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12 posts 1 2

Curious about prices

#266340 by diplexer » Thu Jan 09, 2020 8:50 pm

Just wondering why Shopsmith Mark V's are so cheap to buy used. I see these all the time on ebay and sites like Craigslist and Offer Up for $200. I've even bought one for $100 with 3 band saws and a belt sander included. Only needed a new belt. I remember paying over $1200 in the late 70's. Why so little resale value? Seems like their better chopped and sold for parts at a much better price. Any thoughts? I thinks these things are built like tanks and last forever.

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Re: Curious about prices

#266342 by garys » Thu Jan 09, 2020 9:44 pm

It depends on your location in the country. It seems that in areas where people retire, there are lots of them for sale as people bought them, changed their minds, and sell them cheap.

Around here, you almost never see any 500 sellling for under $1000. And, a 510 or 520 sells for at least twice that.
Consider yourself lucky if you live where you can buy them cheap. It is supply and demand just like any product. Too many on the market drive down prices. Too few on the market drive prices up.

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Re: Curious about prices

#266350 by JPG » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:24 pm

garys wrote:It depends on your location in the country. It seems that in areas where people retire, there are lots of them for sale as people bought them, changed their minds, and sell them cheap.

Around here, you almost never see any 500 sellling for under $1000. And, a 510 or 520 sells for at least twice that.
Consider yourself lucky if you live where you can buy them cheap. It is supply and demand just like any product. Too many on the market drive down prices. Too few on the market drive prices up.


Ya, not too many retire and move to ND! :D

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╟JPG ╢
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Goldie(Bought New SN 377425)/4" jointer/6" beltsander/12" planer/stripsander/bandsaw/powerstation /Scroll saw/Jig saw /Craftsman 10" ras/Craftsman 6" thicknessplaner/ Dayton10"tablesaw(restoredfromneighborstrashpile)/ Mark VII restoration in 'progress'/ 10E(SN E3779) restoration in progress, a 510 on the back burner and a growing pile of items to be eventually returned to useful life. - aka Red Grange

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Re: Curious about prices

#266352 by robinson46176 » Fri Jan 10, 2020 6:17 am

A number of hobbies are aging out... :rolleyes:
Many in the last couple of generations have not been introduced to woodworking in school shop classes. As old guys like me die off (or just get too old to do woodworking) their stuff hits the market but much of the market is gone.
We are seeing the same thing in the antique tractor hobby. When I was a kid (1940's & 1950's) nobody to speak of cared about old tractors then in the 1960's a few clubs got started and over the years the prices kept climbing. The problem there was that everybody wanted tractors like they remembered growing up. Now only a handful are growing up on farms and they don't remember the old stuff like I have. Also tractors are generally so big now that you can't toss one or two on a trailer and cart it to a show someplace. You have to haul the stuff they remember on a semi and maybe have to deal with all of the oversized load crap. Old tractor gatherings now are heavily populated with gray hair. We are not drawing in the younger guys. Most of us old guys are old shade tree mechanics. The young guys are generally not and must hire most restoration and repair work done. That can be really costly. :eek: :rolleyes:
I suspect that there is an abundance of gray hair on this forum. :) :) :) I don't even have gray hair now, it's white. :)


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farmer
Francis Robinson
I did not equip with Shopsmiths in spite of the setups but because of them.
1 1988 - Mark V 510 (bought new), 4 Poly vee 1 1/8th HP Mark V's, Mark VII, 1 Mark V Mini, 1 Frankensmith, 1 10-ER, 1 Mark V Push-me-Pull-me Drillpress, SS bandsaw, belt sander, jointer, jigsaw, shaper attach, mortising attach, TS-3650 Rigid tablesaw, RAS, 6" long bed jointer, Foley/Belsaw Planer/molder/ripsaw, 1" sander, oscillating spindle/belt sander, Scroll saw, Woodmizer sawmill

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Re: Curious about prices

#266356 by Gene Howe » Fri Jan 10, 2020 7:32 am

Bought my first MKV from the factory with the complete lathe package and bandsaw. That was in '75. Can't remember what I paid. Bought a bare shorty from Bill Mayo a few months before he passed. He charged me $450 shipped from FL to AZ. A friend in CA bought a very lightly used 510 with all the lathe equipment and the BS for $1500 and, he was ecstatic. That was about 2 years ago. My BIL, in southern IL, bought a similar one for about the same price last year. Sold it 6 months later for $1200.
I don't know what those sales signify except that maybe some sellers selling cheap, don't know what they have.

