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Favorite swap meet stories/scores

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by theHIGHLANDER, Jul 8, 2006.

    Joined: Nov 22, 2005
    Posts: 7,591

    from SIDNEY, NY

    Same thing happened to me with a pair of 140HP Corvair heads one time. "How much for the heads?" "75.00" "That's a piece, right?" "Uh....yeah, yeah, that's the ticket!" We settled on $125.00 for the pair and everyone was happy.
  2. roadster1923
    Joined: Jul 1, 2005
    Posts: 137

    from Girard PA

    About 20 years ago my buddy and I were walking a swap meet and came across a 57 Caddy tripower; complete with linkage,carbs, manifold and air cleaner. The price was 50.00 bucks on the tag. Great deal, we offered the guy $35.00 and the old guy said O.K. The vendor said he was watching the booth for his god-damn son in law; who had left him to watch the booth for a couple of hours. When we got the tripower home we noticed that the tag said $500.00 instead of $50.00, one of the zero's had been smudged. I'll bet when the son in law was pissed when he finally returned. Must have made for some pleasant family reunions!
  3. chrisntx
    Joined: Jan 20, 2006
    Posts: 1,798

    from Texas .

    I asked a woman at a vendors space how much she wanted for a front fender. I thought it was 35 Ford. She said she didnt know, it was her husbands stuff. I offered $10, she said OK. Got home, not 1935 I think it must be 33/34 and probably worth more than $10.
  4. chrisntx
    Joined: Jan 20, 2006
    Posts: 1,798

    from Texas .

    One of my favories was at Pate. I gave $25 for a 1935 Ford pickup grille, kept the stainless trim and the 1951 Texas plate and sold the grille for $35. Yeah, that WAS a few years back.
  5. tommy
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 14,757

    Member Emeritus


    Paid 5 bucks for this 3 weeks ago and got 167.50 on the Bay. 1966 Chevelle knee knocker tach. Nothing special but I enjoyed it.:D

    A sad one that sticks in my brain was the time that the vendor told his son I'll be right back. Lots of rare Mustang stuff. A guy walks up and picks up a "Rally Pack" gauge cluster. It was marked 200.00, not clearly, but if you were looking at it you knew what it was worth. The guy says how much. The Kid looked at it and said 20 bucks. The guy whips out a 20 and rushes off. I looked at my buddy and he looks at me. By that time it was a done deal and he was gone. I still feel bad about that one. He knew what he had done.
  6. ol'skool29
    Joined: Feb 15, 2006
    Posts: 1,077


    i got a model A grille for 10 bucks and i found another for free, someone was gonna throw it away. i also bought an old radio flyer for 5 bucks, i sanded it down, repainted it, and put some air filled tires on it, i sold it for 55 bucks the next year
  7. Digger_Dave
    Joined: Apr 10, 2001
    Posts: 2,517


    I price my stuff to sell; I dont want to have to "lug" it back home..

    I had an old engine hoist that I had dragged to this swap meet.
    It was just taking up valuable room and I had bought a new fold-up model.

    I put a sign on it that said,
    "This hoist will be sold by REVERSE auction!"
    The sign went on to say,
    "The opening price is $119.00! (paid almost $300.00 originally)
    Every hour or so, I will REDUCE the price by $10.00 until it's sold!"

    Well .. the price was marked down to $99.00 and I spotted two guys hanging around, watching each other to see if the other was going to make a move, especially if I marked it down another $10.

    Along comes a "comely young lady" (honest, she was a "looker!")
    She walked up and quietly asked if I would speak to her grandfather on her cell phone.
    (her back was to the two guys, and she was out of their "ear shot.")

    I take the phone, and the voice on the other end asks if I was planing to drop the price again soon.
    I said, "No, I'm leaving it at that price for a while."
    He said, "OK, let me talk to my grandaughter again."

    30 seconds later she handed me a $100.00 bill, and said, "I'll take it!"

