Author Topic: Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?  (Read 1627 times)

Offline rp2813

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Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?
« on: May 01, 2014, 01:27:09 AM »
I don't know where the seller gets the 1956 figure from because the subject phone looks to be an original 1/51 that never got the C/D conversion.

With a BIN of $149, the seller seems to know what he has, and I'd never pay that much for any phone.  I'm sure my offer would be so low that it would never be accepted, so I'm not going to bother.  I have my 10/50 anyway, but it would look a little nicer with the handset cord off of the 1/51.

Here's a link to the ad:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/191154239916?_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT
« Last Edit: May 01, 2014, 01:31:29 AM by rp2813 »
Ralph

Offline rp2813

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Re: Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?
« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2014, 01:49:24 AM »
I decided to send the seller a message of inquiry about the phone and made an oblique ballpark indication of how much I'd be willing to pay.  I played dumb and referred to the phone as a 1956 since that's how he's advertising it.  We'll see what kind of reply, if any, that I receive.
Ralph

Offline paul-f

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Re: Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?
« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2014, 02:20:46 PM »
On a phone of that vintage, it would be reassuring to see internal photos and get dates for all the internal components.  If the dates are all matching, it is truly unusual.
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Offline JohnInWI

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Re: Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2014, 03:30:34 PM »
I just looked at the listing on Ebay, and the seller had corrected the date to 1951, and also has photos of the internals.  The ringer and the network are both dated 1/51.

Offline rp2813

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Re: Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?
« Reply #4 on: May 01, 2014, 04:12:32 PM »
This is really irritating.  I was embarking on a negotiation (which I thought that after I announced I was going after it, others here would step aside) that capitalized on the seller's description of 1956, and gave him an example of an actual 1956 phone -- with straight handset cord just for good measure -- that sold for $17.95. 

I can't help but think that someone who saw this thread decided to ask for interior shots.  I was beyond confident that the interior was from 1/51, as anyone who has paid attention here knows that if it had been altered, there would be a C/D conversion and a later date on the bottom near the ringer adjustment thumbwheel.

Now the seller knows it's a 1951 and is likely going to dig his heels in.

Lesson learned.  Don't post anything here because you can't count on those who read it to remain discreet. 

To the person with deep pockets who will end up with this phone, you're not welcome.   Grrrrrrr. >:(
Ralph

Offline paul-f

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Re: Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?
« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2014, 04:35:52 PM »
Ralph,
 
First off, I didn't contact the seller.  ;)
 
Even though many of the regular posters might honor your "claim" to negotiate unmolested, remember that there are potentially hundreds of lurkers here -- many of which may feel free to jump in.  There are also loads of collectors who are not members of this forum or the phone clubs, so the question could have come from anywhere.
 
As you may have noticed, most auctions aren't discussed here until after they close, unless they are auction contest candidates or Frankenphones.
 
BTW, when I was building my collection of early 500s, I found a few that had upgraded components that weren't re-marked with a later model number.  In the case you mentioned, a C/D marking would only be appropriate if the network was changed.  Otherwise T or A/B was used -- IF they were remarked.
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Offline rp2813

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Re: Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2014, 04:59:29 PM »
Not to worry Paul.  I wasn't pointing the finger at anyone in particular. 

I knew when I posted this item that I was taking a risk, but at the price listed, I figured nobody would pursue this phone.  I also think I recall reading here in the past that there was an unwritten protocol about not competing for or otherwise interfering with the same item, and that's what I was counting on.  It's possible I read it somewhere besides CRPF.

Some people just don't realize that their actions can ruin things for everybody.

The seller advised me that even at 1956, he thought the phone was older than average and used that as a basis for his BIN (my experience in cruising eBay is that 1956 seems to be the most common date, and I was attempting to point this out to him) so now that he has been tipped off that it's a '51, he'll be less inclined to lower the BIN. 

It's clear that the seller thought 1/51 indicated a model type, not the date, and was just guessing about 1956 -- until someone requested interior shots and perhaps went as far as to enlighten him.  On other forums such a person is referred to in a derogatory and lamentable sense as "Mr. Helpful." 

