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Thread: Cowra War mueum to auction off both War and Rail memorabilia

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    Default Cowra War mueum to auction off both War and Rail memorabilia

    I heard an announcement on the Local TV News that they are now intending to auction off the extensive War and Rail collection.
    The Museum held an auction earlier this year of other general memorabilia which at first was thought to include the Rail collection too but now the announcement clearly stated it and the War memorabilia including the room from the Japanese Prisoner of War Camp that featured in the Cowra Breakout is now to be auctioned off.

    This item I believe that if it cant stay in a suitable place at Cowra should be located at the War Museum in Canberra.
    Last edited by gordon_s1942; 30-12-16 at 07:03 AM.
    I stand unequivicably behind everything I say , I just dont ever remember saying it !!



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    From what I've been reading on different collector forums re the last auction , a lot of people were burnt from buying fakes that were sold as original , And when buyers confronted the auction house they were very abusive ,

    Also family members donated items on the condition they were to be handed back if they closed down , and not sold to make profits ,

    Buyer beware I guess .


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    Quote Originally Posted by gordon_s1942 View Post
    I believe that if it cant stay in a suitable place at Cowra it should be located at the War Museum in Canberra.
    Couldn't agree more, selling off items of such significance is just not on.
    Never be afraid to laugh at yourself, after all, you could be missing out on the joke of the century.

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    Just looking at the partial catalog shown in Humax's posting, I would strongly advise anybody planning to bid that they start saving their pennies now as some of those items should draw big bids.
    I stand unequivicably behind everything I say , I just dont ever remember saying it !!

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    I'm going to drag my sorry arse there for shits and giggles.
    There's a couple of items I would like and I'm prepared to pay some good kopecks for.
    Most I suspect will go for a price better than I'm prepared to pay, but ya never know. I might get lucky.
    Yes I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial.

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    Actually trash, our local second hand shop has a couple of war era magazines one, german with a feature on Hitler. If you are interested, I can get more details for you. I know the owner well.
    I'm out of my mind, but feel free to leave a message...

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    heheheh ..... I'm trying to work out if I am a megalomaniac. The desire is more for omnipotence than raw power.
    People who trip over themselves make me laugh more than if I do it.
    It does make me wonder though if I have a favourite world leader, either good or bad. None really jump to mind, even bad ones don't really rate as despicable enough for me.

    I'm not really interested in the military stuff. I prefer the things with wheels in this case.
    Yes I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial.

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    Things with wheels and big pipe in the middle that puffs out lots of smoke after making a big noise?
    I'm out of my mind, but feel free to leave a message...

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    yeah there are a few cannons there to pick from.
    Yes I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial.

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    Quote Originally Posted by trash View Post
    yeah there are a few cannons there to pick from.
    Ask first because depending on where you live, there may be those (POLICE) who object to you having even a cardboard replica of wheeled smoking pipe things in the front yard.................
    I stand unequivicably behind everything I say , I just dont ever remember saying it !!

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    Actually, getting a cannon permit in NSW is quite straight forward and easy.
    Yes I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial.

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    Some cool stuff. I had a look around the lots this arvo.
    Anybody else coming for a look?
    Yes I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial.

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    If this was 'Cash only Auction' I could see the need for that Truck (at least) they use in the Lotto ads being needed to carry away what they get.

    According to the local PRIME (7) News, registered 'Interests' are from the US, UK and Sweden along with a determined bidder for the Cowra P.o.W memorabilia by the Australian War Museum.
    That is one item I would class as being of National Importance and should never have been allowed to go to public auction.
    I am not saying it doesnt have to be bought but not with the risk of losing it to a private owner.
    I stand unequivicably behind everything I say , I just dont ever remember saying it !!

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    It will probably be protected by culture exports law Gordon. So even if a foreign buyer buys something, it doesn't mean it can leave the country.
    If I bought something that was of considerable importance, lets say a VC medal, the most obvious thing to do is loan or lease it for $1 per year it to the war memorial.
    That way you can still own an item and it can be enjoyed by everybody and they will take good and secure care of it.

