Author Topic: Rat Nation Update  (Read 84440 times)

Offline Sweet Whispers Rattery

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Rat Nation Update
« on: October 31, 2007, 03:33:26 PM »
I contacted Jim Wingate VP of New Products for Midwest about the process of the Rat Nation. I finally got a response after about 48hrs. and I just thought I'd share w/ everyone and get your opinion before I get back to Jim. I'll respond back to him w/ everyone's opinions as well.


"Hi Ashten,
 
We are still working on the design, after which we will determine the cost and the retail price.  We are concerned that there will be more material in the Rat Nation and the retail price may be too high??
 
How much do you think consumers would be willing to pay for a Rat Nation?
 
Unfortuneately, we are still about three months away from deciding whether or not to proceed.
 
Thank you for your continuing interest .... Jim"

Offline JR1030

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2007, 03:45:19 PM »
I think it would be a great idea to mention to him the idea of snap on grids with 1/2 in. spacing that would fit right on the existing FNs.  Then people could snap it right on, and take it off when the rats get big enough, or leave it on if they have little girlies.  I would absolutely buy such a thing to add on to my current FN, and I know a lot of people would buy a new FN if they knew there was something with smaller spacing to add onto it.  That way, all they have to do is manufacture the snap on grid (including for the middle and bottom floors under the pans, and the top), and they don't have to re-design the whole thing just for rats.

*edited because my proofreading skills suck
« Last Edit: October 31, 2007, 03:52:19 PM by JR1030 »
~Rebecca

Offline Suebee

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2007, 03:48:36 PM »
I'm sure if they were able to stay in the realm of Martin's for price per square footage, they'd be competetive. I have no real idea of what a FN cage is like compared to Martin's, though.

Offline OldsGal

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2007, 04:24:18 PM »
Yep I think the snap on grid idea might be a cheaper way for them to go rather than try to build a whole nother cage to add to their product line.  Plus storage space in their warehouses would be less and shipping costs for the grids would be less.  I don't want them messing with the FN design at all other than the bar spacing and I am afraid that a rat nation is gonna be all screwed up and no one will really like it as well as the FN and then they just wasted their time and money.

As for the snap on additions as long as they were made really really well I would be willing to pay $50 to $75 bucks for them. 

If they did not screw up a Rat Nation all to pieces then I would be willing to pay $250 for the cage.

Staci
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Offline ratty_pack

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2007, 05:49:09 PM »
I'd like to suggest:

1) Build a ferret nation frame (ie. the bars of a box and the sturdy door.  Replace the wire bars with 1/2" mesh that is thinner/lighter than ferret cages.

2) Add a pan over 4" deep

3) Drop in shelves. 

I'd buy it at even twice the price.
« Last Edit: October 31, 2007, 05:52:09 PM by ratty_pack »

Offline Punkygirl0101

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #5 on: October 31, 2007, 05:57:31 PM »
I think that snap on grid idea is excellent!! I really want to get a third tier really soon for my boy Nolan, and his 5 young boy cagemates, but they will easily fit through the bars. I think it would be a lot easier to make the snap on grids, I would buy them. :)
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Offline Lise

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #6 on: October 31, 2007, 06:05:52 PM »
I think I would pay $200 (I guess the $229 sticker price like the FN has now) for a rat nation... but if it was going to get anymore expensive than that I'd have to pass, I think.
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Offline Dori

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #7 on: October 31, 2007, 07:02:22 PM »
I would pay up to $200 for a good rat cage!

Offline DazzleMe

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #8 on: October 31, 2007, 07:35:30 PM »
 I agree on the $200 price tag. That would be my limit for a Rat Nation.

 Of course I'd like to see more shelves (perhaps one running lengthwise along the back?), and a 3" deep pan that cannot be accessed by chewers.

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Offline xandria24

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #9 on: October 31, 2007, 08:34:13 PM »
Yeah, i don't think i could see myself purchasing one cage for over $200. I say $200.


Or better yet - snap on grid.

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Offline Topaz

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #10 on: October 31, 2007, 08:41:25 PM »

Or better yet - snap on grid.

I like the snap on grid idea.  I love the FN the way it is since I use fabric instead of litter for bedding with litter boxes.  I'll be buying another FN in the next couple weeks for the girls, which means hardwire mesh  :confused:

Offline Messorius

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #11 on: October 31, 2007, 08:52:29 PM »

Or better yet - snap on grid.

