Recent sales: July

July saw me bring a tonne of stuff to auction as I emptied my various storage areas. The purge made for a long sales list, which (in addition to recent comments) led me to reconsider the way I share my sales. I think in future posts I’ll do a general overview of the numbers, and highlight only the most exciting sales – something in line with what they do at Scavenger Life, but with a few more featured items. The detailed summary made more sense when I sold less items, but now they’re getting to be a lot more work, the tedious kind at that. Better to save that energy for other posts, or more picking!

If you want to keep track of my eBay sales on your own, visit my eBay listings page and sort by “sold” (or just bookmark that link for future reference).

eBay sales

  • Carl Poul Petersen sterling silver cigar humidor: 1000$. This is currently the most valuable single item I’ve ever sold! I hope to break the record later this year, however…
  • Faber Castell Minfix pencil sharpener: 27$.

  • Enicar Ultrasonic Supertest watch: 72$.
  • Leru expandable bracelet: 13.50$.
  • Phonak MyPilot hearing aid remote: 31.50$. All items that sold with cents (and most with prices not ending in a 0 or 5) were part of a sale I did to clear out some older items. It worked pretty well!

  • Egermann bohemian glass vase: 31.50$. This took a while to sell. Perhaps I overestimate its value. Found in Montreal West.

  • Benito Mussolini postcard: 18$. Part of that huge postcard haul I found last year.
  • Royal Navy shoulder boards: 9$.
  • Detonator II programmer box: 18$.
  • Beswick cat figurines: 36$.
  • Burberry eyeglasses: 36$.

  • Rolex passport / documents holder: 54$.
  • Coach eyeglasses: 22.50$.
  • Armani sunglasses: 27$.

  • 1TB external drive: 54$.
  • Habanita by Molinard, 100ml: 58.50$.
  • Miniature bottle of Diorissimo: 22$.

eBay total:  1499$.

Auction results

Unfortunately there’s no good way to link you to my auction listings, either past or present, so a lot of this info will be inaccessible when I pare down these posts. However, I’ll still share my favourite or more notable sales.

Unfortunately I was too busy to take pictures of most of these things before bringing them in. You’ll have to use your imagination!

  • Lot of vintage paper bags (mostly from Steinberg’s): 14$.

  • Lot of slides (mostly of flora & fauna): 20$. A big part of the huge photo haul I found last year in St Michel. The most valuable were the Expo 67 slides, which went for about 250$. Otherwise, some African missionary slides ended up selling for around 50$. These weren’t as collectible, but I’m sure someone will appreciate them (or turn them into a cool lampshade).
  • Old fishing rod: 6$.
  • Vintage metal & glass lampshade: 14$.
  • Vintage 8lb anchor: 10$.
  • Sears 26122 guitar pre-amp: 24$.
  • Wood lathe: 30$
  • Framed metal fisherman: 9$.
  • Picture frame with chain-like motif: 6$.
  • Pressback chair with missing leather seat: 16$.
  • Vintage industrial towel holders: 14$.
  • Train set parts: 22$.
  • Lot of three portable radios with cassette players: 7$.

  • Bucket of pennies: 70$. Given to me by a nice guy in Cartierville. I’d guess there was 35-40$ in actual coins, but pennies sell for around 2c each at auction these days.
  • Vintage Panasonic radio: 8$.

  • Electric soldering machine: 26$. It looks pretty grimy here but it actually cleaned up fairly well.

  • Dromedary sculpture: 16$.

  • Raymond sewing machine table, in pieces: 30$.
  • Wine decanter thing: 26$.
  • Kodak Etkasound projector, untested: 8$.
  • Sharp projector, working but old: 26$.
  • Standing birdcage, missing bottom piece: 12$.

  • Rivet machine: 20$.
  • Aiwa stereo setup, untested: 8$.
  • Entry carpet: 26$.
  • Fireplace log rack: 12$.
  • 17 old Alka Seltzer jars with hardware bric-a-brac inside: 10$.
  • Glass candleholder: 5$.
  • Lot of lamp pieces: 9$.
  • Two balloon inflators, working: 7$.
  • Vintage andirons: 6$.
  • 4×4 jack: 44$.

  • Huge Betamax player, untested: 10$. I realized that I was probably never going to get around to testing this thing, and since it weighed like 50 pounds it would have been a hassle to ship. I’m happy to get it out of my basement.

  • Vintage UFO Pendant lamp: 75$. I’m happy with this sale. The lamp was great but needed some TLC. It would have been difficult to ship and annoying to sell on Kijiji. Found in Ville St Laurent.
  • Chair base with wheels: 18$.
  • Vintage Coleman cooler: 26$. I discovered that vintage coolers are a pretty easy sell.
  • Victoriaville goalie stick: 6$. I should have held onto this until hockey season.
  • Five stainless steel restaurant trays: 50$. A surprising result. I guess these things cost a fair bit new.
  • Untested turntable: 7$.
  • Vintage trophy lot: 5$.
  • Cup & stein lot: 18$.
  • Brass umbrella stand: 44$. I didn’t expect it to sell for nearly this much – I think I had it priced at 10$ at one of my yard sales.
  • Box of Le Jour magazines: 6$.
  • Lot of glass & metal lamp pieces: 16$.
  • Lot of chair wheels & legs: 12$
  • Alain Choquette (Quebec magician) signed photo: 5$.
  • Jean-Pierre Girerd lithograph (cartoon of Rene Levesque): 24$.
  • College de Montreal group photo (“trombinoscope”) with Gratien Gelinas: 34$.