    It's pretty clear that a lot of items are going for "retail price". Dealers are obviously feeling the pressure. Even as a retail buyer I was really pushing my own personal limits.
    But having said that there wer some times which I think went for a bargain. Some items I saw go for stupendous prices. A station chair for $2500. It looks slightly different to other chairs that went for $300 beside it. There must have been something special about it for that price that I don't know about.
    Last edited by trash; 02-04-17 at 01:54 PM.
    Yes I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial.

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    $32k for the fuli siik Torana.
    There must be a few lebs from Punchbowl regretting selling their old junkers now.
    Yes I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial.

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    One thing I found at Auctions was that if you got too engrossed in the bidding, the old adage of a 'Fool and his Money are soon Parted' is still very true.
    I stand unequivicably behind everything I say , I just dont ever remember saying it !!

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    Oh yes, that can be the case Gordon.
    I find it important to be at an auction face to face and value everything before any bidding starts.

    I'm big on game theory, so there is a lot of tactics to consider.
    The first is why we have auctions. Either to get rid of junk quickly or to get the best price for a rare item.
    It's real estate agents who either don't realise this or they or deliberately putting their fingers on the scale to fool the buyers and their sellers.

    I went on the friday afternoon and watched the auction, the auctioneers and the bidders to see what tactics were being used.
    I do have to say that these auctioneers were particularly crap. I'm not sure how they stay in business. One of them was particularly annoying with his bullshit stories and sales pitch.
    The second was their valuations and auctioning methods. OK, fair enough that an auctioneer will over value an item to start, but the time they waste between that valuation and the first bid and it's price tells you a lot about who is bidding and why.

    I found that the methods I normally used had to be modified for this auction because of the auctioneers crap style.
    Once I did that I had very good control over the bids against other buyers.

    A good auctioneer will start the first offer about 70% of it's real value. Dumb auctioneers try for 150%.
    A good auctioneer will then rapidly drop the start bid, Who'll gimme $1000? .................500, 300, and by the time he says 100, somebody should have already bid 300.
    If only one or two people put their hand up, then he needs to go up in small increments, 100, 120, 140 ... ~20%
    But if ten people throw their hands up at the 100, then you know how many dummies you have on the hook and you real them in FAST, 100, 200, 300, 400 ......
    The bids should be fast, if they're slow, then you're not doing your job properly, buyers have too much time to think and back down.
    When the bidding does slow, then the increase in bid price should drop 600, 700 ..... 800 ..... 850 ......900 ......................take a quarter? ...925, 950, 975 ..................
    close the bid and move on quickly. The more regret your bidders have, the more you'll get for the next item.
    Once the bidders you your style, more will bid and not be afraid of the auctioneer over bidding them. That's the worst, to be stung an extra $250 rather than that last $100 because of the auctioneer.
    This happened a lot at this auction and people they burned were not going to top end bid again. Knowing this, I took advantage of it.


    Once you know the auctioneers, you have to know the other bidders, so watching them, learning who they are, what they are interested in etc.
    Of course a few smart ones asked me if I was a dealer. My answer was, no, but I am not going to pay retail prices for items which are not top shelf items.
    And if I want a top shelf item then you're going to pay at least my retail valuation for it.

    So the dealers that I did rub shoulders with were careful not to tread on my toes and likewise.
    The dealers are not people you have to worry about, they're not going to pay retail for the item you want.

    Non-dealers are the people you have to compete with. I quickly watched and learned who liked the things I liked and I watched them bid (and change my tactics against them).
    If they bid on an item (that I liked but wasn't particularly after unless it was cheap) I would push their bids up to help deplete them of buying power later for items I wanted.
    I did notice that some of them took notice of me, and changed their bidding tactics to try make me buy the lesser items, which worked well for me because then items I did want I got them cheaper than I or they were prepared to pay.
    It's a game of double chicken, sometimes you have to use double reverse psychology.

    The "people" factor is something which is a lot harder to get a feel for online, and I could see online bidders were at a clear disadvantage on the first day.

