Forum Replies Created
01/08/2019 at 4:09 pm in reply to: Scavenger Life Episode 393: Happy New Year and Returns Happen #54797
Marie, looking over your listings I don’t see any glaring issues. If anything, I think you could work on improving your photos, in general. I noticed that for many of your items, the main listing photo only depicts a part of the item. As a buyer I prefer to see the entire item framed in the main photo so I don’t have to stop and examine further if I’m scrolling through search results. Especially when you’re using numerous key words in your title (generally a good thing, I think) making it sometimes a bit unclear as to what exactly it is you are selling. Sometimes some of your other photos are out of focus and sometimes you don’t have a photo of the entire item at all in the listing. Sometimes you don’t really have good photos of all angles and parts of the item which is important for picky collector buyers. There is a Photography forum here with lots of good advice if you’re interested but thinking about the composition of the photos to best show the overall item and then all detail is the main thing.
But I would also offer that a store like yours (and mine, for that matter) with miscellaneous antiques, collectibles, clothing and accessories all on BIN with aggressive pricing (aka the “Ryanne & Jay Patented Long Tail Store” format, LOL) will definitely have slow periods, and the smaller the store, a slow period can mean no sales at all for days. I was very slow before Christmas and picked up afterwards. It happens and is random. I see you’re putting things on sale but you could also add Best Offer to your listings to generate some interest, or pick out a few of your items that have many watchers and views and send them to auction with a low starting price to get you over the hump. And keep on listing, taking the opportunity to grow the inventory. Hang in there!01/06/2019 at 4:28 pm in reply to: Funny to me – low ball offers with folksy messages #54628
My theory is that those resellers with the stories are old-school antique dealers and pickers. The sob story was a common negotiating tactic when sourcing in person in the days before eBay. That they’re not quite sophisticated enough on the platform to realize that their use of the same account to buy and sell is transparent to others is another clue that they’re of my vintage or older.
I use a different account to buy on eBay but as a frequent sniper of often relatively unique items I don’t relist them right away to try and avoid any drama from the previous seller.
I have never tried to sell used software but my greatest concern is eBay’s VeRO program that prohibits selling “opened software subject to licensing agreements”. Commercial and home use software that is sold is usually sold with a license, meaning the purchaser only rents it and has no right to transfer it. The buyer agrees to be bound to the license by opening the package (read the fine print on the sticker that you have to tear to get to the disk) and once that occurs, the software cannot be further transferred. Jay recently reported that he and Ryanne had several software listings that were taken down under the eBay VeRO program.
It appears that high volume sellers can usually withstand a couple of those without being shut down but since eBay will never say how many is too many (and some types of violations they appear to be more worried about than others) to get you suspended or worse, I’m not willing to take the chance.
Awesome sale, Boozy! I know Jay and Ryanne don’t care for auctions but this was perfect auction bait with the widespread and competitive interest in these items.
I don’t know what it is but you Brits crack me up. Your translation to “mold” is appreciated.
Nadgers? Somebody’s been watching the Goon Show…
There are a couple things that are infuriating about VeRO. First, not all the companies that aggressively enforce their intellectual property are listed on the eBay VeRO page. The companies that own the Build Bonanza, Ringer, Elf on the Shelf, Suburu, and Lokai trademarks, to name a few that have come up, are nowhere to be found. And the companies that are there are listed by the name of the company, not their trademark. For example Gerber Childrenswear is there but you have click the link to their pdf to see it is for Onesies. So how would you know? It would be most helpful if Ebay created a searchable list of the trademarks for which they have received notices rather than playing Whack-a-Mole with sellers. It just creates hate and discontent with uneven enforcement and no prior notice of what they’re doing is wrong.
Second, even eBay admits that you can state the brand name of a brand-name product that you are selling and include photos of the item and you can’t suggest or say that you’re an authorized dealer if you’re not. It’s called fair use. And yes there are some caveats but if I legitimately obtain a physical item free and clear, the manufacturer has no legal basis to prevent me from reselling it. On eBay or anywhere else. These companies that are out to eliminate the secondary market in their merchandise need to be slapped.
I think you’ve done the right thing by contacting the company. I would keep bugging them if you’re absolutely sure the items are authentic and your listing didn’t imply that you were an authorized retailer for the line. (When in doubt I have listed even new with tags items as used and included a trademark disclaimer.) There are forum members here who have been successful in getting a company to back off by pursuing the issue when they were sure of authenticity and they were then able to relist the items. You don’t want to rack up multiple violations in a short period so if you sell current consumer items that are risky it might be worth it to try and get this one cleansed off your record.
Yup. Old school brick and mortar auction houses are totally caveat emptor situations. The ones online have all kinds of warnings that bidders should come to view the items in person and I guess they feel that lets them off the hook for their shyster ways. I have been lucky with them and made money on the occasional purchases I have made despite no in-person viewing but I assume the worst and won’t bid any more than lunch money on things that will be profitable even if damaged. I don’t win many bids so I try not to waste too much time with them.
My bad buy of 2018 so far (it’s not over yet… still time to screw up again) has been a vintage underwater video camera housing I found at an indy thrift for $30 that was pricing out in the hundreds for eBay sold listings. Until I got it home and realized that they made many models that were precisely set up for different cameras and without knowing which video camera it was made for (not even a model number to be found on the housing) it’s a $20 item at best. The manufacturer’s website even has a notice not to bother contacting them about identification of older models because they can’t help.
You mean this one?
It was a beret badge for 5 Commando, the mercenaries.