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Re: Curious about prices

#266357 by RFGuy » Fri Jan 10, 2020 8:24 am

Farmer definitely raises some interesting points and got me wondering about whether woodworking is declining as a hobby today. I have wondered whether woodworking is in decline, or if it has just changed or shifted over time. I mean when I was growing up in the '80s the choices that I knew about were limited when it came to woodworking tools. My father purchased a 510, but before that he had a cheap Craftsman tablesaw that worked okay, but not great. We didn't have a lot of money, but if we did, maybe he would have bought a Delta Unisaw and assorted tools. Home Depot had only just begun, I believe, so for a small town, the only choices really were what you could find at Sears. We had to drive an hour just to get to a Shopsmith retail store to purchase the 510. How many major power tool companies for woodworking were really in business back then, BUT who also catered to the home, hobbyist woodworker? It just seems like there are a lot more choices these days for machinery. I am guessing there were less than a handful of companies selling tablesaws then, but now there has to be double or triple that number...some tablesaws even run off of Lithium Ion batteries now. So, I polled the Google statistics for the term woodworking. The first graph seems to indicate a hobby in decline as the number of Google searches for the term woodworking is clearly declining over time. However, if you search for the term woodworking on YouTube, it looks like it has a slow and steady trendline that is increasing the last ten years. To me that means interest in woodworking is at least stable or perhaps growing (given the fact that many newbies turn to platforms like YouTube for how-to instruction). I know the Great Recession of 2008 affected everyone, but those who could stay in their home might be taking up woodworking as they decide to do their own home improvements now. Perhaps the low selling prices on Shopsmith equipment in certain markets is just supply and demand for that area, but it could just be the sad fact that Shopsmith could be losing market share - just because there are so many more companies selling power tools for woodworking these days. I don't know if this is true or not...just some random thoughts this morning. I am hopeful this hobby isn't in decline, but I don't know.

Google Search Trends vs. time for term woodworking:
GoogleSearchWoodworking.jpg
GoogleSearchWoodworking.jpg (70.39 KiB) Viewed 7459 times


YouTube Search Trends vs. time for term woodworking:
YouTubeSearchWoodworking.png
YouTubeSearchWoodworking.png (27.34 KiB) Viewed 7459 times

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📶RF Guy

Mark V 520 (Bought New '98) | 4" jointer | 6" beltsander | 12" planer | bandsaw | router table | speed reducer | univ. tool rest
Porter Cable 12" Compound Miter Saw | Rikon 8" Low Speed Bench Grinder w/CBN wheels | Jessem Clear-Cut TS™ Stock Guides
Festool (Emerald): DF 500 Q | RO 150 FEQ | OF 1400 EQ | TS 55 REQ | CT 26 E
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Re: Curious about prices

#266412 by mellowmarshmellow » Sat Jan 11, 2020 12:36 pm

Interesting graph, thank you for posting that.

It's easy to to gripe at the "damn kids", but you also have to remember that many younger folks live in areas where wood working is not possible. If you live in a tiny apartment in a metropolitan area, you won't both looking for hobbies that you know you won't be able to participate in. I suspect urbanization is a factor.

It's anecdotal, but I have many friends that are office workers and a surprising number of them will spend hours drooling over high quality craftsmanship on youtube. I think the desire for hand made goods is there.

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Re: Curious about prices

#266414 by Mjrinor » Sat Jan 11, 2020 1:45 pm

I think having a house, rather than apartment, is not something most young people have access to (unless they are perhaps still living with their parents)- or at least not in big cities. The rent for a studio (that's right- a STUDIO) apartment in my city can be around $1200 per month! So these people will have no space to house power tools, nor will they be able to deal with the sawdust created by these tools living in one 600-900 sq foot space.

