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Author Topic: Damaged glass  (Read 992 times)

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Offline Paul ADK

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Damaged glass
« on: September 04, 2007, 03:27:17 AM »
Yesterday we were offered a very attractive signed and numbered Kosta Boda Vase for a very small fraction of the book value - less than 5%.  I turned it down because in looking it over I discovered a bruise on the lip no larger than a pin head.  I know that any damage greatly reduces market value.  I also know that acceptability is a subjective judgment.  What I do not know is where to draw the line when it comes to moderately priced glass.

To my mind, any common glass could be sent straight to the trash can without a qualm.  On the other hand, I would like to see even a badly damaged example by Tiffany or Steuben considered for possible restoration. 

I would be more interested to hear what others think about lightly damaged factory glass.  Would you purchase it and have the scratch or minor defect polished out?  Or for that matter, even if the price was right, would you pass it by? *

*Please note, I am not talking about restoration with an eye to foisting the result off on an unsuspecting public.         

Offline a40ty

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Re: Damaged glass
« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2007, 05:13:26 AM »
If you like the item and can live with a pinhead bruise, buy the item.
If, on the other hand, you suspect you will only see the bruise every time you look at the item, don't buy it! :)

Offline Angela B

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Re: Damaged glass
« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2007, 06:27:29 AM »
That's one of those things about damage. If you don't notice it, you can love a piece of glass for years. But once you see a flaw, even if others wouldn't think of it as a flaw (like a bubble in a formal paperweight, for example) then sometimes that's all you can see forever after.
To answer your question about the value of a damaged piece, it depends on how easily the perfect version could be obtained. If perfect ones are readily available (for example if there's always one or two coming up on ebay in a month) then there's not much point buying a damaged one. But if you've only ever seen one or maybe two offered before (like for example a set of Bagley bookends) then anyone collecting that kind of glass is going to settle for the damaged ones, and they will bring a good price.
Just my opinion, though.
Nowadays I don't buy damaged pieces because I've no room for them.
Having written that I then went off and found two pieces of carnival glass on ebay with tiny damage - and bid on them!!  :o
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Offline Ivo

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Re: Damaged glass
« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2007, 07:08:15 AM »
fill in the pinhead with clear nail varnish. Make sure to mention a "reversible restauration" on resale.

Offline bidda

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Re: Damaged glass
« Reply #4 on: September 04, 2007, 07:16:15 PM »
if it's an "i must have that" piece then, minute damage barely affects my decision to buy (at the right price). generally, the greater the value of a piece in pristine condition, the less likely i would be to purchase one that is less than perfect. one can learn only so much from web-photos and books. having a piece in your hands can be a very valuable learning experience. sometimes it's worth it to me to buy a less than stellar piece just to have a physical example of something i'm trying to learn more about.

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Offline Leni

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Re: Damaged glass
« Reply #5 on: September 04, 2007, 08:14:23 PM »
Absolutely agree with bidda!  I started my collection with pieces with damage, just to actually handle the glass and learn.  Mind you, collecting the sort of 'frilly' Victorian vaseline thorn vases which I like, it does become more difficult (and expensive!) to find undamaged examples, so I often still buy bits with chips and nibbles, but only pay what's appropriate in those circumstances.   

Offline KevinH

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Re: Damaged glass
« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2007, 10:27:10 PM »
If the question is specifically related to "factory glass" and if that also implies a reasonable quantity of available similar items, then I'd buy only a good piece.

But I have several items that have minor, and not-so-minor damage. Some were already repaired with careful grinding which did not detract from the overall look but at the same time is clearly visible for later owners to note.

I also have some pieces (paperweights) that have severe damage and there is no possible way to have them repaired. To me, these are just extreme versions of the ones bidda and Leni mentioned, that are useful for learning. In fact, some of my broken pieces were purchased because they have features that add to the academic aspect of my collecting and hopefully help to tie together loose ends of history. For those items, I am prepared to pay more than just a "damaged price"!

I have never purchased anything with the aim of monetary profit, so my "value" of an item lies in how it can help me understand something as well as it being a pleasing piece of glass artwork. So, damage is often a secondary consideration for me.

Offline carolglass

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Re: Damaged glass
« Reply #7 on: September 07, 2007, 08:20:02 PM »
After collecting for some years ones focus does change, nowadays I try and find undamaged pieces. My maxim these days is you are paying $xx for a chip or bruise, does the item then warrant the purchase (for a variety of personal reasons). regards from New Zealand on a clear and sunny spring morning in beautiful Golden Bay

Offline Jay

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Re: Damaged glass
« Reply #8 on: September 09, 2007, 07:10:28 AM »
In my own field, there is a big variation in 'typical condition' depending on the model.

There are clearly some techniques which are more prone to damage than others (e.g. edges which have been ground on the wheel but NOT flamed)
As a consequence there are individual items which are almost invariably damaged if they have ever been in use! (for me this includes the Bambusa vase by WJRozendaal which seems to get a chip around the foot rim almost on contact with humans! ;-) )

Therefore I think it really has to do with the true nature of your 'collectaphilia'. Of course I would love to find a Bambusa without the chips, but I'm glad that I can still get 99% enjoyment from the six chipped ones that I have in my display! (only a real fanatic would notice the chips)
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