The definitive source for information on collecting screen-used Star Trek props and costumes

Star Trek Props.com The Internet's premier source for information on collecting Star Trek props and costumes, as well as coverage of all major Star Trek auctions from the famous 2006 Christie's Star Trek auction, through the It's A Wrap Star Trek auctions on eBay and the Propworx Star Trek auctions. Star Trek Props is the best source for information of collecting original, screen-used props & costumes.

Friday, March 30, 2007

More on the Scotty uniform shirt...


Here are two thoughts on the "James Doohan" shirt that is ending today, from two of my prop collecting budddies.

"As you have noted, the colors of the patch and shoulder straps and the rank are wrong for Scotty. My guess is that they took a shirt that already existed but not needed for Scotty and used it for another cast member to avoid having to create it anew. It might have seen the screen but not on Doohan.


One thing that I noticed is that the material for the shoulder straps has often faded over the years for some of the divisional colors. Check the pictures in your Christie's catalog for the security (gray) and medical (green) straps. They are almost tan now. But other colors such as red and orange have fared well.


Incidentally Spike's great ST uniform site has this very image of the shoulder strap featured and explains it as belonging to a crewman second class."

And from another buddy:

"Another case of a costume made for the movie and not used. We have seen many of these so far, (Rand last week, McCoy in the upcoming Profiles auction). I’m sure this one is a relisting from the week 2 or 3."

Monday, March 26, 2007

It's a Wrap eBay auctions - Week 15 Preview

Week 15 Preview

This isn't a particularly strong week, which is evidenced by only 9 items being above $ 500 as of Wednesday. The selection of both costumes and props is rather thin, which gives those of us who have been buying in these auctions some welcome relief! It also offers collectors a chance to get some inexpensive items if they shop wisely.

The Neelix Klingon costume is the top item so far at $ 2,180. This episode was just on TV and so it is fresh in some of our minds. The disappointing thing is there are no boots with this costume.

The Star Trek:Generations Crusher stunt costume is a nice piece and should go at a reasonable price since it wasn't used by Gates McFadden. Truly beautiful costumes, this may jump up because it is kind of iconic.

The Dr. Zimmerman costume from Voyager is kinda of cool and rather unique. It is at $ 810 now but could easily go over $ 1,500 and maybe $ 2,000. Display this next to a Doctor and it will be a great display.

The James Doohan "Class B" shirt is a bit of an enigma. Scotty never used this costume and the rank and insignia are wrong. So what is the story of this costume? No way to tell. It is a nice uniform though.

The Terran Empire MACO Uniform
recently sold for $ 1,075 and this one is at $ 510. I think they are well worth the price.

The Starfleet Cadet Future Uniform is one I actually own, having won one about two months ago. They are really nice and come with a Comm badge and well worth the $ 500 I paid. I think this one will go higher due to the new bidders that have come to the auctions

The Blue TNG Scant are pretty funny and certainly worth a look. Now I have never seen a guy wear one of THESE to a convention!

Finally, I think the Feature Film Vulcan Robes and Hat are being overlooked as they are at $ 228.50 right now. A fine costume that should bring a $ 1,000 price.


I think there are some good deals on secondary and civilian hero costumes. The Janeway Velocity costume, The Jem 'Hadar costume, and the female Klingon costume are all potential good deals.


As far as props go:

The Ferengi Disruptor Rifle (also used by the Romulans) is the top prop at this point and should top $ 1,500.

The Star Trek: First Contact Type III rifle is the EVA version used when Picard, Worf andf Hawke go EVA to blow up the Deflector Dish. It is a foam version so don't go high on this.

The Enterprise Starfleet Energy Carbine is a rubber version, and you all know I hate how rubber props don't age well. Be careful how high you go here too.

The 24th Century Computer is a great prop which should go around $ 1,500. A nice and classic prop that I think appeals to a lot of people.

The Dixon Hill hat and shoes are a great item. OK, who wants shoes? But the hat is awesome! And it is Dixon Hill!

The Klingon PADD could go at a reasonable price. There were a ton of PADDs created for all the various shows, so these should start coming down in price as more and more become available. There were 4 last week alone. This week there are 3. The two Federation PADDS are both nice.


With all but 9 items under $ 500 there are a lot of bargains to be had. Keep your eyes sharp and be smart!

Also, feel free to email me if you have any questions!


Good hunting!

Alec

Thoughts on Scotty Shirt from IAW this week....

I get a lot of emails lately and one the other day asked about the Scotty shirt on eBay this week from it's a Wrap. Seems the label says James Doohan, but it clearly has the wrong rank and department insignia.

I thought this was a good opportunity to prompt people to write comments on the blog to help each other out. So go to the comments link and add your thoughts here. There are a lot of experienced collectors who read this blog and a blog should be a dialog, not a monologue!


Also, I will soon be launching a Star Trek prop and costume message board so we can all start chatting more on that soon....
Alec

Sunday, March 25, 2007

It's a Wrap eBay auctions - Week 14 Results

Week 14

I am sitting here writing this blog entry watching "Star Trek: First Contact" on Sci Fi channel. Damn, this was a good movie. I really think it was one of the best Star Trek movies. Certainly the best TNG based movie. When Lilliy Says "It's my first ray gun" I still laugh out loud. And James Cromwell really was awesome as Zephram Cochrane.

