Surefire E1d Defender values climbing rapidly

Qship1996

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Jan 30, 2010
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Has anyone else noticed this? I had a unused one sitting in its holster since new { also have a Titan and Fury DFT which are both put to use regularly} I have often thought I should sell the Defender since I never used it and have been watching prices on Ebay. This month, one was climbing over $300, so I put mine on at a buy now price of $319 which it sold for in 1 day- the other one finally sold for $340.00 a few days later, and there is another ending today that is already up to $370.00 last I looked. Why the spike in values????
 

Olumin

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People list items of all kinds (but especially collectibles) for incrementally higher prices because they know some idiot will pay it. Rinse & repeat. The problem is not the sellers, but the people who actually pay those prices. If no one payed those prices, no one would be listing them for that much in the first place. Same reason I dont blame scalpers, just the people who buy from them. Wanting to get as much money as possible for an item is neither stupid nor unreasonable. Its a free market after all.
 

Olumin

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Years ago I saw someone selling a rusted, broken typewriter on eBay (common model, nothing rare) for 500€ or something ridiculous like that. Because I was curious I send him a message saying that surely he would know that this is way too high & if he expected anyone to actually pay that. He simply replied that "some people really are that stupid & given long enough someone might buy it". That really is the mindset behind most of these high prices items. Essentially praying on desperation or unwittingness. Some people are willing to pay anything to get something they want right now, instead of waiting a bit for prices to come down. Thats why price gauging & scalping works. Perfect examples are PS5s & Graphics cards. Most of these items which are being resold for such sums are not necessitates of life, just pure luxuries or collectors items, not something anyone actually needs right this moment.
 
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chillinn

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Why the spike in values????
eBay makes no sense. At times there will be a feeding frenzy of high prices as though it is understood there is rarity, and at other times reality sets in. For whatever the reason among E Series, the single cell lights command a higher price. Maybe there are less of the single cell bodies. But still, logically, Surefire flashlights are worth the sum of their parts. For E1d LED Defender, this is 3 parts: a head, a body, and a tail. The head has a market value separately the same as the body, and the tail. Add their prices together, that is what the complete light is worth. Anyone paying more may be paying for the box, whether it is sealed and the item unused and NIB, as this increases collector value if and only if preserved that way indefinitely. IOW, a collector item has no use whatsoever other than as an investment, and using the light, even removing it from the package and merely displaying it, defeats that investment.

Personally, while I do understand vintage electronics and their collectability, using and running them doesn't hurt their value. A vintage transistor radio or an 8-bit computer won't be worth much more unused and NIB, though for reasons some models from some manufacturers are worth more due to rarity and desirability. The market reacts to supply and demand and sets the value.

But hardly any of Surefire's hardware is rare, and it is also not old. There are tens of thousands of most of Surefire flashlight models, sometimes pushing five to ten to twenty times that number depending on the size of their military contracts —and absolutely none of Surefire's LED handheld lights are remotely exceptional regarding the emitter, brightness, or runtime. All that distinguishes them is that they are American made and built well, can take a lot of abuse.

Surefire incan models, on the other hand, are exceptional when compared to other incandescent flashlights, so the market for incan E, M & P, etc. does make some sense to me, and I can see certain rare anodized models selling for what seems like ridiculous prices when unblemished or NIB.

But a ten year old LED flashlight that is one among 70,000 others or more that are identical except for the serial number? This makes no sense, especially because anyone that knows light, the stuff that hits our eyes, knows that Surefire's LEDs produce awful light. They're terrible in tint, in color temperature, and in color rendition. The hardware is valuable, the drivers and LEDs are as bad as any of the worst and cheapest among flashlight manufactures. It is obvious that Surefire never put much thought into their drivers and emitters, and merely maximized their profits using what is effectively commodity LEDs and electronics. The idea that they hardened these devices probably isn't true, as LED are already shockproof and durable, as is solid state electronics. I don't know why anyone would desire them so greatly as to collect them. It's like collecting Ford Pintos or AMC Gremlins. While the aesthetic could have some value, the engines were junk, and while collecting junk is easy, it isn't much of an investment. Paying more than market value is not investing so much as it is throwing money away. eBay is an auction site, part of the market, but it is not the market. Sellers sell too high, and buyers pay too much. eBay is an exaggeration of the market, not some gold standard.

This leads me to believe what others have suspected, that the prices of aftermarket Surefire are being manipulated by unscrupulous sellers. They are effectively of the same ilk as ticket scalpers, and do as they do. And what you have detected on eBay recently is not E1b skyrocketing in value. What you are seeing is Tulip mania.
 
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thermal guy

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Everything sells for what people will pay for it. I'm a big stranger things fan and was looking at the Walkman one of the actors was Using. Right now for that 1984 old technology the cheapest I could find them was like $400!
 

bykfixer

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7D Maglites used to go for the ridiculous anount of $200. Pffft, a friend recently showed me an auction where one sold for well over $800.

At one point you could get the defender version of E lights cheap. I paid $60 for my first one. Never paid over $75.
Apparently not anymore.
 

boo5ted

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Apr 16, 2010
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I pieced one together from multiple lights with a Defender head, Backup body(bored for 18350), Z68 tailcap, lh351d 4k led and a H17Fx Driver and have less than $300 into it. (the black one) Ebay prices are crazy sometimes, like others have said it's only worth what someone will pay for it. Also you just have to know how to look for the deals.
 

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