(Topic ID: 168355)

Would you buy from someone with no history?


By mamawaldee

3 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 34 posts
  • 24 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 years ago by MrBally
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    #1 3 years ago

    Not trying to be too specific here, lets say a Pinsider has been a member for several years, but for some reason has no forum activity and no sales history. Distance is prohibitive, shipping will be required.

    Would you buy?
    Is there any way to protect yourself?

    #2 3 years ago

    It's probably unreasonable to expect everyone with a pinball machine to be on this site posting all the time. I wouldn't immediately hold it against someone... but I also wouldn't send cash in the mail to a total unknown.

    Best case would be if you know someone in the area and could have them check on it.

    You might want to try having them set up a Square account (https://squareup.com/) and charge it on a credit card to get some protection, but that'll add a couple percent to the price (still worth it in my opinion).

    Still, I would try to get lots of pictures, ask lots of questions, get everything in writing just in case.

    #4 3 years ago

    Check vids "don't get ripped off" thread

    #5 3 years ago

    The seller doesn't know you either, maybe you're expecting something different than what the seller is offering. There is always something dissapointing about that used pinball machine you just purchased and the seller never really knows what your actual expectations are. I accept that when buying machines from sellers I do not know but have done it many times and haven't been burnt that often. If your hesitant enough, go look at the machine or simply pass on it.

    #6 3 years ago

    Oh man vid beat me by 10 seconds.

    #7 3 years ago

    Would you buy from craigs list with the same circumstances?

    #8 3 years ago
    Quoted from bam10:

    Would you buy from craigs list with the same circumstances?

    Craigslist is only worth a 1/2 hour distance with cash, and a friend who's packing.

    #9 3 years ago

    It's just weird somebody would be a member year for a couple years and never post. And this is his first for sale it would seem. Maybe he has resistance to the bug.

    I'm ludicrous distance from the seller. I might try to look around for a local pinsider to verify it.
    I got a non-pinhead buddy who lives 5 hours away from the seller. I'm trying to see if he would buy the game for me and ship from his place.

    I read Vid's guide, again. Good read, and that escrow service sounds really nice. That's the only way I'd buy a pin sight unseen again. I'll ask if he'll accept escrow for curiosity.

    #10 3 years ago
    Quoted from Adams:

    You might want to try having them set up a Square account

    Took a look at Vid's escrow, on the front page it looks like they take credit cards too.

    Double protection?

    #11 3 years ago

    Unless it is something rare, give it a miss and wait for something local

    I won't buy unless I can pick it up , or it is being sold by a regular forum user
    And even then I have been scammed

    #12 3 years ago
    Quoted from mamawaldee:

    Craigslist is only worth a 1/2 hour distance with cash, and a friend who's packing.

    I've driven 3 hours each way for a game with a single blurry photo more than once. Granted, the pin scene in my area is pretty dry, so it's either that or nothing.

    I wouldn't pay top dollar for a game without seeing it in person. There's too many things that you can miss in photos or can be hidden by clever framing/cropping, lighting, etc.

    #13 3 years ago

    Some times no history is better. Especially when dating.

    #14 3 years ago

    Of course.
    There's no correlation between a member's forum post count and their level of integrity or honesty.
    In many cases particularly on our local forums here in Australia you will find the truism to be the opposite since those with extremely high post counts have typically lost all sense of perspective of the outside real world.

    #15 3 years ago
    Quoted from pinsanity:

    Of course.
    There's no correlation between a member's forum post count and their level of integrity or honesty.
    In many cases particularly on our local forums here in Australia you will find the truism to be the opposite since those with extremely high post counts have typically lost all sense of perspective of the outside real world.

    You must be hiding in a Cave.
    I find that prolific posters are a treasure trove of thoughts

    #16 3 years ago

    Shipping a pin you have never seen from someone you don't know... No.

    Look, cash on the glass, both sides. If I'm selling, I want to see cash on the glass. If I'm buying, I want to see what I'm getting with my own eyes. If I miss something wrong with the game, I have nobody to blame but myself. I've driven 7 hours each way for a game I wanted. And I'd never ship a game I'm buying. It isn't that someone would try to rip me off, but why take the chance.

    #17 3 years ago
    Quoted from PopBumperPete:

    You must be hiding in a Cave.
    I find that prolific posters are a treasure trove of thoughts

    But are those thoughts from the prolific posters both informative and conducive to the greater good of the hobby or just online overcompensating for real life failures?

