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Old 08-18-2017, 03:11 PM
vyacheslav vyacheslav is offline
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Default Overall MIJ Prices. Your thoughts?

Hello,

The post by Drumbob about the Pearl Aqua Sparkle kit got me thinking about the overall prices of MIJ drums lately, say within the last year. It seems like, at least from an asking price standpoint, they have gone up considerably.

I got into vintage drums because of MIJ kits. They have that vintage vibe, look cool, sounded good (with proper heads/tuning) and most importantly for me, were an affordable way to have a vintage kit. I own many MIJ kits, and all for about the collective price of maybe 2 Rogers Dayton or 60's Ludwig kits.

Obviously the build quality was inferior to the USA stuff. But, you can always make MIJ kits better: New heads, better hoops, bearing edge re-cutting, interior shell lacquering (for sonic and strength purposes), better replacement hardware (cymbal arms, brackets etc.). I can tell you that once I polish up an old MIJ, make improvements, and tune it up, I'm just as proud and happy to play one of them as I would be for 65 Ludwig Clubdate.

Does everyone agree that prices (at least asking prices) have gone up in the last year or so? What do you think the reasoning for this is? I would love to blame TV shows like "American Pickers" "Storage Wars" or "Pawn Stars" etc., just because they have many people thinking, "Hey if I have something old, that means it's desirable and worth a lot of money!". Of course that is only true in a very small percentage of cases (most old stuff is just "old"). However, those shows have been around for awhile now, and are past their prime in popularity, and have been for a few years now as compared to their heyday 5-10 years ago, so I don't necessarily think it's because of those TV shows.

Also, I think another reason might be misguided internet research, especially since those Facebook "Selling Group" pages are now popular (I don't use Facebook, but I've heard that from reliable sources ). For example, daughter is cleaning out the home of her father after he has passed or moved into a facility. She hauls his old drum set out from the attic and has no idea what it is or what it might be worth, she just knows it's old, because she remembers her Dad playing it when she was young. If it's an old (fill in the stencil name here) kit, she types "Vintage Drum Set Value" into Google, and all it shows her is Ludwig, Rogers and Gretsch kits from that era, so she thinks "Well, this looks the same as those", and she prices them in accordance with the stuff she found on Google.

I would love to here your thoughts and opinions on this.

V
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Last edited by vyacheslav; 08-18-2017 at 03:18 PM.
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  #2  
Old 08-18-2017, 03:44 PM
CTMichaelV CTMichaelV is offline
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Default Re: Overall MIJ Prices. Your thoughts?

V -
I could not agree more. Over the past few years, especially on eBay and even Reverb, it seems that everyone with a MIJ snare thinks it is "rare" and asks unrealistic prices. Asking $175 to $250 for a WMP DelRay or Majestic snare is way out of line. I have reached out to several of the sellers and let them know that their prices are off base and even given comparisons to the well made gear from Leedy, Ludwig, etc. and made a fair offer. Some will tell me "I don't care, someone will buy it at that price".
I am like you and have a boat load of MIJ snares that I started to collect because of the uniqueness of the wraps that were not offered by the traditional companies but the prices are now getting out of hand. Please don't get me wrong, I will continue to purchase them, but only at a reasonable price. I am now just being much more selective because don't want to have to totally rebuild or pour so much more $ into a drum to bring it up to a higher standard like the better quality makers. You end up paying the same price for the MIJ as you would for a nice vintage well made snare when you do that. Just my 2 cents worth.
Michael
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Old 08-18-2017, 04:06 PM
Trilok_Gurtu Trilok_Gurtu is offline
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Default Re: Overall MIJ Prices. Your thoughts?

Hello.

It's a fair question. I agree that prices have gone up a bit. In my opinion its two main types of persons who have caused this:

1) 'Vintage' drum shops. Looking to cash in on the raising popularity of MIJ drums. I've experienced this first hand.

2) Private restoring/flipper types. Lots of those on here. I've done it a bit myself as well.