Live and learn.  I really didn't intend to pursue this phone due to the BIN price, but decided I had nothing to lose by offering the seller comparisons to 1956 phones that had recently sold.  I thought it was a good strategy that could have worked, but that's all vaporized now.
« Last Edit: May 01, 2014, 05:01:52 PM by rp2813 »
Ralph

Offline Russ Kirk

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Re: Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?
« Reply #7 on: May 01, 2014, 05:08:12 PM »
Well,  I frequently look at newly listed items.  I did see this auction soon after it was posted and added it to my watch list.  I did not contact the seller, although they are located only 5 miles from my home.

Only a few moments ago did I read this new message thread.  Paul is right, there are lots of people looking for phones on ebay and maybe one of those other hundreds of other phone collectors innocently contacted the seller for more photos.
- Russ Kirk
ATCA & TCI

Offline paul-f

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Re: Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?
« Reply #8 on: May 01, 2014, 06:01:37 PM »
I thought it was a good strategy that could have worked, but that's all vaporized now.

Who knows, you could still get lucky.
 
Store listings have a different dynamic than the usual 7- or 10-day auctions.
 
Sellers are tempted to put a high initial price and fish for high offers.  If no offers come in for a few weeks, the seller may be more receptive to your offer.
 
I have a few items in my collection that were from late low bids.  One item in particular (not a phone item) came about two weeks after my first offer was rejected (in less than 10 minutes).  I almost forgot about it, but checked in later to find it still unsold.  I placed a lower offer, and it was accepted.
 
Of course, this strategy only feels good if you're prepared to lose the item to someone else. 
 
Good luck!
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Offline rp2813

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Re: Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?
« Reply #9 on: May 01, 2014, 06:23:13 PM »
Regardless of who ends up with the phone, it will be interesting to see how this plays out. 

It's a tough call.  I wouldn't want to be making competitive bids on a phone if I knew a member here was already going after it, but if they chose not to post their intentions, how would I know?

Russ, don't you find it coincidental that there was almost no interest in this phone but after my post the chassis pictures were added, the listing title was updated to reflect 1951, and now we're at 9 watchers and counting, all of which is counter-productive to negotiating a lower price?
Ralph

Offline Mr. Bones

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Re: Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?
« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2014, 06:29:36 PM »
Could also very well be that the seller lurks here, looking for info for their auctions, like model, make, value, etc.

Best of luck, and best regards... it may still work out just fine.
Sláinte!
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Offline Dennis Markham

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Re: Anybody Going After the Overpriced 1/51 500 On eBay?
« Reply #11 on: May 01, 2014, 08:28:10 PM »
I had seen the listing prior to your post, Ralph.  I first noticed the straight handset cord, then the dial plate, which to me looks like it's one of the early overlay's, not the sandwiched plastic that we see on most of the phones like this.  The early overlays often discolor to a yellow/green color.  Then the date stamp and location caught my attention.  I've only seen 1950 models stamped where this one is stamped.  Had it been a 1950 date I would have been more interested.  So I "watched" it to see what will happen down the road.  To me it's not worth the money they want.  But that's to me.  Had it just been an auction style listing, I might have asked for more details about the inside, but I didn't.  I have too many Black 500's already. 

This discussion reminds me of when I first started buying phones.  I saw a 1950 model on eBay and had intended to place a bid.  I had entered into an e-mail exchange with another collector.  This collector was and is a long-standing member of the telephone community.  I had indicated my interest in the particular phone and he said he too was "watching" it.  He asked that I not bid on the phone as he intended to buy it.  The phone was an early 1950 model with the curved, U-shape "Operator" under the zero.  He said if he won the auction he would be glad to sell me his later 1950 model (as a consolation prize).  I was new to the "community" and didn't want to step on toes so I bowed out and he won that auction.  It went much lower than expected.  I purchased the consolation 1950 model and I still have it.  In hind-sight, I regret the way I handled that.  I should have  bid on that phone.  I may have still lost it to someone else, but it's a big world out there and ebay reaches many people.  I had just as much right to bid on it as anyone else.

I guess the point I'm trying to make, and trying to be a polite as I can be and as sincere as I can be, is that "all's fair in love and war".  One cannot post their interest in a phone or anything else on a world-wide stage such as eBay and expect others to stay away if they too are interested.  There are many "trained eyes" out there and more than likely, had the original post not have been made, someone would have inquired further anyway. 

~Dennis