Sunday, April 25, 2010

eBay addiction

Over the winter as the cold and snow conspired to keep me indoors, or at least off 2 wheels, I had plenty of time to contemplate this new eBay world we live in. Pretty much the only place to find parts for 30-year-old motorcycles is on eBay – and I needed quite a few of those this year - so I found myself there a lot, watching for postings for those hard-to-find bits and pieces. Like now for instance.
Hey, look at that, a Harley-Davidson t-shirt with a Looney Tunes motif. 2 minutes left and the current price is $3.99. That’s a pretty cool shirt in a cartoonish kind of way. Will have to throw a bid down on that.
Where was I? Oh yeah, there was also the matter of curiosity to see just what people were selling and more interestingly, what  they were buying. It’s pretty hard to imagine anything anyone would want that wasn’t…
Wow, a Heine Gerick leather jacket. Size 42 tall  - perfect. $40 with 5 minutes left. Will have to toss in a last-minute bid in on that.
As I was saying, it’s hard to imagine there’s anything you would want that you can’t find on eBay if you look hard enough and have some patience. So soon enough I found myself wandering around looking for other curiosities, checking out camera equipment…
There’s a Go Pro 1080 HD camera. $240. Damn, they won’t sell outside the US.  And that was a helluva deal too.
… and H-D parts and assorted bling. Why not? If I buy new, it’ll be “used” as soon as I install it, so I’ll let someone else take the initial value hit and I’ll be able to get even more stuff.
That’s a pretty nice looking solo seat. H-D original too. Parts book lists it at $299, so $50 is a great price. Bid.
Of course the real challenge is to separate out the good stuff from all the rubbish, and plan a bidding strategy that will get you the best deal.
Now who on earth would want a left side only, hard saddlebag off a Road King with no lid and severe road rash? Starting bid $100. I don’t think so.
And in the Harley world that’s tough. A simple eBay search on the word “Harley” typically brings up about 300,000 items listed. But by refining the search and focussing only on those items for which the auction is about to end, you can get some good deals, even if it is on things you don’t really need.
Hey, I just won the t-shirt for $4. Loony TunesAwesome!

10 comments:

  1. Ain't that old computer access justa grand thing. Think of all the time you could spend on-line and avoid the out doors, bugs, sunlight and the evil of the wind. Keep at 'er Dave.

    ReplyDelete
  2. i keep finding that left side hardbag minus hardware and lid, and with serious roadrash too :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Paul - Never thought o fit as a bug avoidance technique, but if it works....

    Ms. M - Yeah, there sure seem to be a lot of them out there. LOL.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Canajun:

    being close to the US Border, I have a postal box down in Point Roberts, WA and a shipping address on Paypal so I can take advantage of Free US shipping via UPS. Many people drive over the border just to fill their gas tanks.

    but I have to agree that there are many bargains on eBAY. You can go broke saving money

    bob
    Wet Coast Scootin

    ReplyDelete
  5. I've had mixed results buying motorcycle parts on eBay ... burned twice for parts for my Yamaha (once on a used part, once on an aftermarket part), but, on the other hand, I've saved a good deal of money on O.E. Harley parts for my 2002 Wide Glide. The maxim "buyer beware" definitely applies to eBay.

    ReplyDelete
  6. bobskoot - "You can go broke saving money". I love it!

    Ken - Sorry to hear you got screwed over. I've been pretty lucky I guess, with only one deal that was a bit of a rip-off. In fact most of them have been great deals - even better than I expected - so I'm still happy. :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. Dear Canajun:

    I got my last wife on e-Bay. I am still paying for that one.

    Fondest regards,
    Jack • reep • Toad

    ReplyDelete
  8. Jack - You really do have to pay close attention to the item description. Otherwise you sometimes get more than you bargained for. :)

    ReplyDelete
  9. I enjoy ebay, mostly as a buyer though. I tend to lose money when I sell things there - I always seem to underestimate shipping!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Lance - LOL. I can relate! On both ends - I bid on a great deal but by the time shipping and UPS brokerage fees (never use UPS!) and import duties and taxes are included I could have bought it cheaper at the local dealer.

    ReplyDelete

Please feel free to comment, but any comments with commercial links will be deleted. You have been warned.