Auction Watch #271


Either I found the longest-running, immovable-price last week or people didn’t give a shit about looking for a listing that could beat it. Both could be true too.

With the holidays racing towards us we should be entering the period of over-spending November and December; followed by gotta-pay-my-bills sales bonanza January and February. But the overall eBay M.U.S.C.L.E. market has changed. Sellers are willing to indefinitely sit on purchase-prohibitive sale prices (e.g., a $6.50 Flesh #168 (plus $3.55 Shipping)).

I am not expecting to see the same spending on M.U.S.C.L.E. items. That money is going to be spent other places – which means there will still be a bunch of budget recovery sales to start a new year. Will any of those be M.U.S.C.L.E. items? I, selfishly, hope the answer is, “Yes!”

In the meantime, what does eBay have to offer M.U.S.C.L.E. collectors?

The first auction, M.U.S.C.L.E. Muscle Men Lot of 50 Action Figures by Mattel, is trying to make me a liar. M.U.S.C.L.E. collectors always go crazy for the Purple #153 figure. Will buyers treat themselves to an early holiday gift?

My guess is yes.

As of writing, the price is $102.63. I’ve talked about the figure’s prices very recently; I won’t do that again. However, I think washing the Purple #153 would have significantly helped the final price. Purple figures occasionally start to breakdown (?) and start looking a little ashy or cracked. I thought I’ve talked about that too – but can’t find it.

There is also a Class A Purple #109 figure. I don’t anticipate that figure significantly influencing the price. I would guess that the final price is around $400 – my gut is screaming that it is going to be even lower.

Quick side question, are lots with Class A figures only allowed to be photographed on the same type of gray carpet?

The second auction, Vintage Mattel M.U.S.C.L.E Muscle Men Poster – w/original poster tube(1985), might be a holiday splurge, but I wonder, “Do people still care about the poster tube?”

There were two similar posters earlier this year. The prices for both posters were less than $45. Neither received any bids.

The last poster, with a tube, was the more desirable Color poster. It sold for $84. We haven’t seen many poster tubes lately. How many collectors actually care about the M.U.S.C.L.E. Poster Tube?

I imagine the number of M.U.S.C.L.E. collectors that care about this item is pretty small. However, is a poster and tube worth an opening bid of $45? Probably. The question becomes, “How high can this price climb?”

My guess is not very far past $45.

The third auction, Muscle Men Figures Mixed Lot 16, is the perfect M.U.S.C.L.E. lot. It has a clear picture, it starts at $0.01, and doesn’t use the word “rare” once.

Obviously, this lot will sell – which many sellers don’t understand is the point of eBay listings. I believe the final price will be around $15 to $20.

This lot is worth highlighting because it will do something none of the remaining listings will do. It will sell.

You can tell me that “eBay has changed.” Maybe it has changed. But M.U.S.C.L.E. collecting is different than your average collectible. The audience is tiny and they know what they are looking to buy. That’s why the first two listings are likely to sell – and for a decent price.

If sellers don’t have something special, then they need to start at $0.99 (or lower). You can’t sell to a real M.U.S.C.L.E. collector. An eBay seller can only hope to trick a novice.

The fourth auction, M.u.s.c.l.e. Black King Figure Lot of 11 w/rare keshi,kinkeshi & bootleg figures, probably isn’t trying to trick anyone. In fact, they probably don’t even know they have a Class A Light Blue #157 figure.

Is that worth an opening bid of $20? Or a $26 BIN? I would say, “no.”

It’s a nice lot. I like the counterfeit figures. It’s a cool sculpt. And I think Light Blue is one of the best colors – if not, arguably, the best color.

There might be some M.U.S.C.L.E. collectors that disagree with my assessment. If it was truly a steal (or even a good deal), then it wouldn’t have lasted 24 hours.

A Class A #157, and 10 additional figures, with a $26 BIN makes the next auction a bit absurd.

The fifth auction, YSNT Muscle m.u.s.c.l.e men Kinnikuman MAMMOTHMAN 163 LIGHT BLUE 1985 CLASS B ac, has a Class B #163 with a $25 BIN.

I love this figure and it looks great in Light Blue. However it seems crazy to have a Class B figure with an, arguably, higher price than a Class A figure.

Any Class B figure priced at $25 seems absurd to me. But what about the $38 Salmon Terri-Bull?!?!

We can always point to some lunatic buyer with M.U.S.C.L.E. figures, but it rarely represents the majority of M.U.S.C.L.E. collectors. Most Class B figures sell for, at best, a few bucks.

The King of Class A auctions knows that most Class A figures sell for around $20. But he has he wisdom and confidence to start his listings at $0.99.

The sixth auction, Musclemania M.U.S.C.L.E. Men rubber wrestler 4 Pack, Sealed MOC, wwe, BEAUTIFUL!, is actually a nice MUSCLEMANIA listing.

We have seen some recent MUSCLEMANIA listings, including some 4-packs, but this is the only one listed as of writing.

This particular 4-pack look to be in pretty nice condition.

But is the opening bid of $20 too high for the tiny MUSCLEMANIA population? I think it might be, but I’m very curious to watch this listing.

I wish I had more to say, but I don’t.

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  1. #1 by Walker26 on November 26th, 2018

    The auction with the Purple Claw sold for $426.67.

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