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The One That Got Away: Biggest Non-Purchase Regret

rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,288
edited May 2012 in Collecting
I'd love to hear stories of everyone's most significant regret over not purchasing a particular set.

From recent memory, mine would be passing on 10123 Cloud City. While in production, for some reason or another I kept buying other sets instead of Cloud City. Soon after it retired, I remember watching the eBay prices climb to about $150, and again I passed over it and purchased sets like 10152 Maersk Sealand Container Ship. Fast forward to present day and MISB Cloud Cities currently sell for around $650 on eBay, while TLG has re-released (and thus devalued) 10152.

Looking back, I have no idea why I never purchased it. It's 1 of the only 2 significant holes in my Star Wars Lego collection, and fulfilled virtually every criteria to ensure it would be highly collectible (Star Wars, limited release, exclusive minifigs, high price point). At this point, I'm not sure if I'll ever be able to justify purchasing it at the price it commands.
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Comments

  • drdavewatforddrdavewatford Hertfordshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,258
    edited March 2011
    Probably Set 3450 Statue of Liberty, which is one of the few large sculpture sets I don't own. I stupidly passed up the opportunity of buying a complete, boxed example for about £200 six months ago and now can't find one for less than £500....

    PS. Not to rub it in, but I do have Cloud City. :-)
    ChefKristopher
  • bluemoosebluemoose Member Posts: 1,716
    There are two for me - Cloud City (which I felt, and still feel, in many ways wasn't a very good set, but would be nice to own for completeness), and the Tumbler, which I had planned to buy but which vanished from shelves over night.
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,288
    edited March 2011
    3450 Statue of Liberty would make my top 10, also. Back then, I lived in an apartment which was already overrun with the themes I actively collected. Additionally, it didn't belong to a solid theme at the time (and it's still kind of an odd theme since it should be re-classified as a large scale building). I recall a common reason that people bought the set was for the abundance of sand green bricks, and not necessarily the model itself.

    For me, hope of ownership is not lost, though. My sister lives in Manhattan and bought it for her husband when it was released. It has since been brought back to California because Manhattan apartments suffer from lack of space perhaps more than anywhere, and I never refuse an opportunity to comment on how well it would look on display with my other Lego large scale buildings.
  • natro220natro220 USAMember Posts: 545
    This would probably be 10190 Market Street. It was being fazed out and clearance off at Lego Stores right when I was coming out of the dark ages. I remember seeing it at my local Lego Store, and thinking it was ugly and I would never buy it. Little would I know that Lego would continue the Modular Building line, and that I would grow to love the odd color scheme and design. The set, which was less than $50 on clearance when I saw it, now goes for $400-600 regularly on Bricklink and Ebay. I've managed to piece together 95% of it for relatively cheap, but am still missing most of the dark blue pieces which are really hard to find. I also printed out instructions (I try to get real instructions for most of my sets, but this one goes for $60-70).
  • HuwHuw Brickset Towers, Hampshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,452
    It's incredible that Cloud City fetches such high prices, isn't it. It's a rubbish set with just the minifigs as it redeeming feature. I've been filling holes in my SW minifig collection in preparation for a gallery and now, apart from a few 'counterpart' figs (those that didn't appear in a set from first production), I am complete except for Boba Fett from CC. The other CC figs were not so ovepriced but Boba commands $100+ even for a second hand one.

    I have a 3450 MISB (that's bag, not box, since I threw the box away when I moved house in 2006). One day I'll get round to building it!
  • drdavewatforddrdavewatford Hertfordshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,258
    I have a 3450 MISB (that's bag, not box, since I threw the box away when I moved house in 2006).
    You threw the box away ?! I think I need to go and lie down....

    I agree with you regarding Cloud City, incidentally. I only bought it to fill a gap in my collection, but it isn't a great set IMHO - definitely a candidate for "Most Overrated Set". And you're welcome to borrow my Boba for the Star Wars minifig gallery !

  • natro220natro220 USAMember Posts: 545
    I believe Cloud City is worth so much because so many people passed it over BECAUSE it's not that great. It's crazy that Boba goes for so much.
  • HuwHuw Brickset Towers, Hampshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,452
    I had a loft full of boxes that I just couldn't move to the new house so I sold them, to Darren on Brickish, who hired a van to collect them all! I think that was among them

    It was only a boring monochrome one in any case.
  • drdavewatforddrdavewatford Hertfordshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,258
    edited April 2011
    I had a loft full of boxes that I just couldn't move to the new house so I sold them, to Darren on Brickish, who hired a van to collect them all! I think that was among them
    Looks like an e-mail to Darren is in order....!