I also think a lack of shop classes in schools is paying a part as well. I was lucky enough to have had a woodworking shop class while I was in school. When I could no longer participate in other activities I enjoyed due to a serious injury, I decided to try to take up woodworking and refinishing old pieces- that kind of thing. If I hadn't had those shop classes, I don't know if I would have felt comfortable trying this out as a hobby given many of the tools can serious injury/maiming if you don't know what you're doing (shoot- they can happen even when you do know what you're doing, but have an unexpected accident/incident).

On another site I visit, there seems to be a re-emergence of interest in woodworking in younger people- but there's one interesting variation, they seem very focused on using handtools only for their projects, or they involve a CNC machine. I think the handtools make sense as they may not take up as much room as a power tool, nor would they produce the sawdust- both would make sense if you're wanting to build something and you live in a small space without a shop. I think the CNC makes sense because we're using computers in all sorts of areas now, and it's not surprising to find it in woodworking too.

Another development I've seen here in the city is the development of, "maker's spaces." Essentially, you pay for a membership to one of these places and you can use their equipment/tools. They often usually offer classes as well. These memberships aren't cheap, but at least it provides a person the tools, space and instruction if they're intertested.

Unfortunately, I don't think people are as willing to try to learn how to troubleshoot and fix things on their own- it's more of a disposable culture. I purchased my SS last year and planned to restore it. I got around to the motor and it wasn't firing off consistently. Even though I'd never ventured into the world of motor repair- I'm pretty mechanically minded and thought i could probably figure it out with a bit of help. I took my motor down to a Grainger store (they sell electrical supplies for motors and such- more of a store for the professional than an amatuer) thinking I'd have the most luck finding the items I needed, but I also thought I'd likely find a person working there that'd probably be able to answer a few questions (and as a FYI- 3 out of the 4 of the guys there were middle-aged). Only the younger guy stepped up to offer to look for the parts I needed. The other 3 middle aged guys told me I was wasting my time and that I should go to a motor repair shop, or buy another motor. I told them that I wouldn't learn anything by taking it into have it repaired, and I did want to learn about this. After being there for awhile while the young guy looked for my parts- I learned that none of them had ever seen a motor broken down that far. So essentially, they had no experience and were making recommendations based on that lack of experience- to get it fixed by someone else, or throw away it away and get another one. I bought my parts and left thinking that perhaps I had gone too far and was out of my "depth." I had a somewhat complicated issue with wiring as a result of the prior owner changing a few things up. However, I spent a lot of time of YouTube and the web learning about the subject so I'd know the basic terms and the style of motor I had. I eventually found this forum and posted my wiring questions and was given amazing, generous help by it's members. I was able to get it all sorted and put back together yesterday- and it's running beautifully now (big thanks to all of the wonderful people who helped me)!!! I think this is an example of why these machines might not be reselling for bigger bucks- they may need some TLC and a few repairs, and I think new woodworkers might be too worried they won't be able to fix their machines (or sort out problems to get them running in the first place) if something happens.

Just my 2 cents.

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Re: Curious about prices

#266416 by davebodner » Sat Jan 11, 2020 2:14 pm

All very good observations. Can I add one more for the low used prices for certain woodworking tools?

Several decades ago, quality power tools were made in 1st world countries at high prices. Now, power tools, of whatever quality, are now just so much less expensive than they used to be. So, globalization.

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Re: Curious about prices

#266422 by P89DC » Sat Jan 11, 2020 3:21 pm

Here in Colorado it's $500-$1000 for a 500 with a SPT or two. I bottom fish for basket cases, I got a 500 with bandsaw and jointer for $200 but it spent the spring outside and there was lots of rust.

I am seeing an interest in hand tools by the Millinials because they don't have enough space for power tools. Going forward I wood think Shopsmith has an advantage because it stores so compactly.

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1986 510, jointer, bandsaw, belt sander, scroll saw, jigsaw and lots of accessories. Shopsmith woodworking bench too!

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