    With pinside it is primarily the former, whilst with our domestic Aussie forums it is largely the latter.

    That's not hiding in a cave, that's confronting using reality.

    #18 3 years ago

    Yes, I do it all the time.

    Some of my best deals came from private owners that were not collectors or hobbyists in the world of pinball. PinSide accounts are only relative regarding credibility. Some people do join just to sell something. Some operate businesses but have no interest in PinSide drama.

    Many non-actives don't post for years, but have more experience than most on this website as soon as I recognize their real name.

    Roger Sharpe has a PinSide account, is not active, and does not post.
    Is he legitimate in knowledge and trust?
    Yes.

    Machines, parts, manuals, backglasses, etc.

    Be vigilent, be dilligent always.
    "If it walks like a duck, and talks like a duck, it is probably a duck."

    If you have fears of the unknown, go find another savvy collector to help you validate. They don't need to be or even are always PinSide members.

    Networks are strong, this hobby is still niche small in the grand scheme of world. Let them help you find what you want or need.

    No need to travel the pinball road alone.

    #19 3 years ago

    I was just about to post exactly what The Black Knight said - basically; if you're worried you're going to get ripped off, then don't do it. But you have to take a bit of a risk to get those great deals. The protections via credit card and escrow are very good (although don't use a debit card!!) and if you take that bit of risk you can come out with a fairly good deal - the people who DON'T post on pinside are less likely to be asking crazy money for their pins, despite some of the evidence on ebay to the contrary.

    That said, I've been seeing some *insane* asking prices for kind of middle of the road pins lately... what's going on guys?

    #20 3 years ago
    Quoted from mamawaldee:

    Craigslist is only worth a 1/2 hour distance with cash, and a friend who's packing.

    To each their own, but to me 30 minutes is a joke. I've done 5 hours each way on the spare, a bulging tire, and the game had no pics.

    Went back 2 weeks later and bought another game of his.

    3-5 hours each way is what i consider average.

    #21 3 years ago
    Quoted from dung:

    To each their own, but to me 30 minutes is a joke. I've done 5 hours each way on the spare, a bulging tire, and the game had no pics.
    Went back 2 weeks later and bought another game of his.
    3-5 hours each way is what i consider average.

    Good deal and it usually pays off since the seller typically has other machines or some other pinball related ephemera gathering dust and which they are willing to part with.

    Tyranny of distance is par for the course down here in Australia. If you aren't prepared to do a sunrise to sunsets worth of driving to pick up a machine based on a couple of blurry photos taken in someone's back shed with only natural light as a source then you just aren't deep enough into the hobby.

    My record is jumping on a plane and flying 10,000 miles to inspect in person a stash of machines that I had yet to pay a deposit for. This was just to make sure the machines matched the photos and description that was provided. The added bonus being you can always negotiate a better deal in person.

    Everyone complains that there are no good deals left out there, but they are the ones who expect machines to just fall into their lap by spending their days sitting on their backside and scanning ebay/craigslist/gumtree for the aussies on here et al. If you are prepared to do the legwork there are plenty of machines packed away in sheds gathering dust out there whose owners don't have any idea of the resurgence of pinball or even the fact that there are online forums devoted to it.

    #22 3 years ago

    No sir. I wouldn't do it

    #23 3 years ago
    Quoted from dsmoke1986:

    No sir. I wouldn't do it

    Then I guess you never bought a machine off Craigslist.

    #24 3 years ago
    Quoted from Spock:

    Then I guess you never bought a machine off Craigslist.

    I don't believe the question was as much would you buy from someone you didn't know, but would you buy sight unseen and have it shipped. I buy off craigslist all the time, but have never had a game shipped. I can drive several hundred miles for what shipping charges are, and I prefer to see what I'm paying for before the cash leaves my hand

    #25 3 years ago
    Quoted from Spock:

    Then I guess you never bought a machine off Craigslist.

    Yeah, that wasn't the question. I have bought and sold many machines off of CL, I've had great experiences for all except one, and that one has made me skeptical of situations like the OP is faced with. Don't risk it, too much can go wrong here. I would advise you walk away and wait for a local sale of said pin.

    #26 3 years ago

    Here's something to think about. I bought a Tommy from a guy on Mr. Pinball whom I had never met, never heard of and, as far as I knew, never posted on rgp (pre Pinside). Now he and I are great friends and I've now bought 6 or 7 games from him.