Ultimately the market will speak for itself, just how it goes. If someone wants a kit bad enough, they'll pay it. I have one MIJ kit I know I over paid for, but I really loved the condition, finish, etc...so I ate the mark up. I'm fine with that decision.

I kind of see the higher prices as a good/bad thing; good being, I make more if I put effort into restoring a kit, and bad when some people try to over charge for a beaten up kit. I'm sorry, I'm not paying $200.00 for a MIJ kit that'll need LOTS of restoration work to make sell-able. If I see a nicely restored kit, that mark up has to be taken into account...its only fair.

Historically MIJ kits got a bad wrap (made badly, bad sound, etc), thus the bottom prices. Now its known that these kits can look AND sound amazing. I've used some of mine over my MIA kits, live and in the studio. My engineer buddy is asking me more and more to "bring that Stewart kit". He used to always ask for my early 70's Luddies. So, MIJ's have evolved, in a positive way...the market is rewarding it.

All this being said, there's still amazing deals out there...maybe just not as many, and you have to work a bit harder to find them. To me, that just makes them that much more exciting in the end. Hell, last weekend I scored an insane deal, got a early 70's Premier 2000 COA, in amazing shape for $20.00...guy got it at an auction, didn't know what he had. Then a few days later I JUST missed out on a vintage Yamaha SDM5 snare, in mint shape, for $20.00 as well. So deals still exist.

On another note, I'd like to add how undervalued MIE drums are, including; Premier, John Grey, Olympic, Beverley, etc etc. I own lots of 60/70's drums; MIA, MIJ and MIE...and if we're comparing things based on "build quality" (which MIA fans always point to when discrediting MIJ drums), then MIE drums are superior to MIJ's, AND MIA's. The build quality and styling of those Brit drums is unreal. To me, MIE's are the best deals going, when comparing cost, build quality, finishes, sound, rarity, etc.

In the end, I love all my drums, for different reasons, but mainly-the sound. I could care less about what, where, who and how they were made.

My two cents.
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Old 08-18-2017, 04:15 PM
Trilok_Gurtu Trilok_Gurtu is offline
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Default Re: Overall MIJ Prices. Your thoughts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CTMichaelV View Post
V -
I could not agree more. Over the past few years, especially on eBay and even Reverb, it seems that everyone with a MIJ snare thinks it is "rare" and asks unrealistic prices. Asking $175 to $250 for a WMP DelRay or Majestic snare is way out of line. I have reached out to several of the sellers and let them know that their prices are off base and even given comparisons to the well made gear from Leedy, Ludwig, etc. and made a fair offer. Some will tell me "I don't care, someone will buy it at that price".
I am like you and have a boat load of MIJ snares that I started to collect because of the uniqueness of the wraps that were not offered by the traditional companies but the prices are now getting out of hand. Please don't get me wrong, I will continue to purchase them, but only at a reasonable price. I am now just being much more selective because don't want to have to totally rebuild or pour so much more $ into a drum to bring it up to a higher standard like the better quality makers. You end up paying the same price for the MIJ as you would for a nice vintage well made snare when you do that. Just my 2 cents worth.
Michael
Yeah, there IS some insane prices that certain parties are asking for...I do agree. However, most also sit there forever haha. I've messaged guys saying "hey, your kit has been sitting for 6 months, maybe the market is telling you something".

When I've picked up a beat up MIJ snare for $20.00, take it apart, clean it all up, new pics and put on CL, then sell. Sure I'm looking to turn a profit, to a degree...but not $175.00, or $200.00.
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Old 08-18-2017, 07:39 PM
idrum4fun idrum4fun is offline
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Default Re: Overall MIJ Prices. Your thoughts?

I completely agree with what everyone above has posted! It's to the point where almost any MIJ snare drum you see, especially on eBay, is priced well over $100. That's just nuts! The exception are the drums that are very clean and have cool finishes! There is that occasional drum, or kit, that slips by and listed for a fair price. Just seems like they are getting harder to find, though! Fortunately, I'm very happy with my collection of MIJ snare drums, many of which have some very unique finishes and other hardware related items that make them different from your run-of-the-mill MIJ drums!

