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So, How Much Money Did You Make Selling Your Fountain Pen?

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#1 TomJKT

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 18:27

Selling used pens from one's collection - is it profitable or loss making?

 

Many people here own quite a few FPs. That's why FPN is called a nuthouse, right? Quite a few will sell some of their pens off to acquire their grail pen or for other reasons. What I'm curious about is, whether they lose money doing so or whether collecting pens, hold on to them for a time, and then selling them is actually making some profit. What kind of experiences regarding this can you share?

For a starter, I bought some pens with a good reputation, just to see me selling them shortly after, because I made a wrong decision. The pen was too short/thin for my hand, the NIB not so comfortable for my writing style as expected, too heavy to hold for a long time and so forth. In quite all the cases I sold the pens, I lost some money, the best case being I would come away plus/minus zero.

Am I the only one 'wasting' money for his pen addiction or are there serious collectors out there who know what they do and sell when the prices went up for some (rare) pens and such they make $$$?

Your thoughts?


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#2 jar

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 18:52

If you buy and hold the pens for a couple decades they may actually go up in value.


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#3 Joker4Eva

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 19:27

Short answer: Not much.

Long answer: Many factors come into play, most importantly timing. Sell a pen when there're many buyers out there, and you'll get a handsome return, sell it when no one wants it, and you might earn less than what you've spent for that pen.



#4 ShallowJam

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 20:18

If its a modern pen that you are buying new, you will lose money every time.

 

If its a vintage you're buying, and either finding it at a good price or restoring it, you can make money. I've been into fountain pens for about 10 months now and own a small collection fo about $400 worth of pens. I have profited enough from pen buying/restoring/selling that I am not out of pocket at all.


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#5 Pterodactylus

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 20:27

None!

 

In general I´m like a black hole, whatever I get, I normally don´t sell it again even I do not like it much.

In fact I never sold one of my pens, despite there are some I do not like very much.

I gave some as gift away but never sold one.

 

I do not care about the monetary value of the pens I own.

I have expensive pens I do not like much and cheaper ones which I like more.

 

 

If i would ever sell some of them I would only try to cover my costs.

Mean try to sell them about the price I got it.

 

But as ShallowJam said, with a modern pen you will always loose money trading them.

It´s like with a new car, the first day you own it you will loose 30% of your investment.


Edited by Pterodactylus, 06 May 2013 - 20:29.

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#6 BrandonA

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 21:19

 

Selling used pens from one's collection - is it profitable or loss making?

 

Many people here own quite a few FPs. That's why FPN is called a nuthouse, right? Quite a few will sell some of their pens off to acquire their grail pen or for other reasons. What I'm curious about is, whether they lose money doing so or whether collecting pens, hold on to them for a time, and then selling them is actually making some profit. What kind of experiences regarding this can you share?

Am I the only one 'wasting' money for his pen addiction or are there serious collectors out there who know what they do and sell when the prices went up for some (rare) pens and such they make $$$?

Your thoughts?

 

 

I don't think many people on this forum are wasting money. Most people buy the pens they love. Very few buy to make a profit. If you are buying to make a profit then you need to buy carefully as not many people make a profit on pens.

 

I like to think that I have some will power, I was brought up to save for the items I buy and I would therefore never sell one item to buy another.  This is a mugs game are ultimately leaves you owning less things in the long run as you are unlikely to make a profit on all items you sell.


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#7 sargetalon

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 21:34

I generally keep everything that I purchase but I have had occasion to sell a few pens when I've over purchased.  Every time I have just broken even or taken a slight loss (mostly vintage pens).  I don't mind because I am not in it for profit.  Just a matter of finding the right buyer at the right time which can be difficult to do.


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#8 alexander_k

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Posted 06 May 2013 - 21:39

On average you cannot expect to make much money from incidental purchases (unless you are very lucky) but you don't lose money either and you gain the experience of a few pens. When I sell the ones don't want or need any more, my reasoning has more to do with recycling than with profit: there is always someone out there for those pens.