    The third thing about buying at auctions is yourself and the items.
    Value the item, and work out what dealer and retail prices are on it. Set your limit and make sure you include any fees or GST, usually about 15%-20% and stick to them.
    There are two regrets .... paying too much for an item. That's actually a small cost and one you made Gordon, "A fool and his money are soon Partying". OR "Fools rush in and get the best seats!"
    If you value an item at $1000 and you overbid yourself and pay $1200, then regret the buy, your mistake cost you $200.

    BUT

    If you do the reverse, you value the item at $1000 and it sells for $1200. Did the other bidder pay too much? Will he regret his purchase OR ... did you under value the item by at least $200?
    This is a regret which costs you $1200. Well not really, you still have your money so it doesn't feel like you lost anything.
    BUT reality is, you lost $200. Because the item is worth the $1200 and you don't have it. You have $1000 cash in your hand.
    This isn't a "realised loss". You haven't lost anything at this point in time. But lets say that both you and the winning bidder undervalued the item by $3000 and you later discover the item is worth $4000.
    Now you've realised the loss. This is a bit like a naked call option. There theoretically is no limit to how much you can underestimate a value.

    It's basically a lottery. A fool and his money might be soon parted, but when the fool closes out the position, a lucky or very adventurous fool can be a very rich one.
    I find myself in this position. I was not keen to pay their full retail value for some items because that would be over stepping my finances, but had I done that, trading one kind of regret for the other, I think I would be in a slightly better position.

    But that is a positive regret not a negative one. I still have my cash, but I don't have an item which I know is difficult to find. I believe the term might be "sour grapes" for positive regret.

    At the end of the day I got what I wanted and I paid pretty much what I expected to pay for it.
    The question is, knowing it was a good deal, did I do myself a disservice by not buying two for double the price?

    Items that I did miss out on and wasn't so serious about, I am now hitting myself. I would have over extended myself giving myself less buying power for the items I did want later.
    This is a tactic that would work against me if you knew it and wanted those items. But this is not something I came to realize until after the event.
    Thinking more carefully about the items in question I would have valued them a lot more and bidded more aggressively on them. But by doing so I may also have given other bidders a lot more time to reconsider the items I did want and over value
    them based on a higher valuation of the early and lesser quality items.

    Retrospectively I would have hit them all much harder, but that is because I undervalued some items which I now have a better appreciation for.
    It's a lesson learned and at the end of the day I think I did well because I hedged my bids both ways. The items which were important to me I bought and those that were not so important got away.
    Yes I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial.

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    Good analysis, Trash. I love going to auctions for many of the reasons that you mention. Not that I am looking to relaise a profit at the end of the day, but because I might find something that will work nicely in my home. As you have observed fools and their money are soon parted. Always do your research and Never pay more than your maximum "reserve" on an item. I've seen a good auctioneer convince people to pay up to 300% over retail price on items.
    I'm out of my mind, but feel free to leave a message...

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    Because this was basically a 'Oncer' type auction you dont get to see who are the 'shills' who only bid to boost the price as you would if its a regularly held auction.
    One place had 2 'shills' who popped up to spur along the bidding until the regulars sussed them out and on more than one occasion left them with the highest bid so the items werent sold but were back there next Auction day.
    When the unsold items were noticed, there were a few 'Chinese Whispers' amongst the buyers loud enough for the Auctioneer to hear that fake bidding wasnt appreciated !!
    This was very dangerous as you may end up as the highest bidder if the 'Shill' drops out.
    There were changes made to the Rules regarding Auctions and I think one of them was to limit 'Fake' bids.

    At one of first auctions I ever attended (1960) was the ridiculous sale of a used plastic coated wire frame dish drainer that you could buy brand new in the Supermarket for $1 and the crowd got carried away and it sold for $3 !!!!
    THAT taught me a very valuable lesson to try and NOT loose control when the bidding starts to run.
    I stand unequivicably behind everything I say , I just dont ever remember saying it !!

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