Back to the auctions.....I think we have settled into a routine the past couple of weeks of a mixture of items that is not as deep as the first two months of the auctions. There are some nice pieces, but not to the extent we first saw. Thus I think the better items are getting higher prices because there are fewer of them along with new bidders coming in.

The top item of the week was the Spock "Mindmeld" costume from Star Trek IV. Basically his underwear, it went for a RIDICULOUS $ 4,550. This one totally boggles my mind. Someone must love that movie a lot to pay that for this costume.

The Major Kira went for $ 3,250. Previous ones have gone for $ 3,601 and $ 1,554. I think this a bit high for this costume, but the market is driving the prices up on hero costumes.

The "Nemesis" style dress uniform went for $ 2,425 which is very
strong for a background costume. My friend won this costume and has wanted one very badly, so I know he was willing to go higher than I told him he should! :-) but he is happy and that is what matters.

The Ezri Dax uniform at $ 2,176 was the first Ezri dax we have seen, and it was pretty much in line with other hero costumes of this type. I think the price was fair and these costumes display well. (I have Sisko's in my family room and it looks amazing). I think if you can get a hero black and gray around $ 2,000 you are doing well.

The USS Relativity costume went pretty high at $ 2,026.89. This was a background player's costume, and though it has the rank and communicator badges, I think it went high. It is a beautiful costume with rich colored fabrics and quilting. I would love one of these as it will look great on display, but there are a few more of these and so I think this was only a $ 1,200-1,500 costume at best.

The "Captive Pursuit - Alien Hunter" costume went for $ 1,536.99. I think costumes with strong visual appeal, ones that will display well, are going in this price range. This one is nice as it has a helmet and boots and so I think it is a good price.

The Dr. Bashir uniform at $ 1,525 was a reasonable price as was the Captain Picard civilian costume from Insurrection at $ 1,525. The Janice Rand from Star Trek: The Motion Picture went for $ 1,287.11 which was reasonable as well. Getting hero costumes in the $ 1,200-$ 1,500 range is a good investment.


On the prop front:

There were a lot of PADDs this week and some weapons, but nothing that really stood out. The top PADD was the System Analysis PADD which sold for $ 1,850.36. A less expensiv e buy was the Crew Roster PADD that went for $ 1,192. The Klingon PADD went for only $ 720, and the Romulan PADD went for a paltry $ 685 which shows that there are still good deals if you are smart.

The giant Defiant console went for a healthy $ 2,000. Good luck with the shipping!

The hero Reman RIfle was beautiful and a good deal at $ 1,900.75. The one at Christie's went for $ 2,640 (before buyer's premium), so this was a good deal.

The Insurrection Son'a hand pistol went VERY high at $ 1,531, which I think is too high for a pistol prop like this. Yes it was resin, but still, i think this should be a $ 1,000 item.

The Klingon full head mask at $ 1,526 was $ 1,000 higher than these have gone for in the past. The first couple of these went around $ 500. There are a ton of these and it is just not that rare because they needed a bunch for Star Trek VI in teh Klingon Court scene. (Go check out yoru DVD and you will see what I mean).

As far as the other weapons go, the Bajoran Phaser Rifle went at $ 1,075. Not bad and a style that I think is one of the better ones they came up with.

My good buddy Dana finally got a Reman Pistol. He has been very patient and passed on two previous ones because they went high. He snagged this one for only $ 735 because he was smart and patient as I have told you all to be. The last two went for $ 900 and $ 1,000. Remember, there are a lot of props out there and you need to not overpay.


So here are some awards for the week:

Best Costume of the Week: USS Relativity uniform. Truly beautiful costume, but WAY too high for a background player's costume. $ 2,026.89

Best Prop of the Week: Hero Reman Rifle. A beautiful piece at a reasonable price. It sold for $ 1,900.75.

Best Buy of the week: 2 Romulan Senate Stools for $ 698.88. These went for about $ 1,000 each at Christie's.

Worst Buy of the week: Spock's "Mindmeld Costume" at $ 4,550. Basically glorified underwear! Give me a break!

Sleeper of the Week: DS9 Ferengi costume at $ 467. These costumes are beautiful and this is a great deal, because even the background Ferengi costumes are beautiful..



And here are some prices realized:


5 HIGHEST PRICED ITEMS THAT SOLD

Star Trek IV Spock whale Mindmeld costume $ 4,550

Major Kira uniform
$ 3,250

Operations Gold Dress Uniform $ 2,425

Ezri Dax Starfleet uniform $ 2,176

USS Relativity uniform $ 2,027


Finally, I hope you all keep our troops in Iraq in your thoughts and prayers. It helps keep life in perspective when you realize there are brave young men and women who are willing to risk their lives for the rest of us whiel we sit around and talk about props and costumes. (and hopefully they all come home safely soon).

Special thanks to Aaron Carlson, who every week, compiles all the stats on that week's auctions.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Interesting TOS Prop on eBay

OK, this has to be one of the more interesting Star Trek props I have seen recently. It is the contact lenses from "Where No Man Has Gone Before" that Gary Lockwood and Sally Kellerman wore. Certainly very interesting from a collecting perspective, but $ 6,500???? Give me a break!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

It's a Wrap eBay auctions - Week 14 Preview

Week 14 Preview

This week started strong again as the current crop of new bidders is bidding up the hero costumes early in the week. I think this is one of the signs that we have different bidders coming in, as the previous bidders knew to wait till the end before bidding an item up. All you do when bidding the item up earlier in the week is make it easier for the other bidders to outbid you!

