The joy of Ebay

Posted: May 28, 2012 in Uncategorized

As the sun’s shining and I’ve been spending my free time doing my most hated chore (gardening) I thought I’d post a warning about an ebay seller I recently experienced. This isn’t sour grapes on my part, I’m a very easy going ebayer, but a warning to fellow Epic fans who might not want to get conned.

Like most wargamers I buy a lot of my models from ebay, partly to save a bit of cash but mainly because the models I’m after are long out of production (OOP). Buying second hand always comes with an element of risk and in the eight years of being on ebay, and over 1000 wins, I’ve been unlucky enough to accidentally buy a small handfull of dreadful quality recasts, dealt with a small number of sellers who have refused to post me my wins when I’ve won an auction for a pittance and I’ve very occasionally been on the receiving end of shill bidders. The flipside being that I’ve won some fantastic auctions and I’ve generally had a very positive experience with ebay.

However, recently I fell foul of a shill bidder who is selling recasts and I feel the need to share because ebay were disinterested and people need to know that they’re being shafted..

Up until very recently I’ve only experienced obvious shill bidding twice in eight years. For the uninitiated shill bidding is when you bid on an auction and the person holding the auction has a friend, or themselves using another account, bidding against you to up the final auction price. A few weeks ago I was bidding on, amongst other things, some OOP Forgeworld resin bunkers from the seller “bessthebest”. I failed to win all three auctions but a couple of hours later I was offered a second chance offer for all three items. I was immediately suspicious because this has never happened before and the odds of that happening seemed slim but the price for the items was what I’d call “not bad” so I bought the items. The items arrived and the resin looked ok to my eye compared to resin models I’ve bought from Forgeworld over the years. One of the bunkers was slightly miscast from what looked like an air bubble within the model but it wasn’t anything too obvious. None of this suggested that any of the models were recasts.

The following week this seller, “bessthebest”, was selling the exact same items, again in resin. So, to test the water I bid on a number of items, I did actually want another bunker but I was very confident that they were shill bidding so I would lose all of the auctions again and I would make sure that one bid was extremely low. Surprise surprise I was outbid on every item and a few hours later I was offered a second chance for every item. I bought the very cheap bunker and ignored the rest. As before my bunker turned up quickly except this time it was a very odd colour, it had *exactly* the same miscast issue as a previous bunker which seemed very unlikely unless a miscast bunker was being used as a master to cast from. What was worse was that it was practically dripping with mold release residue, my fingers were greasy when I held the item. I’m 100% convinced that it was a recast that was cast up when I won the item. Whilst I don’t want to get into the whole recasting debate here I did clean and keep the item.

In a nutshell this seller, “bessthebest” appears to be doing the following:

01. All bidders are private.
02. You will be steadily be pushed to your maximum bid.
03. You will be outbid by quite a considerable margain.
04. You will be offered a second chance offer on all items you were outbid on at the price you were outbid at or higher.
05. You may end up with a rather dubious recast.

It’s fair to say that I will never buy anything from this seller ever again and would advise others to think twice before they bid on their auctions.

  1. Patrick says:

    I spotted this guy was selling recasts a while ago when he seemed to have constant supply of pop epic trenches and buildings. I knew what he was up to and sent him a pm saying as such. He got immediately defensive, accused me of slander and blocked me from bidding on his auctions. This guy is an out ‘n’ out crook who rips people off. Maybe you could let forgeworld know and they might get on to eBay on order to protect their copyright.

    • bugstomper16 says:

      Good to hear, I think, that it’s not just me who’s experienced this seller. I’m initially happy enough to give people the benefit of the doubt, I have a large number of identical rare OOP models that I bought as a kid but if I sold them on ebay people would think I was recasting them, but it all felt very fishy from the beginning. I contacted ebay about it all in terms of shill bidding and recasting and their response was not to respond, so Forgeworld will be next.

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