John Dilks K2TQN
oldradio at WORLDNET.ATT.NET
Mon Apr 17 23:29:23 EDT 2006
Close but not 100% accurate.
I was telephoned by the SK's companion. She telephoned me and
informed me of his death and asked me to come down and help her price
out the collection. After verifying that she was in charge I agreed.
I did not go alone, but with two other friends of the SK. We told
her up front that we were not experts, but would give her the best
guess we could. And we did. We didn't low ball anything. If any of
the values we placed were low it was not intentional, it was our best
guess and we said so. Since I wasn't planning to purchase anything,
I had no conflicts.
It was one of the most difficult things I ever had to do, as the SK
and my some of my family members were very close. Being there
without him that day gave me a strange feeling, one I hadn't felt
since until tonight when I read Greg's email. The SK was a good
friend, teacher and mentor. Much of what I know about collecting ham
radios and my collecting values came from his friendship and influence.
That day she told us of two others who were there a day or two
earlier and what was offered for a few of the pieces. Their offers
were very low in my opinion.
I made arrangements for a well known and respectable key collector to
come down with another key collector to appraise the key and
telegraph collection. I was not present when this occurred, but I'm
absolutely sure she got an accurate estimate.
Later I was invited back and given a chance to purchase anything from
the estate. She had things marked and I ended up with a few pieces.
By this time she had the benefit of several collectors giving her
information and values.
It the succeeding weeks and months I would see her at hamfests and
collector club meets selling off my friends collection. I made it a
point to stay away from her area; one - because it still hurt to see
his wonderful collection broken up, and two - I just didn't have that
kind of money to spend. But when she pulled up, it was a feeding
frenzy and the guys with money to spend picked up some very nice radios.
She sold some items at the AWA meet in Rochester. One item, a
homebrew radio built by my friend was in the auction. I kept bidding
until I got it. I knew that my friend was planning to enter it into
the AWA contest that year, but died before it happened. The coils
were missing and I asked her if she still had them. I was invited
down again to look for them and found them in his shop.
The following year I entered his radio (and matching coils) in the
AWA contest in his name. It won the "Craftsman" award for best
construction. The only thing better would have been if he were there
to accept it.
And as Greg said, she came out very well - but it took her months to
do it, maybe as long as a year.
At 08:33 PM 4/17/2006, Greg Gore; WA1KBQ wrote:
>Two quick stories then I'll sign off this one. We were notified of a huge
>estate sale in Maryland about eight years ago, The well known and
>ham was an advanced radio collector and historian and had put together the
>finest collection of vintage amateur and antique radio equipment that I have
>ever seen even to this day. He had managed to assemble a collection
>hundred pieces of vintage equipment many of which were from the 1930s and so
>rare most of us have only seen pictures of them. The news broke at a nearby
>Hamfest and almost immediately the widow started getting visits with
>offers to look
>(and buy) and help appraise the collection many of whom were former close
>friends of the SK. She was wise enough not sell anything that day but instead
>asked everyone who had stopped by to volunteer to put a price on
>soon she began to see a trend. The SK's acquaintances were very eager to help
>her put price tags on everything and each one would lowball the particular
>items he was interested in but would put close to current market value on
>everything else. She caught on to what they were trying to do when
>no two wanted
>exactly the same items. I had been notified by the estate sale by a
>friend and I
>too was up there the following weekend (and made three more
>subsequent trips up
>from NC) and it was a real free for all at times but the savvy widow turned
>the situation around and it was impressive to watch her maintain control over
>the situation until every item was sold.
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