As such, the top costumes are already nearing $ 2,000 with the Major Kira costume at $ 1,775 and the Nemesis style Operations Dress uniform just over $ 1,700 as of this writing.

It's a Wrap did a great job on the photos for the Kira, showing off all the nice touches the costume has, including a communicator pin and holster. This is a nice one and should go around $ 3,500 if the past few week's are any indication.

The Nemesis style dress uniform has been going high of late and I think for a background costume, it is already overpriced. Go back and check out the Nemesis wedding scene and you will see that there are a TON of these. This should go for $ 1,500 tops, and I have shared that with some friends who I know want one. Heck, I would love to have one as well, but don't see a need to pay high for them.

I love the USS Relativity costume, but already at $ 1,325 for a background costume? It is really beautiful though with great detailing and comes with the rank pip and comm badge.

Dr. Bashir's jumpsuit from the early seasons of DS9 is up to over $ 1,500. Judging by this past week, this will go in the $ 2-3,000 range. The Ezri Dax is a more desirable late season DS-9/Nemesis style and should do around $ 3,000 as well, judging by where the bidding is now and what we have seen the past week.

The Data costume is under $ 1,000 still, but that is meaningless, as this will top $ 3,000 easily. I also like the Janice Rand costume from Star Trek: The Motion Picture, as I think it will be rather reasonable.

Special note should be made of the "Captive Pursuit - Alien Hunter" costume. This one has some great detailing and a helmet and boots, so it will display very well.


Bargains? There are a TON of bargains just waiting to be had this week. Look at everything under $ 500 and you will see what i mean. Smart shoppers will get some great stuff at really low prices this week I think.

I think the Picard Civilian costume from Insurrection is going to go cheap. Pair it with the Anij Costume that Donna Murphy wore and you would have an amazing display from a Star Trek movie!

The Nurse Chapel doesn't have insignia or a Bio-buckle (which I bet you will find separately in the month's to come) and if this goes cheap could be a good deal.

The Devidian Alien from the classic TNG episode "Time's Arrow" looks like it will go cheap! It is all foam rubber, and will deteriorate over time, but looks in great shape still. Just keep it out of the sunlight. You can own a TNG alien cheap here I think.

There is a beautiful Ferengi costume that is only at $ 127 right now and will certainly go cheap. It has boots and a head piece and the fabric is amazing.

Speaking of great fabric's, you just got to love the Tarlac female's latex costume from Insurrection. These chick's were hot, even if they did make a living stretching skin! The costume is just over $ 100 right now, and includes boots and gloves. Latex is very hot in the fashion world right now. But warning, it shows off every imperfection in your body, so your girlfriend better be in great shape if you are buying this for her!


As far as props go:

The Hero Reman Rifle is already close to $ 1,200 and it will easily top $ 2,000. It is a beautiful piece and probably worth that.

There is an absolutely giant Defiant console. Would be fun to have, but shipping will be a bear! Better live in LA for this one!

There are four PADDs this week. Two are Starfleet, one a Klingon and one Romulan. They are all in the $ 300-500 range and should all go around $1,000.

Data's sunglasses from Nemesis are pretty cool and I think this is an odd enough item to go at a reasonable price.

The Cardassian Phaser Rifle is a rubber version, and by now you should know I hate rubber props. Take a close look at the photos an you will see why.

I love the style of the Bajoran Phaser Rifle. This one is resin, but has a weathered paint job, so looks kind of dull.

There are a bunch of Son'a Interface Panels and these are cool props that look good on display and go at reasonable prices. There are five of them, so keep an eye on these.



Like last week, there are a lot of items going cheap. Almost two-thirds of the items this week are still under $ 150, so spend time looking at those auctions for good deals.

Good hunting!

Alec

Saturday, March 17, 2007

It's a Wrap eBay auctions - Week 13 Results

Week 13

Week 13 brought some new bidders who drove Enterprise hero costumes up to ridiculous levels. All 5 Enterprise hero costumes went for over $ 3,600! And what is even more interesting is that all 5 high bidders were different!

The Ensign Mayweather costume, which went for $ 1,500 at Christie's (before buyer's premium) sold for $ 4,605.55. An absolutely ridiculous price, and even more than the Archer went for! The buyer had to be new and not familiar with what these costumes have been going for in the past.

The Archer costume was mostly a stunt costume, thought the listing said it had Scott Bakula's name in it as well. It went for $ 4,050.

Other costumes of note were the Xindi Reptile costume which went for a strong $ 2,378.34. The last one went for $ 1,276, but this shows the strength of the new bidders. The Orion Slave Girl costume went for $ 1,837.60, which isn't bad for a glorified bikini! The Enterprise distressed jumpsuit went for $ 1,580 which was way higher than it should have gone for.

I really liked the Vulcan Captain's costume, which was quite beautiful with great detailing. It went for a very reasonable $ 1,125 and will display great. A very fine deal amongst all the high dollar costumes, and winner of my Best Costume of the Week award.


The Suliban costume also went very low at only $ 575.99, earning it my Sleeper of the Week award. These are really nice


On the prop front:

This was a big week for props with a bunch of really nice props from Enterprise. The top selling prop was the First Flight Sensor Package which went for $ 2,900. It was a really nice piece, but that is a lot for a prop. The buyer was a well known buyer of Star Trek props who also bought the Enterprise Phlox Space Suit that was offered many months ago. (While it didn't hit reserve, I heard he reached a deal with It's a Wrap).