I like the snap on grid idea.  I love the FN the way it is since I use fabric instead of litter for bedding with litter boxes.  I'll be buying another FN in the next couple weeks for the girls, which means hardwire mesh  :confused:

I went ahead and suggested it to Midwest.  Although I think someone in the original thread had suggested it prior to me bringing it up in yet another thread, man we're getting a ton of them  :BlueDumboSmileTongue: and they weren't keen on the idea, but we'll see.  It might be more attractive now with the things I said about selling to existing customers and whatnot.

Offline Grace

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #12 on: October 31, 2007, 09:52:51 PM »
I agree with the others about the snap on grid.  I really don't know anything else I'd really like to see changed, I love everything about the cage.  It would be nice if they made optional accessories available easier though, such as extra shelves (perhaps some new shelf sizes as well), deeper pans, and the grids, while leaving the cage exactly the way it is. 

Clear as mud, right?


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Offline LivingPinCushion

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #13 on: November 01, 2007, 11:50:52 AM »
I wouldnt buy the RN because I have two FN's and love them for my boys. I would however love to buy snap on grids for the girls FN that I'm getting soon. I just dont really see a need for a whole new cage. But thats just me.
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Offline OldsGal

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #14 on: November 01, 2007, 12:09:49 PM »
I wouldnt buy the RN because I have two FN's and love them for my boys. I would however love to buy snap on grids for the girls FN that I'm getting soon. I just dont really see a need for a whole new cage. But thats just me.

See I totally agree with this.  I currently have 2 FN and I don't see myself buying a new cage anytime in the near future so in all honesty I probably would never buy a rat nation if it ever was released.  I currently have my boys in one cage and my girls in one cage.  My girls do not get out of there cage.  But what is annoying me right now about the FN is that I have to have a 3rd cage set up right now (a martins) for 2 babies that I adopted personally.  I would really love to be able to have those snap on grids that I can put on the FN girls cage until the babies get big enough and I can pop them back off.  It would be so much easier to intro babies into my girl group then trying to intro the 2 babies when they are adolescent and throwing off all kinds of threatening hormones to my girls. 

Staci
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Offline Saydrah

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #15 on: November 01, 2007, 11:57:27 PM »
I would probably pay up to $250 for a Rat Nation, but I would prefer to see it available in the $200 price range.
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Offline Sweet Whispers Rattery

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #16 on: November 02, 2007, 08:25:34 AM »
I'm relaying all of your concerns and ideas to the VP at Midwest's New Products, Jim, right now. Keep them coming though as I'll keep him updated w/ all of your ideas. He said their still 3mths. away from deciding wether or not to process w/ the full cage build, but maybe when he hears all of your ideas about the add ons or accessories for the existing FN it'll be more appealing and cheaper for them to make, but bring them in more profit. I hope I'm starting to like all of your ideas about the add ons myself coz I'd buy a 2nd FN and a ton of accessories for my girlies. So keep em comin everyone ur givin good ideas!!!!

Offline JR1030

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #17 on: November 02, 2007, 08:35:47 AM »
I like the idea of having more accessories available...it might be nice to have a 1/2 shelf available.  I don't want to overwhelm the guy with ideas, though.  To me, the snap on grid would be the best thing ever...I could have babies and girlies, and whoever else I wanted in there!  This way, they could sell the add-ons to everyone who already owns an FN, and wouldn't be running out to buy a RN.
~Rebecca

Offline FiggyT

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #18 on: November 02, 2007, 08:52:42 AM »
Maybe I can input a different opinion here.
I don't have a Ferret Nation, mostly due to cost and my budget right now. However, if I had the choice between buying a Rat Nation that didn't really need any accessories or a Ferret Nation that did (which cost more money), I'd go the RN route. For existing Ferret Nation owners, the snap-on grids are a fantastic idea, I'm not going to argue that. But for everyone else, I think an RN would be more appealing to us. I'm not against shucking out money (when I have it) to spend on my rats, but between the two choices, I'd like to save money wherever possible. Just keep in mind that not everyone has an FN already and they might not want to spend the extra bucks on snap on grids when they do choose to get one.