    My biggest advice is I never buy games from pictures and have them shipped. If the game is too far away to go see in person, I pass.

    #27 3 years ago

    Two years ago, I bought a Monster Bash from an Iranian man who was moving. He described it as near perfect and it was priced at $6,500. When it arrived it was far, far from perfect. I spent $1,000 fixing and replacing all the various defects including a missing Dracula and a cracked, warped play field. You get what you pay for. $7,500 for a clean MB is not bad, minus the aggravation.

    #28 3 years ago

    I have a buddy who makes his living selling car parts on CL and Ebay. For CL transactions he only does in person in places like a Walmart parking lot in the middle of the day, and he has concealed carry. That might be a bit extreme, but he has been scammed alot. As far as Ebay, he told me he loses 30% of his money to scammers who will dispute the item, and return a box full of rocks and bricks. Then Paypal always gives the people their money back. He just accepts it as a cost of doing business.

    I have never used CL for anything, but my wife has. One time she bought something in person and it was good. Every other time she bought something shipped, she got scammed. Every time she went to sell something, she ended up waiting around the house all day and the people never showed up. She quit using CL for anything. Now we never try to sell anything and just take the stuff to goodwill instead.

    The horror stories I hear about CL where the game is gone when you get there, or it's grossly misrepresented, or you get there and the seller has since received "multiple higher offers" make me want to avoid CL altogether. That's why I said 1/2 hour distance, I drive a little more than that to work every day and can afford to waste 30 minutes if it's a scam.

    That said, I picked up a Batman Forever off Mr. Pinball classifieds back around 2007. I never even played the game before, but the movie is one of my favorites, and the pictures off IPDB made the game look cool as hell. Called the seller, he said he had a local buyer interested but he reluctantly agreed to sell it to me without a deposit. I didn't even get pictures or the game, and drove 6 hours to get it. Looking back that was prime disaster recipe.

    The guy ended up being legit, and the game was really nice. I still have it, and it's not going anywhere. It's the only game in the collection which has never broke down. I guess I got lucky on that one.

    Since then I guess I have developed a much lower tolerance for risk.

    As for the original subject here, I have asked the seller if he would sell it via escrow. It's been a few days now without a response...

    #29 3 years ago

    Everyone's got their stories about cl but they skew negative I think because few people are going to jump on here and start threads about their legit or happy ending cl transactions.. Not quite as interesting as the "maw of despair" type stories..

    I've sold a bunch of stuff including pins on cl as well as buying (always in person) and really can't say I've ever had a bad experience. Some flakes when selling but you just get used to it and it's easier to pick them out.

    Regarding Pinside I was signed up for a year before posting -- used rgp until I remembered I had an account at Pinside and switched over. Plenty of lurkers here. I personally am super Leary of shipping but no reason it couldn't work out either..

    #30 3 years ago

    If you absolutely HAVE to buy a game out of state, then obviously use escrow.com .

    If the seller won't use escrow, then you KNOW it's a scam.

    Simple as that.

    -

    Audiophiles and classic car collectors have been using escrow services for decades whenever they buy $$$$$ gear from out of state.

    #31 3 years ago

    Some of my best pinball purchases have come from people who I have never met before!

    Fine print:

    1. Always pay cash!

    2. Always pick up in person!

    #32 3 years ago

    I would never buy a pinball macine without seeing it unless I knew the person selling it and trusted him. Too much money to be gambling with.

    #33 3 years ago
    Quoted from Mbecker:

    Not quite as interesting as the "maw of despair" type stories..

    Too true, no-one these days gives a rats arse about the good result stories. That, in a LOT of ways, is like watching the news reports. Media has been negative biased for too long, at least in this country, BUT i doubt it's different anywhere else. I personally have bought most of my machines online without actually playing first (hey let's face it, OZ is a BIGGGG country) and haven't had any worries yet. It does help if you have some idea what you are looking for but the main thing i have noticed is that a lot of peeps have expectations far and beyond reality!!

    #34 3 years ago
    Quoted from Magic_Mike:

    Some of my best pinball purchases have come from people who I have never met before!
    Fine print:
    1. Always pay cash!
    2. Always pick up in person!

    I've driven to Southern California to pick up slot machines. Twice.

    I've mailed a $100.00 deposit to someone in Massachusetts to hold a pin as it took me a month to get that way to pick it up. Paid the balance in cash. All went well.

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