August 21, 2010

Selling your camera collection

Sometimes it feels like I'm selling part of myself. This weekend I sold three cameras and two lenses in an effort to downsize my collection.

One of the things I've learned about myself is I really want the transaction to be a positive one. It's important to me the person buying the camera has received good value. I'd like to think I provide some of the value in terms of testing the camera and the discriminating taste behind choosing which cameras to keep or sell.

Most of the cameras I keep are the broken ones. My Konica TC-1 SLR has mildew in the pentaprism. My black Konica Autoreflex T-3N has a cracked mirror and, as I've disclosed in the past, I had to bend a metal plate behind the lens mount to correct a light seal problem between the mirror and the prism. The list of faults of my user cameras go on.

Another is, if I've never taken a good picture with a particular camera, I can't bring myself to sell it. The camera has to have an aura of goodness to it. It has to be capable of magic.

For example, this weekend I intended on selling the Minolta Hi-Matic AF I acquired in Sechelt. This is the great trip where I also bought a Chinon Infrafocus 35F-MA.

The Minolta should have a great lens as it is designated a Rokkor. However, while my test roll on the Minolta revealed it shot well in focus and with proper exposure, it did not create a great picture. Whereas, the Chinon had made one of my all time favourites. When the buyer came to claim the Minolta, I couldn't bring myself to let her have it because the camera had not yet served me well. Instead, I pushed the Chinon even though it was NOT for SALE.

The Chinon simply had, up to this point, better MOJO KARMA.

I did sell it for more than I paid, but it covers the cost of test roll and time and endless camera binning, plus it allows me to continue to take risks with iffy cameras. Case in point, I just bought an Olympus AFL Quick Flash. These cameras have only built-in batteries and I will be forced to rip it apart to replace the lithium's inside. I have NO idea how they charged them!

Sometimes I worry people have walked away from a sale with me feeling ripped off. I hope not. If you do, let me know. It's important for me that camera trading, buying, selling and shooting is FUN.

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