Not what I expected…

Sometimes cameras that I purchase from online auction sites simply blow me away with the overall quality of the item. Sellers that tend to understate the condition of their gear and then deliver something unexpected (“looks good” is really “like new”). Occasionally cameras arrive and my reaction is just the opposite. But I have a wide range of acceptance because I look closely at the pictures of the item in the listing and ask questions when I’m not sure of something. No one likes bad surprises.

One area that I’m completely inflexible on is previous owner’s initials etched, carved, or engraved into the camera body or lens. If I’m told about it and shown a picture of it that’s fine – I can decide if I still want that piece of gear before I bid on it. Often an etching will be on a part of the camera that’s replaceable like the baseplate or even the film door.

Here’s an example of undisclosed damage from an engraving. I received this camera yesterday and it was described as looking like it was unused in the listing. I guess in fairness to the seller a camera can have an engraving and still technically be “unused”. Not in this instance, however.


This engraving is on the camera’s right side near where the strap would go. That side was not shown in the listing photos. Go figure. If you look closely you’ll also see a hairline crack in the plastic just to the left of the “J”. The camera it turns out was very well used (or very well abused).

No worries, the camera is on its way back to the seller and they’ve promised a full refund. If the seller simply didn’t catch that there was an etched name or social security number, or driver’s license number (I’ve received all three on one camera before!) then I understand. But when it’s this obvious and you don’t mention it why bother going through the motions of sending it? Oh well.

Thanks for stopping by! Oh by the way, if you’re looking for accurately described and well taken care of cameras and photo gear, then a visit to my camera shop just might be the place to start. You can find my shop at (Etsy Pattern site). Everything I sell is from either my personal collection of gear or locally sourced cameras. Carol and I are always on the lookout for interesting gear so if you’ve got something you’re interested in selling please drop us a line and tell us what you have. We may be looking for that exact item to add to our collection.


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