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This forum is part of our mission to promote the preservation of vintage computers through education and outreach. (In real life we also run events and have a museum.) We encourage you to join us, participate, share your knowledge, and enjoy.

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Conduct yourself as you would at any other place where people come together in person to discuss their hobby. If you wouldn't say something to somebody in person, then you probably should not be writing it here.

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Why the bleep is eBay so expensive??

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  • pinkdonut666
    replied
    Originally posted by tipc View Post
    Everyone's talking about old puters. What about a water pump for a 1998 Grand Prix. Last 1 (2 sold), 999$:

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Engine-Wate...EAAOSw7xZdgMdS

    I'm glad I spotted 1 for 28$ before I saw that listing.
    thats gotta be money laundering there is not a chance anyone would pay more than the value of the car for the water pump XD

    Leave a comment:


  • NoPizzaTonite
    replied
    Originally posted by pinkdonut666 View Post
    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and stuff is worth what people are willing to pay. I owe my spark and Interest in this Hobby to youtubers as otherwise i would have had zero exposure to vintage PCs. Ebay has been the way I've been able to easily obtain a large portion of my collection up here in Kanukistan, and I've just learned to deal with the shipping fees and high prices. (You gotta pay to play sometimes) it might not be worth $500 to you, but it might be to me
    Quite a nice little toy room you have there young man... that's what my working environment used to look like back in my younger days!! haha

    -Alex

    Leave a comment:


  • tipc
    replied
    Everyone's talking about old puters. What about a water pump for a 1998 Grand Prix. Last 1 (2 sold), 999$:

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Engine-Wate...EAAOSw7xZdgMdS

    I'm glad I spotted 1 for 28$ before I saw that listing.

    Leave a comment:


  • cwathen
    replied
    All of this said on eBay pricing, it's always worth throwing in a generic search for something like 'old computer' to see what comes up.

    The best score I've had in recent years was a Dell P166 - not just the base unit, but it was a complete matched system with the original 15" CRT (a pretty good monitor actually), branded keyboard, mouse and speakers. Also thrown in was all the original software, a couple of still sealed boxes of 3.5" disks (90's manufactured ones which actually work too), a Lexmark printer with a few still sealed cartridges, and a copy of Cubase and a MIDI adaptor cable for the soundcard (was being used as a music workstation). Only way it could have been any better is if it was boxed. The price...£10! Because it was A) collect only and B) listed as 'random PC'.

    Leave a comment:


  • pinkdonut666
    replied
    Just my $0.02 because I may have a different point of view from many of of you guys.

    I'm 24, born in 1996. My first introduction to computers was the Dell XPS T650R desktop running windows 98SE. WHile I was in school we had Colorful Imac G3s and Emacs. While I was in Jr. High I started watching the angry video game nerd, LGR, and other youtubers talking about retro video games. I was hooked and started collecting game consoles. vintage computers were on my radar as interesting, but I had never been hands on with anything older than a pentium 3. (I did start collecting some *vintage* to me at least pentium 3 systems) well, life happens and although i Kept the video game consoles most of the computers disappeared.

    That all Changed when I got my first *REAL* vintage PC on Kijiji locally. an IBM 5150 PC (black PSU "A" model) with 5153 CGA monitor and model F keyboard for $300.





    Fast Forward to now and i have a growing IBM PS/2 and MCA collection, and more than 2 dozen 486 and older PCS, and boxes of parts and accessories.

    the VAST majority of my collection has come from FB marketplace and overwhelmingly Ebay. Good deals are out there you just have to look. Personally I consider Pentium 3 systems just as vintage as the rest. especially dual P3 systems are commanding high prices these days. (I personally really like dual P3 machines)

    TL;DR

    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and stuff is worth what people are willing to pay. I owe my spark and Interest in this Hobby to youtubers as otherwise i would have had zero exposure to vintage PCs. Ebay has been the way I've been able to easily obtain a large portion of my collection up here in Kanukistan, and I've just learned to deal with the shipping fees and high prices. (You gotta pay to play sometimes) it might not be worth $500 to you, but it might be to me