I won the NX Beta Program PADD for $ 1,780.55 which I was after because of its place in history
of Star Trek. It is also huge for a PADD at 8x11". A really cool piece and only the second prop (after the Root Beer Bottle) that I have really wanted.

The MACO Assault Carbine at $ 1,725.99 was way overpriced for a rubber prop. And also over priced compared to previous MACO weapons.

The Universal Translator went for $ 1,601 and was a really nice piece and even lit up. Kind of an Iconic piece and will look great with a good resin communicator prop.

The Klingon Bat'Leth went for $ 1,558.25, which was 50% higher
than the last one to sell. Still reasonable for a truly Iconic piece of Star Trek history.

The Phase Pistol with holster went for $ 1,025, which is still a bit high for my liking since it was an Art Asylum toy! I know a few of us are looking for the resin ones to pop up, but I am sure there are more of these.

The Demons Hypospray was a favorite piece of mine in this auction, and it went for $ 1,212. a good price I think for a really beautiful prop. Rivals the Klingon one from a couple months ago for sheer beauty.

The Communicator and Holster went for $ 911 which is reasonable in that it was rubber and didn't open. The Tricorder was the same way and it went for a very reasonable $ 643.



So here are some awards for the week:

Best Costume of the Week: Vulcan Captain's costume. Check out the detail on this. Beautiful and very impressive. $ 1,125

Best Prop of the Week: The Demons Hypospray was just a beautiful piece with great detailing and metal pieces. It sold for $ 1,212.

Best Buy of the week: NX-01 Galley Table and Chairs at $ 268.56! Yeah the shipping is $ 550! But, if you were in LA you could have STOLE these!

Worst Buy of the week: Enterprise Ensign Mayweather jumpsuit at $ 4,605.55????

Sleeper of the Week: Suliban Costume at $ 575.99. A great deal on an important costume.



And here are some prices realized:


5 HIGHEST PRICED ITEMS THAT SOLD

Enterprise Ensign Mayweather jumpsuit $ 4,605.55

Enterprise Archer jumpsuit $ 4,050

Enterprise Commander Tucker jumpsuit $ 3,727.77

Enterprise Lt. Reed jumpsuit $ 3,605.55

Enterprise Ensign Sato jumpsuit $ 3,605.55


Special thanks to Aaron Carlson, who every week, compiles all the stats on that week's auctions.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Over 1,000 visitors!

Well, last weekend we topped 1,000 unique visitors since I launched the blog! Thanks to everyone who reads the blog and those who have emailed me. I have made some good friends through this blog and hope it has served you all well.

I write this blog, not because I am some expert on Star Trek props, there are others who know more than me, but because there needs to be a resource for those of us who are new to the hobby. Prop collecting is a rather new and very small hobby and there is not only enormous secrecy between collectors (something that I do not think serves the hobby well) but there is a huge amount of fraud. Information is the key to not getting ripped off. And while we know that the Its a Wrap auctions are legit, I think many of us are looking at Star Trek Props beyond IAW and I want to make sure we are all well informed and support each other to make this hobby fun...what it should be.

Thanks to everyone!

Alec

Thursday, March 15, 2007

It's a Wrap Report Card - another view

As I take writing this blog as a serious journalistic exercise, I always endeavor to be accurate. I get lots of emails every day and today I got one from Jim Felicita, which gives a positive view on his experiences with It's a Wrap. He especially praises Dominic who works at IAW and I have heard many positive things about Dominic and he deserves our praise. Here is what Jim wrote (reprinted with his permission)

Hi Alec,
First of all let me say that I love your Star Trek auction blog. I am a Star Trek fan but not an expert by any means and your comments have been extremely helpful to me. So far I have won 4 costumes from It's a Wrap eBay auction.
My experience with Its a Wrap has been somewhat different from what you reported in that I have actually been pretty happy with their service. They have returned all my phone calls and e-mails within a day or two. I always ask for and e-mail only Dominic. I have found him to be very responsive, friendly and helpful. He has told me they listen to customers comments and they are trying to make things better.
I live in the LA area and I've been going to their store in Burbank and picking up the outfits I win in person. I call ahead, usually on Monday following the Friday auction. and I pick them up on Wednesday or Thursday. I always pay by cash, and even though the costumes are packaged I open and carefully inspect them (once they almost gave me an extra costume; I won two items and they were going to give me two boxes but both of my costumes turned out to be in one box!). The people in the back room at Its a Wrap! are very busy packaging and shipping outfits and props, and I have the impression they probably could use some more help...carefully packing and shipping all those items as well as bringing new items over from the warehouse is no small job. They have 2-3 people packing and shipping when I've been there, and they too have been very friendly and helpful to me - especially Ruben.
I realize not everyone can pick up their winnings and it is frustrating to wait a month to get your items, and that situation should be improved.
I think your comments are accurate with respect to the item selections, descriptions, tags etc. I too wish they would photograph the tags, as the tags make all the difference with some of these items. I also like their certificates of authenticity with photos of the items. I wish they included the description that was in the auction listing!
Anyway I want to thank you for your postings and I hope you will keep up the great work!
Best regards,
Jim Felicita
Huntington Beach CA


So I hope that gives everyone another perspective on IAW!

