View Full Version : Where do I go from here?

December 11th, 2008, 01:51 PM
Note; I have posted this in another forum as well as here in hope to get some help for a new friend with a situation.

I'll try to keep this short;

I recently met a woman thru a common friend who needed help with getting rid of a bunch of computers after her husband died of cancer. Apparently she couldn't find anyone in her small town to help her, nor to solve her problems with her existing computer problems. Being that I can repair computers besides take care of any home repairs that she needed I made arrangements to travel the two and a half hours up the Florida coast to see what I could do for her. When I got there I found that she had boxes and boxes and boxes of Amiga parts, software, keyboards and cables, including about seven complete systems from what I remember, plus about 12 or so monitors. Apparently he bought, used and sold items of this nature as he worked as an engineer in the server industry. Now I know squat when it comes to Amiga's, but can trouble shoot and repair PC's and Mac's as well as know about their OS's.
As an aside this woman has fibermyalgy, a debilitating disease that prevents her from doing much work if any and exhaust her quickly, and she had no way to organize all the boxes in the garage which I took care of but have yet to inventory. Since her savings are dwindling because she doesn't work, I'd like to see if I could sell some of this stuff to help her if there is a market for it? Is there? I'd also like to know more about the progression of the Amiga line and OS so I can know what works with what and if there are conflicts between versions of hardware and software. My next trip will involve getting setup to test the equipment and go thru and inventory a limited number of boxes to get started. If there is no market per se' she would like me to clear it out so off to the dump it would go. I hope not. So if any of you reading this could help me help this woman, of only 54 years of age believe it or not, I would surely appreciate your insights and help understanding what I need to know. I hope this doesn't come off as a ad to sell the stuff here. I just like to help people like her who have no idea of what to do. Thanks, Wayne

December 11th, 2008, 02:36 PM
Bottom line, no one is going to make a fortune off the stuff.
It's probably not worth the time trying (or even possible) to put together working systems.
Your best bet is to take a complete inventory and sell it as a lot.
Sure, ebay will give you a lot more "eyes", but they also take a larger percentage.
But by all means, don't haul it to the dump.

December 11th, 2008, 02:50 PM
Nobody will be getting rich, but it will definitely go for something. Right, do NOT haul it all away. Post up for sales on craigslit ads, sell it at the chuckwagon and vendazzle zuction sites, there are many optioins.

Selling it as a lot will get a lot of it gone quickly at once if not all of it. IMHO small lots would be best. Try to get someone who knows about the stuff or can find out about it and try to price it accordingly and to see who is out there that may be interested.

And definitely let us here know what kinds of goodies are in there!


December 11th, 2008, 03:04 PM
If you want top dollar you need to take an inventory.

What I would do is see what systems you have, 4000 and 3000 are worth much more then 2000, 1000, and 500 models (A1200 being in between).

68030/040/060 accelerators boards should sell individually for a decent amount ($50+), Any Amiga SCSI cards should get $20+, ethernet cards $50+. Video toaster cards will sell but I am not sure what they go for these days.

Monitors in working order (use an old playstation composite out to test) should get $20 each if they work.

If the guy has a ton of Amiga chips they can go from being junk to being worth some money (chip model and REVISION) would be needed.

Working Amiga mice and spare floppy drives are in demand as well.

I know many Amiga users, where in FL (city) is the old lady? I might know somebody close by.
Without an inventory you will get little or nothing selling them as one lot.

http://www.amiga-hardware.com/ <== this site has names and picture of most hardware if you need a reference.

Terry Yager
December 11th, 2008, 04:51 PM
I know many Amiga users, where in FL (city) is the old lady?

Old lady??? <Bitch-slaps Uk_K>...


December 11th, 2008, 05:09 PM
just posted to an amiga love group that had a member poke their head in at atariage. Amiga Love Group. That sounds... different. http://www.amigabay.com they are located mostly seems like Europe. Hope this helps you find homes for things.

December 11th, 2008, 08:42 PM
Old lady??? <Bitch-slaps Uk_K>...

Sorry, I consider under 25 young and over 50 old. Hope I didn't offend anyone :(

December 13th, 2008, 06:22 AM
This is a post in another Amiga forum I placed that I am posting here as well.

Thanks everyone for the tips and hints. My next step is to inventory some of the boxes within the next two weeks. I may just setup a site to list everything and allow those who are interested in this and another forum to make an offer. I'm not to interested in going thru Ebay for now although I am a member; I'd rather put as much money into my friend Donna's hands without going thru my own PayPal account. (I do have references in case anyone is interested in multiple photography forums where I have been a member for a long time.) Being that it is the Holidays I probably have won't have anything online till the first week of January. In the meantime, and I apologize if this is against forum policy, if there is anything you may be interested in send me an email with your interest and I'll watch out for it.

