I am sure many of you are now well aware that I am starting to indulge in a little lead trading. Its not something that I have dabbled in before, preferring trawling eBay to locate miniatures for my collection. Too be honest, my collecting on this online auction site has been largely directionless. I have, until relatively recently, been influenced by two factors; price and old school. If the miniature is cheap and was produced by Citadel between the years 1985 and 1992, I'll put a bid on.
Any range, any time, any where!
I also used to indulge in what I called 99ping. This is when you complete a search, such as 80s undead Citadel, and put a bid on everything available for 99p in the hope that in seven days time I will be the owner of some really cheap miniatures.
Sometimes this can have remarkable results. Other times you end up winning one out of one hundred auctions. It also results in a rather eclectic collection. Now in the pre-Oldhammer days this was a very satisfactory approach. I thought I was the only Third Edition fan left in the world, so the idea of actually needing to build a coherent ( and by this I mean aesthetically coherent, not army book coherent ) old school army was not necessary. I just wanted to collect all the models I couldn't afford back in the 80s.
Now the Oldhammer Scene has grown beyond all of our expectations, with even members of the Golden Age Citadel staff joining the movement to discuss the period in question, collecting, for me anyway, needs to be a little more focused. I see trading as a major change in the way I collect, and I expect that it will grow to become the way I source the majority of my collection.
There are three very good reasons for my change:
1) Trading one to one with other collectors broadens friendships and helps secure the sinews ( and thereby the ethos ) of Oldhammer.
2) It is much easier to actually get what you want, in my experience anyway, and requires far less effort than trawling the net late into the night.
3) Its much cheaper with just postage to pay. Happy wife then!
|Battle Lords and Odds and Ends. The result of a recent trade with a fellow, and very generous, Oldhammerer. You know who you are!|
This got me thinking about the ethics of trading. In many ways, ethics are a personal thing. The set of values that you choose to adhere to during your life. These principles are most likely going to be based on two factors: your own feelings and the values instilled in you by your community as you grew up. Some folk seemed to get quite preoccupied with how much their particular model is worth, much like the unwritten 80s schoolboy rule of Panini sticker collecting 'the silver stickers are worth two normal stickers'. Or should I say how much they think the miniature is worth. Others prefer straight one to one trades only. I am strongly in favour of the second category. One miniature swapped with another of a similar size. In part, this comes from being part of a community of enthusiasts, rather than the facelessness of unknown traders online and part in the belief that any lot that starts at 99p will find its price.
|A trade in process. Old Citadel for new (well, slightly less old). It would have taken me weeks, if not longer, to source many of these.|
Do you have a set of principles that you try to adhere to or are you a ruthless tradesman eager to turn gold into lead?