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Where's this hobby going?

Article about: As the title says where is it going. There is obviously interest, enough for several forums like this, and prices for items have never been higher relatively speaking and some of us have spe

  1. #11
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    Default Re: Where's this hobby going?

    I believe you also need to take into consideration income relative to age. Most collectors have the means to purchase militaria because they have an income, they earn a wage or pension etc. Most youngsters under 18 for example won't have the means to buy items because they can't afford them. I think it's only as people become older and can indulge their interest as they earn the money to do so. There aren't many 8, 10, 12 year olds that can afford the type of items we buy on a regular basis.
    With so many other things to entertain young people nowadays it's no wonder they don't hang out with old 'uns at militaria fairs etc. I don't believe the interest is dying, it just takes longer to manifest itself.
    There are a couple of young collectors here on the site who contribute and join in the discussions on a regular basis and I enjoy watching their collections grow, seeing how pleased they are when a new item arrives or are saving up for the next purchase.
    From my own perspective, I always enjoyed the history of WW2 and spent alot of my youth reading about it and buying books. I had no idea how common the items were (pre internet), I had a few family things passed down to me but I didn't start collecting properly until I had the money to do so. Besides, there were exams to do, jobs to find and girls to chase!

  2. #12

    Default Re: Where's this hobby going?

    My immigrant family had nothing to pass down to me, but apparently by great-grandfather (an Arab Revolt/WWI vet) apparently had tons of Turkish stuff that he took from Palestine-bound Ottoman trains. It has since disappeared unfortunately.

    My collection relies on my miniscule income and my drive. I will scan the internet for hours, check Craigslist eight times a day, etc. until I can find a good deal. The vast majority of my items have been bought for half their value. Therefore my collection has a little bit of everything. This helps expand my interest as well, so it all works out!

    Perhaps I should simply try asking nicely for militaria. Chained SS dagger anyone? Single decal Luftwaffe M42? Ade, a lovely Minensuch Abzeichen?

  3. #13
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    Default Re: Where's this hobby going?

    I reckon the major stumbling block apart from cash is the humble "wife" I am a 38 year old Army pensioner, and if I wanted to could quite easily walk out the front food and throw down the cash for 15 of those 10,000 SS daggers, I have enough in savings to do that right now, but I do have a Family and a weekly pocket money allowance of 100 bucks, so if I want something I can get it or save, or ask my understanding wife for a once in a while splurge or a advance on my pocket money, to be paid back. I am more fortunate thsn most, but god the stuff I would have if I was single!!!!!

  4. #14

    Default Re: Where's this hobby going?

    Quote by ObKrieger View Post
    Just curious, Franz, whereabouts are you from? I actually live in Utah.

    I am 18 by the way.

    I agree with you, WRF is my favorite forum, too. I would love to be a member of GHW but I keep getting kicked out of there.
    Why do you keep getting kicked out of GHW? You seem like a nice enough chap!

  5. #15

    Default Re: Where's this hobby going?

    Well, the first time was because I asked how to restore a German helmet. I said that I wanted to make a helmet good enough to fool experienced collectors, but I would never try to deceive anyone. I think that's what did it. It wasn't too smart of a thing to say in retrospect but hey, what can I do?

    The second time I tried, I never received a confirmation e-mail. I.P. address maybe? I don't really know.

  6. #16

    Default Re: Where's this hobby going?

    I agree with all comments here. I started collecting when I got my first job at 17, started with small bits and what I could afford. Its lead to a jumbled collection but a collection none the less. 13 years later I collect higher value stuff, better quality stuff and what I want, because I have a higher paying job and an understanding wife. She has also let me buy in some bits to do some trading with, which is great. As lithgow said, I am also part of the biggest collecting group in WA and I am looking forward to the next show, as I am going to be there as a seller for the first time.

    Although I have some stuff going at high prices at the moment I am also looking for the lower end beginners market, as I get more pleasure out of seeing people happy about what they are going to be buying. It is still a hobby for me at the end of the day and I trade for other people, not profit. Hard to know what to move on with prices going up. Good bits for under $100 is getting harder, as I have to consider postage as well. Still there are bargains to be had and I try to pass them on as much as I can.

    I would also like to source bits for people if I can, but with the internet it make it easier for some to do themselves. I have my little virtual store and I am happy. I tell you its hard to source stuff in Australia though, you guys from the US come across such good stuff!

    GHW is a great place, but I dont post there much, I prefer WRF. I dont feel I have the same class of helmets as the guys there, and what I post up generally goes un noticed so I keep to myself here

  7. #17
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    Default Re: Where's this hobby going?

