I can't belive

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by pupparo, Oct 10, 2002.

  1. pupparo

    pupparo Member

    After searching Ebay for two hours I can not belive people pay the price they do.
    If you look in the thousand of online model railroad stores you can buy new for less money. I know that some of the onliners are a rip off but alot are 100% honest.
    I have dealt with a few that I have no complaints.
    People need to wake up.
  2. Bill Stone

    Bill Stone Member

    That's why auctions are such great deals --- for the seller.

    The Moron Majority get so carried away with bidding that they don't know when to stop. I often buy stuff on eBay, but when I bid, I know exactly how much the item is worth to me, and won't go a penny over that amount.

    I have actually seen worn out model railroad items sell for almost as much as the manufacturer's suggested retail for exactly the same thing brand new.

    Not long ago there was a really bad, half-finished scratch-built brass loco in terrible condition. Only about half the parts were there. It sold for over $100. Anyone capable of finishing it, could have done a better job from raw materials. I guess the magic word "brass" made it seem to be worth hundreds to the eager idiots who bid it up.

    Bill S
  3. McFortner

    McFortner Member

    I don't know about other people, but I am a very cheap SOB when it comes to ebay. And I fall down laughing when I see how much the starting bids are on for some items, especially the brass locos. The most I've ever spent was 35 for 3 engines. I usually spend around $10 for what I want. If I can't get it for around that on ebay, I just wait for something else I want. :)

  4. rockislandmike

    rockislandmike Active Member

    I've gotten a lot of my locos off eBay, many of them "new in box". Like most of you already said, it's "buyer beware". You gotta know what an item is worth new from one of the discount retailers, and if you're careful and stay rational, you can get some really good deals.
  5. YakkoWarner

    YakkoWarner Member

    As someone who purchases much off of e-bay, I think it is all in the first bid. I look for specific items and know how much they cost before I bid. I also make sure to include the price of shipping as part of the total. I once got burned on shipping to the tune of $5 for something in a bubble envelope. My mistake was in not asking for shipping costs up front.

    You can get good deals if you know the cost of the new item and are willing to let it go if the price climbs higher than you want to pay. I have purchased 3 Kato locos with MT couplers each for less than $50 with shipping. all with very minor cosmetic defects easily corrected with a bit of touch-up paint.

    Be wary of is the "I don't know anything about trains but I think it's O.K." Bull-S*!#.
  6. rockislandmike

    rockislandmike Active Member

    That and anything described as "AS IS"
  7. Vic

    Vic Active Member

    Hey Guys, Lighten up on Ebay:D The Robber Barron finances his hobbies (trains and amatuer radio) selling stuff on Ebay:eek: :D I've "knocked down" over three grand in the last two months. :) Everything I sell is sold "AS IS".....but I'm extremley careful to give an accurate description of the items. Most likely I'll tell you more about what's wrong with an item then I'll tell you what's right about it. :D :D :D

    Seriously, All auctions are "cavet emptor". If you don't like what you got or if the purchase was not as described email the seller and see if you can work out something. Most of them will. Sometimes you do run into an A-- H--- ..... If so post a negative feedback on him....that hurts....if you think you have been defrauded notify Ebay... they'll suspend the seller until the matter is resolved.

    BTW....Brass is WAY TOO HIGH on Ebay!!!:D :D
  8. Bill Stone

    Bill Stone Member


    I don't think many of us are blaming eBay --- or the sellers.

    The morons are the bidders who pay more than something's worth.

    Bill S
  9. babydot94513

    babydot94513 Member in training

    I am one of those morons that bid $20 for a railcar that I want soooooo.... bad. I will not tell you which one because I do not want to drive up my own bidding war but we all have our pain thresholds and when it comes to obsolete items, well....

  10. Drew1125

    Drew1125 Active Member

    I've found some really good deals on eBay...
    But I'm always careful to warn newbies about it...You really need to have some familiarity with retail prices.
    There are a lot of retailers selling on eBay, & by the time you pay shipping, you can be paying too much.
    And then there's shipping...one time I bought a boom & flat car set, for what I thought was a pretty good price...then the guy tells me he needs $5 for shipping...OK, I can deal with that...but when I get said item, it is stuffed into one of those little padded envelopes that are that are meant for disks, or cassettes, & he's paid $1.50 postage. That seemed like gouging to me, & I let the guy know about it. He had quite a few items on there, & if he was pulling that one on everyone, he was turning a few bucks that way!
    Anyway, I'm also a big believer in supporting your local hobby shop...I've got a couple of good ones near me, & I'd hate to see them go down.
  11. Vic

    Vic Active Member

    Hi Bill S, You are right on that...sometimes I take the Devil's Advocate thing too far....My apology to all!!!:)
  12. Voice

    Voice Member

    I sell some on Ebay, too. I try to describe the item as clearly as I can, and get some good pictures of it. Mostly, I look for good deals at the local hobby shop (usually old stuff) and then turn around and sell it.
    Two books I ALWAYS have close at hand when I'm buying something: current Walthers Catalog, and trusty Athearn book!! I do NOT bid on stuff that's at new price.....when I KNOW I can buy it locally cheaper!!!