    The look on the faces of the two "lurkers" was just priceless!!
    Was worth the price of admission!!
    Plus I didn't have to take it home! :D
  8. Harms Way
    Joined: Nov 27, 2005
    Posts: 6,873

    Harms Way

    :D:D A Call in bidder at a Swap Meet !,.... I Love it !
  9. SinisterCustom
    Joined: Feb 18, 2004
    Posts: 8,269


    I got my 18" "Milk Truck" wheels at an Estate sale. The sale was happening in town and the owners have the largest private car collection in the US, maybe the world.
    Anyway, this sale was at a rundown old building and was filled with misc body parts, engines, frames, wheels.... you name it.
    I went early...not alot of people and I only had @ $60 in my pocket.
    I had found a Model A wishbone for $5. I went to pay for it but the guy running it didn't have change for my $20.
    So I proceded to find something else to spend $$ on.
    Found a cool dash from a ???? to use....$5
    I then went upstairs. It was dark and full of wheels and cut up body parts.
    I saw one of the 18's and thought it would look good on my truck. Started digging and found 4 more. COOL...a set w/spare.
    I went downstairs to ask how much for wheels. $5 ea..... but since there was a complete set....price would be $40 for all.:eek:
    I said OK and bought 'em.
    I asked him if by chance he knew what they were for as I didn't at the time and he didn't either. But he was looking for 18" tires earlier and he'd buy the tires off the wheels if I brought 'em back.
    I paid the man, loaded up the goodies and went home.
    I took some pics and posted them on the HAMB asking what they were.
    Well.....thats when all hell broke loose....hahahahaha:D
    The really funny thing is.......if they had wanted any more $$$ for the wheels I would not have bought 'em!!!:eek:

    BTW: I still have the tires......hahahaha
  10. 327-365hp
    Joined: Feb 5, 2006
    Posts: 5,423

    from Mass

    My buddy Mark told me a good one.. This spring, he's at a swap meet in the pouring rain. It rained hard both days. The place wasn't even half full with vendors and even fewer shoppers. Anyway, Mark see's this pile of Harley parts and asks about the two wheels. The guy, who's half smashed from partying all nite, says the guy setup next to me wants it all but can't agree on a price. A few hours later, on the way out, my buddy stops and asks about the two wheels again. The drunk, really wasted by now, says this guy next to me wants to buy all the bike stuff but he hasn't shown me any money. My buddy says, Yeah you told me that already. Look I got cash, I'm standing right here, how much for the wheels? Just then this big guy comes over and says, How much for the wheels? Mark is pissed, now there's gonna be a bidding war. The drunk seems aggravated, he shouts at the big guy, "If you do five cartwheels I'll give you the fuckin wheels" Mark told me the guy was over six feet tall. He starts to take of his raincoat, the drunk realizes his bluff isn't going to work. The drunk shouts out "Ten cartwheels, ya gotta do ten" Mark said it was unbelievable, the guy did eleven cartwheels, in the pouring rain. He was halfway down the row when he finished. He came back, put on his coat and grabbed the wheels. While the drunk was mumbling to himself, Mark bought the back wheel off the guy for $100 bucks.
    RonaldR likes this.
  11. revkev6
    Joined: Jun 13, 2006
    Posts: 3,351

    from ma

    not from a swap meet but hemmings. This was back in 1994 when I was at the ripe ole age of 14. I was in search of a model A coupe body to place on the deuce rails I had boxed over the summer. being rather frugel with my summer job money I was hunting for the perfect deal and had $1k saved up for a nice coupe body (and hoping to put some of that towards other parts as well). I had noticed a 32 cabriolet body in hemmings for 2-3 issues for the outragiously cheap price of $1500 to top it off it was only 90 minutes away!. I talked to my ole man about it and asked if he would front me the rest of the cash if I called the guy up and took a look. He said if it wasn't a total loss and was really what I wanted no problem. (love my ole man) I call the guy up and realize why no one had bought the car, He spent the 30 minutes we talked trying to talk me out of even looking at the car! Being rather stubborn I told him I would come down and judge how bad it really is. So my father, my uncle and I jumped into the truck and headed down to his house. Pull into his driveway and meets us outside his garage. my father jumps out of the truck and the guy walks over and shakes his hand saying "so you must be Kevin"
    He turns to my uncle
    "so you must be kevin"
    "nope again"
    then he looks down at 14 year old me
    "no way your kevin, I spent half an hour on the phone with you"
    "yup, I'm kevin"

