Forum Replies Created
That’s incredible! I’m really jealous you were able to score all those electronics for free. How did the invitation to come and help yourself to all that stuff come about?
I’m always seeing those soda thermometers and advertising at auctions and they always go for waaay more than I’d pay for them. It’s a shame cause I wouldn’t mind owning some.
I think you priced it just right. Weber pipes were along the same vein as Dr. Grabow pipes you see nowadays. Sort of the working man’s pipe sold at drugstores. The charm of yours was that it was unsmoked and still had it’s original box after all these decades.
That Weber pipe is awesome! I would be ecstatic if I got that at an estate sale for only $10. I collect tobacco pipes myself. They always go for way too much anytime I see them at auctions.
That’s so awesome that you’re parting out speakers that most people would have just thrown away. And getting great money for it too! Here’s my highlights from last week…
RCA Field Technician’s Box that I paid way too much for at an auction… $17. It turned out to be not what I thought it would be. But I took a best offer of $28 so it wasn’t a loss.
1950’s Travel Map of Geneva, Switzerland. I got this in a box lot of ephemera. Lots of other travel maps and postcards came from that box. After separating everything of value, this map ended up costing $4.25 total. I sold it for $25 to someone in Singapore.
Here’s the Sony Walkman Cassette Player I sold for a best offer of $85. In my research, I found that Walkman’s are priced all over the map depending on the model. This one was rare apparently. I bought it at an estate sale for $5.00.
Finally, I resold an American Keyless Lock Company Padlock that was returned to me. The first buyer just said that it wouldn’t work. I’m not a lock expert, so I took his word for it. Refunded him and listed it the same day for $70 with full disclosure that it wasn’t working. It sold an hour later for BO of $60. I originally paid $5.00 for it at an auction.03/06/2017 at 12:49 pm in reply to: Scavenger Life Episode 300: Our 300th Episode!! Now let’s talk taxes… #13921
Feb. 26 – Mar. 04
Total Items in Store: 565
Items Sold: 8
Total Sales: $316
Highest Price: $85 (Sony Walkman Radio Cassette Model WM-SR10)
Average Price: $40
Cost of Items Sold: $31
Costs of Items Purchased this Week: $0
Not as great of a week as the previous couple of weeks, but still not bad for just small time. I’ve been focusing on listing some higher priced items this week and I’ve still got a lot more to go. I’ve made a goal to have listed all of my backlog of items by May, just in time for yard sale and auction season.
Regarding taxes, this is the first year that I’m taking it serious and I’m going to try and get some expert help. I have an accountant friend who knows a thing or two about running his own business and I’m hoping he’ll at least point me in the right direction. Luckily I’m a spreadsheet data nerd and love keeping track of cogs and sales and mileage and all that. My biggest concern is how much it costs to hire a CPA if I go that route?
Oh, and congrats on 300 episodes!03/02/2017 at 5:39 pm in reply to: What Sells On eBay: Organ parts, trucker wallet, video monitors, 70's flip date, hurricane lamp, amps, turntable #13701
I won’t lie… I would have totally kept those cookie lamps. LOL! Even better that you found them as a pair. I’m curious to know what the story behind them is. Promotional items? Art project? Perhaps we’ll never know.03/02/2017 at 9:45 am in reply to: What Sells On eBay: Organ parts, trucker wallet, video monitors, 70's flip date, hurricane lamp, amps, turntable #13681
Hey! It’s good to hear from someone local. Pittsburgh is great. I make a trip there about once a month or so to scavenge. And I was just in Weirton last weekend for dinner.
Yeah, that silk book was certainly a surprise! From what I understand, I think the mix of Korean culture and Christian religion is a hot issue which was probably what made it desirable. I wish I knew more about it, but I was happy with the end price.03/01/2017 at 9:02 pm in reply to: What Sells On eBay: Organ parts, trucker wallet, video monitors, 70's flip date, hurricane lamp, amps, turntable #13668
It was a very good week for me. Here are some highlights…
I bought a box lot of costume jewelry for $45. One item was a WW2 trench art bracelet. It wasn’t as fancy as some other ones on ebay, but they were selling for a lot. I decided on an auction format. Started it out at $30 and it rose to $54 by the end.
WW2 Trench Art Bracelet
At a thrift store here in town, I spotted some of our local hockey team bobbleheads for a dollar each. I should have bought them all, but found a few that I recognized. I sold two to the same buyer. I priced them high at $65 each and he paid full price for both. Not a bad sale!
