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Thread: Taking a "Bath" in glass....

  1. #1

    Taking a "Bath" in glass....

    Well boy do I feel really stupid, as a business owner I usually make more sound decisions than this, but here goes:

    When I first started out in LF a bit over a year ago, I did not know how much things really cost. So I sought out what I thought were ideal lenses initial lenses for me and they indeed did turn out to be great. I located and bought a 90 Caltar, 135 Apo Sironar N and 180 Apo Symmar, all have worked great. The 135 was and is the most important focal length for me, it just works. But I made a mistake in getting what I did, mostly in what I paid for it...and now I am fully taking a beating on the re-sale. I hunted high and low for a good used 135mm Apo Sironar N and was finding that ebay auctions were closing at around $400 for a good used one, but none were to be found. So I bought a like new one from KEH for over $600.

    The lens turned out to be bitingly sharp, the most impressive lens I have had up to date, even more so than the famed Fuji 240A, etc. And it is tiny too, really nice as a super light lens for hiking. But I got the itch to try out the much heralded fatter sister, the S, talk about a hard lens to find used for a decent price. One finally came up in the classifieds on here so I took the plunge and got it, not a deal by any stretch but not far off what they seem to go for.

    So now I am so frustrated, I feel like selling the S before I even get a chance to use it because I can not even get a lousy $350 for my N version, it just sits in the corner of my office unused. I don't need a lens collection, I need a working tool kit.

    Anyone want to buy an S? Because no one seems to want to buy the N for even half of what I paid for it...

  2. #2
    Corran's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    North GA Mountains

    Re: Taking a "Bath" in glass....

    Looking at the big picture, that's not much of a loss.
    Consider for a moment what new glass costs.
    Think of it as a rental fee and move on
    Bryan | Blog | YouTube | Instagram | Portfolio
    All comments and thoughtful critique welcome

  3. #3

    Join Date
    May 2006
    grand rapids

    Re: Taking a "Bath" in glass....

    Yeah, I've bought nearly all of my lenses here for much less than any online retailer sells them for. The only lens I bought new was a schneider 150 when I started out and I lost a couple hundred when I sold it. I've bought used only when steals have showed up here since then.

  4. #4

    Re: Taking a "Bath" in glass....

    It's just frustrating, I am not sure how much I would even get for it now, certainly not less than $300? It's like brand new for pete's sake and if there is any "Sample Variation" going on in this lineup, this one is a surgical scalpel it's so sharp. I should shoot the two side by side, I bet I hardly see a difference.

    I'm butt-hurt because I never get burned like this, oh well....

  5. #5
    Unwitting Thread Killer Ari's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Ottawa, Canada

    Re: Taking a "Bath" in glass....

    Consider yourself fortunate.
    In 1999, I spent $600 on a Polaroid 190, bought P/N film for it, and used it for a few days before it stopped working, shutter included, and I found that I had bought a dud.
    Since it was less than a week after the sale, I took it back to the used shop where I bought it.
    The guy who sold it to me refused to even consider a partial refund on the broken shutter, and back then I really had no spare cash.

    I have several stories like this where I've lost money outright, and had no means of selling the gear or getting a refund.

  6. #6

    Re: Taking a "Bath" in glass....

    Hey, if you want to take a beating buy a new car (automobile). Park it in a garage, never use it, sell it three years later for thousands less than you paid.
    I once bought a beautiful Rover saloon, 20 months old, 30K miles, unmarked, for less than half of it's new price. Lucky me, sad Vendor.
    Sorry about the loss on your lens but it could be worse. Hell, you could be trying to sell a last generation top flight DSLR . . .

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Stevens Point, WI

    Re: Taking a "Bath" in glass....

    I sold my 135 Caltar for $185 if I recall.

    If a particular lens (or camera, etc.) suits you best, paying a premium is fine. But a premium is a premium - you won't recoup the cost by reselling it.

  8. #8

    Re: Taking a "Bath" in glass....

    If I get half of what I paid, I will take it and just move on. But if I can not even get that, then I will sell the S version and just keep it.

  9. #9
    Resident Heretic Bruce Watson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    USA, North Carolina

    Re: Taking a "Bath" in glass....

    There are many learning curves to LF. This is just one.

    Almost anything worth pursuing takes time and money. Plenty of woodworkers have tools laying around that they don't use anymore. I know painters who have thousands of dollars in paints they they aren't using, and whole collections of brushes they now find unsuitable. Potters who build newer better more specialized kilns every year.

    Learning curves are a PITA. But it's the price that has to be paid. Pay it, move on, and use that hard won knowledge to make the photographs you want to make.

    Bruce Watson

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    San Joaquin Valley, California

    Re: Taking a "Bath" in glass....

    Quote Originally Posted by Kodachrome25 View Post
    If I get half of what I paid, I will take it and just move on. But if I can not even get that, then I will sell the S version and just keep it.
    Keep the one that performs the best for you. You've already paid your tuition--- when starting out, one lens is plenty---in fact it might be all you really need!
    "I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for men if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority"---EB White

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