  • MatthewMatthew Cheshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 3,734
    There are loads for me, and most of them quite recent. 7733 Cargo Truck and The Cargo Plane (can't remember the number) 3222 Helicopter and Limousine (on sale for £6 at Tesco) Loads of stuff I've been considering on Bricklink then I go back to buy it and someone else has :-(
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,288
    I agree that 10123 Cloud City didn't appeal to me beyond its collectibility. It would have been a tremendously better set if they included something similar to the midi scale falcon, slave 1, or even a cloud car -- something that would at least occupy the landing pad. And since it was $100 USD for only 705 pieces, it would have brought the piece count to a more decent ratio.
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,288
    edited April 2011
    This would probably be 10190 Market Street. It was being fazed out and clearance off at Lego Stores right when I was coming out of the dark ages. I remember seeing it at my local Lego Store, and thinking it was ugly and I would never buy it.
    I agree with you; I have mixed feelings about the set. The color scheme and main building is nice and uses some very clever building techniques. However, the side market is horrid: beyond not knowing what it even is supposed to resemble, it doesn't fit in a row very nicely at all.
  • atkinsaratkinsar Member Posts: 4,272
    Pretty much the entire batman theme for me, and slightly more recently, I wish I'd picked up 10184 Town Plan.
  • YellowcastleYellowcastle Member Posts: 4,401
    edited April 2011
    @rocao - I passed by this set several times at the Lego Store and/or Legoland CA when I lived out there and I just couldn't bring myself to buy it. To this day, I just think it's terrible. I really dislike these Star Wars "destination" sets that seem so incomplete and blah like Home One, Hoth, Tattoine, and Cloud City. The figures and extra ships help make up for the shortcomings on Home One, Hoth, and Tattoine but I see really no redeeming value for Cloud City. Here's hoping we get new and improved sets for each of these.

    For me, it's probably Fort Legorado as I had opportuntities to get this the first time around as well as when it returned as a Legends set. Recently, I regret not picking up more Batman sets especially the Tumbler, but that's mostly just my greedy side seeing as how these have skyrocketed in value. I'm sure the Temple of Doom will probably skyrocket too, but I just didn't care for the set outside of the figures, and thus passed. So I reserve the right to add that to this list at a later time. :o)

    @Matthew - Lego released the really interesting Family Home and Limousine sets and then discontinued them so quickly. I imagine a lot of people didn't get a chance to get them.
  • legoDadlegoDad Member Posts: 529
    San Diego Comic Con 2008....I picked up a couple of impulse Star Wars sets but foolishly passed on all the Batman sets they had there thinking...ah, they'll have all of these for a couple of months, I'll pick it up when ever...ughhhhhh.
    Now I see all those sets in the hundreds BUT, Xmas of that year I got lucky and got the Tumbler offa' eBay for only $35 bucks. A couple months before the price craze took place.
    Also the Agents Volcano base I passed on thinking it'll be around and now it's like a $300 + purchase on eBay...whhhhyyyyyyyyyyy.
    Ok...I'm better now...sniff......
  • starfire2starfire2 Phoenix AZMember Posts: 1,300
    Any original Lego Star Wars from 1999+. We went through some pics we had taken of the Lego store in Downtown Disney, in 2000. We noticed in the pics that there were lots of Lego Star Wars sets we never bought. At that time, my oldest son was 5 and wasn't playing with regular Lego's at that time, and my husband and I weren't into Lego's at that time. I especially regret not getting Jango Fett's Slave 1, Jabba's Sail Barge, and Jabba's Palace. Those sets on Ebay are ALOT! I payed $200 to get a mint in never been opened box. It was worth it, but I would have saved if I had gotten it way back when.
  • Jonny2scarvesJonny2scarves Member Posts: 3
    It would definitely be more of the Batman range, like he Tumbler. The second wave of batman sets were only in the Lego stores and much harder to get. I wonder if they will release Batman again when the new film comes out? Maybe they will do more Spiderman sets when the new film of that comes out too? I hope so!
  • mackrelmackrel Member Posts: 75
    In no particular order:
    Town Plan
    Original Death Star (On sale at the local Lego Store)
    Green Grocer at the Lego Store when I knew they had been discontinued. I have one built and another in the box. I could have bought them and re-sold them to buy more sets.
    The Helicopter and Limo. That one really bothers me....
    UCS Falcon. Should have bit the bullet and just put it on a Credit Card...
    I know that this one could be debated but the Indian Jones line. Iconic movie...
    I know that I will think of more.
  • duilimduilim Member Posts: 61
    Oh boy, there's a few....... starting with
    10184 - Town plan - I still remember the day I saw this set on sale and to this day am still wondering why on earth I never picked it up.
    10185 - Green Grocer - this one I CAN explain. I didn't get into modular buildings until I picked up last year's Grand Emporium - by that time, it was too late.....
    7662 MTT - probably put off by the price of Star Wars sets, this one came back to bite me in a big way.

