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How to get the best out of a sale?

Old 10-29-11, 08:38 PM
  #1  
icemonkey
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How to get the best out of a sale?

I am one of those people who are simply addicted to vintage bikes. Until this week I would never even consider selling one of my bikes - but suddenly I find myself in a bind (medical). Anyway Ive never sold a bike in my life and dont really want to but...

Ok I know some of my italian bikes are original and will be sold as such, im guessing on the 'bay? I just cant face taking a single Campy piece off of them. It would be wrong to see one as a single speed.

Then there is my Japanese bikes, Ive already sold a frame from a Univega Competizione to a friend which nearly broke my heart. Now I have a 1985 Centurion Dave Scott Ironman, full 600. I know its not worth a huge amount but I consider it an historical document. Its the first year of the Dave Scott line and its all original - if a teeny bit scrappy. It rides like a dream, one of the best.

I guess the question is a moral one - do I break up lovely and increasingly rare bikes or is that just an evil thing to do? Do I part or do I keep complete and preserve the legacy? I have 3 Bianchis, 1 Centurion, 1 Peaugeot and a 90's Scott. All 80's and mid upper range.
And where do I sell? sorry about the ramblin'.
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Old 10-29-11, 08:48 PM
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try your local craigslist or kijiji, don`t you have anything else to sell other than the road bikes.
hopefully you won`t have to part with them.
If you have some gold or silver nows the time to sell.
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Old 10-29-11, 09:30 PM
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If you really need the money, chop them up and sell them in the way that will get you the most money. At the end of the day it is a bicycle, an old bicycle. I love bikes too, don't get me wrong, but I don't have the emotional attachment to keeping them original that some people here seem to have.

Most people here seem to be very stingy and you will have a hard time getting a fair price.
Where are you located? There is a fresh foot of snow on the ground throughotu a lot of the Northeast, so Craigslist or other local sales would suffer. Also, I've found that local sales are best for complete bikes--people looking for something they can hop on and ride.
Ebay, unfortunately is your best bet unless you have a really hot local market. You'll find people piecing bikes together from all over the country/world and get rid of the regional variations. The fees suck and it can be a hassle though... Good luck!
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Old 10-29-11, 09:32 PM
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Though I sell lots of vintage bicycles, some of them I hate to let go. But room must be made. Sigh!

You will find selling prep information and, perhaps, other useful stuff in Vintage Bicycle Value. You might want to spend a bit of time learning about Selling On Ebay, also.

Again, too bad you have to let them go. And sadder yet is, what they will bring, will be gone in a heart beat.

Been there.
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Old 10-29-11, 09:35 PM
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I feel like a mattress salesman - Everything Must Go - Im even selling my sofa! I live in the middle of the rockies in a place where everyone thinks a bike over 5 years old is junk, which is how Ive got my collection. I think the 'bay is the way. Ive had a drink now and decided that to part is the best solution for the lesser bikes. I really cant sell my Bianchi CDI though. I just cant...
Thanks all.
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Old 10-30-11, 06:14 AM
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From a value standpoint, I find part outs bring the most money for the higher end stuff, unless it is really something rare. On mid grade or lower, part outs don't work so good. Look at what Shimano 105 and similar stuff sells for on ebay, a lot of it goes cheap. On the Suntour front, Cyclone Gen 1, Superbe, and Sprint bring pretty good money. Most of the rest of their models go pretty cheap (there are always exceptions). If you are in a dead town C/L wise, ebay may be your only option regardless. In my case, the mid grade or lower stuff is sold on C/L. Not worth the hassle and fees of ebay.

Regardless, to get full market value either on ebay or C/L is difficult. You need to be a world class marketer. Just posting something out there with a few small camera phone pics and sketchy details guarantees a below market sale. The bicycle market is VERY inefficient; A bike with mediocre presentation might sell for a 50 to 75% discount less than the exact same bike well presented. As a buyer of vintage bikes, this works in my favor. As a seller, its a lot of work. I bought a Trek 620 touring bike off ebay that was poorly presented. Another Trek 620 was selling at the same time, and ending the same day. I paid 70% less than what the second bike sold for, and the one I bought was in better condition (but really sloppy ad). Needless to say, I got instant equity on that bike.

The funniest part on that Trek 620 that I bought is that it was being sold by one of those "professional" store front ebay we sell for you businesses.


There is huge variance in prices achieved on ebay for parts and components as well. Although the higher end Suntour stuff is becoming very popular, I am still able to find it on ebay at low prices. I bought a Cyclone Gen 1 derailleur group a couple of months ago (poorly marketed = low price = score). Presentation is everything, great full sized pictures, spend a lot of time polishing the parts, etc. If you do not take the time to do this work, then your buyer will. Do not be surprised if your item resurfaces back on ebay, at 2X to 3X the money.

Since you are doing this to get some $$, do not leave any of it on the table.

I routinely search completed items, highest price first. I am not looking because I am jealous or envious, I look to scrutinize the ads, see what works, and LEARN. That's one nice thing about ebay, its all out there to see. The foolish seller is one who thinks their ads could not be improved.

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Old 10-30-11, 09:04 AM
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As others have said, parting them out is the way to go. Ebay is a good choice but there is a "For Sale" forum here on BF as well, you won't have to pay eBay fees if you sell them here. Just sayin'
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Old 10-30-11, 09:05 AM
  #8  
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Excellent advice. Luckily everything I have is good stuff. Superbe, nuovo record etc. I think the lowest group I have is shimano 600 (although scuffed) and to be honest I am a bit lazy about photography (even though thats my day job) but presentation is everything. I am also obsessive about keeping my bikes super clean and overhaul them for stress relief. The most difficult part is looking at an garage emptying out, then seeing all those great bits on line - its like cannibalism.
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Old 10-30-11, 09:06 AM
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Keep your favourite.
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Old 10-30-11, 03:55 PM
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Originally Posted by jet sanchEz View Post
Keep your favourite.
Dont you mean "favourites"?
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Old 10-30-11, 07:05 PM
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If you have not done a lot of selling on e-bay recently you may want to be aware of some of there newer policies. Now it takes as long as a month before you can get your money on small sales and maybe several months on large sales.This means you have to ship the whatever your selling and give the buyer a time to decide they just don't want to pay and reverse the charge before you get any money. Also the rules are scewed against the small seller if the buyer complains disputes something their new resalution policy is just not to pay the seller and their out for the value of what they sold plus maybe some large penalties that they charge to your bank account credit card. This combined with the newer $500 a month withdrawl bank transfer limits means on the sale of something like a higher end bike worth a couple thousand it could end up taking 6 or 7 months to get all of your money. I just think you should realize this if you need the money right away and can't afford to get burned.
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