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Thread: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

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    Default Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    I need some help valuing a special, one of a kind bike. This bike was built to raise funds for Don Walker's daughter for the 2007 NAHBS. The raffle winner got a custom bike built and painted by the many forumites here-- Sachs, Weigle, Della Santa, Fattic, Baylis, Nobilette, Tom Kellogg, etc.

    It seems that the owner, Bill White, has passed and the executor of the estate (Ben Black, a friend) is trying to to appraise and sell it. So Ben brought it to my LBS, who in turn called me as I have more knowledge about custom than they do. The family isn't interested in keeping the bike.

    This bike has never been ridden and has a new Dura Ace 10 spd on it; it's probably better to sell without the components. It's a big bike, as the owner, Bill White, was 6'3" or so: seat is 58 c-c and 62 c-t with a 57.5 top tube. I have not seen it myself yet but will this weekend.

    I appreciate your help with this and if any of you are interested, let me know! Too big for me, unfortunately.
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    The shop owner emailed me 2-3 weeks ago for the same reason and I'll post the reply that he received.

    I don't think this is a high value object at all, and might be quite the opposite. The project, while possibly good intentioned, was one of the most disorganized, drawn out, clustefukcs I have ever been part of. One or two of us did was was required immediately, especially in light of the mission statement and the fact that a name was drawn as a "winner". But after that, this thing lingered and had more fits and starts than the Big Dig in Boston. It took very little time for some of us to wish we had never agreed to do the work. I documented my stuff and have had a Flickr set showing the images for seven years now.



    Don-a-Thon - a set on Flickr







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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    BUT the end result was beautiful whether is was a marriage made in heaven or not.
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    Richard may be right, but to quote Doug Fattic from a thread on Paceline (there is no need to use the term "across the hall" is there?):

    "I would be shocked if there could be this kind of collaboration ever again between this group of 10 founders of modern American framebuilding. I can’t imagine who could bring us all together again (certainly not Don) to all work on one frame. That makes this frame a one time only opportunity. We all had at least 30 years of framebuilding experience when we collectively made it back in 2007 and 2008. Do the math. Statistically one of us isn’t going to be around (or at least be able to do this kind of work) in 5 years or less. I’m in fine shape (I like to bicycle) and work as hard as ever teaching framebuilding classes but we're all on the wrong side of the age curve."

    and

    "Let me explain why I think this is an exceptional frame. 10 master builders (all founders of modern American framebuilding) did special work in every area of their responsibility. More specifically each person carved a unique shape out of their lug, bottom bracket shell or fork crown. Not only that but all the lugs were filled in with brass in some areas (before the lug was brazed into the frame) to smooth shape transitions. This is a very far cry from taking a standard set of lugs, crisping the edges and maybe thinning them afterwards like most refining treatment on a standard custom frame. Everyone did an outstanding job. Getting independent minded people with their own schedules to collaborate on one project for free wasn’t likely to happen without tension. The result turned out fine whether we held hands and sang Kunbaya together when it was finished or not (we didn’t). This won't be done by this group again. Good close up pictures can make the best case for the value of this frame so anyone could decide for themselves. Here is another one I took just for documentation."

    Seems that though it may have left a bad taste in Richard's mouth, its rarity (really uniqueness, doesn't sound like they will be doing this again) and the historical importance of the framebuilders who made it have little to do with how one, or several...or even all, of the builders feel about the process. I bet someone wants to own that piece of history.
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    An auction will establish the value and move the item at that value.
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by DrZRM View Post
    Seems that though it may have left a bad taste in Richard's mouth, its rarity (really uniqueness, doesn't sound like they will be doing this again) and the historical importance of the framebuilders who made it have little to do with how one, or several...or even all, of the builders feel about the process. I bet someone wants to own that piece of history.
    There's no bad taste in my mouth, so thanks for projecting on my behalf. I'm not sure what about my text above isn't clear, but I'll reiterate that some of us worked hard and early to fulfill our obligations. So, when we did, our jobs were complete. But it did take at least 3 years for one or two of the others to do what they committed to. Poor Bill White was beyond pissed. He spent two years looking for shoulders to lean on. Walker himself was at wit's end with those too disorganized to step up to the plate and take their swings. It got acrimonious, and one step away from being a legal thing. I am simply adding to the lore of the project and, as I replied to John Zung (the OP), before he even posted about this, the shop owner had emailed me about the unit and the exchange was the same as it is here.

    The auction was for a good cause. Bill White should have had his prize in 2007 rather than in 2010. He shouldn't have been driven nuts by some of the antics that went on after some of us worked on, and finished our contributions, so soon after his name was called.

