Four Dorfan Cars Almost For Sale

John Gorman Mar 9, 2016

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What might be a fair price for each of these?

  1. Less than $10

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  2. $10 to $50

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  3. $50 to $100

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  4. More than $100

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  1. John Gorman

    John Gorman New Member

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    A friend of my mother's has asked me to sell four Dorfan cars. They seem to be toys that were played with but were well cared for.

    My mother's friend considers them to be quite valuable. Looking at concluded eBay sales, they seem to be worth about $10-$50 each. Does this seem about right?

    What would be the best way to conclude a fair sale quickly?

    Thanks!

    John
     
  2. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    John-

    Photos would be a big help in determining condition. At present we have no idea what she has to sell.

    "Well cared for" in one person's eyes, is not necessarily the same as what a skilled collector may see. Old brand name and old in age usually does not equal money.

    Too many people see tinplate and think gold. You should see some of the overpriced Lionel junk people are trying to pawn off on eBaY. Pieces with no value even as parts, which look as though found in a basement sump or were buried in the back yard, that should have simply been thrown away. Many things can be restored, but the time and labor will never come back in dollars, possibly excepting the very finest craftwork on the very, VERY rarest item.

    Here is something you can look at, but be careful- Most amateurs tend to grossly over-grade their trains: http://www.netca.org/grade.html
     
    Hardcoaler likes this.
  3. John Gorman

    John Gorman New Member

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    Thanks for your response, IMG_4837.jpg IMG_4838.jpg IMG_4839.jpg IMG_4840.jpg BoxcabE50.

    Here are some sample photos.

    The cars are just as I got them. They need to be cleaned. But I don't know the best way to do this and I don't want to damage them.

    Sorry, but I don't understand what you were referring to at the bottom of your message, where you wrote:
    'Here is something you can look at...'
     
  4. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    There should have been a link. For some reason it did not show properly. Click it. You will be taken to a page on the Train Collectors Association web site, which explains how your cars would be graded.
     
  5. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    Your O Gauge cars are:

    #600 CCC&St.L Coal Car

    #601 NYC Box Car

    #604 Indian Refining Tank Car

    #606 PRR 4 wheel Caboose
     
  6. John Gorman

    John Gorman New Member

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    Thanks, BoxcabE50.

    I was able to view the site you linked to. Hard as a first time amateur to grade but they seem to be between C5 and C7. They are all original, with no missing parts and no rust but there are some nicks and scratches.

    Please find a new photo below of the caboose, with the roofs centered.

    I don't think I should take any additional photos until the cars have been cleaned. But I'm hesitant to clean them for fear of damaging them. (I'm especially worried about rust.)
    Could you offer any suggestions?

    IMG_4841.jpg
     
  7. John Gorman

    John Gorman New Member

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    Thank you very much, BoxcabE50.

    Could you recommend an Internet site where I could learn more about these cars? (They're not mine. They belong to a friend of my mom's.)

     
  8. RBrodzinsky

    RBrodzinsky Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    I would not clean them, other than a light dusting using a soft brush (clean and dry) or compressed air.
     
  9. John Gorman

    John Gorman New Member

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    Thank you, Rick.
     
  10. John Gorman

    John Gorman New Member

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    I found this: http://www.tcawestern.org/dorfan.htm/
     
  11. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    It is better to be on the conservative side when grading.

    I would grade your cars in the C-4 to C-5 range and stretching things one or two would be barely C-6. The tank car is missing a part, the brake wheel. The others, dents and dings a-plenty, signs of fairly heavy play use. That coal car looks the most used. Conditions overall fairly common.
     
  12. John Gorman

    John Gorman New Member

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    Thanks BoxcabE50. I appreciate your assessment.
     

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