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WW2 collector feeling the down side of collecting

Discussion in 'Militaria' started by ARCHANGELDM, Nov 29, 2010.

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  1. ARCHANGELDM

    ARCHANGELDM Dishonorably Discharged

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    Hi all
    well today im going to be asking you if your collecting years have led to some real negativity. Im a fairly new collector and have found on a few sites a few negative people who really just dont want to help. I am a person who if i can help i will, but im finding that there are a few collectors or dealers out there that feel it is there given right to make life unpleasent for the new collector. For instance maybe the new collector asks to many questions, or feels it necessary to ask if the item that he wants to purchase is worth buying. Maybe the item is a fake and the new buyer needs to know.
    Any way im glad that there are some great people on this site that give solid advice on items, and try as much as there knowledge allows to lead them on the right path.
    For any new collector out there of ww2 items i offer my advice if u need it as little as it may be. And will try to help any way i can
    Thanks
     
  2. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    This is a tricky subject. We are not a valuation service. Too many times, a poster shows up asking us for help concerning an item, then disappears. We are attempting to be a community of people interested in studying about and learning about WW2. Some on here are serious collectors, others (like me) have little or no interest in militaria. In either case, I don't think any of us is comfortable advising on the value of an item, especially if all we have to go on is a picture or description. It should be incumbent on the collector to practice due diligence on any item he would consider purchasing. I would say that one should not buy anything until he is comfortable enough to know what he is looking at. The simple concept is research, research, research. Evidently, the amount of fake WW2 memorabilia is tremendous. In many cases, it is difficult to tell when just looking at a picture. Despite the fact that there are some on the forum who can, or have, provided advice, please be aware that the general policy of the forum is to point the prospective collector to places where such valuations are more likely to be met with a positive response.
     
  3. formerjughead

    formerjughead The Cooler King

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    One thing I have found in 30 years of collecting is that an item will "speak" for it's self. Two of my prize posessions are a couple of everyday items: A Canteen Cup and either a Coffee Cup, Shaving Mug, or Apothecare Mortar. In any case they date from WW1. The Canteen Cup I got in a set with a canteen and pouch ($4.00 US) that was in with a bunch of Boy Scout items and is "quartermaster stamped" 18 and 53 on the handle.

    The Coffe Cup/ Shaving Mug/ Mortar I got from e-Bay and I refer to it as the most expensive coffee vessle in the world.....$63.00 (US) when all was said and done. The lure of this item is that the owner of the market I worked in during highschool was a Navy veteran who served on "Tin Cans" in "Dubya Dubya Two" and would talk of standing watch in the North Atlantic and keeping his hands warm while drinking from a heavy china cup with no handles. This same type of cup is seen in "The Pacific" when Leckie and his group are relieved on Guadalcanal and are drinking Coffee on the mess deck of the LST. My cup is clearly marked in black ink glaze "U.S.M.C. 1917".

    These are very benign objects and I have no reason to believe they are anything other than what they seem.

    My key to collecting is accept the item for what it is and pay what you feel is appropriate. If the purveyor has to sweeten the deal with a story then pass.
     
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  4. Biak

    Biak Adjutant Patron  

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    I try to do my own appraisal as to if an item is worth my dime. If I'm unsure of the cost but I really really want it and I can afford it, it's mine. Oh the other hand I've turn away from a few items I was drawn to because of that uncertainty factor. And to tell the truth, I have no idea what is or isn't a fair price for many of the things I have acquired. But I've been lucky to never over-extend myself. If I was into collecting as a serious pastime the first item would be several books dealing with my main interest. Having said that sometimes just standing back and watching the "auction" and "bidders" is just as much fun.
     
  5. RRCOLLECTOR

    RRCOLLECTOR Member

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    "Caveat emptor"

    Do your homework, buy some books...find a mentor and ask questions. Mistakes will be made but it's how you learn from them that will dictate what type of collection that you amass. Do not treat me like an appraisal service and I will share some knowledge...treat me like a 'magic 8 ball' and I will not respond to your requests. Too many people have a feeling of entitlement nowadays...just because I have 30+ years of collecting experience does not mean that I HAVE to help anyone...it is solely at my discretion.

    My advice has always been that you should specialize early on in your collecting life...become an expert on what you are collecting and build your collection slowly...that way you will know 100% what you are doing. Over the years you will acquire the necessary knowledge that it takes to really collect Third Reich artifacts...know what is real, what is BS, what to collect, what not to collect, who to buy from and who not to. Do not rush into collecting...too many people are impatient...they rush out there and start buying...if you do this you will surely pay the price.

    I realize my words may seem harsh to some of you out there but I speak the truth...

    Rich
     
  6. Skipper

    Skipper Kommodore

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    Not harsh, common sense.
     
  7. Martin Bull

    Martin Bull Acting Wg. Cdr

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    There are some very helpful and knowledgable members on this forum ( people such as RRCollector, Skipper, sniper46 etc ) about many types of militaria. Yes, we do lose patience ( me especially ) with people who come on here with their first posting showing a blurry photo and the banal question 'What's it worth?' :rolleyes:

    But for those who are willing to contribute to, rather than simply 'use', this Forum, there's some good advice to be had. ( And don't forget the 'search' function - there's gold in some of those old threads.... ;) )
     
  8. colletorww2

    colletorww2 Ace

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    There are a few down sides to collecting, but it is mostly not the item, but the seller. I have had loads of down sides in collecting, to name a few: I have seen items dug up from Auschwitz(Such as rings and other personal items) been sold on Ebay, i had 2 forums report the s@it out of him, but Fleabay ignored it. And a bad thing that i always experience when i got to militaria and arms fairs are the russian sellers(Mind you, i have nothing personal against Russians) they show up with loads of Battlfield relics, probably dug up from their own back garden, and sell it for the price you would pay if the item was in mint condition. And if you come up to them and have a look at their items they watch you with a nasty look, they have their hands folded and a mad expression on their face, and the only time i have seen them smile is when they get their money and go brag to the other Russian sellers at the militaria show. And 1 really bad down side to collecting is all the copies, i went to a big fall-market once and there were about 10 sellers selling German Steel helmets, i think every single one had a decal on it, i did not see a single original. A buyer asked a seller there if a helmet he pointed at was an original WW2 German helmet, and the seller said: "Yes, it is totally unique". The helmet was Spanish, repainted so much on the outside it looked like a Christmas tree.
     