Here are 5 MIJ snare drums in my collection. Still need to take pictures of the rest! I purchased all my snare drums for prices well below what you now see. Guess I was just lucky!

-Mark
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Last edited by idrum4fun; 08-18-2017 at 07:49 PM.
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Old 08-20-2017, 03:54 AM
musiqman musiqman is offline
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Default Re: Overall MIJ Prices. Your thoughts?

It depends on which brand MIJ. There is quite a difference between some of them. And also differend steps like student and pro kits.

And at the end it comes back to what one is willing to pay for a kit that makes up the day to day price of a kit. Reverb's price guide and sold listings and eBay's sold items are a good reference. Live listings are not.
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Last edited by musiqman; 08-20-2017 at 03:56 AM.
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  #7  
Old 08-20-2017, 09:33 AM
CTMichaelV CTMichaelV is offline
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Default Re: Overall MIJ Prices. Your thoughts?

I agree with all the posts, the fun is in the hunt. Just picked up a 60's Majestic snare in Aqua Satin Flame for under $90 in pretty nice shape and mainly needs a cleaning and possibly new heads.

ID4F-
Some great snares! Really love the MIJ wraps. And by the way, my offer is still out there for when your ready to part with the Pearl Fantasia snare
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  #8  
Old 08-20-2017, 03:18 PM
Mr.Toast Mr.Toast is offline
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Default Re: Overall MIJ Prices. Your thoughts?

I'm a noob when it comes to the vintage drum market, but I am veteran of 30+ years of guitar and amp flipping/collecting. I see a lot of similarities between the two markets for sure. After the vintage MIA guitars and amps from the big brands got picked over and prices for those items became standardized, the market turned to the off-brand MIA stuff like Danelectro, Supro, etc. and to a lesser extent the MIJ stuff. But, for the secondary MIA stuff and MIJ stuff to fetch the big $s it has to be more than just old, it needs to have the "cool factor." Especially in aesthetics, and to a lesser extent in it's sound and play-ability. Age and rarity are not enough.
I think the next area of the guitar/amp collecting market to grow will be the early boutique made stuff. The stuff hand-made before the maker dies off, gets too big, or sells out.
I wonder if this will happen in the drum world? My thought is no, or at least not nearly to the same level. I'm not aware of many boutique drum makers that make their own shells, and I'd guess there are even fewer that make their own shells and hardware.
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Old 08-20-2017, 03:31 PM
mlayton mlayton is offline
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Default Re: Overall MIJ Prices. Your thoughts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by idrum4fun View Post
I completely agree with what everyone above has posted! It's to the point where almost any MIJ snare drum you see, especially on eBay, is priced well over $100. That's just nuts! The exception are the drums that are very clean and have cool finishes! There is that occasional drum, or kit, that slips by and listed for a fair price. Just seems like they are getting harder to find, though! Fortunately, I'm very happy with my collection of MIJ snare drums, many of which have some very unique finishes and other hardware related items that make them different from your run-of-the-mill MIJ drums!

Here are 5 MIJ snare drums in my collection. Still need to take pictures of the rest! I purchased all my snare drums for prices well below what you now see. Guess I was just lucky!

-Mark
Now those are some beauties Mark. Well done on finding those!
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Old 08-21-2017, 11:03 AM
Kenwood Kenwood is offline
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Default Re: Overall MIJ Prices. Your thoughts?

I think that generally prices have spiked on Mij drums
Especially complete kits and lone snare drums that are in good condition cleaned up or original

one can still find some bargains on partials and less complete or pristine pieces

There will always be the sweet deals here and there
just as with the vintage American stuff

But those days of the fifty dollar MIJ drum kit score are getting fewer and further between

Last edited by Kenwood; 08-23-2017 at 10:20 AM.
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