Thought the auction season would be winding down with the coming of winter, but noooo… Got a couple more up here on the frozen but bare tundra next week. Tomorrow there’s a ’79 Yamaha XS750 triple on the block at the Renville County Fairgrounds in central MN, check out FFI. No idea what condition, weather may be snowy but they may have the auction inside- They may not get to the bike ’til end of the day when everyone’s left and it’s in like new condition and goes for less than $100. Or, it may be a ratty parts bike that a dozen buyers bid out of sight. I’m passing on this one, so you’ll have no competition from me. Next monday there’s a ’69 MG up for Auction near Walnut Grove, as usual no info as to condition or whether it’s an MGB or Midget. I’ll probably make that auction, I’ll be more interested if it’s a Midget but would save either if needed. Of course, I’d love to have the complete set of 60s British Motors Corporation cars and recreate a Austin-Morris-MG-Healey dealership with maybe Triumph and Jaguar on the side, but that’d require more masochism than I’m into. Then again, seems like half the ultra reliable Volvo 1800’s parts were shared with the MGB, so maybe a properly assembled brit car would be reliable?

Expanding the subject to auctions in general, it’s been an interesting season. I’d shied away from auctions, expecting the stories I’d heard of fools bidding the price of junk above equivelent new prices. Well, some of those stories were true- in one town near Marshall, MN a nice VW Golf ragtop went for over $2k, about twice the book price. A month or so later a not so nice one was on the auction bill in the same town. Noting the way old tools were getting bid up and the half dozen buyers guarding “their” VW Convertable, I left early.

But further west in the Dakotas I’ve found bargains- I’ve seen restorable (all there and no more than surface rust) ’58 Chevys, pickups from the ’30s to the ’60s, and even running old Allis, Case, and Deere tractors sell for just above the scrapper’s bid. Seems like the Dakotas are optimum picking place for old iron, as many towns out there used little salt to rust out the old vehicles, there we’re plenty of farms to store them, and their now very elderly owners are letting them go to auction as they move from the farm to town or on to gearhead heaven.

Meanwhile, the loonly listers on Craig’s list continue to provide an avalance of material for the “Craig’s list finds indicating lunacy” threads that thrive on . Heck, we’ve got one local lister that’s had a ’02 Buell with a sidecar up for months. Book on the Buell is about $2k and about the same, at most, for the ‘hack- it looks to be homemade. So it’s worth maybe $4k, and the owner listed it at $7k months ago. I replied that it was worth that $4k, and she said it won’t sell for $4k. Since then the price has dropped to $6k and now $5.5k after it’s been listed for months. When she drops the price to $5k I might go look at it, and she’s right, it won’t sell for $4k… If it’s as described I’ll give her $4001 for it, and if not I might offer $3999 and probably much less. Similar story with the local seller of a 125 cc. Yamaha 2 stroke twin, asking $300. No title, sounds like he listed it and then dragged it out of the garage and found it won’t even turn over… But he’s still asking $300 for it. Craig’s list needs to give theses folks some incentive to make there asking prices a fair bit more reasonable.