Here’s an interesting sale. I recently purchased a metal mail sorting desk for my office. Paid $12 on an online auction site. Picked it up, brought it home and started cleaning it up. Inside the drawer was a key that didn’t go to the desk. I did some research and found out that it was a key to a postal office mail bag. I put it up for auction and it sold for $51!
U.S. Postal Mail Bag Key
I sold a really neat carved coconut mask. It came in a box lot and came to about $1.70. I’ve seen the generic coconut masks at run-of-the-mill souvenir shops at beaches, but this was different. It was really unique. So I priced it high and took a best offer of $40.
Vintage Coconut Mask Carving
Finally, I wanted to show by best sale of the week. I wrote on Monday about a Korean silk and paper doll book. I didn’t think it was worth anything. It, too, came in a box lot and came to about $4.25. I threw it up as an auction starting at $10 and it sold for $356!
Korean Doll Book02/27/2017 at 11:34 am in reply to: Scavenger Life Episode 299: What Control Do We Have as eBay Sellers? #13427
I had to look up CD longboxes to see what you were talking about, Rydell. Wow, who would have thought that those were collectable? I’ve never seen them out in the wild while scavenging, but it’s nice to know in case I do spot them.02/27/2017 at 10:46 am in reply to: Scavenger Life Episode 299: What Control Do We Have as eBay Sellers? #13421
When I first got into selling on eBay, every item was an auction. Most were duds that sold for maybe around $15. I would say that maybe 10% of my auctions surprised me with the final sale price. These days, I’ll only list maybe 3 or 4 auction formats a month since I’ve become better at researching items.02/27/2017 at 10:29 am in reply to: Scavenger Life Episode 299: What Control Do We Have as eBay Sellers? #13419
Feb. 19 – 25
Total Items in Store: 525
Items Sold: 11
Total Sales: $756
Highest Price: $356 (Silk Korean Catholic Book)
Average Price: $69
Cost of Items Sold: $21
Costs of Items Purchased this Week: $15
I had a great week as well (at least for my small store). Several high priced items sold which helps boost my motivation to keep listing. I decided to give the auction format another shot this week. I use the auction format for more one-of-a-kind items that I don’t have much info about. So I describe it in super descriptive detail and see what happens. It paid off this time for sure! I had a Korean “book” made out of fabric and paper. I very nearly threw it away because it didn’t look like it would be desirable. Well the messages started rolling in not even 15 minutes after I listed it. “I’ll give you $30 right now for this.” “Could you add a Buy It Now to this auction?” Well that set my heart a-beatin’. To make a long story short, the bids jumped from $30 to $356 in the last 30 minutes. My God what a rush! It really goes to show that what one person might think is junk can really be absolute treasure.
This past week I’ve spent taking photos. I think it might be my least favorite part of being an eBay seller, even though photography is one of my hobbies. I work a full time job, so it took me a whole week to photograph 120 items. But I go to great lengths to get every detail. It really resonates with me what you mentioned in this week’s podcast about being in control about the quality of pictures one must take to make the sale. Taking a minute or two extra per item to really get those shots is worth it.
I didn’t do much in the way of scavenging last week. I went to an auction that I thought would be very promising only to walk out with one item that I think I overpaid for. Such a bust! I wouldn’t have been so butthurt except the auction was almost an hour and a half away. Lesson learned: always look at the preview photos with a critical eye.02/22/2017 at 8:26 pm in reply to: What Sells On eBay: Projection screens, HeathKit clock & Voltmeter, 8 Track Quadraphonic recorder, Patagonia jacket #13132
I’ve had a pretty good week this time. Here are some notables…
I mentioned on Monday about an ugly 1950’s Silvestri Bros oriental lamp. I acquired it from an auction for $32.50. I kinda went in blind on it not knowing anything about it except the year it was made and the maker engraved in the base. The gamble paid off, though. I ended up taking a best offer of $110.
1950’s Silvestri Bros Lamp
Next was an antique stuffed dog. I bought him in a box lot with some other old toys. It amounted to about $2.50. I was going to throw him away actually but thought I might as well try. It took a few months but he sold for $30.
Antique Toy Stuffed Dog
Next was a cast iron gooseneck lamp. I always see these around and I usually pick them up if they’re cheap enough. But I’ve never seen a teal colored one before. I bought it at a yard sale last year for 50 cents. It sold for full price of $50!
