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Thread: KEH Question

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Jul 2017
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    7

    KEH Question

    Seeing the KEH brick and mortar post brought a question to mind.
    Does anyone have experience buying from them on the auction site? Most of the items Im seeing are rated as ugly but still returnable and guaranteed.
    Im looking at a rare-ish lens that isn't cheap but rated ugly, if you've had experience with this, what should I expect?

    Thanks!

    P.S. I know the rating system. I am asking about the reality of it at this time. The reliability of it has varied considerably over the years.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    New York
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    2,091

    Re: KEH Question

    There is at least one long thread about KEH and its ratings, and the thread was active in the last week or so.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    NYC
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    522

    Re: KEH Question

    here is the KEH rating system

    https://www.keh.com/shop/grading-system

    for lenses the glass is effected under the UGLY rating. if you are looking for parts to repair cameras etc, this is a good deal as well as their AS IS stuff.

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Posts
    7

    Re: KEH Question

    I know the rating system. I am asking about the reality of it at this time. The reliability of it has varied considerably over the years.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    NYC
    Posts
    522

    Re: KEH Question

    ugly is ugly. lenses are fungus eatten n scratched... i use to buy ugly lenses just for shutters n camera parts.

    your best bet is BARGAIN for lenses. ive gotten bargain lenses in excelent condition with just minor cosmetic flaws on the barrel.

  6. #6
    Tin Can's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Posts
    17,997

    Re: KEH Question

    KEH has FREE returns

    I have done a lot of biz with them mostly buying but also selling

    KEH eBay Store was their dump for years, the good stuff on their site

    I try to always buy top quality and condition

    I scour eBay for deals and never delay

    I also Snipe, respite Bryan's dismay

    I just bought my last item for this year, shipping is working...now...but

    Good deals and first rate stuff can be found from Japan, shipping costs, yet deals are there, NOS exists

    Pay the extra 20% for good goods

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    St. Simons Island, Georgia
    Posts
    733

    Re: KEH Question

    I like lenses with character. I’ve bought Ugly lenses with the understanding they’re ugly. On one, the glass is fine but only one shutter speed is usable. Another has paint chips and scratches making the aperture scale difficult to discern. You get ugly lenses. I agree that Bargain is usually the Best Buy.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Posts
    7

    Re: KEH Question

    Quote Originally Posted by j.e.simmons View Post
    I like lenses with character. I’ve bought Ugly lenses with the understanding they’re ugly. On one, the glass is fine but only one shutter speed is usable. Another has paint chips and scratches making the aperture scale difficult to discern. You get ugly lenses. I agree that Bargain is usually the Best Buy.
    I also prefer a lens with character, this particular lens is very hard to locate which is the only reason Im consider an ugly lens that's well north of a grand.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Collinsville, CT USA
    Posts
    1,950

    Re: KEH Question

    My experience has been that the bargains from KEH to be had are the LF and especially ULF shutter mounted lenses that are "as is" or in "repair" condition. Their repair department is quite competent and if the shutter can be repaired, I believe that they will repair it in order to sell it for a higher price. If they can't, then they will sell it for in "as is" or "repair" rated condition at a truly low price. I just keep the optics and eventually find a low priced lens on eBay in which the same shutter works (or can be cleaned) but the glass is really in terrible condition. Mount the glass from KEH on to the shutter from eBay, and in the end one can end up with a rare-ish shutter mounted lens for very little money in the end. Does take a bit of patience and months of time. Over the years I had acquired off eBay several shutter mounted lenses in which the glass was in pretty much un-useable condition but the modern shutter working... I kept the shutters for future use.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Posts
    265

    Re: KEH Question

    If the lens costs more than a grand, call them (or, I dunno, send them an ebay message asking to talk to them), and ask for a real person to answer your questions about the lens. I wouldn't expect them to do this for every $20-40 item in their bargain basement, but for a big buck item, yes.

    I've bought some stuff in ugly or as-is condition from them that did actually work with minor operational faults, but just because I was satisfied with my $40 purchase doesn't imply you should spend a thousand bucks. I assume that their repair side is busy like most and cuts its losses on things that aren't clearly going to be worth their time, but may be more appealing to a tinkerer.

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