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Thread: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

  1. #1
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    Default Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    I plan to sell my Collings MT. I have bought and sold several mandolins over the years but have never had to deal with this issue.

    The mandolin is a 2010, and is in excellent condition except that it suffered a couple of dings in a collision with a guitar headstock, as seen in the pictures. Obviously no structural damage, and I think it is less noticeable in reality than it seems in the photos.

    There are two in the classifieds now for $2,200, and mine is similar except for the dings. Assuming $2,200 is a reasonable asking price, how much of a discount seems reasonable for the dings?

    BTW, my reason for selling has nothing to do with these dings.

    Any thought/questions?Click image for larger version. 

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    rfloyd

    Collings MT

    Guitars:
    Santa Cruz VJ
    RainSong WS 1000
    Farida OT-22 OO
    Blueridge BR-142

  2. #2
    My Florida is scooped pheffernan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    Looking around, new base MT's seem to be running around $2600. I'd expect 30% depreciation off of that figure ($780) for a mandolin in excellent condition ($1820) and probably closer to 40% for a blemished one ($1560). Anecdotally, I sold an unscarred 2005 MT two years ago for $1500 net to me.
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  3. #3

    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    In 2010, the list price was $2400 for satin finish, $2600 for gloss. They could be had for $2160-2200 at the time for the satin finish like yours.

    I sold a 2014 honey amber satin finish one last year, with barely visible dings for $1700. They were going for $2300+ then. I think your assumption of the $2200 price as reasonable is too high for a starting point, considering the year of the instrument and what is currently available.

    What I can say is that MTs these seem to fly off the classifieds around the $1700 dollar mark, $1800 for gloss top, assuming excellent condition.
    Collings MT-O
    P.W. Crump OM-III

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  4. #4

    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    I'm thinking $2,000 discount....where do I send the check for the remainder?

    I can see the dings but they're not terrible. The thing with mando players is that it's a "pretty instrument" and thus most want pristine. I'm not sure what your answer is, but don't value it at less than you think it's worth.
    One thing I've learned about mandolins is that they all respond differently to different picks so if you buy it and you don't like the tone, try a different pick.

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  5. #5
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    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    OP here; thanks for the input so far. I haven't done research on ebay, Reverb, etc on current value of MT's, but I agree that the $2,200 price of the two currently in the classifieds here seems high.

    I would like to encourage further input on the "ding discount" issue, please!

    Thanks...
    rfloyd

    Collings MT

    Guitars:
    Santa Cruz VJ
    RainSong WS 1000
    Farida OT-22 OO
    Blueridge BR-142

  6. #6
    Dave Sheets
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    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    Hmm, no used MTs on Reverb.com, new ones are around $2500 there (probably with gloss tops). The number of $1800 for one in good used shape seems like a pretty reasonable price, below that they should sell pretty quick. The $2200 mark seems high, but then I don't see many used MTs out there right now. Hmm.

    Maybe start somewhere between $2000-$1800 and consider offers? You can always drop the price if you decide you really want it to move?

    Best of luck with it, somebody will be happy to get this, marks and all.
    -Dave
    Flatiron A
    Way too many other instruments

  7. #7
    Registered User colorado_al's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    $1800 will see it on its way within the week

  8. #8
    Registered User Timbofood's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    Ask 2000.00 be willing for 10% drop?
    Don’t cheat the buyer OR yourself!
    Timothy F. Lewis
    "If brains was lard, that boy couldn't grease a very big skillet" J.D. Clampett

  9. #9
    Registered User colorado_al's Avatar
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    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    I don't think you'll get $2000 for a satin top with damage.

  10. #10
    Confused... or?
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    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    Maybe tangent to the topic, and certainly not trying to be dishonest here, but:

    If it were mine, even (or especially?) if I were going to keep it, I'd hit those dings with a dab of medium-to-dark brown stiain, just to tone them down a bit. You're not going to hide them or come close to calling it a "repair", but, IMHO, it's good to have them not shouting so, uhmm, brightly! The stain doesn't need to be a close match, as long as it just tones down the unfinished ding. Look at any "distressed" instrument, whether new & artifical or old & naturally-occurring, and aged imperfections tend to be darker than the surrounding wood.

    Personally, I do it to instruments, furniture, and wall panneling whenever the need arises. To me, it just looks less disturbing that way.
    - Ed

    "What our group lacks in musicianship is offset by our willingness to humiliate ourselves." - David Hochman

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    Well, the OP has now listed this instruments in our Classifieds for $2000 FIRM. Ignoring all of the advice given here which collectively, and consistently said that $2000 dollars is too high and he should be willing to negotiate. His listing indicates the exact opposite of that. Not that this is unusual around here. People ask advice all the time, and then the advice isn’t what they want to hear, and then they ignore it. Why? Why ask for advice if you already made up your mind? My theory is that people that ask for advice are really looking for validation, not advice. They have made up their minds, and they want someone to agree with them.

    There is another thread going on that I participated in where the OP wanted to know what to charge for a used Trinity College Octave. I expressed my opinion there that for a typical production instrument, devoid of collectibility, rarity, or other unusual traits, 70 percent of what was paid for it new is a fair starting point. If it’s in excellent condition. Take more off if there is damage, wear, or anything else preventing it from being excellent. Take a look at Patrick’s post in Post #2. He got it right. Spot on.

    Despite the present situation on Reverb, there is normally no shortage of Collings MT’s for sale used. If you can buy a brand new one, from a dealer, with warranty, for 2600, buying a third hand used one with damage for 2000 makes no sense to me. Nor does buying a second hand used one without damage for 2200, for that matter. But it will be interesting to watch and see how long it, and the others, lasts. I’ve been wrong before.
    Last edited by multidon; Nov-06-2018 at 7:52am.
    Don

    Weber Custom Bitterroot F
    Weber Bitterroot A
    Fender Octave Mandolin

  12. #12

    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    You’d get at least $1500 for a trade value, depending on what you were trading for. At 70% of new, $1800 is a fair sales price for a used MT with no upgrades.
    Good Advice: Play before you pay, and know your product and your market.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    Don,

    You're wrong in your statement that I had made up my mind. I read the seven posts in answer to my question and gave it a good bit of thought before placing the ad. Also, did you take into account that my price included shipping, insurance, PPal fees and Cafe' contribution ($180 approx)?

    BTW, I did it that way based on advice from another thread here. I am also following advice that this time of year is possibly the best for selling an instrument.

    You seem annoyed; that makes two of us!
    rfloyd

    Collings MT

    Guitars:
    Santa Cruz VJ
    RainSong WS 1000
    Farida OT-22 OO
    Blueridge BR-142

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  15. #14
    Dave Sheets
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    Default Re: Need Advice on Selling a Mandolin

    Just another perspective- right now there don't seem to be many used MTs available, which does tell you something. If there were clean MTs available at $1800, the situation would be a bit different. The OP may get his price, if he's patient, or a bunch of them may appear on the market and the price will fall. Can't blame him for trying, and there's nothing wrong with respectful bargaining.
    -Dave
    Flatiron A
    Way too many other instruments

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