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Marble Identification & Pricing Books...


DirtyLutz
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So I have a few hundred marbles. It's my first collection. I started collecting less than 4 months ago. All of my marbles are gorgeous and in mint to near mint condition. I have been on almost every marble website trying to teach myself everything I can to be able to organize them by maker so I can price them accurately to sell (the ones I can bear to part with that is) ... but it's REALLY hard! So I ordered Robert Block's most recent and recommended ID & pricing guide book, and after anxiously awaiting the arrival of the book, I finally received it yesterday and was (hopefully to no offense) completely disappointed.

Can someone please guide me in the right direction? I feel like the few websites I've been using to ID my marbles are far more detailed as far as pictures go and when it comes to pricing. . .??? Oh man, don't tell me i have to refer to eBay and rely on the supply and demand method!

I know my marbles are very old and in very good condition. I am relying on the sale of these marbles to bring in the profit that they deserve so I just need a little help.

Any recommendations?

Thank you,

Jess

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I haven't seen Bob's most recent book. I still want to. There are many caveats to using a book for pricing. However, I still am glad I had my older edition.

This is the point where you need to cover your eyes

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spoiler alert

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Yes, watching trends on ebay is the best way I can think of for setting prices. If you're selling at shows, I hear some things may be priced differently. Or if you're selling in a shop, maybe you can mark them higher and wait for the right customer. Still, for a good pricing rule of thumb I recommend watching ebay. You could post pictures and some might be willing to give estimates. A lot of people avoid talking price though.

Where do you plan to sell them?

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The trouble is that most marble books do not show pictures of a vast majority of the marbles that you will find. It's like the top 20% are shown in books. Trying to ID the marbles is your first step in collecting. Many new collectors think they have a CA or Peltier NLR when they really have a Jabo or a common West Virginia swirl. Posting pictures at a board like this is a good way to learn. There are some marble sites, like Joes' marbles, that give you a pretty good ID factor on many marbles. Remember, the vast majority of marbles, if they are in mint condition, are in the nickel, dime , quarter and up to a dollar value. But, it's the chance of finding the ones that reach the $20 to $500 range and more that keeps many people collecting. Good for you in trying to find proper pricing before selling your marbles. By the way, Steph is correct on trying to find pricing on eBay. The problem is with the ID's on eBay - search Christensen and see how many "real" Christensens are listed.

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In my opinion None of the books are really good enough to ID and price the majority of marbles you are most likely to run across. Block does have a book with actual prices realized at auctions that can be some help. Current prices for many marbles are quite a bit lower than many recent price guides. Online web sites are above and beyond the best way to try and ID marbles.

Some good ones for ID are. And as Steph said once you have an ID get over to ebay and search completed auctions for the marble.

www.Joemarbles.com
www.Marblesgalore.com
www.Peltiermarbles.com
www.westvirginiamarblecollectorsclub.com
www.mikesmarbles.com

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Thank you everybody for taking the time to respond! So sweet of you...

Steph: I was planning on selling on eBay or etsy :/

Al: I agree! Most marbles need to be seen in person to really appreciate them. I shine lights through them and totally get all marble model photo shoot about it but I could be taking pictures all year at that rate. :)

Lstmmrbls: Thank you so much for the info. I do love Joemarbles :)

You are all too kind

Sincerely me

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  • 7 years later...

Also Bob Block just had an online auction and you can check prices on over 300 marbles that just sold this weekend. There are also several other lists of previous sales he had too. However, his prices and those of some other sales sites are top of the line and mostly mint stuff. I think you do have to watch eBay and even there I’ve noticed a wide range of sales prices. You and I are not going to pull in the bids Block and “grandpas” are getting. Study up on the main top of the line marbles that are usually easier to identify. Good luck 

 

jon

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His consignment percentage is different with marbles, numbers of marbles, etc. You have to contact him to find out what it may be. I have sold on Ebay for over 20yrs. but not steady. I may sell for two or three weeks and not sell for two or three months. Depends on how busy I am.  Not sure I will be selling much on Ebay in the future ? 

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