Alec

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

It's a Wrap 3 Month Report Card

OK, the It's a Wrap auctions have been going on for over 3 months now and so I thought it was time to give them a review. The auctions were supposed to last 6 months, but anyone who saw the History Channel special and saw that warehouse knows that there will be at least a year of these auctions!

I graded IAW on 6 categories:

1) Customer Support

2) Quality of Descriptions

3) Selection

4) Shipping

5) Web Site

6) Overall Improvement

No overall grade as heck, the mere fact that Paramount is letting this happen gives IAW a passing grade as we LOVE this stuff! (much to the detriment of some of our bank accounts).

So here goes.....


1) Customer Support

This is absolutely the biggest problems with the auctions. I have yet to speak to one winner who had NOT had problems dealing with IAW. Failure to return calls, failure to answer emails, not shipping for weeks, items not complete as advertised. Really, there is no excuse for this. Now I KNOW the guys in the warehouse have their hands full. They catalog, photograph, research and list all the items each week. They also have to manage orders and ship the items as well as answer customer support. So if they are overworked, then I have to put the blame squarely on the management of IAW. Not only does it appear that IAW is under staffed, at the warehouse, but they don't even have the right technology to make the process work. This isn't rocket science. Use Marketworks, Andale, Vendio or any number of products that can automate your eBay sales, integrate your web site and make everyone's life easier while saving a ton of time and aggravation!

GRADE D


2) Quality of Descriptions

Ok, at the beginning their titles were awful and it looked like they had no clue. The Orange Radiation Suit I won was titled "Star Trek Feature Film". Did they not know what the stuff was? Did they not know how to use eBay? Had they never listed before? Real simple stuff they were blowing, which was only more aggravating as this was eBay 101 and they had many people offer to help and they said no to everyone. Now over time, the titles have improved to the point that they are good.

The descriptions are good, but sometimes inadequate. While they do an excellent job researching each costume and noting what episode it comes from and even what scene, they should include a screencap to add legitimacy (www.trekcore.com has an insane # of screencaps). Also, they need to understand how important the tagging is on costumes and research it more thoroughly. Take a photo of the tags and look for every tag!
GRADE B


3) Selection

Well, first one needs to appreciate that there is a ton of mediocre costumes and props mixed in with the gems at that warehouse. Not every piece is a hero costume or prop. But IAW has put up a nice mixture of both props and costumes, and the themed weeks are a nice touch. No one is sure how they get what they do to list on eBay, so they may not have control over this. But with the exception of the last two weeks, which have been very weak, the auctions have had some great items and enough of a diversity that there is something for everyone.
GRADE A-


4) Shipping

Well, the quality of their packing is great. Everything arrives safely and well packed. The Certificates of Authenticity are nice and include a photo, a nice touch.

Unfortunately the amount of time it takes to get an item can vary from days (some people have gotten their items without paying for them) and weeks (my friend waited almost a month to get a set of patches!).

Again, this is lack of a technology system to manage this all. If they had one they could spit out packing invoices every day and ship in a timely manner.
GRADE B


5) Web Site

Let's ignore the fact that It's a Wrap is insane if they think anyone is going to pay $ 150,000 for the Andy Probert Painting or $ 100,000 for the Ceti Eel moles. Maybe at 10% of those prices they MIGHT sell. Plus every other item on the site is overpriced. They have sold only a few items.

The technology sucks because they can't update it every week. It is some type of static web site without any decent inventory management feature that doesn't allow fresh inventory to be circulated through on a weekly basis before being listed on eBay. The web site hasn't been updated in 3 months and so is useless basically.

In this day and age of Web 2.0 and Internet products that work, this is inexcusable.
GRADE F


6) Overall Improvement

How has IAW improved all categories over the first 3 months? Well, there customer service hasn't improved one bit. Their descriptions and titles have gotten better, as has their selection and they mixture any given week. The quality of the shipping has been good the whole time, though their timing is still erratic. The web site hasn't improved one bit. So I am giving them a "C" which is average by grading terms. Got better in some areas, didn't improve in others. GRADE C


So, while I won't give them an overall grade, I think their strengths and weaknesses are obvious. How would I recommend changing this?

1) More staff - They simply need more people if they are going to have such an inefficient system

2) Better technology - If they aren't going to staff up, then get a decent eBay management / eCommerce system. This will reduce the workload and make their storefront something worth going to.

3) Make customer service a priority. It isn't now. Unanswered emails, no efficient way of tracking an order. This is critical. People are getting tired of the nonsense.

Well, if you agree or disagree, post a comment and we will chat about it!

Alec

Monday, March 12, 2007

Fake props being sold as real on eBay


A certain seller has taken to offering replica props as real ones on eBay. You can see the seller's current offerings here. Check out their previous auctions here to see why this is so obviously a scam. He has multiple copies of each prop.

Read his auction descriptions:

"This is a prop used on Star Trek Voyager, it is a rare piece to get hold of and comes with a letter of COA."

And on the 5 Voyager Doctor holo-emitters he auctioned off:

"THIS IS A PROP FROM THE SHOW WITH A LETTER OF AUTHENTICITY"




Offering an obvious replica with a Certificate of Authenticity and not mentioning it is a replica is an obvious attempt to rip people off by making them think the auction is for a real screen-used prop. Obviously most people know these are replicas, but enough don't to drive the price up into the $ 200 range.

STAY AWAY.

Alec

(and thanks to Dr. Watson for supplying the information exposing this scam!)


