How to Sell an Army?

I think the subtitle of this post should be 'What the Hell is Wrong with Me?"

Of late, I've had this itch to sell all of the Space Marine bike models and parts from my collection. Hilariously, during the previous selloff I did of Marine models and kits, I intended to keep ONLY bike units. I'm not sure why, but I'm restless with this new codex.

I have long been "The Bike Guy" at my FLGS. Folks from other shops have actually recognised my army from this or that event without me being at the table. "Oh, it's that Bike Guy!" Got a question about how to use/kit/build/paint bikes? I was the guy to ask.

I enjoyed being that guy, and having that experience and expertise. But with the new book, I'm less in love with my bikes.

The reason for this eludes me. The White Scars chapter tactics are great. Khan is much improved. Bikes overall are far better and slightly cheaper on points. Folks are flocking to bike armies, and maybe that's why I'm less impressed by them lately. They're the new "power build," at least in the early going. I've never been the "power build" sort of player, and I think the situation feels a lot like what Necron and Eldar players, and to a lesser extent Grey Knights, players feel. You can have the original metal models for Necrons, but when you show up at the table and hand over a Necron list, you get that "broken codex" or "bandwagoneer" stigma. I have a minor fear of that stigma being applied to my bike army. It's an irrational fear, as my play group is tight knit and we all know each others' histories, but it's still there.

I also fancy myself as an opportunist and a bit of a 40K "flipper." I've bought and traded for things in the past, and then turned around and resold or retraded them at a profit. It's how I amassed some of my bike army, in fact. I'm seeing bikes being bought and sold online, and feel like I might be able to mkae a little money by selling what is a pretty complete bike army (though it lacks the min/max weapon loadouts). I've never sold a model I've painted before though, and I'm curious if I'll regret it in the long run, and a bit lost on how much to ask for.

If I were to sell the force, it would contain:
1 Captain (armed as a counts-as Khan)
1 Techmarine with power axe and servo arm
1 Apothecary
1 Company Champion with sword and shield
1 Banner Bearer, with magnetized banner arm
1 Storm Shield Bearer
10 basic bolter bikes
2 plasmagunners
2 meltagunners
2 flamers
1 Sergeant with power axe
1 Sergeant with power fist
2 Sergeants with holstered bolters (used as combiweapons)
1 Sergeant with plasma pistol
5 magnetized, metal attack bikes, each with heavy bolter and multimelta parts
3-4 new Scout bikes in box or on sprue
4-5 old scout bikes, unassembled and off sprue
3-4 additional metal attack bike sidecars with heavy bolter and multimelta options for each
A "remaining bike bitz" pile.

All of this is painted to a solid tabletop standard. Not "pro" level, but not "quick dip" level. No decals in the army, all freehand.

Retail, the completed models pan out just shy of $500, then add in the other kits and parts. But retail is a poor gauge of value for a complete, painted army. Of course, it only shakes out to about 1500 points, so it's not 100% "complete."

Anyone sold an army they've painted and built themselves over time? It's easy enough to flip models you never invested time into, but how hard is it to send away something you've put years into?
I wouldn't be divesting myself of all my Marines, obviously. I still have plenty of non-bike Marines to play with, build, and paint. I have several directions I could go in.

What do you folks think?


  1. I have done this twice with mixed results. My first iteration of White Scars I sold a few years ago with the plan to off load my scars to fund some hobby and pay a few bills. I put tons and tons of time and effort into them, but I also knew I could paint a much better force. I was disappointed, I think I got 500 bucks for a 2500 point army that was well painted, not as good as your ultramarines, but a good middle of the road tabletop quality. This was on ebay too so got screwed on both ends of the deal.

    This lead to building up my grey knights and working on that army which I was really excited for them I just didn't know that they were going to be the power gamer's delight. So after building up 2500 points and playing in the 'ard boyz regionals (I think thats what it was) and seeing the other half of the field be grey knights, I got much the same feeling you describe now with your bikes. (At least my gk's were all painted, thats what I kept telling myself anyway). So at that point I really wanted to play marines again and I couldn't figure out a chapter to do, the only one I ever really liked were the scars and the imperial fists but there really did not seem to be good rules for the fists so I decided to rebuild the scars. I ended up selling off my grey knights. I started on my blog at the time, then kicked off an ebay auction with a message to PM if interested for a better deal. I found a great buyer and we settled it off of ebay and both got a really good deal. I ended up making about 300 bucks over the retail costs of the models for what I consider a pretty solid paint job.

    I haven't regretted selling either army. But I also don't plan on doing it again. It is a nerve racking endeavor though, especially if you send it to auction. Best of luck on deciding what to do, be patient, never accept less than you would be happy with.

    1. I do remember reading your adventures in selling the GK force on your blog.
      I know what I'd like to get for my bikes, but am not sure if it'll be successful. I do have a small advantage in that I trade and sell over on Bartertown, so I can do a flat price listing instead of relying on eBay auctions.

  2. I usually traded my painted armies to friends for unpainted and/ or assembled models to my other armies. (I got a vast Imperial Guard army this way), it made me feel better in that my friends were in the hobby playing with or against me and I could still see my old models. I didn't get the monetary value but it paid itself in investing in friends that probably could not afford or had time to paint an army