It's not often I ask fer hep

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Culpeper
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Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2005 2:01 am

It's not often I ask fer hep

Post by Culpeper » Mon Mar 23, 2020 3:10 pm

But have any of you fellas successfully bid on any items at the major auction houses?

I see a rifle I would like to have for the grandson (yeah, that's it.  the grandson) and the money fever is rising again just like the old days and I have never attempted an auction.

Any help towards a successful acquisition is good help.  As our Patron Saint of Sergeants would say, "I know nothing.".


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Deacon in the Church of the Mighty Krag. Member of People Eating Tasty Animals (PETA).  [url=https://radio.securenetsystems.net/v5/index.cfm?stationCallSign=LWRN]Liberty Works Radio[/url]

Whig
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Joined: Sat Sep 24, 2016 12:53 am

Re: It's not often I ask fer hep

Post by Whig » Mon Mar 23, 2020 4:26 pm

I've been buying through Proxibid for years and do very little bidding or buying anymore.

I have gotten many great deals and have gotten stuck a few times with dogs but rarely. Some of that is good luck but a lot of it, actually, is knowing what I am looking at and seeing what others may not see, good and bad. Being an active member of this forum has helped me tremendously in learning how to evaluate firearms well and looking for small clues in the pictures and item descriptions that tell me things others may not know or see. That's the way to get an advantage over others.

There is a ton of info to pass on but here are a few.

When you place a "high bid", say the maximum you are willing to pay, understand that most auction houses, as disclosed in the "fine print" know what your max bid is and will often "surprisingly" always have the item bid to at least your max bid. This is wrong and is abused and shouldn't be allowed but, heck, it's disclosed and you don't have to bid anyway.

Someone in house "onsite" has the advantage over you. Even if you place a higher bid weeks earlier, it can sell to an onsite bidder at the same price, or lower (!) than your bid. I have called them on this and they just say that the online bidding doesn't always keep up with the on site bidding.

Most auction houses are honest and try to give accurate item descriptions. But, most people don't know military firearms, especially Krags, and make mistakes in their descriptions. Some are outright funny or terribly wrong, some are small and simple mistakes. Buyer beware. I won't buy from Cowan's anymore because the firearms "expert" is an asshole and tried to rip me off on a sale. A nice exec refunded everything to me including postage which made me feel better for a Krag I returned.

The auction houses have gotten blatant in their extortion of profits. The buyer premiums have jumped to 20-25% and then they will charge huge fees for packaging, sending and sometimes transfer fees for firearms.

Whig
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Re: It's not often I ask fer hep

Post by Whig » Mon Mar 23, 2020 4:39 pm

Keep in mind that, even though they say "another company" handles shipping and charges separate prices for S&H, the auction house owns that company and makes all the extra money off of shipping and transfers. They make money for commissions for the sale and the buyer's premiums for the purchase. No wonder almost all auctioneers are multi-millionaires.

Make sure to inspect packages when you get them. I have had numerous damage claims against UPS, Fed Ex and USPS for firearms damage. I have gotten full satisfaction for reimbursement for all of them but it is a huge hassle and is a test of your patience in achieving that. The auction house should pack them well. Take pictures of everything if there appears to be any damage. That's another post all by itself. (I've written about that before.)

You may get a good deal and you may wind up paying too much compared to a fixed, known price from Gun Broker. But, auction buying can be successful and rewarding if you see something you really want.

Any more questions, let me know, It is complicated but can be rewarding.

Baltimoreed
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Joined: Fri Feb 05, 2016 11:42 pm

Re: It's not often I ask fer hep

Post by Baltimoreed » Mon Mar 23, 2020 7:19 pm

Ive never done anything other than GB and fleabay. But the part about doing your homework on the item and checking out the seller applies to any online auction. And even more when the price goes up or the item is supposedly rare. Theres scammers in them thar hills.

Rcat7147
Posts: 112
Joined: Mon May 21, 2018 9:40 pm

Re: It's not often I ask fer hep

Post by Rcat7147 » Mon Mar 23, 2020 11:43 pm

I have my FFL and buy and sell as a side business (day job is in manufacturing).
I buy almost exclusively from online auctions.
I bought over 100 firearms last year from probably 40 or so different auction houses.

Frankly, youd be surprised how FEW problems Ive had.  The vast majority are also FFLs and do things right.
Last year I returned only one item.  A couple 1903 stocks I bought that turned out having severe termite damage.  The pictures were awfully poorly lit in the bad areas.  The auctioneer was very accommodating. 

Whig
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Re: It's not often I ask fer hep

Post by Whig » Mon Mar 23, 2020 11:59 pm

I have also had my own FFL for my hobby and a small side business for years. Big savings overall.

I have bought over a hundred firearms from auctions online and have also had very good success. It definitely has a learning curve. My advice above sounds scary because it is easy to lose out if you are not prepared and know what you are looking for and looking at.

There are dishonest people everywhere, including the auction houses but I also have had mostly good experiences overall but have had a very few bad deals or dealers.

My discussion above is for op who is new to this and I am reinforcing advice of buyer beware. When things work out, though, enjoy the booty!

waterman
Posts: 174
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Re: It's not often I ask fer hep

Post by waterman » Thu Mar 26, 2020 1:06 am

I bought a picket rifle from Amoskeag in 2011.  It was advertised correctly, maybe I was the only bid.  Overall experience with Amoskeag was good.  If I was buying (too old now), I would do business with them again.  But I'm a pretty well informed buyer, only into things like picket rifles, slug guns, strange single shots and Krags.

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Culpeper
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Re: It's not often I ask fer hep

Post by Culpeper » Thu Mar 26, 2020 6:17 pm

Well the one I am looking at is on RIA.  Is rare as duck lips and the sad thing is I am stuck in Africa for the next sixty day thanks to the Chinese and their gift to the world.

So I have to say a quote from that Bogart movie (or Bugs Bunny cartoon with the penguin) "Padon me, but could you (anyone of the Kragites) help a fellow America who is down on his luck?

Would one of you be willing to be my proxy?  I would understand "no" answers.

Deacon in the Church of the Mighty Krag. Member of People Eating Tasty Animals (PETA).  [url=https://radio.securenetsystems.net/v5/index.cfm?stationCallSign=LWRN]Liberty Works Radio[/url]

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