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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Tue 02 May, 2006 6:30 am    Post subject: Auction discussions         Reply with quote

Hey Bruno (and for anyone else interested)

I wanted to start this thread so that we could comment upon commenting upon things... Happy First I would like to say that your points are absolutely valid in the other thread. It is only natural to not want to get taken in by a fake and how better to do that then by asking people with more knowledge then you?

Unfortunately, there's a huge downside to doing that with ebay auctions. First ebay considers that sort of discussion to be "auction interference" and are willing supposedly to disable participants in that sort of discussion's account supposedly. I don't know that I've ever heard of that actually happening but the theat has certainly been made. Ebay is NOT a democracy but rather a privately run corporation. They can make their own rules. There is no freedom of speech on ebay. Secondly often after reading such a discussion some well intentioned soul is almost invariably going to mount their white horse and "ride to the rescue " of the hapless bidder. They will be spouting stuff like "The experts over at myArmoury say... " If someone's auction falls through thanks to a discussion thread, it may be that they are vindictive enough to go after the site that caused them to lose money. The laws about this are so ill defined that they might even win. Even if they do not the financial burden that an administrator of a site would have to shoulder in order to mount a defense might be enough to put the site out of business. It's not right, it's not fair, but it IS the way that the American legal system works.

My suggestion when buying antique swords include:
3) Buy from a reputable dealer with a good return policy. If a sword was really worth a lot with a few exceptions it would be sold at a reputable auction house or with a dealer not through ebay. Those undiscovered diamonds in the rough while every collectors dream rarely actually exist.

Notice that this is number "3" I had 3 others that had in them something like "thou shalt not buy from X" then realized that to could be construed as auction interference... Happy

Caveat Emptor.
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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Tue 02 May, 2006 6:39 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

For those coming to this topic without context, I'll include quotes from the text from another topic that this references. There, it was quite off-topic and Russ has thankfully taken it upon himself to start a new discussion.

Please note that it may get me, the owner of this site, in hot water to discuss actual on-going sales auctions. For sure, it's against eBay's policy to tank a person's sale. I'd prefer not to get my eBay account pulled as one example. eBay's policy is to bring it up to them if an auction is suspect, not to discredit the seller outside of the realm of eBay's site.

Feel free to discuss this, conceptionally, while avoiding discussing specific on-going auctions. If you are to talk about legalities, avoid speculation and discuss what you know to be fact. I don't want to hear what "should not" be illegal, but rather what you know to be illegal, as an example.


Bruno Giordan wrote:
There could be people on this forum who could be tempted to bet on suspect items.

I posted that inquiry because I was thinking of investing some of my hard earned euros in one of that items.

Now, in a democratic regime there should be no liability in discussing the quality of an item that is put on sale: I think that accusing the creator of a forum of some misdemeanor for commenting a product would be absurd, freedom of speech being one of the primary tenets of your Constitution (which is better than many european ones, BTW).

What is all too true is that ebay is all too often a safe harbor for scammers, so many online collector forum devote sections just to the discussion of ebay items: discussing item has nothing to do with any slander of he founders of that site, btw.

Money is obtained by most of us through hardwork, so it would be immoral to allow the scammers further loopholes.

Obviously the tone of discussion should be kept within civilized and educated bounds, that's for sure.

As a person who has been ripped off more than one time on ebay I feel the necessity to discuss prospective buys with utmost care.

Doing this with the proper manners would be easy, since this forum seems to be quite a ranquil place.


Bruno Giordan wrote:
Nathan Robinson wrote:
Bruno: This is not the topic to discuss this. This topic, as mentioned by Russ Ellis, is meant to provide a pointer to eBay auctions. Please stay on topic.


I actually had posted a separate topic in order to discuss such swords, but somebody aggregated my post with this.

Actually I would like to receive help on the matter of spotting fakes, since I abandoned other branch of collecting just because of fakes.

I see that the field of swords and armor is also plagued by the same disease.

I may understand the need for a civilized discussion, obviously, just I do not understand why a civilized discussion about pieces being sold on a auction website should be that dangerous.

One thing is to give an expertise, another is to give an opinion.

When one has to decide wether to shed some hundreds or thousands of dollars on the ground of some so and so pcs and the words of an internet nickname, the asking of the nonbinding opinions of other people is far from being immoral, I hope.


If you wished to create a thread just to educate people on the identification of likely fakes it would just be an appreciable move in my humble opinion.

