Buying bikes on ebay - seeing the things

Location
London
I have bought a bike frame in the past on ebay.

And checked out some others.

I always chose local sellers so that I could pop round and see the thing before bidding.

But ebay seemed to be snotty about this and was less than clear when I asked for a clear answer about whether you could actually see stuff/run your hands over it before buying.

But I pretty much have the idea that ebay has decided that it is just so old fashioned/a total no-no to do this.

This would seem to be a right pain/source of problems for both sellers and buyers.

What to do?

Must say, I much prefer local gumtree.
 

Specialeyes

Veteran
Location
Essex
It's not up to eBay whether you can see the item before bidding, it's up to the seller - but an eBay bid is, nominally at least, a contract so what they would try and discourage is winning bidders then changing their minds.

I always include the phrase "I'm based in Leigh on Sea in Essex. You're welcome to come for a test ride and a cuppa during the auction" and a surprising number of folks do and they invariably bid. I think it pays to be open and honest, and discouraging viewings just sounds off-putting to me.
 
OP
Blue Hills
Location
London
Have you used it recently specialeyes? They were less than clear with me.

And I discussed this on the cchat movie ride with someone and their impression was similar to mine.

And note this entry from a regular seller of frames and old stuff on ebay:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/382437046231?ViewItem=&item=382437046231&category=0&emailtemplateid=141333870&sellerid=eJGfcJBwsRJ9BxZw2Ea0FA==&buyerid=eJGfcJBwsRKjGmXFjNautw==&refid=store&ssPageName=ADME:B:SEMK:UK:LISTG

This text on their page:

"Due to daft new Ebay rules I can no longer give you any contact details if you wish to view in advance. Therefore if you buy and do not like when you come to pick up I will be happy to allow you to cancel your order with no hard feelings or bad feedback - sorry but it`s the best I can do......".

Now they are being sporting.

But if ebay do this surely lots of folk are going to be turning up to collect and then claiming (with justification, even if there was no intention to deceive) tnhat the item was not what they were led to believe from the description, pics and questions.

Sounds like a recipe for lots of p'ed off buyers AND SELLERS.
 

Elysian_Roads

Senior Member
I have bought a bike frame in the past on ebay.

And checked out some others.

I always chose local sellers so that I could pop round and see the thing before bidding.

But ebay seemed to be snotty about this and was less than clear when I asked for a clear answer about whether you could actually see stuff/run your hands over it before buying.

But I pretty much have the idea that ebay has decided that it is just so old fashioned/a total no-no to do this.

This would seem to be a right pain/source of problems for both sellers and buyers.

What to do?

Must say, I much prefer local gumtree.
I suspect that it is more to do with their fear that people will do the transaction off the books, and they won't get their fee.

Bought a bike off eBay without seeing it beforehand. But that was only because I noticed it on the day and it was cheap enough for a risk. I was pretty lucky, and the bike was okay.

A friend who likes to buy and sell rates Facebook's marketplace as somewhere to pick up a bargain.
 

Venod

Eh up
Location
Yorkshire
A friend who likes to buy and sell rates Facebook's marketplace as somewhere to pick up a bargain.
I use Facebook and have sold and bought items off there, the good thing is there is no selling fees, but the audiance is not as wide as ebay, I put some brakes on FB for £25 on three selling groups and got no interest, so I put them on ebay starting at £20, they sold for £38 and I had 29 watches.
 
OP
Blue Hills
Location
London
I suspect that it is more to do with their fear that people will do the transaction off the books, and they won't get their fee.

Bought a bike off eBay without seeing it beforehand. But that was only because I noticed it on the day and it was cheap enough for a risk. I was pretty lucky, and the bike was okay.

A friend who likes to buy and sell rates Facebook's marketplace as somewhere to pick up a bargain.
Yes I realise that is their concern.

And hence I have the feeling that they have more recently made things very strict - to the point where it is unusable.

Ebay has special scanners that look for signs of them being cut out. I did a year or so ago pop round to see something. Paid cash as the seller had on ebay said they wanted this. No intention on my part to cut ebay out (and of course as a buyer I wouldn't pay them fees anyway) but I think the seller may have been naughty after I left. I got a warning from ebay.

Sorry, I won't use Fbook.

So ebay does seem to have a new toughened up policy. Big problem.
 

Specialeyes

Veteran
Location
Essex
I think it's exactly as @Elysian_Roads has said - it's the fear that people will complete the sale off the books.

eBay have had filters to block email addresses embedded within their own messaging system for ages. Sometimes stuff gets through, sometimes it doesn't and I've never fathomed any rhyme or reason to it. So for that reason I have a jpg with my email address written on a post-it note saved on my Mac, as if the message carrying the email address gets filtered, one with a picture attachment seems to get through ok without being reviewed. (sometimes eBay messaging can be incredibly slow too, but that's another matter)

I guess it's only a matter of time before that loophole gets closed, at which point they'll start to lose business and get the message, hopefully.
 