    Leave a comment:


  • SomeGuy
    replied
    Every time there is some "disaster", it has been used as an excuse to jack up shipping costs, and prices rising in general. Of course, then they never go back down when the "disaster" is over. In the past they usually kept a slow stream of disaster excuses ocasionally bumping things up. Things like gas shortages, refinery fires, really bad weather, etc. But the last 5-10 years or so it has been a very steady stream of disasters. Prices on everything has gone through the roof, out of the atmosphere, out of the solar system, past the edge of the galaxy, and out of the universe itself. For example, only the filthy rich can afford health insurance these days.

    When shipping costs twice what most eBeh items are worth, the system is badly broken. How does it even manage to cost $20 to ship a software box from California (Do floppy disks contain materials known by the state of California to cause cancer?).

    Leave a comment:


  • VERAULT
    replied
    How has Covid pushed the prices up? the prices were up long before Covid. I'd say prices started going up around 2012. This past year seems the same as the previous year.

    Leave a comment:


  • Google
    replied
    Covid has pushed prices up on ebay people don't believe they'll come down but they can I've seen it happen recently.

    Leave a comment:


  • Bill-kun
    replied
    Originally posted by kc8eyt View Post
    I drooled over that episode when it first came out. What I would give to have about $25K in spare change, a big ass uhaul, and a few days to explore.
    You may be interested to know that someone filled a whole cargo van of stuff for only $500, according to one of the Facebook admins. And this guy made a video where he shows the 5 desktops, 2 CRTs, a pile of NIB software, books, floppies, 10 floppy drives, keyboards, and mice he got at CR, all for $125. You can't even get one computer like that in parts-only condition and no peripherals on eBay for that price!
    Screenshot 2021-03-05 161643.jpg

    Maybe all this eBay rigamarole is why God gave us the Computer Reset Liquidation. (If you don’t know about it, start by watching LGR’s video on YouTube.)
    Hasn't that or isn't that going to be liquidated on eBay though? I'm having trouble understanding why the family let people pick it and didn't hire a firm to eBay it. There was probably several millions of dollars of sales in there.
    The CR Facebook admins say they don't mind at all if people flip-sell the items. At least some people have been able to do that to make back the cost of their trip to CR. The point, the admins say, is to get the stuff into the hands of collectors/users instead of scrapping it. (Boy, those are the most welcome words you could hear!) Flipping, they say, still gets it into the hands of a collector/user. Other than that, I'm not going to look a gift droid in the floppy drive.
    Last edited by Bill-kun; March 5, 2021, 01:41 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • Airxx
    replied
    "
    What happened with Computer Reset and the remnants of the Houston Computer Museum wasn't fun to follow.[/QUOTE]


    A few personal observations as both an avid Ebay user and a Computer Reset explorer:

    To clear up any myths about the Computer Reset, you absolutely can acquire a vast amount of goods for "well below Ebay prices". How do I know? I traveled there on invite and purchased a moving van full of stuff. I wont's share the exact price, but it only had 3 digits. That was vastly below market, granted for 95% untested and poorly stored items. So far not a single PC and only one laptop that is officially dead, and at least half booted. The folks there are awesome, and I cannot heap enough praise on them for their efforts. You WILL get a good deal.

    On Ebay, I've make close to a thousand purchases and generally find you have to be careful shopper. Look for weasel words, vague descriptions, stock photos, failure to say if something works, failure to mention it does not come with battery, cables, HDD, etc. and other similar oversights. I admit to using sniper tactics on bidding auctions, though I personally think it is a shame that sellers lose so much money this way. I watch as many items as I'm allowed (about 16 pages worth i think) and drop off the sold items as they happen. It gives me a rolling retail average to work with and lets me monitor the market.

    I agree that successful Ebay buying requires daily work, and a hair trigger for making a purchase when a good deal pops up as a new item. Usually you have less than an hour before a good deal sells (but it now). You have to know the proper values, and adjust for condition and seller reputation. I pay more to good trustworthy sellers. I pay more to people I've bought from before and had success. Know your sellers. Oh, and prices too good to be true are just that. There is always a catch.

