Recent sales (July through October)

As you can tell I’m pretty far behind on these posts. I’m thinking I’ll go a different direction in 2020, maybe sharing notable sales at the bottom of my regular posts. It’s just a bit of a hassle (and not that much fun) digging through my auction records in particular, and I don’t know if it’s worth the effort. Either way, I’ll keep you up to date on the most interesting or exciting developments.


Macbook Pro for repair: 175$. This was in pretty good condition outside of the missing keys.

JM Poirier sculpture: 80$. A neat piece of maritime folk art. Found in Hampstead.

Silverware lot: 330$. I basically sold all the nicer 800 silver pieces from this spot to one buyer (I scrapped the ones that were in poor condition). In the end they sold for barely above their silver spot price, so I might not bother listing similar silverware on eBay in the future.

IWC watch box: 135$. Both of the luxury watch boxes I found in Cote St-Luc sold pretty quickly for good cash. Empty boxes have proved to be a nice source of income over the past few years.

Rolex watch box: 110$.

Vintage Gubelin watch box: 80$.

10k gold Steinberg service pins: 70$. Found in St Michel.

Tiffany choker: 240$. Found in TMR.

1981 Steve Caballero skateboard: 300$. Apparently these old skateboards are pretty collectible! This one was missing a couple wheels and had some wear and tear, but still sold within minutes once listed. I don’t even remember where I picked it up, I just remember it sitting around my garage for months before I finally got around to dealing with it.

1970s Golden Movie News magazine: 100$. Part of a larger haul of vintage Chinese film magazines. This one had some quality Bruce Lee content, which made it more interesting to collectors. Found in Westmount.

Eaton’s Christmas catalogues: 2 for 100$. I made a point to get my Christmas catalogues listed for the holiday season, and two of the four sold right away for a good price.

Armani Attitude: 120$. This scent has been discontinued, so fans are willing to pay good money for an old bottle.

Octagonal cufflinks: 250$. I found these years ago in Cote St-Luc. I’m glad they’re finally gone.

Chopard watch band: 150$. Just a like-new watch band with an original stainless steel buckle.

Total: 3946$.

Auction sales

Cast iron crank wheel: 40$. Picked this up in Cartierville.

Russian doll: 44$. This was the biggest Russian doll I’ve ever found (Cote St-Luc).

Valenti Alina lamp: 65$. Made in Italy.

Pod espresso machines: 75$. I tested these for basic functioning. The two on the left were missing pieces.

Hudson Bay wool blankets: 2 for 60$ each.

Mostly Swatch lot: 260$. These sold for a lot more than I expected. I think the buyer overpaid – based on my eBay research I figured they were worth around 40$ each. But hey, I can’t complain. Occasionally people will bid like crazy for certain items, and that makes up for the other times when they don’t.

Michael Kors watch: 110$. I also think this watch sold above its eBay value, I figured it was worth closer to 50-60$. Either way, someone threw it out barely used in its original box. Easy money.

Total: 2224.50$.

Otherwise, I’d estimate that I made around 2500$ from yard sales, 1000$ from scrap gold & silver, and 300$ from regular old scrap metal. I didn’t really keep track, but those seem like solid guesses.

So, if the estimates are right I made about 9970$ from garbage in this span, and made 28233$ through the month of October. It looks like it’ll be another “record breaking” year financially! Garbage picking isn’t making me rich, but it has turned into a reasonably well paid endeavor. And, who knows, maybe I’ll find a treasure treasure someday.

(For newer readers, these figures are in Canadian dollars so adjust accordingly!)


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10 thoughts on “Recent sales (July through October)”

  1. “Another “record breaking” year financially” … sounds pretty darned sweet. Go Martin! You’ve certainly come a long way from your humble 2012 beginnings. And the things you’ve learned along the way … like empty boxes being good moneymakers … who da thunk it! 🙂

  2. What come to my mind is how much work actually goes into what you do–in adddtion to the scavenging. The sortilng, pricing, listing and storing is time intensive. So lest anyone out there think that you aren’t working hard for your money…oh, yes, I forgot to list the researching. All tasks that take an enormous amount of time and patience. I just want to recognize all that goes into the process for you. Then there is the posting which is what the rest of us get to enjoy froml your endeavors! Happy New Year and Good Picking in 2020!

    1. It’s indeed a lot of work. I’d say I put in about 40-60 hours a week between all the various tasks, depending on the time of years. So it’s almost like a normal job, except in the ways that it isn’t.

  3. I think what is so difficult to wrap my head around is that all this stuff had been thrown away.
    I am in awe of what you do.

  4. impressive improvements in strategy and finances Martin – Here’s to strong 2020. I think you probably did better than you realize. $1,000 in gold and silver scrap is a very low estimate, given the 18k ruby pin you got $800 for.

    1. I think you’re right, that guess was probably 3-400$ short. And it’s possible that I went the the jeweler another time in that span, in which case it’s an extremely low estimate. In 2020 I should work on my bookkeeping skills, lol.

  5. Yes, I agree with others, you certainly put in a lot of work, Martin. Your blog is very educational regarding what people are willing to pay for, and also a great overview of the whims of humans. I always look forward to your posts.

  6. I agree with all of the comments above. Who knew that empty watch/jewelry boxes could be so valuable? You figured it out, and now all of us readers know, too. It continues to be very inspiring to read about all that you do. THANK YOU for finding time to post about any/all of your activities. May you recover and sell many more fascinating and valuable objects in 2020 — as well as some mundane and unexpected and whimsical objects, too!

  7. What others have said above is so true: the work you put in is amazing. But it’s the research that really blows me away. You have an eye for beauty and value. How someone could throw away a Tiffany necklace in sterling silver is beyond me, but if anyone deserves to profit from that ignorance, it’s you. Kudos!!

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