    So we all have a good chuckle and he leads us to the side of the garage where the car sits under a pine tree. I look the car over and find that it's been built really rough a couple times over but its still very solid and very savable. no floors but the subrails are there and solid, windshield was a hack job but there was also a useable frame underneath it! At this point I'm thinking, even if I can't get him to go any lower $1500 for a 32 body and frame is a great deal. We finish looking the car over and we start to talk price. The looks at me and says, considering how "rough" the car is and that you are only 14 I'll make deal with you. IF you make the check out to christian charity XZY I'll sell The car to you for $500. My mouth dropped and I stuttered when I asked if he would take $400 (I couldn't help it I had been trained well) I couldn't right the check fast enough. turns out the guy had a glass bodied 32 roadster and bought the cabriolet body to replace the glass body. He bought it site-unseen out of hemmings while he was "in europe for the summer" and had it shipped to his house. I think he must have paid way to much for the car and thought it should have been nicer than it was for the money he paid. the car was in pretty nice shape. with the extra $500 I had I managed to get the 32 K-member $35, nice(reallllllly nice) 32 firewall $180, and complete repop floorpans (An entire set had gotten wet and surface rusted) that I needed at fall hershey that year. I also had sold the other 32 frame I had put together and boxed (those were an early set of repop rails) for some more spending money at hershey. I made out like a little bandit that year.

    in the end though the car turned out to be a 32 sport coupe (slight difference in the reveal on what was left of the windshield post) that the posts, door tops and top irons had been removed and replaced with a piece of pipe welded around the top. Not that I cared, I fabbed up a set of posts like a cabriolet and she looks good.
  12. Irish Dan
    Joined: Jan 19, 2006
    Posts: 1,231

    Irish Dan

    A few years ago I bought an early Hurst 4-speed shifter (with nice white knob) from a biker dude who wanted $12 at first, but then settled for $10. Walked around carrying the thing for about an hour before this hysterical looking character comes running up to me asking if I'd be willing to sell it. Would you take $50 for it? How bout $75? You've gotta know it's a Mopar bench handle that was usually found in the "muscle cars", right? He says. Oh I'll give you $100 for it! It'll make my Dodge Polara complete! I ended up taking $90 for it. Found out later that I coulda got as much as $150! Oh well.
  13. gtokid70
    Joined: Jul 30, 2015
    Posts: 137


    Well used to go around checking carb numbers , before the internet days found a couple of hemi carbs $40 $45 aw the good old days. About 5 years ago I spot a 70 gto gudge spoiler laying on the ground , I pick it up check it , i see it's original not a repop ,so I stand there with it my hand waiting for the guy to finish up with another customer . He finely turns around and says 5 bucks I don't know what it's for . Well couldn't get the money out of my pocket fast enough

    Sent from my SM-A520W using The H.A.M.B. mobile app
  14. BJR
    Joined: Mar 11, 2005
    Posts: 7,250


    Not a score but a story. This happened at the Iola swap meet years ago, at a friends booth right on the main drag across from the Toy Barn. One of the guys in our group brought a fishing poll and some fake $20 bills. He ties one on with a lead sinker for weight and casts it out into the isle in front of our swap spaces. He screws with a few people giving it a jerk when they go to pick it up, and we are all having a good laugh while consuming an awful lot of adult beverages. After about 45 minutes of this shit, a 30 something good looking stacked woman bends over to pick it up. He gives it a little jerk so the bill moves about an inch. She bends a little farther and he gives it about a foot worth of a jerk. She takes a step toward our space with all of us looking down her shirt, and he gives it another jerk as she bends to grab it. At that point she was going for it no matter what, and he starts small jerking the bill and reeling as she is bent over trying to grab it. He reels her into our booth behind the tables we had our junk on before she looks up. When she looks up she sees she is inside our booth with 6 drunk 50 year olds with tears running down our faces as we are laughing so fucking hard. She turns beet red and the she starts laughing too. It was the funniest thing I have ever seen at a swap meet, and I swear it's true. Brian
  15. racer_dave
    Joined: Nov 16, 2012
    Posts: 206