HOW TO REPORT FRAUD TO EBAY

1) Go to the bottom of the item page. Click on "Report this item"

2) In Step 1 click on "Fraudulent Listings"

3) In Step click "You suspect a listing is fraudulent you didn't bid.

4) Click "Continue"

5) Under "Contact Customer Support" Click "Email us"

6) The item number fills itself in. Just add an explanation of why the item is a fraud.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

It's a Wrap eBay auctions - Week 13 Preview


Week 13 Preview

This week is a big Enterprise week. The selection of both props and costumes is very good and there are lots of hero costumes. There are Archer, Reed, Tucker, Mayweather and Sato jumpsuits, and even an Orion Slave Girl costume!

The Archer jumpsuit is the perfect example of It's a Wrap needing to more carefully describe its auctions. It appears this is a stunt costume by the tagging, but there appears to be a Bakula tag which also lists the stuntman as well? A photo would help serious collectors.

The Reed, Mayweather and Sato jumpsuits are all in the $ 500-600 range now and should all go in the $ 1,200-1,500 range. The Tucker should bring more as he is a more popular character. His costume is already over $ 1,000 and should go in the $ 1,500-2,000 range.

The Xindi Reptile costume is a great piece. Using the jumpsuit from the Reman costumes of Star Trek: Nemesis, without the shoulder pad/chest piece of those costumes, these are great costumes. The last one, sold for $ 1,276 and this one is already at $ 1,460. I see this around the $ 2,000 mark as last week's Reman costume went over that number.

Ok, who doesn't love Orion Slave Girls? Ok, let me re-phrase that. What adult male with a pulse doesn't like Orion Slave Girls? Well, now we have a chance to own the costume from "Bound" the Enterprise episode that let us know that Orion women are all Dominatrixes! None the less, a very cool costume. It is at $ 485 at the moment and should easily go between $ 1,000 and $ 1,500.

Bargains? Well, there are a couple of distressed Enterprise background jumpsuits that you should be able to pick up for $ 800 or so I would bet. The MACO Terran Empire Jumpsuit is real nice and should go under $1,000. The T'Pol desert stunt uniform is somewhat distressed and so I am not sure how great a buy this is.

I really like the Suliban costume, which is under $ 150 right now! Not sure why the lack of interest, as this is a great costume.


As far as props go:

Well, this is one of the better weeks for props and if you like Enterprise, there is plenty for you.

The Klingon Bat'Leth is the top prop at the moment at $ 760 and should go over $ 1,000 as the last one that came on did. These are nice items, but remember, there are a bunch of these in the warehouse, so don't go crazy!









The Hypospray used by Peter Weller in the Enterprise episode "Demons" is an absolutely stunning piece. There are a lot of collectors who love props like this, and so I think this hits $ 1,500 easy. Check out the detail on the handle, and this prop was made for only one scene!

The "First Flight Sensor Package" is dynamite, and already over $ 700. This item could easily top $ 2,000. It is really well detailed and will display well in someone's collection.

There is a Phase Pistol and holster, but note that this is the smaller Art Asylum version, which is a bit smaller than the resin or rubber ones made for the show. Paramount actually bought a bunch of these nicely detailed toys and repainted them for use on the show. Still a nice piece and screen used. Probably $ 1,200 or so. I certainly don't think it is worth more than that.

The Tricorder and holster is cool, but the Tricorder doesn't open up. Still, a popular item and will top $ 1,000 as it is already over $ 500.

The Universal Translator prop is awesome and if you have an Enterprise communicator to fit this onto you are set! It lights up and the detail is beautiful. I see this prop topping $ 1,500 easy and won't be surprised if it goes over $ 2,000.

There is a Communicator with Holster, but, like the Tricorder, it is a background version that does not open.

The Enterprise Emergency Medical Kit is disappointing only in that it has big Q-tips! Come on! It is the 22nd century, isn't there some ultra-sonic doo-hickey that takes the place of something as mundane as Q-tips? Other than that, there is some cool pieces in this set and how impressed will your buddies be when you whip this out the next time your friend gets a paper cut?

I also like Captain Archer's Water Polo certificate, but it is already over $ 300 and it is a piece of paper! Still, kind of cool.

If you are looking for a good deal, I think the MACO Pistol and Rifle, both rubber versions, will go in the $ 600-800 range. They are both nice pieces if you can deal with them being rubber. The Andorian Pistol is also a good value as I don't see it going over $ 600.


Half the items this week are still under $ 150, so spend time looking at the bottom half of the auctions. If you are looking for value this week, you will have to have a good plan and spend wisely. Look at the items based on when they end, and plan out your strategy with this in mind. There are so many good deals that will be there this week, and enough good props and costumes, that prices shouldn't get out of hand.

Good hunting!

Alec

Friday, March 9, 2007

It's a Wrap eBay auctions - Week 12 Results

Week 12

While Week 12 was not spectacular, it had some interesting costumes, and a few nice props. It had a lot of inexpensive costumes and there were some real bargains in the $ 500-$800 range.

There were a lot of Voyager items this week. The first rank pins, these being the Marquis, sold very well. And again, we are seeing new bidders driving up prices.

The Voyager B'Elanna Torres Starfleet Uniform was a rare two piece Voyager uniform and a few collectors I know were interested in it for that reason. It also had a Maquis rank pin which was rare as most of you know, as few of these costumes have rank pins. The costume, even though distressed, went for $ 2,300. A healthy price for a Voyager character costume.

