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(Topic ID: 10340)

Overall: Buying off Ebay worth it???


By TheStranger

8 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 25 posts
  • 23 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 8 years ago by dangermouse007
  • No one calls this topic a favorite

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    #1 8 years ago

    I keep hearing horror stories about Ebay, from people lying about condition, not packaging machines properly, to freight companies destroying merchandise. Top it off with pricing often not being the best. Unless for an exceeding rare item, is Ebay worth it in the end? I ask because I've yet to use Ebay for pins...

    #2 8 years ago

    Your always going to hear about the bad deals on Ebay much more than the good ones but I still feel that buying in person is the only way to go. I know thats not always possible but remember that fellow Pinsiders are always willing to inspect a machine and report back with pics, so dont hesitate to ask if you spot one. Most of us wont even snake it from you if its a good deal.
    Shipping? Thats a whole 'nuther story!

    #3 8 years ago

    I only use ebay to contact the seller about buying outside of ebay....Yes, I'm breaking the rules. I used to not do that, abiding by the terms of ebay, but then I realized that many sellers are using ebay for free advertising by starting their auctions with high prices with the intent of selling off of ebay. 9 times out of 10, if I inquire on an item, the seller will tell me it's for sale locally too, which is secret handshake speak for contact me about negotiating a deal outside of Ebay.

    Ebay is a shell of its former self, and if it weren't for the momentum it's achieved from years past, it would be defunct.

    #4 8 years ago

    I find the prices alone make it not worth it. Almost everything on ebay is inflated to such a degree that everyone overvalues everything. I saw a Tron Le NIB going for $10,000, I don't care how much money I have... I'm not going to pay that much, unless it's covered in diamonds, dipped in gold and delivered to my house by Jeff Bridges himself.

    Although there are sometime when you can get a good deal. I've bought many things with no issue. Most of the dealers I've dealt with have been very good and the packaging has held up. I always look at the seller's feedback and read the item description several times & compare it with the pictures to see if they line up.

    #6 8 years ago

    In my personal experience that would be a big NO! That is, unless you can see the pin in person before you bid.

    #7 8 years ago

    Thirty thousand machines have found new owners on Ebay in the past three years- that's ten thousand machines a year. Give or take. Craigslist, who knows how many, but love em or hate em, Ebay moves a lot of pins.

    #8 8 years ago

    Ive bought from ebay and had no problems.. Ask to view the machine if its within driving distance, If they say "No' then avoid at all costs.
    Ask for tons of pics etc.

    #9 8 years ago

    It seems purchasing off Ebay comes with its risk. If you are doubtful about anything with the sale its probably best just to avoid. Better than being burned. Also I'm a noob to this stuff, who knows what's messed up with a pin. That's why I feel getting a machine from HEP might just be worth it. I mean you're paying through the butt cheek, but at least you know what you are getting. "Anything worth buying is worth paying full price for" is that old maxim.

    #10 8 years ago

    I've had a lot of experience on EBay, and overall have had good luck. I've only bought 1-pin on-line, so mostly my experience is with smaller stuff. What I've learned is to never deal with anyone having less than 99% (yes, that high) feedback, and to closely review anyone with less than 100%. There's just little reason in my mind for bad feedback, and those situations are typically where I've been burned. You also need to gauge the transaction based on the quality of the sale description, and the communication with the seller. On larger items, I always reach out on something, and the response I find can say a lot about the quality of the seller.

    With that said, as Robertmee, I too go off line a lot now, and have built a list of a few go-to people for things.

    #11 8 years ago
    Quoted from TheStranger:

    It seems purchasing off Ebay comes with its risk. If you are doubtful about anything with the sale its probably best just to avoid. Better than being burned. Also I'm a noob to this stuff, who knows what's messed up with a pin. That's why I feel getting a machine from HEP might just be worth it. I mean you're paying through the butt cheek, but at least you know what you are getting. "Anything worth buying is worth paying full price for" is that old maxim.

    To clarify, my offline conversations are with those that are local enough to take it to face to face dealings. I wouldn't buy anything offline of ebay that wasn't local.