    Quote by VolksJager View Post
    I dont feel I have the same class of helmets as the guys there, and what I post up generally goes un noticed so I keep to myself here
    There is point worth picking up on here. I've noticed that there is an 'elitist' element on several forums. If you're a newcomer to the hobby, a young collector just starting out or are only posting low end items, your posts tend to go unanswered and ignored in general. From a TR point of view, you sometimes need to be posting a Ritterkreuz, a Deutsche Kreuz, an EK1 or EK2 with a rare reverse setup or makers mark, a variant EK Spange, super rare Kriegsabzeichen etc to get any response to your thread or comment.
    If you're posting a basic KVK2 for example, no-one is interested, seen it all before, not worth commenting on - 'it's just a KVK2'. This does nothing to encourage young or new collectors when they might have saved for a month to afford it or have had it handed to them from a relative. It might be really exciting and a huge thing for the individual and they don't get the urge to post on forums of show off their collections when the elitist attitude kicks in and no-one can be bothered reply to them.
    It could also be said there is an intimidating atmosphere from experienced collectors and newbies are daunted by posting, thinking they will get ripped to pieces by the so called 'experts' in the hobby who are so willing to be abrupt, un-welcoming and quite patronising in their answers and comments.
    I like to think and have noticed that on WRF, this doesn't happen and everyone, young, old, new, experienced, with a big or small collection is treated with respect and equally with constructive, informed and encouraging replies left for them. It's the same when it comes to answering questions, some questions from newcomers get asked time after time, so what, it doesn't take much to answer them or point them in the direction of the search button and start the answer off for them. It's a good thing, encourage, pass your knowledge on and help develop the new blood in the hobby. This will help to keep new people in the interested and they won't be turned off by the stuffy, looking down your nose, 'my collection's better than yours' attitude seen in other places.

  8. #18

    Default Re: Where's this hobby going?

    Well put Adrian!

    You are very right about the elite group. Its not everywhere (as I said, thats why I prefer it here) and without naming to many places, that why I dont ever post on WAF(am a member though), as I know I will be chewed up and spat out. An example of this is my DD M40 Police lid I go in. Got good comments here about it and was chuffed, posted it on GHW and did not get a single reply. Not a terrible thing for me, but if it was my first lid I would be devastated. Same with my WW1 Camo, 2 pages of replies here, 2 comments on GHW. I love that forum, dont get me wrong, just not the warmest place to post from my point of view. Heaps better than WAF. Love the knowledge at the last to forums though, some great minds there.

    You are right though, behind a post with a question or an new item, there could be an old timer or a beginner, that is excited about a new purchase or wanting advice on something they have saved up for and wanting to make sure its not a waste. At the end of the day I would like to think we all hang out here to show off our collections, help out new beginners, and talk about history. When new bits come in I usually say to my wife 'I cant wait to take some pics and show this to the guys online'

  9. #19

    Default Re: Where's this hobby going?

    Quote by VolksJager View Post
    Well put Adrian!

    You are very right about the elite group. Its not everywhere (as I said, thats why I prefer it here) and without naming to many places, that why I dont ever post on WAF(am a member though), as I know I will be chewed up and spat out. An example of this is my DD M40 Police lid I go in. Got good comments here about it and was chuffed, posted it on GHW and did not get a single reply. Not a terrible thing for me, but if it was my first lid I would be devastated. Same with my WW1 Camo, 2 pages of replies here, 2 comments on GHW. I love that forum, dont get me wrong, just not the warmest place to post from my point of view. Heaps better than WAF. Love the knowledge at the last to forums though, some great minds there.

    You are right though, behind a post with a question or an new item, there could be an old timer or a beginner, that is excited about a new purchase or wanting advice on something they have saved up for and wanting to make sure its not a waste. At the end of the day I would like to think we all hang out here to show off our collections, help out new beginners, and talk about history. When new bits come in I usually say to my wife 'I cant wait to take some pics and show this to the guys online'
    haha! I say the same thing to my girlfriend whenever I get something new. It's nice to show my collection to people who actually also know what I have. I hate explaining an item to a friend just to get a "cool" and a move on to the next subject.

    I completely agree with you Adrian. The thing that attracts me to GHW is the database and the e-stand that I have heard so much about. I don't think that they have to be so secretive. During my short time there I did get that elitist vibe that you are talking about. I guess I love WRF because we are mostly collectors on a budget, so I feel like I am on a level playing field. (everyone except you, Doug, with your million dollar wall of SS steel that I have a healthy envy for. I know you're out there!)

    I had an idea the other day. Why not link all of the forums together in some way so that we can have one massive, easily accessible database of pretty much all kinds of militaria? That would help out future societies' archaeologists immensely.

  10. #20

    Default Re: Where's this hobby going?

    Quote by ObKrieger View Post
    Just curious, Franz, whereabouts are you from? I actually live in Utah.

    I am 18 by the way.

    I agree with you, WRF is my favorite forum, too. I would love to be a member of GHW but I keep getting kicked out of there.
    About to go into 20. Just around the corner. 5 year collector.... In CA.

    Adrian i understand you thinking about income (respect that). But Years ago long time collectors online and offline, say that they could afford this stuff (at my age), like a German tunic and a helmet. One 30 year collector told me in early 80's you could buy a tunic for around 250$ at a gun show.

    One thing and know all of you guys agree, that fakes donít get better. That will hurt the new commers into hobby. That is probably be great threat of all. Im glad like Adrian, Ade and others are around to pass on knowledge and lend us younger guys great advise (and other).

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