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 Post subject: Is there value in the testing equipment ?
PostPosted: Apr Mon 24, 2017 5:37 am 
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Joined: Apr Thu 20, 2017 6:55 pm
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A co-worker is trying to dispose of her parent's estate. The mother passed recently in her 90's, and apparently the father had passed some time ago. They have no idea, if their father's stuff is worth trying to sell. I had acouple of young (under 30 !!) fellows, take a look at a few cabinets. I heard them mutter, "wow, a wave generator" "wow, a tube tester". "wow, this place is a time capsule" There are 3 cabinets with electronic testing equipment. I remember seeing a couple instruments called something like "TV tube analyzer".

To me, the fellow appears to have been a professional. In addition to the tube inventory, and the cupboards of instruments, there is a 4ft tall spinner, with drawers of resistors and other electrical components

Since since there is more than one of several instruments, I assume some of the equipment does not function completely/properly.

Here's my question. I realize I have not photographed a lot of detailed equipment. If we assume there are all the instruments for a complete repair shop. If the fellow was s professional, is it worth the family's time to photograph and post on eBay each of these instruments, or if they can find somebody that will take the stuff, should they give it away ?

To put it differently, say you walked into a complete repair shop, with the "usual" instraments and inventory, but you were not sure if all the instruments still worked. Should an effort be made to sell the stuff, or simply try and find a good home ?


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 Post subject: Re: Is there value in the testing equipment ?
PostPosted: Apr Mon 24, 2017 7:52 am 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
Posts: 11078
Location: North of Mpls, Minnesota
There may be some valuable test equipment or tubes in there. Get the model numbers and check the sold prices on ebay, some tube testers go for over $1000. If you have a problem identifying something post a picture of it here and we will be happy to give you an idea of the value. Try to contact a local radio club for help if you have one. Your location would be helpful. Don't sell or give anything away until you have verified the value, You will be contacted by "bottom feeders" trying to take advantage of you, so beware!

Dave


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 Post subject: Re: Is there value in the testing equipment ?
PostPosted: Apr Mon 24, 2017 3:05 pm 
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Joined: May Thu 14, 2015 4:15 pm
Posts: 576
Location: Dallas, TX
Boy Scout, where are you located?
In my area there is a professional auctioneer that regularly conducts auctions of electronics gear. He also is a member of a local vintage radio club.

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"Excellent!" I cried. "Elementary," said he. - Sherlock Holmes


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 Post subject: Re: Is there value in the testing equipment ?
PostPosted: Apr Mon 24, 2017 3:39 pm 
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I'm in Anchorage Alaska

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 Post subject: Re: Is there value in the testing equipment ?
PostPosted: Apr Mon 24, 2017 4:39 pm 
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Joined: Jan Thu 01, 1970 1:00 am
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Location: S. Dartmouth MA 02748-1225 USA
Boy Scout wrote:
I'm in Anchorage Alaska
Quoted without comment...

IMHO if your new to the radio collecting hobby and have no test equipment then this is a bonanza for you. Keep in mind the shipping costs to obtain equipment at a later date.

Wish you Luck!

Chas


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 Post subject: Re: Is there value in the testing equipment ?
PostPosted: Apr Mon 24, 2017 7:10 pm 
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Joined: Sep Thu 23, 2010 6:37 am
Posts: 9491
Location: Powell River BC Canada
If possible, pack everything in the collection, after photographing and gathering
model numbers. Also collect books, papers, and other associated records.

If the owners kept this collection for as many years, as is obvious from what
you have shown so far, it might have value offered as a complete lot.

There are ways to get it shipped South at little cost. You might link to local
Ham operators, they may know of some empty cargo space, on a return hop.

A few years ago, I picked up a like scenario lot, from a gent who didn't want
his gear scattered by vultures.

Since then many parts have been scanned, and photographed, and shown on
this, and other forums, to clarify some issue or another.

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 Post subject: Re: Is there value in the testing equipment ?
PostPosted: Apr Thu 27, 2017 9:06 am 
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It would depend upon the 30-something's sense of value. If someone has the time, photographing and packing items could be worth a few dollars. Someone who doesn't, it would not be worth it.

That said, there is always some value in vintage electronics. Generally, TV repair equipment will have less value than radio and audio repair equipment (besides those rare hard to find tubes). In audio, tubes are still highly sought after and are still relevant today for guitar amps and high fidelity. There is also the aesthetic value. I found a large tube: NL-734/5544 which is only worth about eight bucks but worth more sitting on my mantle.


