eBay emerges as an unexpected hotbed of high-priced antique diving helmet sales

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Although eBay would seem to be a less efficient place to buy something as bulky and obscure as an antique diving helmet, in fact there are some exquisite, unique examples changing hands for large amounts.

Looking at recently completed auctions in the Antique Diving Helmets category, a surprising seven helmets sold for over $1000 (ranging from $2,280 for a somewhat banged-up Japanese helmet to $12,660 for an awesome Miller-Dunn Mark V from 1944). Interestingly, requested shipping costs had a wide range, $33.43 to $207.97, as well as a couple marked "not specified".

eBay, known as a place to buy and sell any and everything, has a stigma with some buyers due to the several unknown factors when using the service.

For example, anyone can list an item for sale, for any price. Whether or not the item exists, or if it is as described, or if the buyer will actually send it after payment has been made — all of these keep some potential buyers away.

Which is fantastic for other buyers, because all of these concerns are complete bunk. With eBay's buyer/seller feedback system, not to mention the financial protection of both eBay and its online payment processor, PayPal, there is little to no chance you will have a bad experience with eBay if you be careful. (For example, the seller of the Miller-Dunn above has a feedback approaching 500 comments, with a positive rating of a perfect 100%.)

It continues to be very fortunate for buyers that eBay's stigma continues. It keeps competition between bidders down, and it is still possible (and even common) to get a fantastic antique boat part for a great price.

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