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: E-Bay Buyers  ( 1992 )
Mojo
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« : July 03, 2010, 10:29:43 AM »

I was just wondering, after a discussion on another thread, do any of you ever buy upholstery items on E-Bay ?

I think most of you know about my disaster when I bought a Tuffsew machine on E-Bay. That was my biggest mistake of the decade. I learned my lesson on that one so when I went to buy a new machine this year I bought it from one of our vendors here on this forum ( Bob at Toledo Machine ).

But I have and still will buy simple things off e-bay such as needles, bobbins, folders, binders, zipper feet, welt feet, etc. For the most part I have had good luck and have gotten some incredible deals on some very high quality parts. But I have also gotten a few parts that were extremely cheap and were useless.

I bought 10 yards of vinyl off E-Bay a couple years ago and was surprised to learn it was Miami Corp that sold it to me. :) For the most part I never buy fabric on E-Bay but have bought foam and leather. The one thing I really like about using E-Bay is being able to use Paypal.

I was just wondering if anyone else has used E-Bay to buy upholstery items.

Chris
sofadoc
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All types of upholstery.....except cars and boats.


« #1 : July 03, 2010, 11:35:11 AM »

I've bought a few welt feet off E-Bay (before I discovered this forum). They usually range in price from $12-$20 including shipping. Pretty good deal, except that I've had to grind every one of them in order to fit them onto my machine. I did get a great deal on size "M" metal bobbins ($32 including shipping for 100). But as for welt feet, Gregg has them in the $30 price range, which is plenty cheap enough for me, especially since they fit without me making the sparks fly.
I've never tried to buy foam, or other supplies from E-Bay stores. There's just that "fear of the unknown" keeping me away.

"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban
bobbin
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« #2 : July 03, 2010, 11:51:17 AM »

I regularly peruse E-Bay and Craigslist for sewing related offerings.  But I've never actually purchased anything from either. 

I call my ace sewing machine mechanic for my attachment needs.  I'm cool with the extra $; he's a local businessman who faces the same constraints and overhead we all do.  I know that when I buy from him he'll stand behind whatever he sells me.  He's candidly told me that he can't beat a price and that I should buy from whomever. 

Kind of makes you wonder when vendors "to the trade" start showing up on E-Bay... what exactly are they selling there... seconds, close-outs? are they making the same deals to their "to the trade" customers? by prior notice, with any exclusivity? 
Mojo
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« #3 : July 03, 2010, 12:18:54 PM »

I think, and I am not sure maybe Greg can add to this, but I believe that alot of these vendors on E-Bay can offer deep discounts because:

1.) They have no employees

2.) They have no storefront, thus, no overhead

3.) They buy in bulk and are able to pass volume pricing down to their customers.

I am sure Bob and Greg are paying much more for these parts / attachments then some of these e-bay vendors because they buy in small quantities.Some of these vendors have thousands of transactions so when your selling 1,000 folders versus 50, your price is going to be low.

I bought a binder from one of my e-bay suppliers for a 1/4 what I would have paid through Sailrite or another machine dealer with a storefront. It was the same exact model as what other dealers sell.
Bob said the e-bay price on some of that stuff is below his cost. ( I teased him and told him to start buying on E-Bay. :)

I also got some amazing prices on M bobbins. :)

But there are some things I am leery about buying. In regards to machines, there is a huge difference between buying on E-Bay and buying through Bob or Greg. The E-bay dealers simply drop ship your machine. Bob and Greg actually have possession of it, take it out, set it up, run it and adjust it before you get it. And the kicker is Bob's prices ( as well as Gregs ) are nearly identical to those selling new machines on E-Bay.

I think E-Bay offers some good deals on some items but your still better off buying direct from machine dealers on other items.

Chris
Jim101
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« #4 : July 03, 2010, 12:37:06 PM »

I check E-bay occasionally for deals I might not find at my regular suppliers.

I picked up a Pres-N-Snap tool for $49.- with two of the dies.

It pays to ask the seller questions and find out what they know about the product they're selling.

I bought a right angle binder for our Pfaff 1245 and try as I might it wouldn't work, but I tried it our Pfaff 545 and it works great!  Something to do with the placement of the adjustable feed dog.

Anyway, if you take your time and ask the right questions you might just find a good deal.

I don't think I would want to buy a sewing machine from E-bay unless I could go test drive it first.  The shipping charges for a decent medium to heavy weight machine would be too much!

Jim
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