Interesting route back to the UK for the one you had. There are period photos of Mike Hoare wearing it, and one of his famous officers, Muller. There were about 300 total soldiers though how many of these badges were really made at the time is unknown as period photos show a variety of uniforms and badges among the mercenaries. I understand he had copies of his patches and badges made up and sold at least in the US after the war to pay for his legal costs when he went to trial. Probably advertised in Soldier of Fortune magazine.
Yay I’m first! Great sales, Steve! I love your model cars. I tried to buy a really nice used baby blue ’64 Fairlane bone stock with a 289 automatic in it from a big new car dealership once in Philly. I was about 19 or so at the time. Of course they had priced it very high and I honestly thought they’d sell it for what it was really worth (at the time). I was there about an hour and went through three levels of salespeople before they finally realized I was not budging off my low ball offer and kicked me out.
I bought a small wholesale lot of these ‘70’s or 80’s vintage East German Army surplus leather military pistol holsters for a couple bucks each back when the market was still saturated with their stuff a while after the Berlin wall came down. Though this particular model worn by the border troops is less desirable the prices are going up as the supply from over there is drying up and this one brought $21 plus shipping.
More surplus: This US Army fatigue shirt is the 100% cotton OG 107 pattern with straight cuffs of a type manufactured in the 50’s and worn into the 60’s. All the patches including the gold printed US Army tape and the white name tape are period correct and certainly all original because it wouldn’t be worth faking it. There’s nothing real exciting about a leg buck sergeant in the 5th Infantry Division. Can’t recall what I paid for it – bought it a while back but my daughter absconded with it to wear. I finally got it back and it sold for $49 plus shipping; would have gotten more but for a large hole on the back shoulder.
This random ugly gift shop slate painting came out of our family donation box. I don’t even want to know what my wife or daughter paid for it because it was probably bought new but it sold for $20 plus shipping.
Gun guys and gals wear hats so when I saw this Gemtech Suppressors ball cap for $2 at an indy thrift I thought it would not take long to sell and I was right. It went for $20 plus shipping.
I am nowhere near as knowledgeable as others here on the forum about shoes so I mostly stay away from them but the quality and Euro look and feel of these black leather Camper Pelotas fashion sneakers convinced me to take a chance at an indy thrift for $5 when I was getting no reception to check prices on my phone. Sold for $64 plus shipping.
What a funny example of how to describe really ugly art and make it sound awesome. Great find, Ryanne!
Neat shirt! It’s a nice example of one of many camouflage pattern uniforms recognized as in use in Vietnam by ARVN rangers and airborne and their advisors starting in 1966. These were manufactured in VN using US-supplied ERDL camouflage rip-stop cotton material (as Antique Frog noticed). There should be one or more large rectangular maker’s ink stamps inside but if the shirt was heavily washed they may be hard to see or faded out. The collectors call it the “invisible” camouflage pattern. With a full patch set as typically worn this would usually have Vietnamese jump wings sewn over the right pocket but that’s not a big deal.
While with real provenance this shirt could be worth a couple thousand (the number of advisors in that period were only in the 100’s), without provenance I think you’ve done the right thing by just using your key words and putting it up for auction to let the buyers decide what it’s worth. You’ve already got 30 watchers and a couple bids – it’ll go higher. Especially with that odd patch. It’s intriguing.
I’ve been collecting and trading militaria for many years. There are collectors who argue about the most minute differences in patches or sewing techniques or other identifying features to identify an original Vietnamese uniform by inspection but the truth is that with so many of the Vietnamese uniform items, it is very difficult to tell if something was made in 1966 or 2006. Everything may look right but without provenance, this ensemble could have been put together yesterday with the really good copies available. Personally, I don’t buy any “rare” Vietnam uniform or insignia items as originals unless there’s provenance, and by provenance I mean I got it from the guy or an estate and was shown pictures of the guy wearing it in VN, or some documentation like a DD-214 showing service in VN in that era, because military guys like to collect uniforms too and the previous owner could have bought it post-war. Good news for you is that there’s plenty of interest in this stuff and even reproductions bring a good price. Good luck!!
I would box/shell it with cardboard. Besides the bits that poke out, too many odd angles and spaces for a soft wrap to remain intact to protect the wood and the paint, even heavy contractor bags.
In the period photos of ARVN paratroopers that I’ve seen there is no epaulette patch. That makes sense to me because they would not hold up very long in the field with LBE and rucksack straps, rifle slings, etc. wearing on the shoulder.
But the ARVN airborne battalions allegedly each had unit insignia as well that was worn on the epaulette (I say allegedly because I have not seen them in period photographs), and some airborne uniforms have turned up in collections with them, like this one with a 9th Airborne Battalion insignia.
The battalion patches are sold on eBay also. As Antique Frog says Vietnam War patches are still being made (and the uniforms are reproduced, as well), but they have a distinctive look that is very different than this one. Assuming there really was such a thing as a battalion epaulette patch, I’d say this was either a soldier’s amateur attempt to create his battalion patch out of thread and/or I agree with Jay it got destroyed in the wash. Even when I squint it’s not matching up with any of the alleged airborne battalion insignia that I have seen, though. (BTW, even reproduction items sell well.)11/30/2018 at 6:46 pm in reply to: The Need for Speed: Improving Efficiencies in Reselling #52511
Useful info from everyone, thanks! I’m a part timer but my greatest time sinks are scavenging and research. I enjoy them too much. I was an attorney and they used to say that the most successful small firm and sole practitioner attorneys are NOT in love with the law. They are business people first, and lawyers second. Spending too much time going down legal rabbit holes in a solo or small practice is a recipe for failure. I think there is an element of that to eBay selling. If you lean towards hoarding or are too interested in the history of the items found it can be bad for business.