    I don't think this is a high value object, as I mentioned already. But it only needs one person to like this, and to have the money to buy it. For myself, I'll say what some of us said all along, and though it may seem harsh, it's our reality with regard to the project: It's like a bad jam session at the R+R HOF induction ceremony. Lotsa' talented cats who, in their own right can hit the right notes. But together? All you get is noise, not music.

    The auction was for a good cause.
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by ryker View Post
    An auction will establish the value and move the item at that value.
    That's really the only way. Make sure any auction gets noticed abroad. Different markets might yield different results.
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by bobswire View Post
    BUT the end result was beautiful whether is was a marriage made in heaven or not.
    ergo bars are incompatible with beauty

    sell the parts off separately and auction the frameset
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by ryker View Post
    An auction will establish the value and move the item at that value.
    Yep. There will certainly be any number of collectors who will value this one-off.

    Those of us who don't will just sit on the sidelines.
    GO!
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by e-RICHIE View Post
    It's like a bad jam session at the R+R HOF induction ceremony. Lotsa' talented cats who, in their own right can hit the right notes. But together? All you get is noise, not music.
    When the Foo Fighters inducted Queen into the R&R HOF, that was some rock n' roll magic that night. Just sayin'.
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    ---just like irving berlin, had to be "cheek to cheek" to make music not noise..

    ronnie with a smile for harmony
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    GO!
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    That is my size and a beauty. And I'll bet it is going to sell for way way more than what I can spend. Where/how is it being sold? (Have to ask...)
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    It's just a bike. It doesn't have a pro racing palmarès. It isn't a multimillion dollar racing ferrari of the sixties. The market for such things couldn't be smaller. Auction is the way to go.
    --
    T h o m a s
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    Remove the parts, lay out the backstory in detail (who did what and the charitable angle) and set the starting bid at $5K. Your pool of potential buyers may not be limited to just people who will fit the bike if there are interested collectors. If you can get an article about it somewhere out in the connoisseur world (versus the bike world) that would be helpful.

    If there are other reasons for setting the value - estate taxes, etc. - versus selling it, you don't need this site. A good bike shop should be able to provide a detailed estimate of value given the details of its construction. And the IRS (or whoever) will probably like that better than an Internet forum.

    Looks terrific. Really stellar. And the project sounds very worthwhile, whatever the snags in the process. To the buyer who wants this, the details on the lugs will be the thing they focus on.
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    Designed by committee?

    Got some cash
    Bought some wheels
    Took it out
    'Cross the fields
    Lost Control
    Hit a wall
    But we're alright
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by e-RICHIE View Post
    There's no bad taste in my mouth, so thanks for projecting on my behalf.
    Re-read your email. It was oozing with derision for the entire project. I don't see how posting that in a public forum does Bill's estate any good, either. Josh has done such a good job with SEO that this thread will be one of the first few things interested parties come across. Your insight into the back story don't inspire confidence.
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by nahtnoj View Post
    Re-read your email. It was oozing with derision for the entire project. I don't see how posting that in a public forum does Bill's estate any good, either.
    You have no clue what you are talking about. Bill is (was) also a pal and client of mine, and for the 3+ years of the ordeal was at my side (as I was at his) as he fretted and lost interest and vented and wondered about who was dropping the ball that, originally, was lighter than a balloon. Everything that happened is part of the "project", not just the bicycle. I have his emails from over 3 years that speak to it. There was no tension among the framebuilders, especially among those whose work was completed early and on time. I stand by my original reply above, as I stood with Bill from the moment he "won" the drawing.
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by e-RICHIE View Post
    You have no clue what you are talking about. Bill is (was) also a pal and client of mine, and for the 3+ years of the ordeal was at my side (as I was at his) as he fretted and lost interest and vented and wondered about who was dropping the ball that, originally, was lighter than a balloon. Everything that happened is part of the "project", not just the bicycle. I have his emails from over 3 years that speak to it. There was no tension among the framebuilders, especially among those whose work was completed early and on time. I stand by my original reply above, as I stood with Bill from the moment he "won" the drawing.
    OK - I don't know what I'm talking about. The first time I heard of this project was when the OP posted.

    But you've now said plenty. None of it is flattering. And I don't see what purpose it serves.
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    Default Re: Project Tessa bike - how to value a one of kind bike?

    Quote Originally Posted by nahtnoj View Post
    OK - I don't know what I'm talking about.
    Thanks
    Quote Originally Posted by nahtnoj View Post
    The first time I heard of this project was when the OP posted.
    I am sure you can do searches, as the time between the draw and the delivery was maybe 4 years.
    Quote Originally Posted by nahtnoj View Post
    But you've now said plenty. None of it is flattering. And I don't see what purpose it serves.
    Consider my contributions as a counterpoint to any others coming from those involved. It's good to have some balance when the facts are involved.
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