    So about 10 years ago I cleaned out the garage of a bunch of stuff left over from my street based racecars. I used to run the quick ratio vette & vega steering boxes. I'd hoard them since I wanted spares in case of wrecks. I also had some heads and a 12bolt posi. I get to the swap meet area Friday night to unload into my spot. As I start setting out the steering boxes a guy comes by asks if they're the vega boxes. 7 offers $100 each for them. Sold him all 5 :) I didn't have 20 bucks each in them. Another guy comes by and buys the double hump heads for a normal price.

    But the best was the 12 bolt posi. I figured I'd sell it for $400 bucks or so. I guy comes hustling over from the other end of the building seeing it in my truck. pulls it around, pulls paper from his pocket checks the date codes and says 'how much'. I figure if he's restoring a car with a 12 bolt posi to numbers/dates matching he's gonna pay. So I drop $1200 on him, he says 'sold'.

    I then yelled out that I'd sell everything else left in the bed of the truck for $500. Spare chrome, valve covers, misc parts. A guy buys it all for the $500 and I drive away never even getting the stuff out on the tables.

    Next day I go back, flush with cash from the night before- and its pouring rain- no business. As I slosh through the fairgrounds there's another circle track racer there. He's bitching about no business since its more a hot rod show than racing show. I look though his stuff and see 3 muncies. I ask about them- he says they've all been converted to 2 speed- nobody wants them. I offer $100 each, he counters $200 each I buy them all. One goes in my racecar. Popped the other two up on a racing website and sold them for $600 each.

    Best swap meet ever!!! made serious bank.
  16. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 15,619

    from oregon

    There have been numerous "scores" for me over the years at swap meets, here is a biggie.
    Many years ago I found the 3245 Holley carburetor for my Nova at the Corvallis (Oregon) swap meet of all places, for you Nova L79 guys I don't have to tell you how hard these were to find even back then as they are considered one of the "holy grail" of OEM Holleys, not only does the list number identify them but they also have the GM part number and date stamped on the air horn.
    Nowadays they show up on that big auction site but they are going for nearly what the car sold for when new.
    I was going through a big bucket of misc Holleys (mostly partials), on that rare chance that I'd at least find some correct pieces, I lifted up a few and there's one that looks newly rebuilt but missing a couple linkage arms.
    When I spied THE number I nearly crapped myself, when I collected myself I asked the swapper If he new what it was off of and he says a Corvette (typical huh).
    Now here's the deal, I had spent nearly all my money and my friend was there looking for one also so I agreed on the asking price of $85:eek::confused::D but gave him my last $20 to secure it while I looked for my buddy to borrow the rest, he was only a couple of stalls behind me.
    Got the money from him and finished the deal and went back and showed it to him, when I pointed out the part number his eyes got real big and of course he had to know what I paid for it and when I told him I think he about crapped his pants too.
  17. 32phil
    Joined: Nov 24, 2007
    Posts: 44

