand new LRDG Chevy kit that’s been on the shelf for years (six or seven anyway). The LHS has gone under, but had a great reputation amongst local modelers. Noticed the box seemed a little heavy when I picked it up. Upon opening, I find a box literally crammed with enough parts to do three kits! Yet no body work! I have a Horch that is exactly the same way (but one truck inside). A few weeks before Thanksgiving, I decided to build the newer BF109g6 and the Spitfire MK.I kits in 1/48th. The box had been opened on the 109, but everything was still sealed inside. The decals in both kits had turned brown where they should be white. I see that as another twelve dollar expenditure on each kit that is already over priced. The decals are so bad from Tamiya and Hasegawa that I’ve came to expect to have to buy new decals automatically. Yet don’t get me started on Trumpeter and Stephens International! I’ve been mad about that one for ten years. A two hundred dollar kit missing the decals and instructions. Called Stephens up and made a request, and the women pretty much told me to go pound sand. I will not buy any Trumpeter without going thru the parts to make sure it’s all there.

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So they are supposed to make up for your screw up? They clip a piece off a sprue then who want’s to buy that sprue? Something like an ammo can you only have about a jillion after market options. Really?


I have also made good experience with Eduard Customer Service in CZ some years ago. In a Yak 3 kit the Red Stars were more pink and I asked for a replacement. All they asked for was a photo of the sheet. And they sent me 2 complete sheets for free. :slightly_smiling_face: :+1:

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yes it was my mistake but I did offer to buy the part/sprue but in the USA you only pay a few bucks for the part/sprue. I don’t know why you are so angry about the fact I was not prepared to pay almost the full price of the model just for one sprue when there are 5-6 sprues in the box.

if you are feeling generous you can always but the full kit for me and I will send you the parts that I don’t need or use.



To be fair, he is kind of correct… not that i agree with how it came across. But seriously, an aftermarket replacement (probably with better detail) would cost you half that at most.

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Ah bugger, that sucks man. Here in Canada, at the store I work at, that’s unfortunately par for the course. When a customer wants a specific part, we’ve got to source the entire sprue from our vendor. Unfortunately, I think that’s just how Tamiya works, although it’s worth noting that Takom does that too.

I kind of agree with Gary here, I know, it is a shocker. You can’t expect them to send you the sprue for free. I would actually replace the whole gun. The Tamiya parts are seriously lacking any semblance of details. There are a lot better options that are not that expensive.

I’m not angry about anything. I’m laughing at your whining.

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I don’t have a problem buying one sprue but I don’t think that one sprue should be almost equal to the cost of a brand new kit.

if you get a puncture on your car tyre, a replacement tyre shouldn’t equal the cost of the vehicle itself.

I fully admit that I was at fault for losing the part but charging that kind of fee is just insane. the problem is people here are being conditioned into paying these high prices, " that’s the way it is, so that’s the way it is" attitude.

I have had dealings with numerous Asian companies and they generally pride themselves on good customer service, this British company seems to have a record of ripping off people in the UK.

Dragon (I Don’t) Care in US is just as bad, even when it is their fault. If they don’t have a returned, or unsalable, kit on the shelf, you’re not getting your missing part!

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Bang on as always, knowing Tamiya mgs you may as well just get some aftermarket.

They did that to me with a ship kit.
One of the secondary guns had been cut from the sprue before being sealed in the bag. Sent photos as evidence to them.
Total denial and refused my request.
Luckily I was eventually able to replace it with spares from a Skywave kit, but that stuck in my craw for a while. It was a long time before I bought another Dragon kit.

This set by Tasca/Asuka is about the best plastic .50 cal: Asuka (Tasca) 1/35 US M2 .50 Cal Heavy Machine Gun 35-L8 – Burbank's House of Hobbies It looks even better when combined with Eduard’s PE ammo cans , loading tray, and gun cradle set.

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