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Thread: Hello/Goodbye?

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    12

    Hello/Goodbye?

    Hello, everyone. My name is Mason Frichette. I live in Washington State, and I first got into large format photography in the late 1970s.

    Sadly, my introduction to the Large Format Photography website heralds my exit from large format photography. In truth, Iíve been inactive for some time now, but Iím about to take the irreversible, but necessary, step of selling my equipment.

    Iíve looked around the site a bit, and Iíve concluded it would have been nice if this site had existed when I was actively photographing. At this point, the features of most interest to me ó out of necessity ó are the buying and selling forums.

    Selling my equipment is not something I will enjoy, but health problems (and the associated expenses) are not going to disappear, and itís time to do what I must.

    I have cameras (4x5, 5x7, and 8x10), lenses (90mm to 450mm), and accessories (e.g., Pentax Digital Spotmeter, Minolta Autometer IIIF, tripod/head, filters, etc.). Currently, my darkroom equipment is being stored in Colorado, so I donít have ready access to it. I guess when Iíve sold my camera equipment, Iíll figure out what to do about my darkroom equipment (Durst Laborator 184 8x10 enlarger, numerous lenses, and virtually everything else (except the ďkitchenĒ sink ó or in this case, the darkroom sink, which I've already sold).

    So far, I havenít offered anything for sale on this site, in part because Iíve been gathering information on prices, but also because I havenít decided whether it would be better to offer the equipment here or on eBay.

    I wish my circumstances were different, but as the saying goes ďif wishes were horses, then beggars would ride.Ē Unfortunately, Iím permanently out of the saddle, and I'm hoping to avoid begging. I would welcome any advice that anyone can offer on prices or where and how best to sell my equipment. Because I need the money (and Iím not just emptying the closets), I do need to get as much as I reasonably can. However, Iím interested in ďfairĒ prices that reflect the quality and condition of the equipment, and Iím certainly not interested in taking advantage of anyone.

    What is the best way to ask about pricing information for specific items? I noticed that one person said he was using a particular piece of equipment, so I sent him a message (with apologies) asking for some information, but I never received a reply. I don't know if he was annoyed by my request and chose not to respond, or if he even saw the message. I don't want to bother anyone, but I could use some advice about current prices. (Note: I've been looking at items bought and sold here and elsewhere, so I have a better idea now than when I decided I would need to sell my equipment.) Still, any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Auburn, WA
    Posts
    81

    Re: Hello/Goodbye?

    PM Sent

  3. #3

    Re: Hello/Goodbye?

    Mason,

    I think that you will generally make better money on Ebay for 'normal' items. There's more people watching over there, and the competition can sometimes be fierce.

    Selling over here makes sense if you know the value of the items, but since you are unsure, you are probably best searching the closed Ebay auctions, and then setting a reserve based on what you see.

    If you make good photos of the items, write good, thorough descriptions, and accept Paypal, you will get what the item is worth; that is, the market will determine the value, and that is about all you can ask for from the situation.

    I'm generally a believer in the neutrality of a marketplace like Ebay. Sometimes buyers are fickle, but for the most part, the way things sell over there represent the tipping point on 'fair' pricing; a good value to the buyer, and a good value to the seller.

    Don't be too upset at the relatively low value of the enlarger... They are unbelievable machines that almost nobody wants anymore. I've seen many go to the dumpster due to thier size and relatively high difficulty finding a good match. If you're lucky, there'll be a few people in the Denver metro area that would like one. Otherwise, it'll probably go for an embarrassingly low sum.

    The lenses, condensers and other items like that could very well sell for more than the enlarger though, so consider carefully how you package the items for sale.


    ---Michael

  4. #4
    Has Been LF Photographer
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Posts
    181

    Re: Hello/Goodbye?

    Mason, I'm going through the same issues of trying to get rid of equipment I haven't used for 20 years, and never will, but it's still sad to part with it just the same. Figuring out an asking price is very difficult, and I still haven't achieved it. One way to get a rough idea is to look at completed sales on eBay. This occasionally produces a little help, but often times not.

    I have concluded that darkroom items are virtually impossible to sell. Not because there are not darkroom workers around, but because there is so much of it available, usually for free. I just ended up giving all of my darkroom stuff away for free. Some of it was top of the line in it's day. I gave away a 20X24 Saunders easel that had never been used. Still, I occasionally see some darkroom stuff sold on this form for a few dollars.

    The wild card is your Durst 184 8x10 enlarger. There was a day I would have "killed" for one of those. I would today if I were still active. I am currently trying to figure out the best way to dispose of a 300mm lens. Someone commented that nobody is enlarging 8x10 so they don't need a lens. Don't know if this is true or not, but it might limit the value.

    I guess the purpose of my post is just to say that I have been working on disposing of darkroom things I fought to acquire a little at a time, and now, it has little value.

  5. #5
    Cooke, Heliar, Petzval...yeah
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    698

    Re: Hello/Goodbye?

    Quote Originally Posted by Deane Johnson View Post
    ... I gave away a 20X24 Saunders easel that had never been used...
    Damn, someone got very lucky. I just bought mine like for $330 last week.
    Peter Hruby
    www.peterhruby.ca

  6. #6
    Eric Biggerstaff
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    1,307

    Re: Hello/Goodbye?

    I might be interested in the enlarger and I am in Denver.
    Eric Biggerstaff

    www.ericbiggerstaff.com

  7. #7
    Eric Biggerstaff
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    1,307

    Re: Hello/Goodbye?

    Shoot, never mind. I just looked at one in eBay - they are huge! Wish I had the room.
    Eric Biggerstaff

    www.ericbiggerstaff.com

  8. #8

    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Boulder, CO
    Posts
    140

    Re: Hello/Goodbye?

    he said he lived in Washington State, where are people getting Denver from?

    oh i see now, darkroom stuff is in colorado
    Last edited by Dan Schmidt; 7-Nov-2007 at 14:21. Reason: looked closer at first post

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    12

    Re: Hello/Goodbye?

    I was in and out all day and only got to my messages at about midnight. I'm going through them now and replying to each.

    Thanks to everyone for advice and interest.

  10. #10
    jetcode
    Guest

    Re: Hello/Goodbye?

    I sold my darkroom stuff through craigslist in the s.f bay area and got top dollar for it.

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