  9. sniper1946

    sniper1946 Expert

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    I believe the recent spat, was down to communications, that which was simply stated from brad, impressing on dean the best way to forward your knowledge in collecting, I don't have any issues with those that ask for assisstance when wanting to know certain things, but it is as most have said? the valuation side of things that Irks, now! asking to I.D. something should not create resentment, nor wanting some guidance, but I also think responses from both sides should remain polite and to the point, not to start deviating from a poorly worded remark, which! like a snowball running down hill? gathers momentum, and grows, until it finally is unable to move anymore, hence the impasse last night, I portion no blame? nor wish to! I personally do not like to see this sort of stand off..getting along is the name of the game, and being helpful, and trying to help is part of the way some of us here work, me! I'm a pacifist..don't get me wrong? I just would rather not take the name calling or goading route..hope you understand, no one wins, and certainly best to keep differences on a level that starts no war....we have enough wars in the real world to contend with....

    P.S. sometimes it's the way the response is written? whereby one reads it, and see's it as offensive, yet if it had been a spoken reply? that was given, it would come out and sound different. A helpful reply... and not meant as one reads it? and takes offence...
     
  10. ULITHI

    ULITHI Ace

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    I don't know. I feel bad the way that new members use and abuse you knowledgeable militaria folks and sympathize with your curtness and annoyance.

    Shoot, you can't post pics and such until five posts in. Maybe there should be a bold rule stating you can't ask about collecting until after introducing yourself in the new member forum. And if any bring it up in that thread, discharge them on the spot. This place is for curteous conversation, not for "hit and runs".
     
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  11. colletorww2

    colletorww2 Ace

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    I couldn't have put it better myself Darren.
     
  12. AndyPants

    AndyPants Ace

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    All I will say here is that before I decide to part with my money on a new purchase, I try to do as much research on the item first, sometimes I may research an item for several weeks, even months in order to see as many real examples as possible.....and where possible try to handle an original firsthand. As others have said, if you like the item and feel comfortable with the price ......then your mind is most probably already made up. As long as your happy with the purchase that's all that really matters.

    As others have stressed, we would prefere not to value items for people (for a number of reasons).......Im not saying I personnally would not help people but one time posters and such do make you wonder.
     
  13. LRusso216

    LRusso216 Graybeard Staff Member Patron  

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    Rich, far from being harsh, I think this is the whole point of the argument. For those like you, Ray, Carl, and others, your expertise is appreciated. What I think is not appreciated is the approach many have of coming here for the first time and asking us to evaluate something we can only see in a photo. If a regular contributor comes on and asks our opinion ("I saw this for this much. Is that a fair price?), then it's a whole different issue. Ray has a point about politeness. I think we all need to be aware that reading the written word is much different than speaking in person. A little kindness and understanding goes a long way.
     
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  14. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    Arch

    let me ask since you have not responded except to post the original question(s)

    what are your prime interests ?

    you have been treated with some sound advice in this thread, study and make yourself an experten in possibly 1-5 items. As you can see by the newest militaria purchases thread what many of us are "into".

    feel free to ask we will help you the best way we can.
     
  15. sniper1946

    sniper1946 Expert

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    I think the point is what lou, erich, and myself included, want to make, be polite, don't give discourteous responses..help poster to move on, or let it pass you by, I think? making some feel they have done something wrong by asking for help, is taboo...guidance, not ignorance is that which serves best....
     
  16. Artem

    Artem Member

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    I know what your position is like since I'm in that place right now! However, beyond going straight for forums I emphasis the essentials in doing your research. Collecting historican items, you must be interested in history, and fundamentals of history is plenty of research. There's plenty of books, online sources and people out there who can help and are probably as passionate as you are about your area. Read those guides, look at what other people are looking for, try to handle some real life militaria as much as possible, and chances are, something might crop up and surprise you.

    And my best advice of all is, do more research and less buying. I wouldn't get into anything over $100 when you're just starting, since if you do make mistakes (which you will, I'll guarantee that now, everybody does), they won't stun you in the future and put you off collecting all together.
     
  17. C.Evans

    C.Evans Expert

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    The others pretty well summed it all up but ill add, use good judgement, dont ruch into buying the first thing you see (we all have dont it) and dont let the bastards get you down. Had i done so? i'd have quit collecting 25 years ago.
     
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  18. Erich

    Erich Alte Hase

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    no doubt C, we serious types for many many years have all been kicked in the pants at least once .........
     
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  19. sunny971

    sunny971 Ace

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    hehe not to mention broke with valueless collections

    But Carl's right.. He certainly has expierence in these kind of things
     
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  20. Slipdigit

    Slipdigit Good Ol' Boy Staff Member WW2|ORG Editor

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    Note his status listed under his name.

    He found the door for reasons other than are visible in the forum.
     
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