Do your homework when using eBay

Lynn Larsen

Lynn Larsen
It has been my experience that items selling on eBay very often sell for MORE than the retail price of the item. I am sure we could come up with a whole host of reasons why this happens, but thousands of books have been written on psychology, sociology and social psychology.

Here is a great example. I was following a VHS tape on eBay entitled "Ford Legends." It covers GT40s, Cobras and Shelby Mustangs; cool, right? Well, once it went over $10, I was no longer interested. When I went on eBay this morning, the auction had ended and the video had sold for $36.

I then went to Goggle and typed in Video VHS "Ford Legends."
A list of URLs popped up with at the top. I went there and purchased "Ford Legends" for $4.88.

Caveat Emptor!! Do your homework and KNOW what the value of the item really is before you start bidding. Otherwise, you could end up making a huge mistake and pay way too much. Oh yeah, and always check the shipping costs: a lot of sellars make their profit in shipping charges.


I'll go along with that. Last year I sold a set of soft luggage to fit a Honda ST1100 after I sold the bike.
I only paid £36 direct from a Honda dealer a month or so before, yet the auction went to nearly £60 + £8 p&p !
These were not rare or discontinued (they're still available from Honda now) yet it seems people must presume it's a bargain.
I say bring back the old days when you could go and talk a price DOWN !
(gotta get me some more of those bags though....)
I've been looking for an MSD Digital 6. $275 from Summit.
2nd hand ones on ebay go for about 230-250 plus post. Why? I don't understand why you would want a secondhand one for only 10-15% off. There is even a 'Buy it Now' currently for $300. Incredible!

Lynn Larsen

Lynn Larsen
I watch 3 mustang/ford forums that seem to have a little more "sane" pricing on the stuff. You have to be careful because there are a lot of shade tree mechanics on these forums who's idea of "good shape" is a far cry from mine. They also have no clue about what the term blue printing is either and if it says it is for a SBF they slap it together and hope. So if you get heads or anything that needs a flat, non-warped surface, I would highly recommend taking them to a reputable machine shop and have them given the once over and assume nothing.

The forums I watch are:

NMRA Classifieds
Corral.Net Classifieds


Charlie M

I was following a Kenne Bell supercharger for a 5.0 Ford on ebay a couple of weeks ago. The winning bid was $3030. This item new from Kenne Bell is $2999. I couldn't figure out why anyone would make a risky purchase for a used item for more than it cost new.

Re: Use your brain when buying on eBay

If you are purchasing anything on ebay that you consider is a lot of money, I would suggeest that you use an escrow service such as Escrow. com. I have made two big purchases which if I had sent the money, I would have been very upset at paying that amount for what I recieved.
My first purchase was my GT40(See buying a previously owned or partial kit). There were a lot of things that I considered nusance problems that werenot disclosed to me prior to buying(shot bushings in Corvette suspension, calipers that were useless etc.). The biggie was the "newly rebuilt" 351 Windsor(he forgot to tell me he had left it out in the rain).
Because I was smart enough(read fortunate enough) to use the escrow service, he was stuck with working out the amount of money it would take to fix the problems. I saved thousands of $$$. My last experience was buying a "newly rebuilt" 930 transaxel. I used the same service, not wanting to lose $3000. Good thing I did. It was never rebuilt. Worst case senario is that I will lose only the shipping fees and $100 escrow fee. Best case senario, I'll buy it for parts, and trade my two 930s needing rebuilding for one that already is. Rebuilding one can get expensive.(for me anyway) Just parts alone can run upwards of $1500 or more with bearings, sliders, dog teeth and idlers.
So no matter what the purchase is, even if its something being made, if its long distance, its tough getting your money back.
The service is really neat. You decide on the terms(how much,lenght of time for inspection, who pays for shipping, etc.). You deposit the money. The service tells the seller to ship. You notify the service when it arrives, and then you have X number of days to inspect it. If it's OK you release the money. If its not, you reject it and you either ship it back or you negotiate. It protects both the buyer and the seller. Money(either all or part) can't be released in either direction without the aproval of both parties. You do lose a little on the fees and shipping, but thats better than the whole amount.
Speaking of shipping, I had the 930 shipped via Forward Air from LAX to ATL(198# with crating) for, would you believe $52. I had it insured for $1/$100 or $30 for a total of $82. The only catch is, you have to drop it off and pick it up at Forward Air. So It might not be real close to where you are. For that amount who cares. Check them out next time you ship something.

David Morton

Lifetime Supporter
Re: Use your brain when buying on eBay

Lots of mail generated from or rather via ebay trying to sell "similar items" at so called reduced prices - at the moment typically high value computer items - from the eastern European fraudster fraternity. They all seem to want to use Western Union to untraceable internet cafe addresses somewhere in Romania. Surely WU can sort this out somehow, but any money paid into WU here in the UK is the same as standing at an upstairs window on a windy day and throwing tenners out of the window.
All very similar to the Ducati scam that was being perpetrated about 9 months back.
Throwing tenners out of the window? - a bit like owning an aeroplane or boat really !!
Dave M
Re: Use your brain when buying on eBay


In case you didn't know..........

The definition of B.O.A.T.: Bring On Another Thousand!

In my experience, owning a boat usually involved stacks of

hundreds! Mere tenners would have been a blessing! /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/shocked.gif