    On the topic of pricing, I do think the pandemic has influenced pricing a lot. That said, there has been some downward pressure as more and more items come up for sale. Why? I'm 53, and the prime of my youth was spent in the earliest days of computers and consoles. Some adults had to be making those items, and the software (and likely several of you readers are from that generation). Those older folks are now aging to the point where mortality is kicking in... Covid or otherwise. That is leaving estates selling off collections of fine running PCs and old consoles. I've personally made several estate purchases like this, and the equipment was mint and clearly much loved. Ebay is seeing many sales coming from similar sources. Some folks think everything they have is gold, and ask insane high prices. Others just want the stuff gone. Timing and luck is what determines which of these sellers you encounter.

    Last thought... I've noticed the upgrade/enhancement items prices on retro PCs climb quite a bit. I think this directly correlates to the increased sales of old PCs and frankly the large dumping of Computer Reset goods. I know I've added quite a few memory expansions, Goteks, drive emulators, modern built audio cards, and the like since I've been spending much of my pandemic time at home working my Reset haul. Most all of these items have risen in price, excepting the Goteks which are now flooding in from China. Demand is rising, and that is elevating the supply price naturally. Nobody said this hobby was free, and i don't mind supporting the folks out there making innovative products and PCBs that are vital to retro PC restoration and upgrading. As I explain to the wife, this hobby is not free, and is far cheaper than a hobby involving a bar.

    Leave a comment:


  • Al Kossow
    replied
    Originally posted by the3dfxdude View Post
    there are probably a dozen of places in the US as large as computer reset, that are trying to make money selling off old parts, and no one is roaming their warehouses.
    There are a LOT more of those right now filled with the remnants of the surplus stores that have closed in decades past that weren't sold to the Chinese.
    You'd run into some of the guys at hamfests. There are also lots of eBay-only sellers like https://www.ebay.com/usr/svcstore who have huge warehouses and no storefront.
    I knew those guys when they were an office and some self-storage units in San Jose.

    What happened with Computer Reset and the remnants of the Houston Computer Museum wasn't fun to follow.

    Leave a comment:


  • the3dfxdude
    replied
    Originally posted by kc8eyt View Post
    I drooled over that episode when it first came out. What I would give to have about $25K in spare change, a big ass uhaul, and a few days to explore.
    I have kept refraining myself to say this, but it's my belief that place was never supposed to be open to the general public like that. I think I saw the person who owned the place, who has now passed, was also on ebay already, and for years was selling to people directly by mail, and the like. The problem started when he was very ill, and could not run it anymore. The family was considering to liquidate it to deal with the cost of having that warehouse. It is then, my understanding one of them opened up the place to people to make some money so they didn't have to liquidate it, and those that heard and came to it for at least a day, and unfortunately got hyped. Then that was quickly put to an end. Some repudible local people have offered to help with cleanup, which is nice of them, but it's my opinion really hasn't been open, ever, to people just to roam and load stuff into their uhauls.

    The reason why I mention this, is because I myself have come across a seller that seemed to have a largish stock of a rare item. I bought one from him one day, and unfortunately it was not working. While speaking to him, he admitted he couldn't remember what he had or which he had in stock had a problem or not. But to his credit he offered to exchange it, because I paid plenty for it to be working. Anyway, I noticed he his trickling out this same item one by one, slowly raising the price, but enough for me to realize, he must actually really have a decent sized warehouse of stuff too. He had been also operating a repair business for a long time just like computer reset. So my point is, there are probably a dozen of places in the US as large as computer reset, that are trying to make money selling off old parts, and no one is roaming their warehouses. Some of these places might have some stuff reasonably priced, and sometimes they get liquidated, but it will always be hit or miss. They'll always be in business as people are willing to exchange money, and there are places like ebay.