    There are a few others, but I put those down to the fact that I was a kid when they were available and so, couldn't really afford them. As an adult, these three will haunt me for a long time to come.......
  • hleonffuhleonffu USAMember Posts: 229
    Where do I begin?? Since becoming a member of Brickset and searching thru the catalog, I keep finding more sets I wish I had or should have bought at the time. Sets with regrets:
    4957 Ferris Wheel
    10181 Eiffel Tower
    10182 Cafe Corner
    10185 Green Grocer
    10123 Cloud City
  • aplbomr79aplbomr79 Member Posts: 159
    I originally passed on the Winter Toy Shop after it's release. As most of you know, it sold out rather quickly. However, about a week after Christmas I found it on Ebay for $44.99 (not including S&H). Even so, it ended up being the near the Price listed on LEGO [email protected] Then LEGO went and re-introduced it. (kicking the sand...)
  • jb3pinjb3pin Member Posts: 3
    Taj Mahal. I never really wanted it, yet always wanted to build it. Now that I can't jusify the current market price, I want it. Next to that would be the Cafe Corner, didn't get into modular buildings because of the price and then my wife gave me the Grand Emporium for my birthday. What a fantastic build, what she didn't realize it that it was a gateway to owning the Fire Brigade and the Green Grocer, which I just paid too much for on BrickLink. Should of pulled the trigger on that before it was discontinued. Now I have the the self fulfilling prophecy of "just buy it", which is likely only a gateway to "just buy two", and sell one later. So far that's only happened with the CM's.
  • zumazuma Member Posts: 17
    Unfortunately, mine seems to be the exact opposite:
    When I was at university many years ago, I sold my castle Lego collection for £100 - It was pretty much all sets released from 1984 to 1990, all complete, instructions and boxes...
    I have since purchased from eBay all these castle sets, but at many many times the cost of what I received.
  • prof1515prof1515 EarthMember Posts: 1,561
    Sets I regret not buying even at full cost would include Cloud City and the Sail Barge. Sets I regret not buying on sale for 80% off included the entire Orient Expedition line. Unfortunately I didn't make it to the store (about an hour's drive away) before they closed and so I missed the chance to get the entire collection for about $60!
  • MisterFubarMisterFubar Member Posts: 4
    Trains.

    I picked up a few copies of the Toy Story train on a very deep clearance at Sam's Club and now I'm hooked and have been buying and building everything I can get my hands on. I had always overlooked the trains and now looking back I see there were so many great sets that I missed. With the exception of all my childhood castle sets the only theme I've been into for the past few years has been Star Wars and I'm slowly taking apart sets on display to make room for more Trains.

    I do regret missing most of the UCS sets before the Falcon as I was in a bit of a dark ages between 2000-2006. Also missed most of the regular SW sets in that time frame. Now the prices are just too high for me to justify getting them. I can afford them, but they just aren't worth to me what they are to others I suppose. I do keep an eye out for cheap offerings on them though and have filled in a few gaps in my collection.
  • korkor Member Posts: 392
    A few of the early modular buildings and some of the Star Wars exclusive sets.

    I also REALLY regret selling some of the stuff I did. I remember when Batman and Spiderman were being heavily clearanced. I bought up a ton of sets and ended up selling everything on ebay. I made good money but now they're worth an arm and a leg....
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,288
    edited April 2011
    I sold my castle Lego collection for £100 - It was pretty much all sets released from 1984 to 1990, all complete, instructions and boxes..
    Excuse me while I pick my jaw up from off the floor!
  • washenwashen Member Posts: 2
    I had the opportunity to choose between a brand new 4504 Millennium Falcon at the Disney LEGO store and the last, slightly damaged, REDUCED PRICE (about $50) 10123 Cloud City. Unfortunately I chose the Falcon. After returing home, I disassembled the Falcon and stored the pieces away. Since that time, three new versions of the Millennium Falcon have been released and the asking price for Cloud City has gone sky high.
  • llanowarsoldierllanowarsoldier Ohio USAMember Posts: 357
    My Biggest regret was during christmas season 2 years ago when I went into the Lego store for the 1st time after it had opened up here in Columbus and saw piles among piles of Cafe Corners on their floor along with some other really cool sets. I thought to myself.."i'll pick it up after x-mas." At the time I had just got back into lego and didnt realize it was being discontinued. Instead I picked up Green Grocer and Town Plan that day. So basically I went back a week after X-mas and they were all out and Lego.com was sold out also.

    To this day I kick myself for not buying it over Green Grocer which just retired.
  • MartinMartin Member Posts: 375
    There really aren't that many sets I could have bought but didn't. Yoda and the Statue of Liberty probably fall into that camp but I usually buy what I like and skip what I don't. It probably helps that I'm not an avid SW collector (even though I am a big SW movie fan) - that would seriously dent my wallet.

