Sign in to follow this  
heartviolinheart

I'm thinking of selling my violin

Recommended Posts

I have a violin made by WC Ehrmann in Albany New york in 1908 which I planning to sell to move onto a better one. I bought it a decade ago for 8000 dollars. How much should I sell it for or expect to earn? Ebay is a site I may use. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pictures would be helpful.

Clear photos of the front, back and scroll.  Other pictures might be required.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
43 minutes ago, heartviolinheart said:

How much should I sell it for or expect to earn? Ebay is a site I may use. 

Sorry to say, but probably not nearly as much as you paid for it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would not expect to do well on ebay. I like ebay for things like camera lenses that are predictable. But I'd never pay full price for a string instrument there. It's a swamp of fakes, and even once you sort that out, instruments are too variable - if you can't play it, it's an extremely risky proposition. I'd say going rate for modern instruments is 20-30% of MSRP and about half what you'd pay in a face to face sale. If you're in a remote area, it might be an option, but I'd expect to take a beating on the sale.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"The above answer is utter rubbish. Not true at all, not correct. Several Ehrmann violins have come up for auction in the past 20 years, one of which fetched around $1200 in England. Others have sold on eBay. With the growing interest in American violins, a violin made by Ehrmann, set up and in good condition is worth at least a couple thousand USD." "Steve" from Yahoo Answers

Edited by heartviolinheart

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well...regardless of the Yahoo answers...it likely is worth at least 1200-2000.  It might be worth more, so wait and see if you get more answers from MN.  You can try selling eBay, but I'd start by seeing if your local music stores are interested in it.  Your local Suzuki group and other music schools might have an advertising site.  Fiddlers might be interested, so don't dismiss the adults.  

How's the set-up?  If people are test-driving it, it should sound as good as it can.

I recently traded a violin I wasn't using in on a guitar.  I also tried selling it (not very hard, mind you)  but had no luck - so rather than take more time I decided to take my lumps.  I took 40% less than what I paid for it.

I am quite happy with my guitar.  One day I will learn how to play it.  In the meantime, I like looking at it...lol.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't, and won't, comment on the value for an instrument that will be, or is, for sale on a public forum, but will comment on the procedure and the question that is being asked. If you wish to know what the appraised value of your violin is, see an appraiser familiar with American violins.  If you want to know how much you can "sell it for", do whatever research you can and maybe try calling one of the several luthiers in the states (especially on the east coast) who collect (and appraise) American fiddles to see if they are at all interested. You can also contact auction houses (like Tarisio or Skinner) who have offered instruments by the maker, or similar in quality to the maker, in the past.  In the end, what you can sell it for will vary according to the venue.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tarisio auction site sold one dated 1908 in 2011 (after when you bought yours) for $1025. If you buy from a shop then you are likely to take a significant hit on resale. I honestly can't see much of a variance between the responses above - no one is predicting a great result at auction.

Anyway what is your strategy for its replacement? Trading in might be an option if you want to buy at a music shop. Alternatively, there is the riskier business of buying from an auction. There has been plenty of lively debate on this forum that you should be able to find useful.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The ebay route does have at least one advantage: you get a ton of exposure. You could certainly list with a Buy It Now price that's palatable to you and see what happens. If you want information about where the market is, include the "or best offer" option (my guess is that this will primarily reveal the bottom-feeding lowballers like me, but you never know.) You might get lucky. Also, writing a good description with focused photos in good lighting goes a long way.

The instrument will surely be worth more to someone who can play it. However, there's apparently a risk: ebay/paypal seller protection does not apply to local pickup, but ebay requires you to offer an electronic payment option. So, someone can pick up your fiddle, pay with paypal, then claim their account was hacked, and you get zip. I don't think instruments are a particular attractor for that kind of scam, but it's something to ponder.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Based on all the numbers presented and what I have seen with American violins, I think you might consider keeping the instrument and saving up for a second. You might not get enough out of it to move the needle.

Also, don't think that you necessarily need $8000 or more to improve on what you have, look in all price ranges, you might be surprised at finding a good sounding lower priced instrument that will give you what you want and allow you to keep both. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, deans said:

Based on all the numbers presented and what I have seen with American violins, I think you might consider keeping the instrument and saving up for a second. You might not get enough out of it to move the needle.

Also, don't think that you necessarily need $8000 or more to improve on what you have, look in all price ranges, you might be surprised at finding a good sounding lower priced instrument that will give you what you want and allow you to keep both. 

Can you recommend any american luthiers whose violins are at least 15000 dollars?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi heartviolinheart,

I think that paying  8k for this violin a long time ago was more than it was worth, unless it came with with a really nice bow and high quality case. It is a nice looking violin but I cannot see the top clearly.  Just don't be too disappointed if you have a hard time trying to sell it or trade it in on another instrument. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, heartviolinheart said:

Can you recommend any american luthiers whose violins are at least 15000 dollars?

Any luthier (not only american) can sell the violin to you for more than 15000.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, heartviolinheart said:

Can you recommend any american luthiers whose violins are at least 15000 dollars?

I think you need to submit the word 'worth' in there (you experts are needed again). You have to be very careful HV as you are on the road to being taken to the cleaners.....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
50 minutes ago, victordriver said:

I think you need to submit the word 'worth' in there (you experts are needed again). You have to be very careful HV as you are on the road to being taken to the cleaners.....

Good point,

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
10 hours ago, Jeff Jetson said:

Hi heartviolinheart,

I think that paying  8k for this violin a long time ago was more than it was worth, unless it came with with a really nice bow and high quality case. It is a nice looking violin but I cannot see the top clearly.  Just don't be too disappointed if you have a hard time trying to sell it or trade it in on another instrument. 

How do you know I overpayed? Does it look it? Is the maker not famous

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello Heartviolinheart,

I do not know that you have overpaid on this violin. I am not a dealer but do have a love of violins and looking at them playing them and have a decent perspective of value. The key value for me to consider is what would I be able to sell this instrument for, and that is my reality check. I hope that you can sell your violin for what you paid for it or at a profit. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.