Teal Eagle Cast Iron Gooseneck Lamp
Finally, my favorite sale of the week. In a box lot of cheap costume jewelry, I found an old beat up piece of metal. Upon closer inspection, I noticed engraving on the surface. Turns out what I had was a piece of trench art. Someone turned what I think was an artillery shell casing into a bracelet and engraved the location and a date. I looked up Trench Art bracelets and sure enough, it’s a thing. A very profitable thing, too. Since mine was pretty beat up, I decided on the auction format. It shot up at the last few seconds and sold for $54. I paid about $5 for it.
WWII Trench Art Bracelet02/21/2017 at 2:15 pm in reply to: Scavenger Life Episode 298: The Scavengers and The Collectors, A Love Story #12998
I’d like to start sharing my numbers along with everyone else…
Feb. 12 – 18
Total Items in Store: 533
Items Sold: 11
Total Sales: $495.00
Highest Price: Fischer J Budapest Bowl ($150) (I talked about this one last week and they finally paid)
Average Price: $45
Cost of Items Sold: $58
Costs of Items Purchased this Week: $0
Not a bad week for me. I sold a few higher than average priced items with the highlight being the Budapest Bowl I mentioned back on Wednesday, as well as an ugly Silvestri Oriental lamp for $110. That was a major pain in the butt to pack! I got a return for a vtg American Keyless Lock Co. padlock. So that’s $90 I have to refund.
After listening to this week’s podcast, I wanted to comment on the Scavenger vs Collectors aspect. I feel like I am the scavenger through and through. I fully adhere to the lifestyle of finding and selling and the idea of the pipeline. I try to minimize my personal items down to things I need for day to day living and a few hobbies. My partner, on the other hand, is the collector. She owns stuff for the sake of owning it. Video games, anime toys, comic books, holiday decorations, anything and everything that she deems as neat. But we somehow coexist under one roof. I get to see firsthand the thought-process of a collector. It’s fascinating really.02/16/2017 at 10:05 am in reply to: What Sells On eBay: Lee jeans, Girl Scout items, Hansa Branta Eskimo parka, Stereo viewer, Polaroid camera #12698
I had another slow week in sales. But I’ve been listing like a fiend so hopefully that’ll spark something soon. Here’s a few of my notable sales.
My big sale of the week was for a Fischer Budapest bowl. I mentioned these before in another thread. I personally think they’re ugly as hell, but I can pick them out in a lineup so easily. And they sell extremely well. I grabbed this from a buyer’s choice table at an auction for $5. I listed it Sunday and it sold overnight for BO of $150, though it’s been a couple of days and the buyer still hasn’t paid. I’m not worried though. I know it’ll sell again if he doesn’t.
Fischer J. Budapest Bowl
Sold an old 1961 Sears catalog for $20. It came in a box lot that I thought I overpaid for, but I’ve since turned into a nice little profit. This particular catalog came out to cost me $10. I’m going to keep an eye out for these older shopping catalogs. Some of them sell for big bucks.
I’ve been experimenting with tin containers lately. I’ve seen them at auctions and I’ll pick up a box of them for a few dollars. They’re really easy to list and take photos of. And they usually tend to sell after a month or two. This 1980’s Uncle Ben’s rice tin sold for $15. It probably cost me ten or twenty cents.
Uncle Ben’s Brown Rice Tin
Finally, another item that sold within a day was a cast metal eagle. The weird thing was, there were a bunch of them up on eBay already and I priced mine about the same, if not higher than everyone else. It sold to what I think is a shipping company in CA. Packing it was a pain. I had to go out and find a box to fit it. And I messed up on the listing weight so it cost me an extra $6.00 to ship. I really need to learn to weigh my items before listing them instead of guessing.
Brass-Toned Metal Eagle Hanging02/14/2017 at 10:47 am in reply to: Scavenger Life Episode 297: Being Frugal vs Running A Business #12511
It had been a slow week for me. Made $125 net. My highest price item sold was a Tiffany paper stationery set for $40.
I did want to share about an exciting cache I acquired. Where I work, they were cleaning out an old forgotten room for expansion. Everything was getting thrown away! Well they let me dig through the trash bags and I pulled out over 100 technical service manuals for all kinds of audio and video equipment. Thanks to Steven Schultz and his What Sells videos, I knew that they could be worth something. I brought them all home and hopefully I’ll get around to listing them soon.
I’ve also been frequently stopping at the Goodwill Outlet store in Pittsburgh. I usually don’t do too bad, but on Saturday I found a 18K gold nib Parker fountain pen! I couldn’t believe it. It was in an old bin too. It goes to show that treasure can be found even after its been picked through.