I thank you for your help and consideration. Wayne

P.S. To the person above with the old lady quote, you'll be very surprised how fast time goes and what your opinion is of that age when you get there. (^: Hopefully you won't be the same position as her.

December 13th, 2008, 10:01 AM
drop us a link to the items when you get them listed. I don't have an Amiga, always wanted one. I would email you a request but I don't know what is what on an Amiga. I wouldn't know what to ask for.

December 13th, 2008, 02:15 PM
Hey, W.A, what's your eBay user ID ? I'm sure some of us wouldn't mind checking out your listings.

December 13th, 2008, 08:51 PM
If you have any questions about what goes with (or goes in) what, we have several people very knowledgeable about CBM systems here to help you.

December 14th, 2008, 12:57 PM
Take three pictures of each item. Put one item up for auction every three days. You will get more $$, which I assume is your goal if you put up a well documented, well photographed item. Effort maximizes profit.

Micom 2000
December 24th, 2008, 08:57 PM
Don't sell it off as a job lot. Her return on her husbands passion would be minimal, and a shame. If you have the time yourself or another local contact somewhat knowledgeable about computers to inventory it, sellng it off by item(even parts) could be rewarding even in these tough economic times. The retrocomputing community is quite large and many times will pay willingly for some items which may seem inconsequential. It may take longer and require more effort, but once it is inventoried all be transaction by computer. After that initial effort their could be a constant rate of return to you for your efforts as well as the lady in question if there is no problem with storage.

Unfortunately in this throw-away society too many of those well-off simply want to rid themselves of excess and can afford to, and their councilling reflects these comfortable biases without considering the problems of those without a forthcoming large income check. Avoid these people and do the right thing as your message reflects.

There are several people on this forum who have done estate sales of older computer equipment and I'm sure would be wlling to gve you suggestions. There does seem to be a certain truism on many of the retro forums "you can't get rich off old computers" which is a defensive reaction to non-knowledgeable people who have unrealistic expectations of the value of their old computer. Computer collectors on the other hand search out the lowest price or free, understandably. But on the other hand their are also good prices paid for certain items reflected on e-bay. Once you have an inventory including parts and peripherals you can get an idea of what individual items are worth at fair value.

I think in the long run it could be rewarding to you and the widow. Good luck.


December 24th, 2008, 10:28 PM
Very few people want to spend the time to research what they have, clean it up, photograph and do a descritpion of the part, ebay it and box it up to ship week after week for little in return. Expecting somebody to do this without some kind of compensation for time, effort, and travel is not reasonable. And if they are compensated then the return on the items will not be too great unless you have some major rarities.

Best bet is to find the rarities and ebay them, and freecycle the rest.

What do you guys think of the ebay consignment shops where you just drop things off for them to ebay and they give you some percentage of the sale? Do those places make most of their cash in shipping/packing charges?

December 25th, 2008, 06:13 AM
I would guess like most shops,, tthey overcharge shipping then keep 60% of the profit.

December 25th, 2008, 08:26 AM
well it is the curse of selling things.

December 25th, 2008, 12:43 PM
Our computer club has some great swap meets, no money changes hands (or very little), and everyone gets a chance to get rid of things they can't use while taking home new and interesting things to work on.

I am preaching to choir here, but selling vintage computers and gear is a unique art. I always start my auctions at $1.00 and no reserve. I approximate shipping to the best of my ability, but I will include shipping materials cost.


December 25th, 2008, 07:24 PM
Our computer club has some great swap meets, no money changes hands (or very little), and everyone gets a chance to get rid of things they can't use while taking home new and interesting things to work on.

I am preaching to choir here, but selling vintage computers and gear is a unique art. I always start my auctions at $1.00 and no reserve. I approximate shipping to the best of my ability, but I will include shipping materials cost.


What ebay name do you sell under?

December 25th, 2008, 08:00 PM
When I was selling on feE-Bay, I sold off several hundred items (a lot of it to the same people, but, at different times) and it was a LOT of work.

Each item had to be tested (excluding software, but, the open items got a scandisk, so, at least the disks could be said to have no errors), cleaned up, photographed, described, listed, shipping quotes answered, etc. etc. and then, each week, I'd spend a couple of days packing, labeling and shipping the stuff that sold.

I'd have to keep each week's auctions down to a number that could be handled, maybe 20 - 25 items and it still consumed a lot of time. It was almost a full time job.

The website is a little easier as the shipping is automatically calculated and the buyer's information is transferred to my Canada Post shipping program, but, the prep work is still about the same.

As for those consignment places, I can't speak to most of them, but, it doesn't seem like they know what they are selling a lot of the time and any testing consists of turning it on.

Unless there are some pretty damn good items in the collection, it's not going to be worth it unless you have a lot of time on your hands, and, as has been mentioned, a lot auction will get WAY below individual item totals.

December 26th, 2008, 06:56 AM
What ebay name do you sell under?

Since 1999 100% positive feedback. I don't sell much however, mostly just buy.