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 Post subject: Re: Is there value in the testing equipment ?
PostPosted: Apr Thu 27, 2017 4:31 pm 
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Joined: May Thu 14, 2015 4:15 pm
Posts: 576
Location: Dallas, TX
Your location somewhat limits your options. How much time you or someone else spends going through all the stuff vs. how valuable is a consideration. Do you want to go through those tubes one by one and figure out each ones value? Many times ebay prices are inflated, sellers high hopes or ignorance of the real value. Ebay is used too much to appraise value, just because its handy.
There are tube brokers that buy large collection then sell them individually. I think ABC Vacuum Tubes is one. http://www.abcvacuumtubes.com/ Although it looks like those tubes are in original boxes, some of them might have been used. You might notice that many of ABC Tubes go for about $3, so on average they must have bought them for less. There are some $50 tubes on that site also. Most of the test equipment that are in your pictures are vintage, so the value isn't that great. Prices for tube testers can be higher because of the demand for Hi-Fi audio tube testing. Something like meters and oscilloscopes are rather low priced because newer ones are cheaper or higher performance.
How much time there is to find new owners is another factor, if the stuff has to be cleared out in a couple of weeks or can it stretch out a couple of years so that each items goes for the maximum price.

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"Excellent!" I cried. "Elementary," said he. - Sherlock Holmes


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 Post subject: Re: Is there value in the testing equipment ?
PostPosted: Apr Thu 27, 2017 4:41 pm 
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Joined: Jun Fri 19, 2009 6:34 pm
Posts: 7334
Location: Long Island
One thing you have to be careful with when dealing with electronic estates like this is, the fact that the tubes are in boxes does not mean they are new, or even the ones marked on the flaps. You have to check each. It was once common practice to replace tubes when they got old or slightly weak as preventative maintenance. Old tubes which still worked reasonably well would go back in the boxes and be set aside for spares. But since their condition and remaining useful life expectancies are unknown, used tubes are not worth much unless they are very rare, special, or early types of interest to collectors and hobbyists.

It appears there is a good selection of radio tubes and some TV types, including many popular and useful numbers from the 1940s and '50s. Even if they are used, many people collect that kind of equipment and they'd be of interest to somebody. They just may not pay a whole lot if the tubes are used. If they are new, prices would depend on the exact types, brands, and certain other factors. eBay is a pretty good place to see what people are asking nowadays.

As for test equipment, there does not appear to be anything that people are going to get into bidding wars over. Things like the Heathkit TV alignment generator, the in-circuit capacitor checker, and the old analog recurrent trace oscilloscopes do not have much application today. Some of those items may not be worth the cost of shipping and you'd be better off gifting them or selling them locally on Craigslist.

There may be some other equipment not pictured in there which is more desirable. The fact that he had multiple versions of each instrument does not mean that some of them were defective; serious technicians and repair shops often set up multiple benches, each with its own set of equipment, so more than one activity can go on at the same time. Also, like the tubes, sometimes old test equipment would be retained for backup duty if it was still usable. However, unless it was in service recently, any test equipment more than 30-40 years old likely needs to be checked over and repaired or recalibrated before it can be used again.

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 Post subject: Re: Is there value in the testing equipment ?
PostPosted: Apr Fri 28, 2017 12:52 am 
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Joined: Nov Wed 30, 2016 7:35 pm
Posts: 469
Location: ohio
Value means different things to different people. A lot of that equipment probably has little use in today's world, but may be quite desirable to collectors or those who want to use OLD equipment for today's tasks. Being a restorer and collector of, particularly, old TV test and alignment equipment, I sometimes pay way more than I should for something I really want to collect. But I harbor no illusions that I'll be able to re-sell it later and cover my costs... more a labor of love.

I was in TV repair for many years in the late 60s and into the early 80s, and I am now both trying to recreate my former shop (lost in a fire), and also collect really OLD hickok test gear. That includes a few tube testers. Some of them have real value today, some do not. Some don't but command high prices to collectors or Ebay flippers. You never really know.

Best bet is to catalog each item, look them up on Ebay (check SOLD prices, not asking) and then decide what to do, or find a collector that might want to buy the entire lot (such as myself).

While there may be a valuable tube or three hiding in those boxes, chances are that there are not. It would take quite a bit of research for the novice to determine this, which is why so many lots sell as "wholesale" and "let someone else figure it out". I started down that path, and quickly decided that I was way ahead just purchasing, on Ebay, the few I needed at the moment, rather than buying hundreds for the one or two I might need and then have to dispose of the rest.

Hope that helps .. good luck
Barry

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 Post subject: Re: Is there value in the testing equipment ?
PostPosted: Apr Fri 28, 2017 3:05 am 
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Joined: May Thu 14, 2015 4:15 pm
Posts: 576
Location: Dallas, TX
I believe the way a tube broker works is that you send them a list of the tubes you've got,as been said the actual tube type number not necessarily what the box says. It will take you some time just to sort and count the tubes. They buy used tubes as well as unused. The broker will tell you what he will give you for them, its his business to know what they are worth. Of course he has to make a profit. What you may lack in quality you can make up for in quantity. Tube are light so they don't cost much to ship. I think he either tests the tubes as they come in or as he sells them. I've bought tubes from ABC and some of them are obviously used. Every once in a while one is bad however. Antique Electronic Supply does the same I think.

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"Excellent!" I cried. "Elementary," said he. - Sherlock Holmes


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