Peter Bowman owns a small job shop near Green Bay, Wisconsin. He wrote me an email Monday asking for advice on how to sell the assortment of manual machine tools his father has accumulated in his small shop where Peter initially learned about the business.
Please read Mr. Bowman’s letter below and reply with suggestions. I will write my own reply on the blog in the comments following the letter.
My 75-year-old father just shut down his machine shop and asked me to sell off everything. The place is a museum of 1940-1965 manual machine tools and I can’t get anyone interested in making an offer for any of it, maybe because I’m at the end of the road here in Green Bay, WI. I have (2) 1-5/8″ 6-spindle Greenlees with (literally) a ton of tooling, a 1952 3″ G&L bar (boring mill), a 12″ chuck 1962 Monarch lathe, a 30” Blanchard, radial drills, grinders, dozens of lathe chucks, drill presses etc. etc. etc. – all of it in working order, but too old and worn for production guys and too big and costly to move for hobbyists. The scrap guy says he’ll take it, but I won’t get anything out of the deal. Is this why most people give in to the auctioneers and their high prices? I was able to sell off the few CNCs and the gear department for the same amount the auctioneers estimated, so it’s really just the leftovers here. I’m just trying to raise some cash so an old man can supplement his Social Security enough to stay in his house, but at this point it looks like we’re going to scrap it all out. What do others do in this situation? He owns the building, so there is no hurry – perhaps after we fall off the Cliff people will be looking to spend some money. Any advice would be appreciated.
Peter W. Bowman, Song Industries, Inc.
Question: How would you sell this stuff?