Sign bubble? Topic of conversation
Last Post 05 Jul 2021 02:41 AM by Mick G. 15 Replies.
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Mick GUser is Offline
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24 Jun 2021 05:06 AM  

Hey Gang, what are everybodys thoughts on the price of enamels over the last couple years? I'm finding myself wondering if these crazy prices are going to stay or if we will see some sort of correction in the future? I've been sitting on the sidelines mostly due to this lately, and have lost out on a lot of signs that 2-3 years ago my current bids would have been overpaying, but they are still selling for like double+ my current bids. 

Look what happened to glass insulators that were all the rage in the 1970's and are practicaly worthless now. I'm not saying that orignal enamels will every be worthless, but the concept might be the same in another few years if the buyers frenzy subsides a bit, and the older generation gets out....who knows.

Also the modern fakes can't be helpling, I know Spence is a big buyer of those dirty indians repops that are flooding the market, but I would have though it would be affecting buyer confidence on original signs.

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24 Jun 2021 08:53 AM  

 Amazingly , Mick , just for once , I agree with what you are saying  . You are thinking to yourself  , " how long can this crazy situation continue " ??

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24 Jun 2021 06:22 PM  
My biggest concern is repros become that good that you can't tell what's genuine and what's not,I've said before that either someone's come across a hoard of Morris radiator cutouts or someone's done a very good repro and they are selling for thousands,very hard to tell without the back of the sign to look at.
Mick GUser is Offline
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24 Jun 2021 10:45 PM  
Yeah that's a real concern. If that ever happens, then the price of originals becomes meaningless and with the market continuing to flood, the originals will never hold any value as no one will know what's authentic, its already happening with two sided signs.
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24 Jun 2021 11:06 PM  
100% true Mick,similar thing happen with cast iron Railway signs I've got Millers price guide books from the late 80s and the big ' no trespass etc ' were £300-400 then the repros came along and prices fell massively.
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24 Jun 2021 11:17 PM  

Many signs have virtually doubled in the last 18 months, basically during the Covid pandemic. Its a fact that many collectors have not got their fix at shows, not been spending lots and lots of money on holidays, leisure, sport, eating out, etc, etc or simply down the pub !!

So they have been online with surplus cash in their accounts. This in my opinion has pushed prices to ridiculous and unsustainable levels. Advertising enamels etc in " real terms " are probably dearer than they have ever been. I think this is an undeniable fact.

I have heard so many times recently " they will never drop " ..." Its a one way bet " .... " you can't lose "

I say buy what you like and if you can afford it then ...no problem.

But be aware one way bets do come tumbling down sometimes. You actually only need a very few people in a relatively small market to squeeze prices and drive them to unrealistic levels.

About 10 to 12 years ago quality Guinness Collectables went through the roof with good pieces selling at anywhere from £500 to about £3,000. Then with about 6 months 3 of the main players stopped collecting. One retired / changed tack, One died, and one slowly sold up. Withing a year prices had at least halved and years later most pieces are nowhere near where they once were !!

 

It could'nt happen ..............BUT IT DID !!

 

lummox

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25 Jun 2021 07:41 AM  

Any market is driven by supply and demand and if the product becomes more and more scarce and demand keeps increasing - up go the prices.

Speaking with a dealer recently he said that there just isn’t the stock being found and discovered and coming onto the market anymore, so scarcity increases – I guess there are only so many old allotment sheds with enamel sign walls still left out there. As he said, until some of the private collections begin to be released onto the market, I can only see it continuing in the upward direction.
 
The other curious thing is what is driving this demand? Yes, us private collectors are driving it, but I also wonder about the commercial areas such as bars, shops and restaurants wanting a retro look. Just look at the increased number of people going to flea fairs and places like Kempton. A lot more people are buying to make money and not for the pleasure of owning and collecting.
 
I agree with the pandemic point that people have cash burning a hole in their pockets creating a buying frenzy, but I also think there has been a big increase in the interior designer demand. Just look at the number of TV programmes now available on the subject of picking, upcycling...
 
The same thing has happened with the old phones, with the UK stock now quite scarce and all in people’s private collections now. One good thing with phones is that the UK and Europe supplied most of the old commonwealth countries, so if you are willing to travel, good ones may still be found.
 
Happy hunting - for what it's worth...
 
 
Mick GUser is Offline
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25 Jun 2021 03:24 PM  
Hi there phoneguy, could you post some pics of your phone collection? I'd be interested in seeing it if possible. I promise not to call you out on it !
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26 Jun 2021 08:26 AM  
Posted By Mick G on 25 Jun 2021 03:24 PM
Hi there phoneguy, could you post some pics of your phone collection? I'd be interested in seeing it if possible. I promise not to call you out on it !


Hey Mick, 

Here are just some of them.

1930s - 1950s (British)

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26 Jun 2021 11:00 AM  
Bet its mayhem in your house when some one rings..🤣🤣🤣
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26 Jun 2021 12:00 PM  
Very interesting topic. My opinion is, maybe enamel signs are going the way of collectors cars or the art market. Huge increase in prices in both areas and very similar clients, with a mixture of financial speculation and collecting fanatics who appreciate their great art. Money earns less than nothing in a bank or other types of funds at the moment, so people are on the look out for something to put their money into, with the added benefit of signs being a beautiful investment you can hold in your hands. I think this explains why super perfect Enamels with no resto have particularly risen in value as these are now often described now as investment grade collectables.
I am also a comic collector for my sins and can see a direct parallel between the enamel sign market and the comic book marketplace. PriceS for rarities in both markets have gone through the roof over the last few years with the deciding factors being rarity and condition, condition, condition. It is an odd comparison when a Fantastic Four number one in VG condition ( which is just about average) is worth the same as a mint Frys 5 Boys or a Spiderman Number 1 (which unfortunately I sold in 1980 for peanuts ) can today go for £20.000 or more. Years ago they were worth 9d each, now they are traded in massive auctions encased in sealed professionally graded plastic boxes so you can't even read them in case they are damaged. I know some sign collectors frown on my having signs on the wall because they might get damaged and keep their signs bubblewrapped in a cool dry place - maybe they are right - time will tell.
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trixon telstar

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26 Jun 2021 04:04 PM  

 If God hadn't intended us to hang signs on the wall , he wouldn't have put fixing holes in them Richard .

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26 Jun 2021 05:00 PM  

 I agree trixon, although I wish I hadn't nailed them up with a hammer in solidarity with the  the olden ways, when I first began collecting - I still remember enamel flying off them when I missed ouch! ......

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04 Jul 2021 12:01 PM  
People have been saying the bubble will burst since I was 5 years old.
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04 Jul 2021 08:45 PM  
Me too...
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