One of the most fun and challenging parts of my job is finding inventory. Of course you have many choices. You can purchase from your friendly train distributor, or you can buy in the secondary market. I prefer the secondary market as you may well know. It is much more challenging and rewarding!
I get to travel a lot to purchase train collections. Recently I purchased a collection down-state somewhere. Well let's put it this way, I had to drive through Punxatawny, the groundhog town on this one. That was somewhat thrilling in itself because I drove through only two days before groundhog day, and the place was jumping.
My destination though was around 30 miles past, so I couldn't sit around and drink beer that day. I was on the road to purchase a nice quant train collection from a gentleman who had recently had some health problems and had decided to sell.
When I arrived he showed me the back room downstairs which was full of trains. As I usually do I checked through the inventory and knew there had to be more. Then he took me upstairs to a bedroom at the top of the stairs where there was a pretty big closet full of trains. Then he took me to the bedroom across the hall that had trains laid out all over the place. Then we went down the hall to two more bedrooms and another utility room.
To be honest, I was overwhelmed by what I saw. After checking the list some more I determined that there was more inventory that had been listed and this scared me a little mainly because I had brought a van instead of a truck. For instance there was no Williams trains mentioned in the list. But in this one room there were a bunch of Williams engines in a big pile. Heaven only knows how many duplicates there were in the Lionel!!!
So right then and there I stopped and gave the guy an offer that was more than I had originally intended. But fair is fair, and I was so happy he accepted it. We could have been there for weeks inventorying the collection.
Thank goodness he had a friend there that was going to help load the van. When we finally finished loading that van five hours later, I felt like I had just had a hard work out at the gym!
And as my suspicions had been, I couldn't get everything in that van, although there wasn't enough to return for unfortunately.
Well that is the collection that has been appearing on this site and choochooauctions.com for the past 3 to 4 weeks.
We are almost done with that and of course when I start to run out of inventory I get a little worried. I much prefer to run out of money and have to much inventory!
But not to worry. I'm actually in Florida writing this, and yesterday I purchased a nice sized Mikes Train House collection of trains.
The guy I bought this collection had just built a house in Florida with a basement. Yes, I said basement in Florida. A completely dry basement! And one of the biggest basements I have ever seen! He had seemed a little amazed himself when he explained to me it was completely dry.
At any rate, my point is that when we got down to the basement, everything was piled neatly and ready to go! It took us only a little over an hour to pack up the 19 boxes that I shipped back to myself yesterday. Now that's the kind of collection I like. But you have to take the good with the bad I supposed. Awe shucks, I like the collection that was scattered all over the house just as well I guess. You have to work for your money, and I certainly did that day!
My concern for purchasing collections and running out of inventory have ceased since only the other day I agreed to purchase a huge collection of Lionel trains in the Chicago area next week. This collection will keep us busy for quite a while thank goodness.
Boy, do I love buying trains!!
I'd like to apologize for the problems we had with choochooauctions.com a couple of weeks ago when it was down for some 16 days.
Evidently our site got too active for our past hosts and they literally pulled our plug. They said that our site was taking from the resources of the other people on their server.
That's actually a variation on what happened a year ago when we were shut down for an extended time.
We are taking steps to make certain that choochooauctions.com will be very stable in the future with little down time.
Our current host is only temporary, as we are in the process of setting up a dedicated server which we will use excessively for our sites. Yes we will move this site to the new server as well.
The server will be much faster and more reliable than anything we have had in the past with little down time. This is in theory of course, but I think this time we are going to be in pretty good shape for a very long extended time.
So we do have one more move for both choochooauctions.com and traincity.com. We will make sure that both moves go as smoothly as possible. After all we do have quite a bit of experience in moving choochooauctions.com! (And that's a bad thing.)
Now a personal note. I now know how people feel when I purchase and haul away their collections. Due to the fact that I purchased property in Florida just yesterday, I will be selling my train collection reluctantly. I need the cash to cover the down payment!
My collection is small, but very high grade Lionel and American Flyer trains. My main interest was in quality boxed items, and as you can imagine I cherry picked many collections over the years. I believe most of the collection will be sold on choochooauctions.com. I'll make sure I label anything from my collection. If you would like a peak at my collection now, go here. At least after everything is sold, I'll have the pictures!
Til next time, I hope you have fun bidding, selling, and buying on our sites. Thank you very much in advance!
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