Recent sales (June 20 – July 17)

All things considered this was a decent sales period. For a while it was looking like there was going to be a postal strike, so I put my stores on vacation to make sure there weren’t going to be any issues with delivery. Fortunately the parties involved seem to have worked things out, at least for now. I actually sold a few things while on vacation mode too, and because the lockout hadn’t actually begun I was able to ship them out normally.

Otherwise, I was also busy with the move, meaning I didn’t have much time to list new items. I’m starting to get back into the rhythm of things again though.

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1. Antique Chinese silver ring: On eBay for 65$. Found this January in TMR.

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2. Lot of 13 5.25″ floppies, some of which held old Apple software: On eBay for 40$. I was kind of surprised, but not really when I looked these up and found out they were worth selling. There’s a healthy market for vintage computer stuff. I can’t remember where I found them though.

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3. “Message of Israel” 1950s radio transcripts: On eBay for 45$. I had a box full of these, and I’m glad they sold before I moved. Found in Westmount last summer.

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4. Garmin Nuvi GPS: On eBay for 50$. Just the device was included – I had none of the chargers or accessories. Found in February in TMR.

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5. Original iPad: On Kijiji for 80$. This is the second working iPad I’ve found in my trash picking career. Both have turned up in the last six months. Found on McGill move-out day.

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6. Charles de Gaulle tobacco pipe: On eBay for 70$. Found November 2015 in TMR.

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7. Lot of old broken cellphones, mostly Blackberries: On eBay for 25$. These phones were just barely worth selling on eBay. Anything older is best recycled at this point, though the really old stuff (especially the old brick phones) can have some serious collectors value.

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8. Vintage Ray-Bans, 12k gold filled: On eBay for 130$. These took a while to sell but that was mostly my own doing. I wanted to feel out of the market, so I started with a very high price and eventually worked my way down until they finally sold. The market for anything Ray-Ban related, especially the vintage stuff is pretty good! Found last summer in Hampstead.

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9. Martin Wells eyeglass frames: On eBay for 25$. These would have sold for more, but there was a small crack on one of the arms.

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10. Vintage 1960s Silva compass (“Sun Watch”): On eBay for 30$. I listed this compass last week and it sold within a day. Found not far from my old place in the Plateau.

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11. Programme Officiel de Parti Quebecois, 1980: On eBay for 20$. I found this on Thursday, listed it on Friday and sold it on Saturday. It included an introduction by René Lévesque, the founder of the Parti Quebecois and Premier of Quebec from 1976-1985. Found in Outremont.

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12. Yard sale: 330$. It was my first one in over a month, and the first at my new place. It went pretty well all in all, though I’ll have to find some folding tables for future sales. Some better signage would also help.

13. Magazine lot: to a friend for 100$. These included some of the vintage Vogues I found a while back, as well as some old Playboys I found in the Plateau. She intends to use them for collages.

Total: 1010$, 13980$ since the new year. I’m on pace to make around 25k in 2016.

Just to clarify for any new readers, the stated prices factor in the cost of shipping but not eBay / PayPal fees, which come to around 10% of the total transaction.

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Space hopper

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The move went well and now it’s time to get organized. My main goal is to develop an effective storage setup for all my junk while also ensuring a separation of my work and relaxation spaces. I have things mostly done, I just need to put up a curtain (to serve as a room divider) and find a solid Ikea-style storage shelf. Maybe I’ll post some pictures when it’s all done!

I haven’t done much picking in the last month or so, and I more or less missed out on Moving Day. However, I’m starting to get into the rhythm again. The weather’s been nice so I’ve been biking a lot, and I came across most of these finds while cruising around my new hood.

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Here’s an unusual find. It looks to be a WWII-era life preserver. On one of pillows is printed “The Col. P.P. Hutchison Memorial Life-Belt.” I did some research on the Colonel and found that someone by the same (or at least a very similar) name and title wrote a book about the history of the Black Watch … in 1962. That man was still very much alive when this life preserver was made, and it seems odd that he would be memorialized with a “life-belt” while still kicking. Maybe it’s a long forgotten inside joke.

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I noticed this much later, but multiple people signed the back of one of the pillows. Unfortunately the names are all faded and hard to read. The only name I could make out was Ogilvy. This side of the pillow is also stamped with a date: January 30 1941.

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Up the road I found a collection of perfumes that look to date from the 50s or 60s.

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My favourites were these old Polish scents. I find Polish stuff on a semi-regular basis, which is I think is because a lot of them emigrated here after the war.

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The same spot also provided this old toy. It’s called a space hopper, though they seem to go by many different names. These were apparently very popular in the 70s and 80s. I took it home because old toys can be very valuable, but after doing some research there doesn’t look to be much of a market for them, at least for now. I left it on the curb, and I think someone else took it home.

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I went on a little bike ride last Friday and salvaged this stuff from some black trash bags. I figured it was mostly a nice yard sale / change haul, but it turns out the Swatch is kind of collectible. The design, which features the Mona Lisa wearing sunglasses and giving a peace sign was sold only at the Swatch store in the Louvre.