The Reman Warrior costume went for $ 2,125. It is a nice costume that included two latex head pieces that were used in the film. The last one went for $ 1,930 without the latex headpiece. So this was in the ballpark. Still one of my favorite costumes.

The Harry Kim costume went for $ 1,525, which is a bit more than the Voyager costumes went for when the last hero costumes were on. at that time they were going for about $ 1,300 each. So this costume was pretty close.

The Enterprise uniform jumpsuit went for $ 1,580.55 which was 50% higher than similar jumpsuits sold for in the past. The winner was a new bidder and probably hasn't seen where costumes have been going for previously. I think he paid way high for this, but new bidders haven't learned the hard lessons some of us have about patience and the depth of supply there is.

The Neelix costume went for $ 869 and the Kes for $ 565. Those are great prices on costumes of main Voyager characters.

The Ferengi costume went for only $ 555 also, and these prices should tell you where to bargain shop as we move forward. There are a lot of great costumes well under $ 1,000, so any collector or Star Trek fan can get one.


On the prop front:

The Travel Isolinear Storage Assembly was the high prop item this week and was well worth the $ 1,825 it went for. It really was a beautiful piece, and considering where other props have gone for lately, I think the buyer did well.

The Thoracic Hypospray kit went for $ 1,555,55. A simple, but interesting prop, it had a retractable needle, which will make for some fun when guests arrive! It came with a nice case as well and was reasonably priced compared to similar props.


The Phaser Rifle went for $ 1,601.99 which is reasonable for a rubber stunt version. It was a nice piece and will look good on display. Always be aware though that rubber items will decay somewhat over time.


The four Maquis provisional rank pins went for The crewman version went for $ 213.50, the ensign version went for $ 217.50 and the two Lt. versions went for $ 210 and $ 255. Now, considering that It's a Wrap even said in the listing that they have a bunch of these, I think they went a bit high. I could easily see these in the $ 100-125 range. I guess if you have a Voyager costume that needs one, you need to try and be patient!


So here are some awards for the week:

Best Costume of the Week: The Reman Warrior costume. Great costume with nice extras.

Best Prop of the Week: Travel Isolinear Storage Assembly. A beautiful piece.

Best Buy of the week: "The Wounded" Cardassian costume. One of the first Cardassian costumes before the familiar gray ones at only $ 456! Great deal!

Worst Buy of the week: At $ 1,580.55 the Enterprise Uniform jumpsuit is 50% higher than it should be.

Sleeper of the Week: Darmok - El Adrel IV Creature. This latex monster head from a classic episode went for a paltry $ 178! Great deal on a memorable piece.



And here are some prices realized:


5 HIGHEST PRICED ITEMS THAT SOLD

Voyager Torres Starfleet Uniform $ 2,300

Reman Warrior Costume $ 2,125

Travel Isolinear Storage Assembly $ 1,825

First Contact Phaser Rifle $ 1,602

Thoraic Hypospray $1,555


Special thanks to Aaron Carlson, who every week, compiles all the stats on that week's auctions.

And now back to our original programming.....

I get emails all the time from collectors who have questions about the It's a Wrap auctions. It is lots of fun to talk to collectors and help them out. I have also made some great friends who I talk to all the time, just from these auctions and Christie's. Dana, Aaron, Grant, Matthew, Jason are all great people, awesome collectors and a great source of knowledge and fun.

Well, the type of cool stuff that happens is like this AM when a guy named Chris emails me asking about the Rachel Robinson outfit from the DS9 episode "The Visitor". Now first of all, Rachel Robinson is Andrew Robinson's (Garak) daughter. Second, "The Visitor" is one of my favorite episodes of DS9, which is my favorite Star Trek. So it was fun to chat about this piece, which I thought Chris could get for well under $ 300.

Well, I just got an email from Chris, who won the outfit at $ 131.50! Needsless to say, he was quite pleased.

So there are happy stories from the Star Trek world this week as well. Please let me know yours and it if is interesting, I will blog about it. I always need good stuff to post.

Alec



Tuesday, March 6, 2007

It's a Wrap eBay auctions - Week 12 Preview

Week 12 Preview

Well, this week is a step up from last week and there are some nice items this week. A lot of Voyager items with some Enterprise items mixed in. The first rank pins too were listed this week, these being the Maquis rank pins from Voyager.

I think one of the things that was most interesting this past week, is we have seen an influx of new bidders, which is probably going to keep some prices up for a while.

This week's Reman costume is already at $ 1,850. A great piece, I have wanted one myself, but have been patient as I think there are a bunch of these in the warehouse. These costumes were also turned into the Xindi costumes on Star Trek:Enterprise with the removal of the shoulder piece and the addition of the gold wire shoulder pieces. This one is nice in that it includes two latex head pieces that were used. This will undoubtedly be the highest selling item this week, and well worth it. The last one went for $ 1,930 without the latex headpiece. I think this one might go for $ 2,500-2,600.


The Voyager Torres Starfleet Uniform is interesting in that, as indicated in the description, it is the rarer two piece version rather than a jumpsuit. It also has the Maquis rank insignia pin. However, the piece is distressed and sadly, the auction description offers no photos or details of the distress.