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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Tue 02 May, 2006 7:50 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks Nathan, I should have thought to put some context in there myself. Happy You mean EVERYONE does not read EVERY thread? Eek! Eek!
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Michael R. Black





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PostPosted: Tue 02 May, 2006 8:21 am    Post subject: Splitting hairs?         Reply with quote

Just out of curiousity, based on current interpretations, would PM discussions regarding an ongoing sale be exempt from retribution by Ebay? Any info or opinions would be much appreciated.

Michael
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Bruno Giordan





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PostPosted: Tue 02 May, 2006 11:45 am    Post subject: Re: Splitting hairs?         Reply with quote

Michael R. Black wrote:
Just out of curiousity, based on current interpretations, would PM discussions regarding an ongoing sale be exempt from retribution by Ebay? Any info or opinions would be much appreciated.

Michael


Given that the probability of a retribution seem to be having a slight foundation, I would suggest, in the case that the topic of discussing possible buys be of some interest for the gentlemen of this forum, that a special section be created which would be open for view and posting only to longtime registered users, while being totally invisible to the unregistered public.

I think such section should concern every possible vendor, being it not limited to ebay.

This section could not contain discusions on replica weapons makers, it should be solely dedicated to the knowledge of antiques and to the identification of copies and fakes.

In no case conclusions or even hints from such discussions could be transposed in other parts of this forum, people enabled to partecipate would sign an agreement to such effect.

I guess this could safeguard the owner of myArmoury from every possible liability by hypersensitive vendors.

A possible, rather neutral name, could be " Antiques knowledgebase".
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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Tue 02 May, 2006 1:47 pm    Post subject: Re: Splitting hairs?         Reply with quote

Michael R. Black wrote:
Just out of curiousity, based on current interpretations, would PM discussions regarding an ongoing sale be exempt from retribution by Ebay? Any info or opinions would be much appreciated.

Michael


Absolutely. It certainly wouldn't be something they'd see.

One of these days I'll find out more info on this stuff. Personally, I find the whole thing contradictory. It's honestly not high on my list of things to do.

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Alex Oster




Location: Washington and Yokohama
Joined: 01 Mar 2004

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PostPosted: Fri 05 May, 2006 5:46 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I think that if I saw it mentioned here as "hey look whats on e-bay" and I wasn't an informed collector, If I bought it and found out that it was fake I would be annoyed that the community felt it was worth pointing out, but worth mentioning that it was a bad buy or misrepresented. I say it should be a free speech forum by law Big Grin (and get government subsidies!)
I guess the topic might look like this:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Another sword on e-bay: http/e-bay.comfsdafhasdfdjshfadshfjaf/ Item#8574354255.html

PM me if you want my opinion..... *hint*cough*hint*
-bob
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Good find, *cough*, wonder what it will sell for.....
-joe
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Yea, I know I'm not going to bid on it.
-frank
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

something like that to imply discreetly w/o stating it outright... I dunno, its too eary to think.

The pen is mightier than the sword, especially since it can get past security and be stabbed it into a jugular.
This site would be better if everytime I clicked submit... I got to hear a whip crack!
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Russ Ellis
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Joined: 20 Aug 2003
Reading list: 42 books

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PostPosted: Fri 05 May, 2006 6:25 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Maybe you could just cut and paste point three if anyone expresses interest:

"My suggestion when buying antique swords include:
3) Buy from a reputable dealer with a good return policy. If a sword was really worth a lot with a few exceptions it would be sold at a reputable auction house or with a dealer not through ebay. Those undiscovered diamonds in the rough while every collectors dream rarely actually exist. "

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Allan Senefelder
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PostPosted: Fri 05 May, 2006 7:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Russ, while buying from an auction house increases(doesn't guarentee, Mr. Oakeshott sites multiple miss labelings of swords he's purchased from or seen at reputable auction houses in Records) the chances of getting a quality piece, the "diamond in the rough" is out there in very respectable quantities and will actually increase as the "boomer" generation passes on over the next 30 years. The number of people out there who "got left this thing by grandpa" is alot larger than one might think, couple that with estate sales(the venue where a huge amount of antique material is sold off in lots by auctioneers because the "kids" don't want it they just want the money) where antique dealers who know very little about militaria( I routinely beat these folks on stuff because they just know its old they don't know what it is) will put this stuff in thier case at the co-op or thier store or on ebay for a fraction of its worth because they don't really know much about this stuff they just know its old has ALOT of material out there outside the auction house setting. You'll have to do your homework but then don't you have to do that with any collecting hobby your serious about? Just a few things i'v picked up outside of auction houses for pretty much nothing:

1) Norther Indian/Rajput horsemans maille and plate coat c. 1700 - a woman who'd read an interview I did in a local paper called me because she had "this thing" sitting in a suitcase that her husband had brought back from his service in Burma/India in WWII and she knew that it had something to do with armour. It was this coat in great condition, liner intact. I told her what it was what she could expect to get for it through various outlets(auction houses ect.)and she then asked what I could give her for it. I had $300 in the bank. SOLD

2) Very nice little mid to late 18th century Scots stocking dirk - Local antique co-op out of a case predominantly filled with depression era glass and Roseville pottery(hate that stuff). Price- $20.00

3) Maximillian right leg c.1520-30's- Ebay from a guy in Australia who thought it was a Victorian theater prop. I was the only bidder. Price $250.00

4) Indo-Persian khula Khud helmet c. 1800- Bought at a local gun show froma guy who thought it was some sort of theater or shriner costume prop. Price-$80.00

Its out there to be had on ebay and other places you just need to study up as you would with collecting any type of antique so you can spot the good stuff and the bad.
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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Fri 05 May, 2006 8:25 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hey Allen,

First may I say great finds! I agree with your points that things are to be had if one does ones homework and knows what they are looking for. I would submit however that probably nine tenths of people out there and and that includes those that visit sites like this one don't know there stuff well enough to be able to make that determination especially not based upon a few photographs on an ebay website. I was sitting here thinking to myself... "Do I trust my own judgement and knowledge enough to spend multiple thousands of dollars based upon a few photographs?" The answer is a resounding "NO." There are simply too many fakes both old and recent some of them obviously junk but some that are quite good. With a quality dealer even though the concerns you mention are perfectly legitimate at a minimum you typically will have a good return policy even if you discover you have purchased a fake. The extra eyes on the piece as well as what is typically a more reliable provenance make it seem like a safer alternative.

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Allan Senefelder
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PostPosted: Fri 05 May, 2006 8:55 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Russ , I would have to agree that if your not willing to put in the study time but want the safe route auction houses offer the best option(ACW can be iffy even there, theres actually a handbook out there on how to doctor stuff up to make it look like ACW original materials and the end results can be nearely undetectable. Dad's big into this era and they're putting some of this stuff up in museums before it gets spotted). You will pay top dollar which is prohibitive for most of the folks on the forum as the kind of money that shops Christies and Soothebys(sp) is alot more than you or I will ever make. The vast majority of collectors in this arena, guys like you and I have a budget and have to shop for values. Gun shows, ebay and estate sales(estate sales while typically packed with antique dealers are most always open to the public and you can get outstanding deals at them) which are increasingly being held with an online/live auction feature as well are where they shop because the odds and the prices are more in thier favor. The catalogs from the above mentioned auction houses, as well as places like the now closed "Museum of Historical Arms" shop in Florida and other Arms and Armour auction houses are a great source to train youself on what to look for. If you have the oppotunity to hit the museums for a closer look at what yourinterested in this is a great help to as theres no substitute for in person exposure. Gun and militaria shows can provide a good place to get hands on time with the materials you interested in to clue you in to what to look for. In most of these venues as long as you ask permission(should we be any way) before handeling vendors will let you do so. At estate sales you can hands on as well if your there in person. Estate sales tend to be advertised in the local paper and whatever your equivalent of The Penny Saver (you know the little townie, pizza coupons and classifieds paper. I think just about ever town has one) and will have a quick list of whats being auctioned. There also local auction houses who basically handle multiple estats at once and will usually an online presence with upcomming and past aucitons and whats for sale so you can check for militaria and the like before going.
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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Fri 05 May, 2006 12:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

"If you have the oppotunity to hit the museums for a closer look at what your interested in this is a great help to as theres no substitute for in person exposure."

Truer words were never spoken. Bernard Levine a professional appraiser of knives has said many times that the only way to be able to know the fakes from the authentic article is to see dozens, hundreds, perhaps thousands of that type of item. He also notes that you have to be honest enough with yourself to know what you know and also know what you don't know. Wise man, Mr Levine...[/i]

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