The show must go on pt.1

I happened upon this trash pile while out for a jog in the fall. I ended up walking home with a big box of junk, and stashed another bag to pick up later.

I had one other good haul here a few weeks later. After that the supply dried up, and I soon learned that there would be an estate sale held at the house. I was a bit disappointed to hear that, because I rarely find any exciting trash once the professionals get in there.

I found a whole bunch of pens that day. I ended up going to the estate sale, and I think I can say with confidence that this person never once refused (or discarded) a free pen. So, most of these were junk, but I did pick out a few nice ones.

The middle pens are the fanciest ones here. Both were made by S.T. Dupont and have 18k gold nibs. The brownish one (I’m not sure what the material is) also features gold-plated silver accents. Both of those should be good for 50-100$, maybe more. Otherwise, I saved ballpoints made by Waterman, Reform, and Waterford.

Many albums full of photos were tossed out on the curb, but I only took a handful of the oldest ones. Here’s a selection of what I found, including some paper ephemera. There were some neat letters from the 1910s written on House of Commons letterhead – it seems that a relative of this person was an MP at some point. If anyone’s interested in those I brought them to the auction house, and they’ll be sold by Thursday at around 8pm.

Many of the photos I saved dated to the late 1800s and early 1900s. That one of the girl on the toy horse is pretty cute, here’s a better look.

That photo of the building collapse is intriguing. Anyone know where that might have been? At the top right is a small silver Birks picture frame.

Speaking of silver frames, I also saved this fine example. It was made in Chester, England in 1903 by James Deakin & Sons. I recently sold it on eBay as part of a silver frame lot, which ended up going for 51$.

I also saved a nice old Quebec history book and a Radio Canada record from 1956. The latter looks to contain a news reel about some political goings-on in Cambodia. I wonder how many copies of that recording are still out there… Perhaps it’d be an interesting thing to digitize.

I haven’t had a lot of luck finding trash in the new year (so far), but I still have lots of great finds from 2019 to sort through and share. I’ll share the second batch of finds from this house soon, and then get to talking about a couple other productive spots.

Links

1. Facebook page
2. My eBay listings, Sign up for eBay, Search for something you want / research something you have (I’m a member of the eBay Partner Network so I make a bit of money if you buy things [even if they’re not mine] or sign up for an account via these links)
3. Help me pay off student loan debt / Contribute to the blog
4. Follow me on Instagram
5. Email: thingsifindinthegarbage@gmail.com – note that it might take me some time to reply, and that I am unlikely to be able to fulfill requests for items

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.

eBay

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!)

Links

1. Facebook page
2. My eBay listings, Sign up for eBay, Search for something you want / research something you have (I’m a member of the eBay Partner Network so I make a bit of money if you buy things [even if they’re not mine] or sign up for an account via these links)
3. Help me pay off student loan debt / Contribute to the blog
4. Follow me on Instagram
5. Email: thingsifindinthegarbage@gmail.com – note that it might take me some time to reply, and that I am unlikely to be able to fulfill requests for items

The curmudgeon

Let’s go back to the early summer, when it seemed like there was a new crank or curmudgeon around every corner. This particular model sounded British, wore a bathrobe, and asked rhetorically if he had to call the police. If I remember right I used some of these nice rocks to try to persuade him to let me do my thing. To clarify, it was more along the lines of telling him “I just want nice things, for example these rocks” and not “I will hit you with these rocks if you don’t let me pick your trash.” Regardless, he was not convinced. The rocks ended up making a decent auction lot, selling for somewhere in the 20-30$ range.

I found some decent stuff here in the weeks prior, and a week or two after our meeting, but this spot didn’t produce for long. That little dish in the middle is sterling and those viking ship salt cellars are pewter. The little coasters on the bottom were silver-plated brass – the engravings made them less marketable so I decided they were best sold as scrap brass.

This doohickey is pretty cool. It’s a KLM (Dutch airlines) bottle stopper that dates to sometime before 1961. It’s silver plated and should sell for around 50$.

One day I saved a whole bunch of tools, including a nice set of mostly vintage “Union Twist” drill bits that should fetch a bit of cash online.

My most valuable find ended up being old software, particularly this set of mid-1980s Ultima games on 5.25″ floppies. The disks came in big boxes with cool cloth maps and lots of game-related books. This all sat on a shelf in my garage for many months before I finally brought it home yesterday to list. Upon doing that, the lot sold for 180$ within about 10 minutes. I probably could have made a little more money here, but I can’t complain. I wonder if I missed out on more titles in the weeks before I first arrived.

I also found a load of old Apple programming books here. They weren’t worth too much individually but probably would have done well enough as a lot on eBay. I never got around to it though, and they ended up in one of my yard sale free boxes. There’s so much stuff that I could theoretically list online that I have to be a bit choosy sometimes, lest I become overwhelmed with junk.

Let’s finish with these old Mac Mags, which are from the mid-80s and are probably pretty uncommon at this point. I doubt they’re worth much, but they might be interesting to a local collector. I’m starting a collection of things that I think would be best sold at flea markets or vintage sales, and I think these mags will go in with that lot.

Speaking of that, it’s in my plans to try selling at some kind of vintage market this winter. I haven’t gotten around to actually taking steps to make that happen, but it’s a good idea in theory.

2019 is nearing an end. Despite the numerous grumps it was a great year financially and I found a lot of interesting trash. I’ll try to get a “best of” post up soon, ideally before the new year but we’ll see how it goes.

Links

1. Facebook page
2. My eBay listings, Sign up for eBay, Search for something you want / research something you have (I’m a member of the eBay Partner Network so I make a bit of money if you buy things [even if they’re not mine] or sign up for an account via these links)
3. Help me pay off student loan debt / Contribute to the blog
4. Follow me on Instagram
5. Email: thingsifindinthegarbage@gmail.com – note that it might take me some time to reply, and that I am unlikely to be able to fulfill requests for items