#9 xwingrox

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 00:27

Oh you are definitely not the only one who is losing money selling pens. I have only made a marginal (<$20) profit when I get lucky on ebay (such as Pilot Heritage pens from engeika). Most times, I end up barely breaking even. I consider the marginal difference between buying price and selling price a "trial fee" of sorts. That said, I am personally trying to only buy pens that I think I really will keep! 



#10 StarFireLiz

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 01:49

I've only bought two pens.  One for myself and one for my brother for graduation.  I actually have some money for when I'm ready to make the jump on another one.

 

I'm actually using my other addiction *video games* to pay for this new found one *fountain pens*


Edited by StarFireLiz, 07 May 2013 - 01:49.


#11 kkshadow

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 04:20

I've made some money selling some pens I got at a real bargain and restored then eventually sold.  But usually, as mentioned, pens I bought new in the past few years I have sold for a bit less.  I don't mind, nor do I consider it wasted money.  Each pen was a learning experience, and since there was never a goal to make money, there is no harm done.  My hobby is budgeted in Quicken as entertainment.


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#12 TomJKT

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 07:12

Thanks for all your comments!

At least I can see that I'm not the only one to lose money when selling pens. Maybe especially when buying and selling new ones. Indeed it's very similar as with new cars depreciation. But it's much easier to decide on the right car than finding the right pen :(

Yes, I don't like to sell the pens I own either, but if I do not use them? Better to get rid of them and consider the difference between the purchase price and the sales price as a 'trial fee' or money paid for some learning experience as you point out.

I guess I will probably pay some more "try and learn" money, since I only can buy my pens through the Internet. 

I will open a Quicken entertainment category for pens, that's a good idea. It's really not a matter of making profits but rather of enjoying to write with FPs. Maybe I will name it depreciation though, because I'm married ;)

@jar  Nuh, I haven't left decades to wait. And I want to write with my pens myself, my kids will communicate then via telepathy anyway (Nintendo or Apple will come up with that shortly).


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#13 MyPenNeedsInk

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 11:21

When I buy a pen that I read great reviews about and learn it's not for me it's usually after one ink fill and I sell it as such. Personally I don't want to send it back to the seller when there is nothing wrong with the pen and it was exactly what I ordered. I usually sell it on FPN for slightly less than I paid for it. The buyer gets a near mint example for less $ than new. The money I lose I chalk up to experience and find some joy that someone got a good deal on a nice pen.

 

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#14 georges zaslavsky

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 20:55

I don't plan to sell any pen I have, they stay with me till my death.


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#15 Joe in Seattle

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 21:07

Sell? One of my children? Surely, you jest!
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#16 harrietthespy

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Posted 07 May 2013 - 21:44

I tend to give away the pens I don't like...it converts others to our madness and makes a great spontaneous gift that makes my friends and family happy!

#17 stevekolt

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 00:14

I tend to give away the pens I don't like...it converts others to our madness and makes a great spontaneous gift that makes my friends and family happy!

What a GREAT idea! i may have to start considering this scenario...



#18 ISW_Kaputnik

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 00:47

I've been considering selling some of my extra modern pens.  Of course I would expect to get much less than I paid for them, but I've had the use of them for a while, and getting some money back is better than leaving them sitting around unused.

 

It's possible that I might turn a profit selling some vintage pens where I did minor restoration work, replacing sacs and j-bars, but we're not talking a lot of money, and I really prefer to keep all the vintage pens that I have now.

 

I have given away a couple of cheap fountain pens that I thought were good starters, but most of my friends and family aren't interested.  I've done Internet PIFs on other things in the past, but have decided not to do it any more.


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#19 Sasha Royale

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 13:36

FP's are pleasure.  I collect, use, trade, give, and tinker.  Mine is a relatively inexpensive pastime.

I have sold only one fountain pen.  It became too valuable to keep.  From time to time, I give away

some of the redundancies.  (It hurts a little.) 

 

I plan to play with the rest of my pens until I die.  Then, it is someone else's problem. 


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#20 torstar

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 14:23

Gave away 3 recently, sold a few and took a bath on them.







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