    from New York

    Frankly...I just love it when guys don't put prices on stuff. I'm not sure why they refuse to price things.
    Personally, I hate answering the same question over and over all day.
    In January of this year I'm at the Lake Worth show/swap in Florida.
    It's a V8 club event combined with the local Model A club. Probably 70 cars there, more than half Model A with almost a dozen Banger "Gow jobs" too. The car owners are a pretty knowledgeable bunch, judging from the cars they are driving. Swap meet has maybe 12 vendors.
    I walk up to a small table with a bunch of mixed stuff V8/Model A/whatever.
    NOTHING has a price tag. Perfect !!! 5 or 6 guys standing around looking... barely paying attention to what's on the table. There's an early quick change sitting there....looks clean....not sure what it price.
    Everyone knows QCs are $1200 and up depending on condition etc.
    Dumb old me ...."how much for the QC ??
    The guy says...$20.00.....At that price I didn't even pick it up to look it over.
    I think I fractured my wrist getting my wallet out!!
    It's sitting next to the mint 32 pedals I bought at Hershey 3 yrs ago for $75.00, no price on them either.
    The guy next to me says ..."shit.... I shoulda asked...don't forget to take the new main shaft"
    I looked around... he had the rest of the internals for another guessed it $20.00
    So, the moral of the story....ask the price ...even at the risk of appearing foolish.
    pat59 likes this.
  18. About 10 years ago at a farm auction a “ strange 47-48 ford pick up was there

    Fibreglass fenders and running boards, fibreglass one piece flip front end
    Original cab with glass, but missing everything
    Sitting on a hacked up s10 frame.
    New steel bed with wood and dome other bits
    No drivetrain brakes etc.

    No one wanted I got it for $1 one buck

    Dragged it to my parents cottage, realized I bought a can o worms.

    Ended up buying a “ lowryder s10 with a 350/350 away and suspension upgrades, good brakes etc.
    For $1500 bucks

    Swapped the ford stuff onto the s10 frame so it’s now a driver
    Got a bench seat out of a 2 nd row caravan so it can be yard driven. Painted it flat black
    And sold it as a “ running project “ for $7000 grand
    Not bad for about a month or so of fiddling around with it and maybe 2 g’s invested.

    It was a silly fibreglass thing, but sometimes I think I should of kept it as a winter beater
  19. Not a swap meet but interesting. I worked in an auto supply that had an apartment above it. Old guy and his wife. He buys a new '58 chevy 4 door HT off the lot. The thing has fuel injection. That scares him so he has the dealer put a 4 barrel on it. Dealer doesn't want the FI (go figure) so the old guy brings it into the auto supply to see if they can sell it. It sits in a cardboard box along with the distributor with a price of $75 on a shelf right behind the counter. I'd have liked it but $75 was a lot of money I didn't have. The thing sat there for YEARS before it finally disappeared one day.
  20. seb fontana
    Joined: Sep 1, 2005
    Posts: 7,215

    seb fontana
    from ct

    I went to a swap meet with a friend, he was selling and I was goofing around..Pulled into the space and barely got out of the truck when the vultcher appears..Bought a whole bunch of stuff haggled my friend to death..My friend gives him a couple filters for a one year only Honda application just to get rid of him..Free stuff brand new and my friend had like ten of them and purposely gave one that had a hole in it..Yep the vultcher came back and threw a fit..Gall, eh?
  21. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 15,619

    from oregon

    Too bad he didn't sell the guy 10 condoms with a pinhole in one.:eek:
  22. Bubba1955
    Joined: Jul 8, 2013
    Posts: 463


    Oh God no !!! ... Think of the spawn that would come from that shallow gene pool.
  23. I was at the Big 3 swap meet in San Diego a few years ago. I spot a set of four trim rings sitting with a bunch of hubcaps. They are in perfect shape. I’m thinking “Man, those sure look like the ones I have at home.” I ask the guy what they fit and he says he has no idea. “What do you want for them?” A buck apiece. I calmly paid the man and walked away. Yup, they were ‘57/58 Cameo pickup trim rings.

    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
  24. 48ford
    Joined: Dec 15, 2001
    Posts: 450


    Years ago when our son was just a little guy, he was walking in front of us,looking at all the tables, came up on a table where some hooters girls were signing poster!
    He stoped dead in front of them just staring at the girls, we walk up and I said Tim how much they asking?
    He looks at us and said ,Dad I don't even know what there selling!
    To bad they grow up

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