DCLane

Found in the Yorkshire hills ...
eBay's become difficult for things like test rides - they won't allow phone numbers, etc. because they think it'll lead to sales outside eBay. I've been warned and banned from using their message service for a week on two occasions simply because I let a potential buyer contact and test ride a bike.

Now I'm a little bit better at hiding the phone number :okay:
 

Tom B

Über Member
Location
Lancashire
I sold some patio doors and a conservatory recently on fleabay... The buyers naturally had lots of questions. I ended up sending the buyers my mobile number by messages as it was easier to talk. I had to disguise my number as a list to get it to send. 24hrs later eBay accused me of breaking the rules and deleted the listing. Naturally we then concluded off ebay. .. Counterproductive.

But it was clear a human had at some point reviewed the messages between me and the three interested parties.
 

Levo-Lon

Guru
Whenever I've sold motorcycles or bikes on Ebay i always insist that buyer sees the bike and buys it off me ,i then end the auction early , " use one of the reasons listed"
I Never let an auction run.
Its a cheap way to advertise if you do it this way.

If its not attracting buyers over the week, you just end auction again and relist with a new description and price.

Ive sold loads motorcycles this way and had a bloke pop over from Germany for my ZX 12R.
200 miles for my SP2 honda ,and loads of 20 mile radius buyers so it does work.
Guy from Cambridge for one hybrid.,and the wife's specialised road bike went to Gainsborough.
It saves sorting postage and a courier,and the " its not as described crap!!! That you get with blind purchases.

Never paid a penny in ebay fees, for all other items i let the auctions run.
 

Heltor Chasca

Out-riding the Black Dog
The bikes I have sold on eBay have gone for a good price as I look after my kit. I have always been happy to start auctioning again, if for any reason the buyer wasn’t happy when they came to collect. That’s my risk and I know it would be a pain to relist, but I would rather everyone was satisfied.

The last bike I sold went to a lady who brought her boyfriend to have a gloss over of the bike. He was a bike mechanic :ohmy: However he was super impressed and actually helped the sale go through.
 

SkipdiverJohn

Veteran
Location
London
The sort of machines I buy are so cheap (usually listed as for parts only etc) there's no real risk of getting stung with a lemon, and no incentive for the seller to be less than honest about the description. I've always bought blind without prior viewing and never had a bad experience with either the seller or the bike.
In one case I bought a scrapper for literally a few quid locally to strip for mechanical parts, and whilst picking that up, spotted something nice that I also bought for a total bargain price in cash, without it even going through eBay.
I take a pragmatic attitude, anything used will have wear & tear so you can't expect perfection. The problem comes where sellers price stuff high, then the buyer is naturally going to get sniffy about any little issues they discover. If it's cheap as chips, you know you've got a bargain even with defects present.
 
OP
Blue Hills
Location
London
Whenever I've sold motorcycles or bikes on Ebay i always insist that buyer sees the bike and buys it off me ,i then end the auction early , " use one of the reasons listed"
I Never let an auction run.
Its a cheap way to advertise if you do it this way.

If its not attracting buyers over the week, you just end auction again and relist with a new description and price.

Ive sold loads motorcycles this way and had a bloke pop over from Germany for my ZX 12R.
200 miles for my SP2 honda ,and loads of 20 mile radius buyers so it does work.
Guy from Cambridge for one hybrid.,and the wife's specialised road bike went to Gainsborough.
It saves sorting postage and a courier,and the " its not as described crap!!! That you get with blind purchases.

Never paid a penny in ebay fees, for all other items i let the auctions run.
I don't understand how you get the contact details to them so that they can see the stuff.

Also don't they have rules about ending auctions early?

How can you do it?

sorry if being dim.
 

Tom B

Über Member
Location
Lancashire
I don't understand how you get the contact details to them so that they can see the stuff.

Also don't they have rules about ending auctions early?
How can you do it?

sorry if being dim.
You used to be able to include a mobile number or email address in the advert, or sent it to them in a message.

Now they have bots/scripts to spot this theyre getting quite good.

07123 so to send 4 a nu5mber to6 pe7opl8e9 you hav to do things like this

or this

jasdklnasdkj cv0asdafsdfas7asdfasdcxcvcxvb7vxzcvsdvasdvasdfafa10sdsdfasdfasdf1asdfasd2faasda3dsf4dfasdfasdfasdf5asd6asdf7dasdfsd8sdafasd9

You can send email address hidden in the same way hiding hotmail as myemailaddress%freezingcoldmail.com and gmail as geewizzmail.com and getting the other person to turn it into what it should be. But clearly they do read your messages if they feel something may be amiss / heuristics (sp) pick something up.

You can end an auction early for various reasons.
 
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