One of the problems I have had with the It's a Wrap auctions, is the lack of detailed descriptions when needed. Now I know the guys in the warehouse work their tails off, but a sensitivity to the needs of the collector would help them serve their customers, minimize the number of questions they get, and get them higher prices for their items.

The Harry Kim uniform is nice and complete, sans the communicator badge. It is currently at $ 820 and will probably go around $ 1,500. Remember, the Voyager character costumes have gone for around $ 1,300 each so far.

The Enterprise Uniform is a background one and should go for $ 800-900 judging by what has happened in the past. It is a nice costume with undershirt.
Where are the bargains in the costume selection?

The Voyager Vorik costume is a nice piece and I like this as a great potential bargain. Vorik was a semi-regular character and had a prominent role in an episode or two. I think this goes at a reasonable price and think it is a good potential deal.

The Neelix is a nice costume and only at $ 270 right now! I think this easily goes under $ 1,000 and it is a major character. Same goes for the Kes costume.

The Ferengi costume is at $ 128!!! It is a background character and should go cheap. I think this will be a great deal and probably the sleeper of the week. If you like the Ferengi, and want a cheap costume, this could be it.


As far as props go:

The Travel Isolinear Storage Assembly is a nice piece and will be the top prop this week. It lights up and is quite nice. The Thoracic Hypospray kit is also a nice piece. Both these items will go over $ 1,000 easily.

The Star Trek Phaser Rifle is a nice example of the Type III Phaser Rifle. It is a stunt version and in rubber, which, as you know if you have been reading my blog, is not my favorite material. They crack over time and wind up looking pretty poor. But this one is certainly a nice one and has some great detailing. It is already at $ 565 and will go over $ 1,000 easy.

Speaking of rubber, stay away from, the Next Generation Type II Phaser unless you get it cheap. It is rubber, and latex, two materials that do not age well. it is also molded as one piece, so you can't take it out.

Finally, there are four Voyager Maquis provisional rank pins. Two Lts., and ensign and a crewman. Now what is interesting is that IAW tells you they have a bunch of these! So don't bid these up too high! Just be patient f you need one for a costume.

Check back tomorrow as I have some information on some non-IAW Star Trek items on IAW.

And as always....good hunting!

Alec

Saturday, March 3, 2007

It's a Wrap eBay auctions - Week 11 Results

Week 11

The poor selection of this week's eBay auctions from It's a Wrap that I discussed in my Week 11 Preview resulted in a record low total sales number of $ 35,717.70 While the lack of reserves meant that every item sold, there were only 5 items that sold for more than $ 1,000.

The Vulcan Musician's costume was the highest selling item this week as many of us predicted. The Klingon costume from Star Trek: Enterprise was a good buy at $1,125. Although not as Iconic as a TNG uniform, it was a nice piece.

The Admiral Jameson top went over $ 1,000, which was higher than when it failed to hit reserve a few weeks ago at $715 A shame it didn't have the pants, a sit would be a great piece then, but still nice.


I really like the Starfleet Jumpsuit from The Motion Picture at $ 967. I happen to love these costumes, though I think few people liked them at the time. I own Kirk's Jumpsuit and Decker's jumpsuit (thanks Andy!), and they display really well.

On the Prop front, I almost went after the Orion PADD as it was a real beauty. Reasonably priced at $1,125, I think the buyer got a good deal on this beauty. The Son'a PADD at $521 was a good deal as well. These pieces came into their own in TNG and are all over the place in the TNG era series. Between TNG, DS9 and Voyager, there are a bunch of these that will be propping up over the next few months.

The half a missile was pretty cool as well. Mounted on a wall, these props look great.

There were over 60 items under $300 in this week's auction and so a lot of people got cool items at a good price. I really love the fact that so many collectors can get items that were used in the series. Prop collecting has been a very small hobby and the collectors very private. Before these auctions, you had to bid in a Profiles in History auction in order to get a Star Trek prop, and even then, the pieces were very expensive. Now people are able to get props at an inexpensive price. And even though they may not be a hero phaser, they are important pieces to the collectors who buy them.


So here are some awards for the week: I am changing the awards to split "Best Item" into Best Costume and Best Prop.


Best Costume of the Week: The Vulcan Musician costume. Nice piece, and the best on a bad week.

Best Prop of the Week: The Orion PADD. Really a beautiful prop.

Best Buy of the week: The Star Trek:TMP Jumpsuit at $967 is a great deal for a classic costume.

Worst Buy of the week: Since there were so few items that sold high, there were really no bad deals.

Sleeper of the Week: Ferengi Bloodlines Costume. A Ferengi costume under $ 800!


And here are some prices realized:


5 HIGHEST PRICED ITEMS THAT SOLD

Vulcan Musician Costume with headband $1,925

Enterprise Half a Missile $1,585

Star Trek Enterprise Klingon Costume $1,175

Star Trek Enterprise Orion PADD $1,125

Star Trek: TNG Admiral Jameson Jacket $1,025



Special thanks to Aaron Carlson, who every week, compiles all the stats on that week's auctions.

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Christie's Auction Catalog still available

I noted on eBay yesterday that people were selling the Christie's Star Trek auction catalog for $ 200 a piece. What a rip off! Christie's still has a bunch and they are selling them for $ 60 for the set of two (plus $ 8 shipping). If you haven't gotten your yet, do so! Simply call 1-212-636-2000. It is well worth the investment as it is a valuable resource. It is two volumes and covers the 1000 lots sold with photos for each lot! This is a must have.


Alec