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Advice Needed - How to sell a scope


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A few years ago I was offered and purchased a telescope - I had always wanted one but rather than doing the research and buying what would suit me I bought one that was offered to me by a friend.

It's a Skywatcher 150PL. with some extras - 2-axis motor drive and polar scope

The problem is that my garden is not suitable because it small with overhanging tall trees so not much view of the sky - also plenty of light pollution.  It is too heavy and bulky to transport around to better sites.  As a result it has sat unused.

Looking at it the other day I figured I should try and sell it and maybe do some research and buy something more suitable.

I'm not expecting too much for it, but the problem is I don't know how to sell it.  It is in excellent condition, but to be honest I don't know how it works so have no idea how to demonstrate it.  In fact I bought it on trust from a good friend so I never saw it working then - I saw it inside the house then packed it up and took it away.

I tried looking at the  tops of the trees behind my garden but they are just a green blur - but I'm guessing that this is because they are too close to focus on.

Would appreciate any advice.

Cheers,

Nigel

 

 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Racey said:

You could either place an advert in the classifieds here or place an advert on Astro Buy & Sell...

Thanks, but it is not so much where to sell it, but how to sell it when someone turns up for a viewing.

I don't know how to demonstrate it, but even if I did it would be difficult at my house.

What do buyers expect and how do sellers meet thouse expectations.

 

If I wanted to focus on a terrestial object (assuming I could align the scope) what is the minimum distance I could do that.  As I said, I tried looking at the tops of some oak trees behind my house but all I could see was a green blur.

 

Also how much do you think I should pitch it at?

Would I be better selling the scope, the 2-axis drive and the polar scope seperately?

 

Cheers,

 

Nigel

Edited by nheather
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Place your advert. Give an accurate description detailing any marks or problems. Include numerous photos to show condition. Name your price and whether you'll send via post or courier or whether you want it collected. 

And if anyone wants to view it they'll know what they are looking at or looking for. 

It's a simple process really...

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I bought a scope recently in similar circumstances from someone who had been given it as a gift and knew very little (priced reasonably).

Visually checked for any dings and any markings or discolouration on mirrors.

Got it out onto the street in daylight so could get a long range view and brought it to focus on a chimney in the distance.

Powered the mount and made sure the controller had basic functions - your axis drives prob would need new batteries and could be seen working.

Then it's a matter of price. Trawl a few sites like ebay, here, astrobuysell to gauge a decent price.

I saw their advert on gumtree, so cash sale and collected.

If you post then you could get caught up with timewasters, or scope could lose collimation during its mishandling by couriers.

Current new price for yours is £380 for scope and mount, £100 for dual axis drives, polar scope £37

The drives and polar scope would sell separately, but you might want to try the whole package first.

Is it 70% of new price as a guide for selling?, though a 150PL sold in march for £102 on ebay

 

 

Edited by Conrad Edwards
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You should be able to achieve around £200 for the whole lot easily - assuming it's all in good condition and good working order. If you aren't confident demonstrating it then state so in the advert and potential buyers will know they either have to be proficient, or bring a friend who is. If your buyer is a friendless newbie, then you may have to offer a "money back" guarantee to secure the sale. Hth :)

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Made it clear in the ad you havent used it, and price it accordingly.  Under no circumstances would I let someone have the option of returning it.  Buyer assumes all risk as is the case in any used sale, if you are open and honest from the outset.

Edited by tooth_dr
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Almost as a précis of the good advice above: Get an idea of a price. (Conrad has done that for you above.) Be honest about your unfamiliarity with the scope. Be transparent in your dealings and dismiss any potential buyer who is not.

'Live clean and let your works be seen'.

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Thanks guys.

 

Yes I had worked out it would be about £450 new but had always assumed 50% for second hand so was thinking £225 to sell for £200 - I'd be happy with that.

But I'd also seen that they don't go for much at all on eBay.

I wouldn't post, for one I suspect that it would be expensive plus I can easily imagine it getting damages and most couriers won't insure.  So that really limits the market I guess.

I'll put it up for sale in a few places and see how it goes.

Cheers,

Nigel

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Nigel, bubble wrap it to death and you can post it with confidence. Explain it's at buyer's risk and get a tracking number for them.

I have bought items via courier which are worth far too far into four figures to be entirely easy about it but, y'know, life on the edge; rock 'n roll; outside the box. 

Amateur astronomers rule OK. ??

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I still have the original boxes with the polystyrene cradles.

The cost is more of a concern - two big heavy boxes - insured.  This isn't an expensive sale so the post would wipe off a huge part of the proceeds.

Also I'm not convinced that many couriers would insure it - they have loads of exclusions these days.

Cheers,

Nigel

 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, nheather said:

The cost is more of a concern

State in your ad that it's collection preferred but you will ship - buyer to arrange. You've set expectations, if somebody wants it shipped badly enough they'll do what needs to be done.

Edited by johnfosteruk
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Thanks, that's good advice - I will try that - though hard to imagine that someone would pay £50 shipping (I'm guessing at that price) for a £200 scope.

 

Cheers,

 

Nigel

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I shipped a scope to Lithuania once, but they arranged it with a Lithuania courier and paid for it - only thing I had to get was a big box, then padded it with an old quilt, took photos of delivery van and docs, it got there in one piece.

 

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On 2017-6-2 at 20:52, nheather said:

Thanks guys.

 

Yes I had worked out it would be about £450 new but had always assumed 50% for second hand so was thinking £225 to sell for £200 - I'd be happy with that.

But I'd also seen that they don't go for much at all on eBay.

I wouldn't post, for one I suspect that it would be expensive plus I can easily imagine it getting damages and most couriers won't insure.  So that really limits the market I guess.

I'll put it up for sale in a few places and see how it goes.

Cheers,

Nigel

Scopes can sell very cheaply on ebay, but it's really a case of timing and how many people are in the market for what you're selling.  I got my 250px from a guy off ebay.  They usually go for around £230-300 second hand, depending on condition.  I got mine for £155, and it's in great condition optically and otherwise.  It seemed to have low interest because there were few photos, little description, and one of the cheap, stock eyepieces was missing.  

If it's not A1, it can put people off.  Maybe that is what happened with the one that went cheap.

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