Disposing of collection - how?

Over Christmas I was privileged to look over a pretty big collection of
railwayana and model railway stuff. The model railway stuff seems to be
mostly 1950's to late-80s, with literally hundreds of coaches, wagons
and locos, whilst the railwayana is just about everything related to
railways, UK, and overseas, and ranges from rail chairs (aka scrap
metal!) to tickets, signal box gubbins (including a lever and line
occupation instruments), works plates, lamps - everything. I did see a
few specific collectable items (a lovely condition Blue Pullman, for
example), but most of the wagons and coaches are the sort of thing you
see for £3-£10 on junk stands at model railway exhibitions. There were
some Ratio wooden coaches, and a few coaches by TTR(?), as well as some
tinplate stuff in pretty good condition.
The owner died about 5 years ago, and his wife has no real idea how to
sell it, but is aware that this stuff has value. What she doesn't want
is a barrage of second-hand dealers cherry-picking. She has already
been offered £200 for the lot, which she quite rightly refused - there
must be several K's worth of stuff, all told. She's nervous that once
word gets out about what and where it all is she'll be burgled, so
ideally wants it to go in one hit.
So, any ideas? Will auction houses be interested in this sort of thing?
Which ones (if any) are reputable, and will be prepared to travel to
have a look? How does the process work?
Reply to
Paul Boyd
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In article , Paul Boyd writes
Paul
The railwayana may be worth daft money. Have a look in Railway Magazine or similar for guide prices, the options are to sell to a dealer or go to an auction house: it's a matter of risk and return. But sell the railwayana separately from the models.
Can you indicate which part of the country. I'm an exhibition manager in South East England and can recommend dealers who would make a reasonable offer. In fact a member of my own club could give a sensible valuation. Other posters may be able to help with other parts of the country.
Anyone making an offer will have two problems. First, some of the stuff may well be practically valueless; such as badly made Ratio kits. Secondly traders have limited funds and cannot tie up much of their capital on stock which may not sell for years. She may want to split the stock into lots of (say) 100 items, and may get the same price for each lot as for the whole collection.
Reply to
John Bishop
On 29/12/2006 01:31, John Bishop said,
Yes - the railwayana would probably be need to be sold separately as that seems to attract different punters, and some of it will go for silly money! I can never understand people wanting to buy rail chairs or bolts though...
I'm hesitant to be too specific, but Lincolnshire is quite a big county!
The Ratio coaches I mentioned aren't built kits - these are the very early RTR ones they used to make.
Reply to
Paul Boyd
Suggest you make a listing on Excel and be quite specific in the description.
Post it on here and I am sure you will get an idea of value from someone.
You will need a detailed list in any case.
J
Reply to
Bob
In article , Paul Boyd writes
And a long way away! My only suggestion is to go to an exhibition (York at Easter?) and assess the second hand traders. You should get an idea of prices, but traders need to mark up towards 100% (some of the stock will take years to move and is tying up capital in the meantime).
The stuff you don't see on their stands is either tat or exceptionally valuable - and I wouldn't know which is which.
I think that traders will have a maximum stake so you may need to split the collection into lots.
Reply to
John Bishop
IMO, an auction house specialising in old toys and mechanical antiques etc is your friend's best bet. Your friendly neighbourhood auctioneer is unlikely to know enough about the items' market values to set reasonable starting prices. OTOH, there are few such auctioneers about, and they will charge for a valuation prior to auction. (Actually, it should have been valued as part of the estate.)
HTH
Reply to
Wolf

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