    #12 8 years ago
    Quoted from robertmee:

    TheStranger said:It seems purchasing off Ebay comes with its risk. If you are doubtful about anything with the sale its probably best just to avoid. Better than being burned. Also I'm a noob to this stuff, who knows what's messed up with a pin. That's why I feel getting a machine from HEP might just be worth it. I mean you're paying through the butt cheek, but at least you know what you are getting. "Anything worth buying is worth paying full price for" is that old maxim.
    To clarify, my offline conversations are with those that are local enough to take it to face to face dealings. I wouldn't buy anything offline of ebay that wasn't local.

    Exactly what I do as well.

    #13 8 years ago

    If you use ebay, just beware, prices are usually inflated. Besides, it doesn't give me a good feeling knowing I just paid higher than anyone else in the country on a machine. That drives prices up cause I'm gonna wanna sell higher too.

    #14 8 years ago

    I use (and trust) e-bay for small items (parts etc.) and then only if I can't seem to purchase elsewhere. Purchase of a pin is an expensive investment and not one I undertake without being able visually inspect the game.

    #15 8 years ago

    Reputation is everything. If you have one, good or bad, someone here knows it. Ask around. It seems nonpinheads tend to understate the value of a pin. There standards are not as high as ours. They don't know how to run switch tests, etc. If your looking for a particular pin EBay might be the only way to find it. If you just want any fun pin, go local. Contact the seller, if it takes 2days before you hear back and it's a one work answer that's telling. I ask of I can come by and look even if there on the other side of the country. Just to see what they say. If a seller does not allow local pickup it makes me think they don't want to see you face to face. I bought one pin off eBay and it was a hacked pos. And yes as stated above 99% is to low. If you sell 2000 items it takes more than one unhappy person to put you at 99%.

    #16 8 years ago

    Haha, took the word right outta my mouth. Just "no".

    #17 8 years ago

    You cannot see the real condition in a photo. You are taking a huge risk.

    #18 8 years ago

    I have had nothing but problems buying whole machines off Ebay.. Parts on the other hand Ive had good luck.

    Buying a pinball site unseen on ebay just sucks. Then you wonder if the person shipping it has any idea what they are doing packaging it.. If it get damaged then you get to fight with the freight company to get paid...... It just Sucks!

    #19 8 years ago

    I bought mine on ebay and had it shipped from NJ to NC. I'm happy with it.

    Just lucky, I guess. ;o)

    #20 8 years ago
    Quoted from absocountry2:

    You cannot see the real condition in a photo. You are taking a huge risk.

    It does really depend on the photo, some sellers take excellent high resolution shots of their playfields. Some use an iphone at 3 yards, and some use stock ones.

    I've had as many bad deals directly with other collectors as I have over ebay unfortunately. Travelling to see games just isn't an option for me most of the time.

    #21 8 years ago

    I guess I go by the old motto.... if you can't test drive the car you don’t buy it.

    #22 8 years ago

    ALso remember that there are listing/selling fees on eBay. Not sure what they are, but maybe 10-15%? So, you could, overall, buy the same pin directly (CL, etc.) for that much less.

    #23 8 years ago

    no alot of over priced pins

    #24 8 years ago

    I have had good success with buying pins on ebay. I've had good success with other outlets, too (Pynball.com and CL). BUT, you must TALK to the seller before you buy. That applies to any remote pin purchase, or any other high dollar item. Photos are great/fine but to me but the character of the seller is really where the rubber hits the road. How can you tell if a seller is 'honest' and accurately representing to you the condition of what they're selling? That's hard to put into words. But in my experience, the honest folks are usually very forthright and display a willingness (eagerness?) to do whatever they can to answer your questions and show you exactly what you're buying, its condition, its shortcomings and so on. They not only want to sell the item but they also make it clear that they want you to be happy with your purchase. If you can't get that level of comfort, my advice is to stay away. But if you can, then buy with confidence. Sorry for the lengthy post. Just trying to be helpful.

    #25 8 years ago

    2 of the 4 machines i own were bought sight unseen from the otherside of the world and arrived as described or better!.

    BSD from the U.S and Dr Who from Pauls50's shop in Germany which i must say Paul does fantastic work and service and shipping is top notch.

    Could be just lucky so far i guess...but im still very actively searching my machines from ebay

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