Seller's market

From: Richard Erlacher <>
Date: Fri Mar 26 13:22:15 1999

You're right on the money with this assessment! I'm convinced of this
because when I look at the items you've listed I think, "goodness! Why
would anyone want that stuff?" while when I look at the pile of equally
esoteric S-100 stuff I have in the corner, I think of it as "good stuff"
which of course is a purely arbitrary judgment. I am not a collector and
have held onto my "stuff" for two reasons, which I think may be pretty
common in the world of computer "junk" ownership. (a) I bought the "stuff"
when it was current hardware and I needed or wanted it for some specific
purpose and still hope to squeeze the remaining value/utility out of it, and
(b) it's a daunting task sifting throught the "archive" to determine what
has to "go." This combines itself, quite naturally, I believe, into "Well,
one of these days . . ."

Auction prices would yield useful informaton IF . . . and only if. . . there
were a completed sale to go along with a set of finishing prices published
on the web. What's damaging to the usefulness of what we have now, e.g.
eBay, is that they allow an auction to run to completion, record the final
(winning) bid, and make no assertion whatever about whether the sale
actually happened. As a consequence, putting your goods up for auction on
eBay or Haggle is pretty chancy, as the only thing you're guaranteed of
getting is a bill. That leaves the observer with a big question mark where
an answer to the question of "What would someon give for this?" comes up.

In the meantime, I, a potential seller, sit here saying to myself, "All I
really want is for this stuff to GO AWAY!" When I advertise it as
available, I get all kinds of offers to "take it off my hands," which means
people will let me gather it up, package it, and ship it to them, on the
off-chance that they'll use it for something, provided, of course, that I
don't mind bankrolling the whole project, and what's always in the back of
my mind is "I wonder what (how much ) this stuff would bring at auction?"

If there were just a realistic way to find that out . . .


-----Original Message-----
From: John Ruschmeyer <>
To: Discussion re-collecting of classic computers
Date: Friday, March 26, 1999 7:48 AM
Subject: Re: Seller's market

>> The point that seems to stick with me is that while some people complain
>> vigorously about the high prices on eBay, the prices don't seem to be
>> high enough to get them to part with similar items they have. ie the
>> are more than they wish to pay, but not what they would be willing to
>> for.
>My vague feeling is that there is another, nebulous factor involved-
>akin to being purely mercenary versus wanting to see an item go to the
>"right" home (with "rightness" being defined by the owner). I think that
>is also a little of the dilemma that any speculator has- What is the best
>time to cash in.
>I know I'm guilty of the latter. For a while, I've been considering getting
>rid of a couple of my classics that I *never* get around to touching and,
>so, every once in a while, I find myself checking the prices on similar
>items, trying to decide if now is the time to go ahead and list them.
>For those who are wondering: the two I'm thinking of parting with are:
>1) Osborne 1, blue case, with DD controller and 80-column upgrade.
>2) Lisa 2/10, working, with original manuals (but disk copies). Also has
> a Sun Remarketing SCSI board and MacWorks Plus.
Received on Fri Mar 26 1999 - 13:22:15 GMT

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