Saturday, January 24, 2015

LEICA ON EBAY



Nobody would argue that Leica equipment is very expensive.  It always has been.  Subsequently, many look at the used market to find a Leica, a Leica lens or Leica accessories at an affordable.price. 

EBay logo.svg

One excellent source for used Leica equipment is eBay.  I have purchased many items from eBay over the years and I recall only one instance where I had to return an item because it was not anywhere near in as good a condition as it was advertised to be.  A little bit of research, and eBay is a good source for that too, can quickly reveal an average price range for whatever item one might be looking for.  Most people describe their items accurately and often even underrate them.  National Camera Exchange in Minneapolis and KEH Camera in Atlanta are two such companies.  It is not my intention to publish a complete list here, but these are two companies, besides numerous individuals, that I have dealt with on many occasions in the past.

Since some Leica equipment has brought rather astonishing prices on auctions recently, it is unfortunately a fact that some individuals and companies try to take advantage of this.  I have seen some rather outlandish asking prices for Leica equipment, so, beware.

Just recently I came across the most absurd price I think I have ever seen being asked for used Leica equipment.  It is a package consisting of a Leica IIIg, 50mm f/2 Summicron, and 90mm f/4 Elmar.  In addition there is a metal neck chain, a Leitz CEYOO flash with nonstandard flash bracket, and a sunshade.  In good condition, the package price for this equipment would be no more than $2,000, maybe 500 dollars more if it were all in near mint condition.  This equipment was originally listed for $7,000 and has been reduced to $6,000 since then.  The camera has all of its Vulcanite covering missing.  The two lenses are listed as “excellent” and the rest of the equipment is not rated in any manner.

Leica IIIg
For demonstration only.  This is not the camera listed on eBay

This is an absurd price to ask.  The individual listing it, is obviously is trying to take advantage of Leica’s reputation of being worth a lot of money for used equipment.  This package has been listed on eBay for almost three months.  Obviously, people interested in used Leicas are not as ignorant as the owner assumes.

But there are also bargains to be had.  Currently, a Leica M (Type 240) is listed for $4,900 in mint condition.  That is definitely substantially less than the usual $5,500 to 6,000+ for this camera in similar condition.

Leica M (Type 240)
For demonstration only.  This is not the camera listed

With a bit of caution, eBay and the used camera market in general can be an excellent source to save often considerable amounts of money.  A fair purchase price, combined with a reasonable return policy or warrantee will be a good protection against any hidden faults.  This has served me well.

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13 comments:

  1. I looked at that Leica IIIg outfit on ebay. That guy is insane thinking to get 6,000 dollars for it, especially if one considers that all of the vulcanite is missing. Does it look like he painted the camera black? I am not too familiar with the history of Leica, but it seems that some of his strangely long description is not too accurate.

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    1. Interesting, I was wondering too if the camera was not painted with some sort of black paint. As far as I know, the black surface underneath the vulcanite is smooth. You are definitely correct, there are quite a few inaccuracies in his account of the history of Leica.

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  2. I find it rather absurd that this guy initially was expecting to get 7,000 dollars for his kit. WTF

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  3. Hey, don't be too critical. After all, there is a lens cap and a weird case included in the deal that wasn't mentioned in the article. That ought to bring up the price to the 6,000 bucks he is asking for the outfit.

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  4. I have had quite a few dealings through ebay, both as a seller and as a buyer. My experiences have all been quite positive.

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  5. I just took a close look at this outfit. One of the pictures shows the 50mm summicron without a lens cap. The front element is totally scratched, and this fraud rates it as excellent? Considering the shape of the reest of that equipment, I consider it not worth anything more than maybe $1,200.

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  6. I just did a bit of research of prices on eBay for equipment in similar shape. I came up with $400 for the camera, $380 for the scratched 50mm, $150 for the 90mm and $50 for the flash. That leaves $20 for the rest to make it an even $1,000. I have seen the lens shade and the lens caps sell individually for about $50 each, so, to be fair, I guess that brings the total value t $1,250.

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  7. Typical example of greed gone amok.

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  8. The number of responses to the eBay listing clearly show that Leica afficionados are not as stupid as that guy apparently thinks.

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    1. How many responses have there been?

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    2. None, nada, gar keine, goose egg, big fat zero...

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  9. Still no responses, even though the price has been lowered to $3,900 by now. But the shipping costs in the US are listed as $120 from New York State. So far this has been an interesting fishing expedition with absolutely no results.

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    1. 150 bucks for shipping? This guy is insane.

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