Total: 917 – 229.25 (25%) – 48 = 639.75$.

Yard sales: 300$ (one small sale, one mediocre turnout).

Total: 2438.75$, 14505.25$ so far in 2018. So far I’m on pace to make about as much as I did last year. However, I expect that my profits through the last quarter will propel me to new heights of (relative) wealth!

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8203 Tanika

Today I’m sharing finds from two different houses on my Monday evening run. Neither of these spots developed as I hoped they would, but I found some cool blog-worthy stuff regardless.

This house (which also gave me the turtle magnifier and kitchen stuff from this post) produced great stuff for around a month before the source dried up, leading me to wonder if I was a little late for the party. Unfortunately, despite my best efforts I’m still bound to miss out on most of the great trash that gets tossed in this city! The cool vintage kitchenwares I found here should do well at future yard sales, assuming of course that nice weather ever actually arrives. The picture above also features a collection of skeleton keys and a single Birks sterling silver napkin holder, which I think was good for about 15$ in scrap.

There was a bit of nice pottery here. They’re signed on the bottom, and I should probably do some research before selling them.

I haven’t found any particularly noteworthy teacups since that huge collection I saved years ago. However, this Royal Stafford cup & saucer is pretty cute, and in good condition outside of some fading to the green on the near the middle of the saucer. I found more nice saucers but no cups… I wonder if those went out on previous trash days.

I also found some cool paper ephemera here, including this Sears catalogue from 1966. I’ll likely add it to my small catalogue collection that includes a 1983 Sears catalogue I found back in the fall.

I just did a bit of research and found that the vintage Christmas / “wish book” catalogues sell really well on eBay. I hope I find some soon! This particular catalogue seems to sell for around 35$ plus shipping.

I love vintage road maps, and this spot provided a whole bunch of them. Most were from the 60s and 70s, and should be easy to sell at a yard sale.

I’m not sure why the map of Warsaw has a topless lady on the cover, but there you go.

These map were stored in that little Texaco plastic folder. These folks did a lot of travelling!

I think these pressed flowers were stored with the maps, and were likely picked during one of their many roads trips.

I also saved a neat old newspaper from the time of the Warren Report. It’s not worth a lot, but it’s still pretty cool.

Finally, I picked these old leather “Gorilla shoes”. I doubt they’re worth much, but they’re in good condition I’m sure someone will appreciate their slightly distressed look.

Unfortunately that’s about all I got. I wonder what I missed out on?

Elsewhere, the house where I found that Robert Larin collar necklace was reasonably productive afterwards. “Reasonable” though isn’t what I was hoping for – I was dreaming of an MVP-like performance à la the generous (or perhaps the opposite of that) folks of the Very Rich People series. Alas, true GOAT contenders don’t come around very often.

If I were to guess I’d say that this trash was the result of an older person downsizing before a move to a smaller home. One day I opened the recycling bin and found a small collection of great ephemera. This is the cream of that crop – zoom in for a closer look! I really like the leather bankbook holder at the top of the screen. The bankbook contains entries from the 1910s, so I’d assume the holder dates from around that time as well. There’s also a McGill student card from 1949, a YMHA and YMHA library card from the mid-40s, two old photos of a guy working shoe repair in front of a hospital, and some other stuff.

This little pineapple looking thing was a fun find. It’s made of bakelite and measures about an inch tall. I’d guess that it’s a pendant, but there’s only one hole drilled into it so I’m not sure how you’d hook it onto a necklace. Regardless, due to its unique shape it should have some value on eBay.

That stockinette doll in the middle is kind of interesting. It was made in the Soviet Union, and most eBay sellers seem to think it dates back to the 1930s. I have no idea if that’s true, but it does look pretty old. I think that well worn bouquet of flower on the right goes with it. The pendant with the four red spots was made by de Passille-Sylvestre, a Quebec couple who did quality enamelwork in the 60s and 70s.

Lastly, I found that nice purse thing on the left. Inside was a pair of lacy black gloves and a very pretty scarf. The latter looks barely used and has a tag saying “handblocked print – 100% pure wool – Made in Switzerland.” I don’t know if it’s worth a lot, but it’s definitely a good find.

Barring an unexpected revival that’s all she wrote from these places. Fortunately, lots of other great spots have emerged to take their place.

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Email: thingsifindinthegarbage@gmail.com. Staying on top of emails is not my best quality, so please be patient (but feel free to nag).

Recent sales: November

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After around 15cm of snow yesterday I’d say that winter is officially here. I plan on taking more time off from trash picking as a result, particularly when the roads are bad and the snow makes it hard to stop anywhere. In previous years I might have powered through regardless, but I no longer think that picking in those conditions is a good use of my time and energy.

