E-Bay frustration

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Forum topic by b2rtch posted 04-12-2010 02:04 PM 1434 views 0 times favorited 22 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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4822 posts in 2471 days

04-12-2010 02:04 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question

During the last weekend I bid on thee different Stanley #7 planes on E-Bay.
I lost all three bids, which is alright but there is something I do not understand.
All three time I set my maximum bid at $55.00.
All three times I was the highest bidder until the last minute (I watched until the auction closed), or so I thought and all three times the planes were sold to someone else for less than my maximum bid.
How does this work?
Thank you for any help.

-- Bert

22 replies so far

View pvwoodcrafts's profile


234 posts in 3344 days

#1 posted 04-12-2010 02:12 PM

I wouldn’t think that possible. Snipers will outbid you at the last moments, I’ve even done it , but your bid should have been the winning bid if your max. is higher than the winning bid

-- mike & judy western md. www.

View b2rtch's profile


4822 posts in 2471 days

#2 posted 04-12-2010 02:27 PM

May be I explained my self poorly.
I set my maximum bid a t $55.00.
I was bidding, in one example, for $51.00 and at that last seconds before finishing I still was the highest bidder but the bid was won by someone else for $51.25.
Two questions: how come I did not see at the last second that someone else out-bided me, I was closely watching, and how come my $55.00 maximum bid did not win the bid?

-- Bert

View Peter Oxley's profile

Peter Oxley

1426 posts in 3297 days

#3 posted 04-12-2010 02:39 PM

Can you post a link to one or two of these auctions?

Ebay accepts bids at certain increments. You have to beat the previous bid by a certain amount. That amount changes depending on the current sale price, but you can’t just bid one cent more. But I thought that was just for starting a new bid – if you had a higher bid in before the other person, you should win the auction, even if you only bid one cent more.

If you want to try to place your bid in the final seconds, I recommend Gixen. I’ve used Gixen several times and have been very happy with it. It’s free, too.

-- -- --

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4822 posts in 2471 days

#4 posted 04-12-2010 02:56 PM

Checking again this morning I can see that twice I was out bid in the last second by 51 cents. And once my maximum bid was not $55.00 as I thought but $50.00 and again I was out bid by 99 cents

-- Bert

View PurpLev's profile


8523 posts in 3071 days

#5 posted 04-12-2010 03:06 PM

most winning parties on eBay only bid at the last second – if you’ll notice there is a timer on the auction page for the last couple of minutes or so. that’s how it works. I’ll usually place a bid in 1-2 seconds before it ends.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View SnowyRiver's profile


51452 posts in 2903 days

#6 posted 04-12-2010 03:15 PM

This is an interesting question. I have bought and sold thousands of dollars of items on Ebay and have never had this happen. As long as I met the minimum bid and I confirmed my bid, and I was the lead bidder at the end, I won it. IMO the best way to win things on Ebay is to snipe it. Most often, if you bid well in advance of the end of the auction, even with a proxy bid, you get outbid at the end. I typically dont bid at all on an item that I am watching until a couple of seconds before the end. By early bidding, you just drive the price up because others keep trying to outbid you. I then submit the bid in the final seconds with a proxy. Although its what Ebay and the sellers want, you often will be outbid by last minute bidders if you bid in advance.

-- Wayne - Plymouth MN

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4822 posts in 2471 days

#7 posted 04-12-2010 03:44 PM

SnowRiver, ” I then submit the bid in the final seconds with a proxy”
what is a proxy?

-- Bert

View NBeener's profile


4808 posts in 2596 days

#8 posted 04-12-2010 04:30 PM

I’ve only bid on a few things, but lost them ALL in the last seconds.

I knew, or assumed, that it was programmatic bidding, though I never looked into the “how.”

If I were MORE motivated, that’s exactly what I would do, too LOL.

I’ll look into that Gixen thing. Thanks.

-- -- Neil

View SnowyRiver's profile


51452 posts in 2903 days

#9 posted 04-12-2010 04:37 PM


The proxy is your maximum bid. The Ebay computer will automatically increase your bid if necessary to your maximum bid…I think you probably already know this.

-- Wayne - Plymouth MN

View Rileysdad's profile


110 posts in 2701 days

#10 posted 04-12-2010 04:38 PM

For what it’s worth, here’s my strategy for bidding on eBay:

I view an item and ask myself the question, “What’s the most I want to pay for this thing?” That’s what I bid. If I get it, it’s always at or for less than what I was willing to pay.

I never watch the end of the auction anymore. I’ve done it before and found I would bid a little more than I wanted. I’d get caught up in the excitement of the auction.

-- Measure twice, cut once, buy extra stock.

View David Kirtley's profile

David Kirtley

1286 posts in 2420 days

#11 posted 04-12-2010 06:00 PM

That is one of the reasons I never buy off ebay for auction.

If I want something, I want it. I don’t want to get my hopes up and screw around to save $2. Personally, I much prefer to deal with the established online tool dealers. You know what you are getting, you know how much you will pay, and you know when you get it. You also build up a rapport with the dealers and you can do things like give them a wish list to be on the look out for on your behalf.

I have bought a grand total of 3 things off ebay in two purchases. Both were reasonable and the dealers shipped and things worked well but I don’t want to spend my time watching their website for days.

-- Woodworking shouldn't cost a fortune:

View reggiek's profile


2240 posts in 2692 days

#12 posted 04-12-2010 06:40 PM

There are several bidding programs that will put a bid in at the final seconds – Auction Stealer is one of them. Thus winning an item without allowing someone to respond with a higher bid. I have found that if I bid during the early part of an auction, someone will eventually come in and bid up the price (If someone wants an item…it makes it more attractive to someone else – we are indeed a competitive society). So I now watch an item until the last moment and then decide whether I will bid…I don’t use one of these “proxy” bidders to win items as I am not that active on Ebay….but I do know folks that are and swear by them.

-- Woodworking.....My small slice of heaven!

View Shopsmithtom's profile


787 posts in 3617 days

#13 posted 04-12-2010 07:21 PM

The way I look at it, ebay is a “value setter” thing. It’s simple. Regardless of what you think an item is worth, whether you’re a buyer or a seller, the market value of an item is what a willing buyer will pay in a free marketplace.

If you think an item is worth $100, then put in a max bid in that amount. If you get it for that or less, that’s the value at that time. If you don’t, then you underestimated its value or weren’t willing to pay its value. You can either decide it’s too expensive for you, or adjust your thinking for the next item that comes up.

I’ve bid both by sniping and by putting in my max bid early and I know this: either way I bid, I get the item if I’m the highest bidder. I’ve gotten items by a few cents & missed by a mile.

The good news is that, if I miss it, there will be another one like it along soon & if I get it, I’ve only paid one bid increment more than the loser.

-- Accuracy is not in your power tool, it's in you

View swirt's profile


2107 posts in 2394 days

#14 posted 04-12-2010 08:06 PM

Like others have said, there is nothing to be gained by bidding early. (well almost nothing…there is an advantage in the case of a tie, but I’ve never had that come up as an issue). Bid in the last 10 seconds for the highest amount you are willing to pay. If you enjoy the little adrenalin boost, snipe it by hand. If not, let a sniping program like Gixen handle it while you are busy doing something else.

-- Galootish log blog,

View Shopsmithtom's profile


787 posts in 3617 days

#15 posted 04-12-2010 09:08 PM

It helps if you think of it as a game… (actually a quote from “Robocop”, just before the recipient of the quote is blown up)

-- Accuracy is not in your power tool, it's in you

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