Monday, May 20, 2013

Buying 40K Stuff on eBay (Rant)

Let me start by saying that this post is intentionally patronising. I'm also pretty sure that anyone reading this is unlikely to be part of the problem but frankly I just want to vent some frustration.

Since the Tau codex was announced I've been on the look out for models on eBay to bulk up my existing force on the cheap. So far I've managed to get an old battleforce for £45 and a dozen kroot for £10. Obviously I bought the kroot first but the battleforce kroot will soon be going up on eBay. Other than that I've struggled.

I've kept a search going for "Tau" for a few weeks now and I'm amazed by what I'm seeing. Several items go for far in excess of their actual value, new from GW. To me the point of eBay is to save some cash so it frustrates me when people are morons and bid more than something is worth.

A prime example of this is Shadowsun. Now I know some people would prefer the old metal model to the Finecast one but seriously. Here's an example. That's right, £54 for Shadowsun in metal. That's an extreme example but it's far from unusual. The average price seems to be between £30 and £40. Direct from GW in Finecast, Shadowsun is £23.50.

I was watching a hammerhead that went for £31 which is pretty much the price on the GW site I think. I can understand it for limited edition models like Space Hulk or the codices but otherwise eBay should be full of bargains. In other areas it is, but perhaps the Wargames and Roleplaying section isn't as saturated as DVDs or Video Games are.

Here's a few tips for people who don't seem to get it:
  • Look on the GW website to see how much the item will cost new
  • Compare that to prices on Wayland, Dark Sphere etc.
  • Use this figure as a maximum bid - I tend not to bid more than 75% of the GW price
  • Remember to include postage - people seem to completely ignore this and often it's extortionate
  • Don't get carried away - know your limit and stick to it
Seriously, it isn't that hard is it? If you're paying more than full GW price for something on eBay then I pity you I really do. Maybe you're doing so out of some misguided idea that at least GW doesn't get the money but ultimately they already have.

There is of course a chance that these bids are coming from places like Australia where GW prices are even more ludicrous than they are here. For example, a £30 broadside costs something like £50 in Australia. That's the last time I complain about GW prices here!

Sorry for ranting but I just find it so frustrating that what should be a source of cut price models actually costs more than the item would brand new direct from GW. Perhaps I should just feel lucky that my FLGS does 20% off.


  1. Just have to be the seller )

    It's not rational.

    I recently put up the Shadowsun novel from Black Library, which I read for a Blog Review.

    Remember, anyone (!) can buy the book straight of Black Library for GBP 12,- free shipping.

    Still the eBay folks bid themselves up to GBP 16,- + nearly 3 quid shipping for it.

    Do I understand it? No. No clue.

    Do I complain? No. Glad to have gotten a good price that will even leave me with a pound or two extra after eBay fees.

  2. I CAN understand paying more IF the models are assembled, painted, and magnetized.

  3. Some of these bidders may be from Aus/NZ where they can pay a bit more than UK GW prices and still get it cheaper than what GW charges them. It's my understanding that their prices are about double what we pay in the US.

  4. I've noticed this as well, it may be that some of the people find it cheaper if they have to pay loads for shipping, but otherwise I've been just as puzzled myself. Especially when it gets to paying like double the price of new versions of models for old metal ones... of the same model...

  5. I'd pay more to have a model in metal rather then failcast.
    Failcast is awful. I've not had a single perfect model.

    I've been in the hobby since 2000ish. As you can imagine, I have had plenty of metal models in that time. Do you know how many bad metal models I've had.....1. Which was instantly replaced for a good one in my local GW.

    Last time I had a failcast model, they asked my hobby level to see if I could repair the air bubbles myself.

    1. I've actually had more good finecast than bad. The detail is more crisp and they go together a lot easier.

      Metal models were mostly pretty poor in my experience. I often got bent swords etc. Paint chips off them easily too.

  6. I've been frustrated with the professional shops ebay listing tau items they don't actually have in their shop, then mentioning it a month later only after you open an item not received case. Still waiting on my riptide...$8 off is much less appealing 30+ days later. Oh and they have been and are currently still listing more when they can't fill orders from over a month ago....

  7. Metal mini's are selling like crazy at the moment due to Finecast (for better or for worse).

    Now it's specialist games items since they are being canned (along with ALL metal minis - which is the real story).

    A lot of people are going to look stupid via e-bay.

  8. I stopped using Ebay when I realised I was paying equal and sometimes more for second hand models than it would cost for me to buy new models from discount stores such as Darksphere and Triple Helix Wargames.

    A lot of people don't like Finecast due to the imperfections so the older metal models are in high demand at the moment. Plus they are less likely to break.

    Also, some parts of the world have prices much higher than the UK and USA so may actually be getting items cheaper even though they are paying more than the RRP in your country.

    Many models that I see selling for more than RRP are usually professionally painted so it can usually be justified.

  9. I think the problem lies with eBay sellers setting starting prices way too high,they aren't modellers or gamers but professional eBay retailers who are looking to make as much money as they can. They buy in 'job lots' and strip things down for resale, you often see something like "I have no idea if the model is complete" in their add.

    I'm in OZ and I always look for a bargain and add in the cost of postage, I find that a lot of sellers are exaggerating the cost of postage and packing a pocketing the difference.

    Buying on eBay is not as good or as easy as it once was.

  10. Sorry but this rant is rather pointless. If the model is well painted then it should be more expensive that buying from GW page. People should get their money worth if the paint job is of good quality. The 75% of GW price rule is a bit crap.

    1. Sorry, but your comment is rather pointless and demonstrates that you haven't actually read the post. I'm not buying PAINTED stuff here, I'm talking about the unassembled kits.

      For models which are painted it's perfectly reasonable to pay above RRP because some time and effort (and talent) has gone into the finished piece. The 75% rule is based on how cheap you can get the models from an online shop in their unassembled form which is how I was looking to buy them. Obviously not for painted stuff.

      I still (two years later) see items going on eBay for more than GW RRP for stuff you can walk into a shop and buy cheaper. I stress again, NOT painted stuff.


Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...