  13. Mike R

    Mike R Member

    There's an alternative to online auctions [ let's face it, they didn't exist until recently], and that's real auctions. At least you can inspect what you wish to bid on. There are two well established annual MRR auctions up here, in our relatively sparsely populated area of central Ontario.
    One at Harriston [ in a week and a half from now], and one at Wasage Beach,[ May 03, 2003 is the next one.]
    If you're in a heavier-populated area, there are probably more auctions to choose from. There are good deals to be had if you don't get too excited and "carried away" with wanting something.I often pick up poorly assembled buildings, you know, tube-glue-ooze everywhere, and even if overall unit not good, I scavenge all doors, windows, other detail, for other projects. Have picked up some pretty fair rolling stock too, just needed some TLC.
    regards / Mike
  14. TomPM

    TomPM Another Fried Egg Fan

    As someone who has bought and sold on Ebay I too find it hard to believe some of the prices people buy things for. As a seller I did appreciate when the bidding got outrageous. I still can’t believe that I sold wargame magazines for over $100 on several occasions, but hey it went to fund my train purchases (or jewelry peace offerings to the wife;) ). As far as shipping goes I used one standard price for the magazines and charged according to weight for the boxed games. I rounded things off to the nearest quarter dollar just to make it easy on myself. If it cost me 3.95 for mail plus 0.40 for delivery confirmation I charged a flat fee of 4.50 and it was clearly stated in the auction listing.

    As a buyer I research an item before I bid. I only bid below what I can pay for it at a LHS or by mail-order. If it goes higher than that price I figure no loss I can get it cheaper. I had to laugh when I recently bided on a HO IHC GG-1 that I could get for about $60.00 mail order and it sold for over $100.00.

    I also stay away for sellers who don’t list their shipping charges. I learned that lesson the hard way.
  15. NYCentral

    NYCentral Member

    I also buy and sell on E-bay. I find that some people just get caught up in the heat of the moment and bid way too much. I personally try to figure out how much I am willing to pay, bid that amount and walk away, if I win fine if I lose fine also. Many items get in bidding wars at the very last few minutes.
  16. Voice

    Voice Member

    One thing about local auctions...you still have to know what you're getting into. I've watched one guy who runs an "antique store" spend $100 on an old Lionel engine. The box was bad, the frame was rusted and corroded, and I doubt that it even worked. BUT, he said he could sell it for even more on Ebay. It was hard not to laugh out loud!!!!

    Also, the swap meets are good places to buy stuff....also good places to pay too much!!!

  17. tomfassett

    tomfassett Member

    Joe, thanks for bringing it out into the light. I thought I was the only one who felt this way...:D I know a lot of you that do well on E-Bay, but I am just plain incompetent when it comes to finding deals. I usually end up staring in shock as someone pays $25 for a "classic" Tyco caboose from the 1980s collection... Man, I could have paid off my house with what I threw away...:D

    Vic, it's OK to play devil's advocate, as long as you are willing to give some pointers to those of us who have no skills at the blasted thing...:p

    How come I can't find 3 engines for $30? Maybe I can still get in on the bidding war for the Tyco caboose--I think there's only two days left, and it still has the original box...:D

    Tom "I threw away a fortune" Fassett
  18. Vic

    Vic Active Member

    Hey Tom, Don't feel like the "Lone Stranger" :D I ain't never found a good deal on Ebay either but have bought some things that I wanted and were no longer available anywhere else.

    What amazes me is that I can buy something for $10 and sell it for $100 or more :eek: (don't sell trains...just collectables and amateur radio stuff)

    Here's a little buying tip.....don't bid on something when you first see it. Put it on "watch"and follow up to see what its doing. Impulsive bidding just drives the price up. If the price remains reasonable slam your bid in the last 30 or so seconds of the auction. Make your bid higher than the increment just in case someone else is doing the same thing (bid the max you're willing to pay). Odds are around 50-50 that you will be the winning bidder. Just bidding on something without a stratedgy and hoping that you'll be the high bidder doesn't work.

    Also, always bid from the listing page. The clock on My Ebay is slower than the clock on the listing page. Just click Refresh on your browser to get the actual time remaining as you watch the item on the listing page.

    Another thing that sometimes works is to just bid the max amount that your're willing to pay right off the bat. Ebay will proxy bid for you and will not take your bid at any given time higher than the increment shown in the bidding block. This way you can get the other bidders to pay too much for the item!!! :D :D :D Just stay out of the bidding wars!!!:D :D :D
  19. tomfassett

    tomfassett Member

    Thanks for the tips, Vic. Now I think my $90 bid on the classic 1989 Tyco caboose was too high... Darn impulse buying! But I only have 31 of them now. Surely this one will complete the collection...:D

    I like your strategy--I may try it.


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