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Cost of selling vintage vs using it

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Cost of selling vintage vs using it

Old 05-11-14, 11:08 AM
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Mr IGH
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Cost of selling vintage vs using it

I sold a bunch of stuff vintage bike parts on ebay (about 40 items) and learned the real value of some of this stuff (not as much as I was dreaming of). Now I'm building up bikes for friends and family using up all my vintage stuff. I'm constantly looking at a vintage part and trying to decide if I should sell it and get something cheaper vs just using the vintage part. For the most part, I have found using vintage parts is cheaper once the ebay fees and postage are added in.

Here's an example:
I had a set of Dura-Ace cranks and I was building my son a college bike. They're banged up but straight and true, I'd be lucky to get $50 for them, that's $34 in my pocket and now I need to buy a set of cranks.

Besides, my kid thinks they look cool:
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Old 05-11-14, 11:20 AM
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ebay is a pita. If I can't get $100 for whatever I am selling, it is not worth my time. If it is "worth" $40, I'd rather unload it for $20 at a swap. Someone is happy with a "deal" and I get easy money and move crap I don't want out of my house.

Wringing your hands to get every nickel is not worth it.
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Old 05-11-14, 11:33 AM
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Originally Posted by iab View Post
ebay is a pita. If I can't get $100 for whatever I am selling, it is not worth my time. Wringing your hands to get every nickel is not worth it.
Agreed, but ebay comes in handy to sell a frame that's too small or too big and you really just want the components. I sold a Peloton frame set for more than the complete bike cost and I received a full Suntour Superbe group in the process, except for the headset. On rare occasions, I pick up several hundred dollars in parts locally, cranks, stems, shoes, and the like, knowing that brooming a few key items via ebay will pay for 1/2 or more of the stash.

I find it amusing some CL listers go through the effort to list $5-$15 items. Just donate it. What buyer wants to invest the time and mileage, unless it is around the corner.
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Old 05-11-14, 12:11 PM
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Originally Posted by oddjob2 View Post
I find it amusing some CL listers go through the effort to list $5-$15 items. Just donate it. What buyer wants to invest the time and mileage, unless it is around the corner.
depending on where you live, there may be thousands of people who live within a half mile radius. and not everywhere has a co-op to donate stuff. There's a guy around here who has a whole bike shops worth of inventory that he lists, including small stuff like shims and bearings. Really useful when you need something and don't want to wait for/pay for shipping on small items


Selling parts is a hassle compared to selling whole bikes
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Old 05-11-14, 02:00 PM
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You have to find the balance.

If you do a lot of ebay sales then $30-40 bucks an item adds up, last year I had 270+ transactions. It's always good to have some spare parts around but how many cranksets do you need, or saddles or hubs? At a certain point, unless you flip for a living or hoard, your best selling off all the extra's.


@Mr IGH If your losing more than 13% on your Ebay sales then your doing it wrong.
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Old 05-11-14, 02:16 PM
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Originally Posted by miamijim View Post
...@Mr IGH If your losing more than 13% on your Ebay sales then your doing it wrong.
Hmmm, so how does one get around the 10% ebay fee, the paypal fee and postage?

Example: I sold a saddle for 41.01 with 12.35 postage. Total sale to ebay is 53.36. Paypal takes 1.49, ebay takes 4.10, shipping cost is 11.30. Net sale after costs is 34.88 or about 65% of the gross sale.
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Old 05-11-14, 02:37 PM
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Your figuring your total shipping fees as lost profit, rather than just the final value fee they do take from the shipping costs. If I sell something and charge shipping on top of that, then the gross is not held up to the net, unless you only count net as the 41.01 sale for the saddle.

I usually do free shipping. If I want 40 bucks for something that will cost 15 to ship, I charge 55. Unless its something that is big, then I do shipping costs so the customer can know up front how much it costs to ship something, they don't always realize that, and just think that I am charging to much.

I use ebay and etsy a lot for my business. When I sell bike stuff its just to either clear out or fund something fun, as there is no market for used parts anywhere near me. I used to give stuff to a "co op", but realized that the guy running that was just a hoarder, or sold it on ebay themselves.
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Old 05-11-14, 02:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr IGH View Post
Hmmm, so how does one get around the 10% ebay fee, the paypal fee and postage?

Example: I sold a saddle for 41.01 with 12.35 postage. Total sale to ebay is 53.36. Paypal takes 1.49, ebay takes 4.10, shipping cost is 11.30. Net sale after costs is 34.88 or about 65% of the gross sale.
In no accounting system in existence is [add-on] postage part of gross sales.
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Old 05-11-14, 03:11 PM
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As the others above said!!!

I factor free shipping into my price and ship with the lowest option available.
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Old 05-11-14, 03:42 PM
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Originally Posted by miamijim View Post
If you do a lot of ebay sales then $30-40 bucks an item adds up, last year I had 270+ transactions. It's always good to have some spare parts around but how many cranksets do you need, or saddles or hubs? At a certain point, unless you flip for a living or hoard, your best selling off all the extra's.
Exactly right. It does depend. I am certainly on the collector end of of the spectrum, not a dealer. And all my spares fit in a couple a tupperwares on 3 shelves in the basement, I don't have a lot. But I would much rather a fast easy sale for a few bucks less than spending an hour or two on ebay, packing and shipping.
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Old 05-11-14, 04:01 PM
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Originally Posted by oddjob2 View Post
... I find it amusing some CL listers go through the effort to list $5-$15 items. Just donate it. What buyer wants to invest the time and mileage...
you find me amusing then.

i live in a bicycling community where an online inventory of items listed by people easy to work with is "worth" the "trouble."

try to find that vintage suntour chainstay cable guide easily in a bin at the co-op. or meet the neat dude at the park and pick it up in five minutes.
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Old 05-11-14, 04:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Ex Pres View Post
In no accounting system in existence is [add-on] postage part of gross sales.
OK, so it's $44, where am I gonna get a better crankset for the money?
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Old 05-11-14, 05:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Mr IGH View Post
OK, so it's $44, where am I gonna get a better crankset for the money?
attached to a bike you got a good deal on?
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Old 05-11-14, 05:55 PM
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From a buyer's perspective (me), Ebay is pretty pricey for a lot of parts, but mostly I'm willing to pay the cost because of how easy it is to find what I need. Craigslist is a bit of a crapshoot if I'm looking for specific stuff, and Bikeforums and other forums have post requirements or other requirements before I can use those as a market resource. I'm glad that people list things on Ebay--otherwise I'd have no other way of getting what I want :|
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Old 05-11-14, 08:08 PM
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I hope you are reporting that on your taxes.

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Old 05-12-14, 11:16 AM
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Originally Posted by Mr IGH View Post
Hmmm, so how does one get around the 10% ebay fee, the paypal fee and postage?

Example: I sold a saddle for 41.01 with 12.35 postage. Total sale to ebay is 53.36. Paypal takes 1.49, ebay takes 4.10, shipping cost is 11.30. Net sale after costs is 34.88 or about 65% of the gross sale.
I get $36.47, not $34.88. You'd probably get about the same selling locally on Craigslist anyway.
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