I wouldn't know how to present that to Jim, I was just offering something up for discussion here. :]
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Offline OldsGal

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #19 on: November 02, 2007, 11:26:12 AM »
Maybe I can input a different opinion here.
I don't have a Ferret Nation, mostly due to cost and my budget right now. However, if I had the choice between buying a Rat Nation that didn't really need any accessories or a Ferret Nation that did (which cost more money), I'd go the RN route. For existing Ferret Nation owners, the snap-on grids are a fantastic idea, I'm not going to argue that. But for everyone else, I think an RN would be more appealing to us. I'm not against shucking out money (when I have it) to spend on my rats, but between the two choices, I'd like to save money wherever possible. Just keep in mind that not everyone has an FN already and they might not want to spend the extra bucks on snap on grids when they do choose to get one.

I wouldn't know how to present that to Jim, I was just offering something up for discussion here. :]

I completely understand what you are saying.  But according to the first updated post Jim is concerned that the Rat Nation is going to cost much more to build then the FN.  So if that is true and they do build the RN for kicks and giggles lets say they have to sell it for $250-$300 to make a profit.  Lets say they make the snap grids and they cost $50-75 to purchase.  A FN right now costs $200 including shipping and the snap grids would be $50-75 so that would put you right at the same price as the RN.  So honestly you would not be spending more money for the RN as the FN.  And the wide bars on the FN are a love hate thing with most of us who have them.  Most who have them will tell you they love being able to walk by their cages and stick their fingers through those bars.  It really gets you on a more personal level with your rats on a day to day basis.  The only time we hate the bars is when we have babies or small girls.  Like I said I have girls in mine now who are on the small side who do not get out of the cage.  They could if they wanted to but for some reason they don't try so I don't have my girl cage wrapped with hardware cloth.

Staci
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Offline LivingPinCushion

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #20 on: November 02, 2007, 11:35:32 AM »
I completely understand what you are saying.  But according to the first updated post Jim is concerned that the Rat Nation is going to cost much more to build then the FN.  So if that is true and they do build the RN for kicks and giggles lets say they have to sell it for $250-$300 to make a profit.  Lets say they make the snap grids and they cost $50-75 to purchase.  A FN right now costs $200 including shipping and the snap grids would be $50-75 so that would put you right at the same price as the RN.  So honestly you would not be spending more money for the RN as the FN.  And the wide bars on the FN are a love hate thing with most of us who have them.  Most who have them will tell you they love being able to walk by their cages and stick their fingers through those bars.  It really gets you on a more personal level with your rats on a day to day basis.  The only time we hate the bars is when we have babies or small girls.  Like I said I have girls in mine now who are on the small side who do not get out of the cage.  They could if they wanted to but for some reason they don't try so I don't have my girl cage wrapped with hardware cloth.

Staci
[/quote]

Thats where I am exactly! I love the wide bars for my boys because I like sticking my fingers in when I go by and being able to rub all their heads. It also helps when Im giving a quick treat and I need to leave fast, I can hand them any treat through the bars. When I was with my ex we had 11 girls including one SUPER tiny girl all in the FN they could escape easily but didnt. I would love snap on grids because now that all my rats will be in FN's I cant risk the girls deciding to get out and get into the boys cage. I have 6 boys and four girls now that could be a mess. Thats why the snap on grids make sense I am not going to wait and buy an overly expensive rat cage that I am only getting because of girls I adopted. When in the future Im only going to have males which ruins what I love about the FN the wide bars. The grids would mean I could have the cage I need *for babies and girls* and then the cage I want for adult bucks.

I would also like if they did like what Martins does where you can custome order stuff. That way yes it will cost more but they dont have to put it all into production and waste resources. Maybe just have a thing where you pay X$ extra to get a deeper pan. And X$ extra for a shelf etc.
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Offline Randomrat

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #21 on: November 02, 2007, 05:09:38 PM »
Well I agree with FiggyT. I can't get a FN for $200.00 but for $300.00. If I was going to get a bigger cage then I would get a rat nation if they made it. The FN add-ons would not be the cheaper route for everyone. I know if it is cheaper for most people then thats what counts but I will never buy a FN if it is going to cost me that much money.

Offline FiggyT

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #22 on: November 03, 2007, 12:10:04 PM »
Just out of curiosity, why would the RN be more expensive to produce?
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Offline LivingPinCushion

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #23 on: November 03, 2007, 01:25:29 PM »
Since there will be smaller bar spacing they need to use more material to make it. More steel means more money.
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Offline JR1030

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Re: Rat Nation Update
« Reply #24 on: November 03, 2007, 02:00:34 PM »
Plus they would have to spend a certain amount to modify their equipment (or buy new equipment) to produce something different than they're already making.
~Rebecca