    Leave a comment:


  • VERAULT
    replied
    Originally posted by Trixter View Post
    That seems really easy to overturn, as they absolutely did match the description. What was he trying to do, claim they are now working when all he wanted was broken boards? Or that they were not Apple IIgs boards?
    What was the outcome?
    To be honest Trixter, he and many other just open the claim as "doesn't match description" ADD ZERO write-up. Wait until the option to escalate to eBay pops up and then escalates it. They always win. When you call in and get India, they are less than useful. I get more productive conversations with my dog. I have gotten a couple Americans by shear luck but all they did was credit a few dollars back to my account from being forced to pay shipping to the buyer (even when I set it up that BUYER pays return shipping in the listing creation).

    Anyone have that happen to them?

    Leave a comment:


  • NoPizzaTonite
    replied
    I've been an Ebay member since it first started. My current username is my domain - toyinc.com (that's how OG I am - you can't do that for many years now). It shows member since 1997 because that's when I changed my Ebay name to my domain. 4,000+ 100% feedback. Hopefully I can lend something to this pretty cool thread I've enjoyed reading since the first post. In no particular order:

    Pricing might be high from the lens of looking at Buy It Now prices, but in the broad spectrum, Ebay is an auction site and items go for what the competition deems it. All it takes is two people that want the same item bad enough. Sometimes egos get in the way, yes - but it is an auction after all. I've found that a lot of the frustration comes from folks wanting a hard to find item and for one reason or another not attaining it. If it's so rare that there aren't other listings for the same item, then maybe the price is appropriate for it's scarcity. Collectibles go up in price as the bar goes up in the price people are willing to pay for it.

    I've been guilty of raising that bar on many occasions when I really wanted something that was hard to find and just got tired of hunting for it. So I paid a price that included me saving my time

    When I see Buy It Nows that are pretty far out there, I will make an offer with links to previous sold items to show I'm not trying to lowball.
    Sometimes a seller has a threshold set where your offers are auto-declined. If I really want to try for the item, I'll just send an Ebay message with the offer.
    Sometimes the seller doesn't know how to price something and puts a best offer with a really high price because hey, they'd sell it for that to forego the auction competition
    Sometimes a seller may have overpaid for something at an estate sale or is trying to cover their costs, hence the high Best Offer or Buy It Now - they're trying to meet their margin - even if it's inflated
    Sometimes a seller will end an auction early because there is no action on it - bad part for the seller is that everyone snipes these days and the price skyrockets at the very end
    If I see a Best Offer on an auction that seems high and get my more reasonable offers auto-rejected, I will just bid the starting price so the Best Offer goes away - all pending offers are also automatically cancelled - and take my chances on the auction hoping for a lower price. This eliminates anyone swooping in with an offer the seller might accept
    It's a pain to box, pack and ship large items. Some sellers have the UPS store do it for them. That costs money - same with boxes, packing material, time, etc... so they figure their overhead into their Buy It Nows - Many sellers are businesses so it's not the same as buying something on Facebook and just transferring the item face to face
    Other sellers don't want certain items to sell quickly - they use the Buy It Now to keep it longer - a marketing tool so to speak
    When something I'd like has a high Buy It Now and has been sitting there forever, I'll send the seller an offer from time to time with a little humor ("hey - that dust it's gathering is going to increase your shipping costs.."). I've won a few items this way.
    Also - Ebay encourages sellers to accept Best Offers. They've made changes to listing practices in the past where it automatically showed up in Buy It Now listings.

    What irks me are those sellers that have Best Offer and they flat out decline when you submit an offer. Why not set the auto-decline if you have a threshold where you will flat out reject an offer instead of countering. Grrrrr

    Hope this wasn't toooo long a read

    Leave a comment:


  • kc8eyt
    replied
    Originally posted by Bill-kun View Post
    Maybe all this eBay rigamarole is why God gave us the Computer Reset Liquidation. (If you donít know about it, start by watching LGRís video on YouTube.)
    I drooled over that episode when it first came out. What I would give to have about $25K in spare change, a big ass uhaul, and a few days to explore.

    Leave a comment:

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