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davidcalgary29

What Thrift Store finds did you pass over...and later regret?

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Another one. A few years back they closed our first grade school. I came across one of the record players from that school at a local flea market. These players were ultra heavy duty machines probably built for commercial applications (like selling to schools. It even had some of the educational discs with it. I should have gotten it if nothing else for the sentimental value. One of the things I liked about them was the four speed platter. People will swear up and down there was never more than three speeds but right there was the switch for 78 45 33 and 16 (the edu records were 16 speed and some local stores used them for music back before everyone just used the local radio stations)

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Yea, who would want that gigantic super heavy duty molded travel case overflowing with two sizes of intricate screen overlays, game cards, poker chips, play money, and playing cards? So old and outdated! I would just emulate it, it takes up a lot less space that way.

IMG_0547.JPG

Makes my skin crawl just looking at the thing!

Looks like his loss was your gain. Do you play it much?

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I don't have a lot of big regrets, just a lot of small ones. If I find something rare it's hard for me to pass on it.

 

One of the big problems I have is that I keep finding controllers to awesome systems, but no console. I have a CD-i (found for $20, yay!) and so I know how any controllers are a pain in the ass to find. One day I found a beaten up remote style controller that was missing its battery cover. My heart started racing and I combed the entire store for the CD-i unit it must have come with, but didn't find it. I left that remote but now I wish I took it. It didn't have a price so I'm sure they would have let me have it for like $1. On another occasion I found a couple 3DO daisy chain style controllers and again I searched for the system but came up with nothing and again I left the controllers but now wish I took them after looking up their value.

 

Another recent little regret was when I passed up a Power Rangers plug & play. I like to collect cheap plug & plays but I looked up what this one might be and it looked like a version that sucks so I left it. Then when I got home I did a little more research and found out it's actually the one that has a pretty decent beat em up.

 

I guess it doesn't really count as a thrift store find but once while I was at Gamestop back when they were getting rid of all their PS2 stuff, I found a loose disc for the game Blood Will Tell for like $5 and at the time I had never heard of it so I looked up reviews and the reception was mixed so I left it behind. The PS2 is my favorite console and I have a massive collection of games but I'm missing that one, I still kick myself in the ass over that.

 

So yeah, not a lot of big regrets, but a bunch of small ones. But when I think of all the stuff I've found and kept it definitely outweighs the losses.

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One of the big problems I have is that I keep finding controllers to awesome systems, but no console. I have a CD-i (found for $20, yay!) and so I know how any controllers are a pain in the ass to find. One day I found a beaten up remote style controller that was missing its battery cover. My heart started racing and I combed the entire store for the CD-i unit it must have come with, but didn't find it. I left that remote but now I wish I took it. It didn't have a price so I'm sure they would have let me have it for like $1. On another occasion I found a couple 3DO daisy chain style controllers and again I searched for the system but came up with nothing and again I left the controllers but now wish I took them after looking up their value.

 

Depending on the thrift store, the system may not be around at all- chains like Goodwill normally ship their donations out to a central location for pricing and distribution. So you donate at a store, the donation guys there sort out the un-sellable stuff, then the rest of it goes out to the pricing warehouse, and allocated back to the stores depending on stock needs. So you're counting on the original owner keeping everything together, and all the other hands it passes through to know it's a set.

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Shouldn't be that hard to fix a couple broken keys, even if you have to fabricate something yourself.

 

I've had pretty decent luck at thrifts, maybe better than eBay, although I did get a Wurlitzer organ for $10 once because it had a plug broken off inside the headphone jack (which came out easily).

I'm not talking about the keys. Luck of the draw.

Edited by thadsilverfox

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Even broken beyond the keys I wouldn't mind having it, for the history. Oh well, maybe another one will turn up... some day...

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I don't seem to ever have the kind of luck other people have in finding stuff in thrift stores, garage sales, etc. Maybe it's that where I live (Long Island, and before that NYC) gets picked over so quick.

 

Long Island is where I've had most of my best finds, actually. :) But that was mainly from about 2008-2011, maybe up to 2012; after that it got insanely competitive and I lost interest.

 

I don't have many regrets. I passed on a 32X for $5 because it didn't have the AV cable, but in retrospect I could've hacked one out of a Mac serial cable, and it would've been a nice present for my brother. (The EverDrive wasn't out yet, so maybe I also thought to myself "How will he play it?")

 

I also didn't buy a 3DO FZ-1 for $15 at a flea market, because it was missing the power button and I was carrying a lot of stuff already. And I've passed on stuff that's pricier now: Blackthorne 32X at a gaming store for $25-30, but in rough shape -- that kind of thing.

 

I can't think of much else. Obviously it'd be nice if my family hadn't given away our Atari 5200 and games, including Mr. Do's Castle and Zaxxon -- I'd like to have those back. But that's a different sort of thing and it went to an appreciative home anyway.

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Only things I have passed up were common garbage, overpriced trashy systems or the combination of the two

 

I don't regret not paying 60$ for a turd brown C64 with most of the letters rubbed off the keys and no power supply

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Oh, there was also a boxed CoCo 2 in nice condition for $25 a few years ago. I couldn't tell how much RAM it had, so I passed.

 

(I've since bought a CoCo 2, but the seller waited so long to ship it that it didn't arrive until the day before I was leaving home for several months, and couldn't test it until months later. Only then did I discover that it was DOA -- and stank of cigarette smoke to boot.)

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Not a thrift store find, but I had a stash of Rainbow CoCo magazines 12 issues form 1983 to 1984. Three years ago I had to suddenly move and there was no place for them.. they got thrown out. Those poor mags...

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In all honesty, I have never once seen any video game, system, or gaming accessory at a thrift store that was worth buying. People simply do not donate gaming stuff to thrift stores in my area, most likely because we have half a dozen or so mom and pop gaming stores scattered around the city that will pay cash for old systems, games, and accessories.

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Couple...

 

1) Goodwill in Middletown, KY. 2004. There was a large donation of 486 PCs and probably 100-200 big box dos and Win3.1 games. The computers were going for $15 with monitors, the games were a buck a piece. Passed on it all.

 

2) Elizabethtown Flea Market, ETown KY (2007).

 

Guy had a booth, was going out of business. Had several NES systems, probably 50-60 games (mostly common, some marginally rare), he had two Chrono Triggers CIB (SNES) and a crate or two of Atari games.

 

Told me he would sell me his entire booth stock for $300. I passed. I was broke, yes. But I could have found some money somewhere.

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