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There’s only one listing for this watch on eBay and the price is 186 US dollars (or around 240 Canadian dollars). The seller owned four, two of which have sold. Theirs are brand new, but I expect I’ll be able to sell mine for a nice sum as well. I listed it at 150 Canadian dollars, and as usual I’ll let you know how it goes.

On a related note, it’s very satisfying to casually find valuable stuff while biking. I bike mostly for fun and exercise at this point, so it’s a bonus when I end up getting paid to do it!

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Just this morning I took a bike ride in Outremont and came across this collection of electronics. I snagged the receiver, leaving the CD and VHS players for other pickers. It wasn’t much fun carrying the thing home though. I’d guess that it weighs around 25 pounds, and I had to carry it in my arms because it didn’t fit in my backpack.

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It’s a Marantz Model 2225. I knew it was worth something right away because Marantz is one of the more desirable vintage audio brands. Even when they’re broken they can be sold for parts. Still, I was surprised to see how much this model actually goes for. Serviced, fully functional 2225s have recently sold for as much as 550$, while a non-functioning unit sold for around 175$.

I haven’t fully tested this one yet, but it does turns on (unlike the one that sold for 175$) and is in nice cosmetic condition. On the other hand most of the bulbs are dead, though I think those are easy enough to replace. I’d guess that this receiver is worth 200-250$ as is, making it a very nice get regardless!

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I otherwise saved a nice vintage footstool. A cool greek key pattern is carved into the wood. Unfortunately my roommate’s cat has taken to clawing at the fabric, but I’m there to shoo her away more often than not.

I hope to do a yard sale at my new place this weekend. I don’t know if I’ll do another post before then, so check my FB page for updates. Otherwise, you can email me if you want details!

Relevant links

1. Facebook page
1. My eBay listings
2. Etsy store
3. Kijiji listings
4. My donate page

Email: thingsifindinthegarbage@gmail.com. I often fall behind on emails, so I apologize in advance if it takes me a while to get back to you.

Move-out day

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I mentioned I had a great time picking in the McGill Ghetto during move-out day. That way was back at the beginning of May, but I haven’t gotten around to mentioning it until now.

From what I hear move-out day is a phenomenon across the world. Basically, a lot of students move after their academic years end, and when people move they inevitably leave stuff behind. I wrote a fairly in-depth post about the event last year.

In past years I’ve been busy or haven’t taken the day particularly seriously. This year though I decided to go out of my way to see what I could find. I went with a couple friends and even recorded a bit of video, though we haven’t done anything with the footage yet.

There’s no shortage of things to be saved on move-out day. We (and many other scavengers!) saved lots of clothes, food, books, school supplies, and so on. I think I got particularly lucky this year though. All the stuff in today’s post came from a single spot, one of the first we stopped at. It’s hard to fathom why the previous owner threw these things away, though I’d guess that they’re privileged enough not to have to consider the financial implications of their actions.

One of the things that has surprised me most in my garbage flipping career is the amount of money I’ve made from used perfumes. I had no idea that such a market existed before a couple years ago. The Replica perfume on the left for example sold quickly on eBay for 75$. The “Juliette has a Gun” is listed for 60$, while the Vanilla one sold at a yard sale for 4$ (it was originally 20$ at Anthropologie). I’d guess that I’ve made around 2000$ selling perfumes in the last two years – that’s around 5% of my income!

I also got 30$ for that Links of London silver bracelet, which I noted in my last post.

I love finding cash in the trash. Easy money right? A lot of this change came from inside a laundry bag. I found more (including the bills) inside some used purses, and the rest was loose inside the bags. All in all it added up to around 40$.

Click on the picture to see a GIF my friend made! We found three 24s of Sleeman’s sitting on the curb, while a bunch of other cans (some of which were still cold) and most of a bottle of Vodka were saved from the bags. This is easily 100$ of booze right here. Unfortunately I’m not a big Sleeman’s fan, but they have been useful as bartering chips.

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I found another original iPad, which I flipped recently on Kijiji for 80$. I guess we’re at the point now where working 1st generation iPads are being thrown out on a regular basis – I saved another one just this February. I used the photo of the last iPad here because it turned out a bit better.

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My best find though was easily this Macbook Pro. It’s an order of magnitude better than the last one I found. For one, it’s a 2012 model instead of a 2009, and it has a 15″ screen instead of a 13″. It came with the power cable, and even the battery works well. It’s easily a 600-700$ computer, and it’s definitely better than the Asus I bought last year.

It was locked with a password when I found it. I’m not really tech savvy, but using Google I was able to find a way to bypass the password and basically delete the old account from the computer. Apparently the laptop hadn’t been used since 2014, so I’d guess that the previous owner got a better computer and didn’t care about this one. Either way, it works out well for me!

As you can see I had a great time on move-out day. I look forward to doing it again next year, though I don’t expect to get this lucky every time.

In other news, I’m moving today so wish me luck! If all goes well I should have a bit of time tomorrow to check out moving day trash. To clarify, moving day is a totally different thing and a uniquely Quebec phenomenon.

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