My instincts tell me that the two weeks before Christmas are some of the slowest for trash, and looking back on my old blog posts confirms that (though the sample size is still fairly small). I’m going to keep an eye on my favourite spots, but I think I’ll take it easy otherwise. People often have better things to do this time of year than sort through old junk.

One notable exception might be local university students, some of whom are finishing their degree right about now. I’m sure a good number will move either after exams (which began last week, and end around the 20th) or before January 1st, leaving many of their old things behind. I’ll keep an eye on the situation. I did some biking around the student areas last December with limited success, but I think it’s worth trying again this year.

Either way, the trash should pick up again after Christmas. I’ve never had luck finding the mythical rich people, post-Christmas throwaways (ie: they get an iPhone X and toss the 7). I’m now convinced that the ultra rich just put the “old” stuff in their massive basements or closets. But there’s still people, like the students I just mentioned who move for January 1st and have to downsize before then. I don’t think the quality or quantity of garbage truly returns to normal until the second week of January, however.

Less picking means more time for other things, like listing on eBay. Over the summer I list less often and dedicate more time to yard sales, with the idea that I’ll get more listing done in the winter when eBay sales are stronger. It seems to me a logical strategy.

I’ve been sorting through my drawers and boxes full of potential eBay items. Some of those items end up in the yard sale box but most eventually make it online. I try to focus on the most valuable, or largest items first. I listed two big things earlier this week that sold within a day, so I’m happy about that!

Anyways, below are my November sales. It was a slow month overall, but I did get rid of a lot of clutter, and two recent finds helped to bump my earnings to an acceptable level.

1. Vintage Silva compass manual: On eBay for 10$. I don’t usually bother listing items on eBay for under 20$, but this was something I could easily ship out in a regular envelope. It didn’t take particularly long to sell either.

2. Electrolier gooseneck desk lamp: On eBay for 60$. It’s always nice to sell the bigger stuff!

3. Carnation milk punchers: On eBay for 20$. These would have been worth more, but for whatever reason one spike on each had been removed. Found in Villeray.

4. Secret Dakini Oracle tarot deck: On eBay for 50$. They’d have been worth more, but one card was missing. Oh well, they still fetched a decent price! Found in the Mile End.

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5. Silver keychain fob: On eBay for 15$. This (on the left) was another one of my prehistoric eBay listings, and I’m glad to not have to look at it anymore. I found it way back in February 2014.

6. Gillette razor blade holder & blades: On eBay for 20$. These also sat around for far too long. Found in Outremont.

7. Vintage 70s Liberal party campaign ads: On eBay for 25$. Found in Villeray.

8. Framed Parc Lafontaine dogsledding photo: On eBay for 60$. This was probably taken in the 20s or 30s. Found near Decarie boulevard.

9. Vintage Pencil lot: On eBay for 35$. I ended up going with a fixed price on these, and they sold rather quickly. Found in NDG.

10. B&L wire rim glasses: On eBay for 30$.

11. Aiwa boombox: On eBay for 150$. This didn’t take long to sell! It cleaned up fairly nicely as well. Found in NDG.

12. Elgato EyeTV 250: On eBay for 75$. I forget what this thing is supposed to do, but it sold for a nice price. Found on rue Jeanne Mance in the Mile End.

13. Lot of small metal things: On eBay for 15$. Part of the junk saved from “The Muck” in Ahuntsic.

14. Vintage pencil leads: On eBay for 25$. I’m also glad that these, and the pen box below are no longer with me.

15. Peter Pan deluxe fountain pen box: On eBay for 15$.

16. Givenchy Gentleman aftershave: On eBay for 50$. This is a vintage scent that’s fairly sought after. I found five bottles of roughly the same type a couple years back – I think only one remains. I listed them one at a time to increase the illusion of scarcity.

17. Barbie lot: On eBay for 20$. These came with some extra clothes (not pictured). I’m wondering if it might just be easier to sell similar dolls at garage sales in the future.

18. Technics by Panasonic catalogue: On eBay for 20$. Another little booklet that was easily shipped via regular envelope. I’m sure it sold to an audiophile.

19. Two vintage necklaces: On Etsy for 35$.

20. Bell & Howell filmosound projector and amplifier: On Kijiji for 80$. I wish I had a better pic, but the ones I put on Kijiji were more functional than beautiful. Instead, here’s how I found them sitting by the curb. The projector must have weighed around 50 pounds, and the speaker another 20. They looked to have been made in the 30s or 40s. I might have gotten more on eBay, but shipping these things out would have been a total pain. Found in Rosemont, somewhere around 17th av.

21. Vintage Universal Genève watch boxes: On eBay for 450$. These ended up going to the same buyer in Italy, so I gave him a bit of a discount. Either way, I made about 225$ per box which is pretty awesome! These were in excellent condition, but who’d have thought that two empty boxes would go for so much? Here’s hoping I find more soon!

Total: 1260$, 25136.50$ so far in 2017. Not great, but thankfully December is going a little better!