    I try to be happy with my lot. A couple of years ago I had too many unopened sets and got to the point where as much as I loved them, I was never going to build them so I sold them. I've learned to accept that having something that looks nice in a box isn't what LEGO is about, nor is it helpful from a storage/cost point of view. I now build stuff or plan to build stuff. If I have to think about whether I'll build it, I think about selling it.
  • jb15jb15 Member Posts: 53
    Clearance? What are you guys talking about? I've only seen LEGO on clearance once or twice, and when I got home and checked the prices on ebay, they were about the same (for example, the Toy Story 3 train set I found on clearance at Kmart--for $50. Which is the same amount that they sell for on ebay right now...)
  • brickupdatebrickupdate Member Posts: 1,020
    I like this quote from @Martin: "I've learned to accept that having something that looks nice in a box isn't what LEGO is about"

    It would have been nice to have Cafe Corner, but I can't really say that I had some big chance to buy it and missed out. it was only mid-2010 when I started really buying LEGO in a serious way again.
  • prof1515prof1515 EarthMember Posts: 1,561
    It probably helps that I'm not an avid SW collector (even though I am a big SW movie fan) - that would seriously dent my wallet..
    Funny, I'm the exact opposite. I used to be a big Star Wars fan when I was a kid but as I grew up I began to notice more and more how thin the films are. Then came the prequels which were utter garbage. The Clone Wars film in 2008 proved there was even lower to go on the scale. Regardless, I liked the Lego line though it has tested my patience with repeated releases of sets that have been done before.
    ...something that looks nice in a box isn't what LEGO is about, nor is it helpful from a storage/cost point of view. I now build stuff or plan to build stuff. If I have to think about whether I'll build it, I think about selling it.
    It is helpful from a cost point of view as well as in regard to display space. I simply don't have space at my present location to display all of my sets. When I have more room to display them, I'll be able to. At some point I may decide to sell them before then and that's where keeping them in the box is important, especially from a cost point of view. Just opening the box can reduce the value of the set by 50% in some cases.
  • 50missioncap50missioncap Member Posts: 96
    Green Grocer - Schaumberg Lego store about 2 years ago. Why didn't I buy? Still gets me angry.
  • wagnerml2wagnerml2 Belleville, IllinoisMember Posts: 1,376
    For me it is the UCS Falcon. Just could never pull the trigger. When it went on clearance, I was away and couldn't get the order in before it sold out. I therefore ordered my Death Star a few weeks ago when rumors started to swirl that it was on it's way out. Wasn't gonna happen to me twice :).
  • meyerc13meyerc13 Member Posts: 227
    A couple come to mind. In no particular order (except Town Plan, which is my biggest regret):

    10184 Town Plan http://www.brickset.com/detail/?Set=10184-1
    4997 Transport Ferry http://www.brickset.com/detail/?Set=4997-1
    7628 Peril in Peru http://www.brickset.com/detail/?set=7628-1
    6754 Family Home http://www.brickset.com/detail/?Set=6754-1
    7633 Construction Site http://www.brickset.com/detail/?Set=7633-1
    7738 Coast Guard Helicopter and Life Raft http://www.brickset.com/detail/?Set=7738-1

    The Family Home disappeared just before Christmas, before my wife had a chance to buy it for me, so that's probably my #2 regret. I remember seeing Peril in Peru, Transport Ferry, and the Coast Guard Helicopter in stores, but always passed on them and then it was too late. The Construction Site I like, but the high price point held me back.
  • georgebjonesgeorgebjones Member Posts: 224
    This is easy, a few years back I saw set 8781, Castle of Morcia at Costco for $50. There were about 100 of them. I thought it was a good deal, but didn't get it, and a couple days later decided to go back. They were ALL gone. I went to other Costco stores in the area, nothing. It wasn't a particularly awesome set or anything, but a great deal, and one I do regret not buying.
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,288
    edited April 2011
    I had the opportunity to choose between a brand new 4504 Millennium Falcon at the Disney LEGO store and the last, slightly damaged, REDUCED PRICE (about $50) 10123 Cloud City. Unfortunately I chose the Falcon.
    You can't really blame yourself. Resale value aside, if I had to pick to own only one out of the two (a la, "If you were on a deserted island"), I'd pick 4504 every time.
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,288
    Clearance? What are you guys talking about? I've only seen LEGO on clearance once or twice, and when I got home and checked the prices on ebay, they were about the same
    @jb15: where do you live? Nearly every big retailer (Walmart, Target, Kmart, etc) and Lego.com and Lego shops all have clearances. The tricky part is getting in on them before they're gone -- it really is a matter of constant vigilance and luck.
  • tomcatttomcatt CanadaMember Posts: 24
    Cafe Corner - definitely. I saw it for months on Lego [email protected] (before we had a Lego store in Canada), and kept thinking "Meh, I don't really NEED it", and "there's other sets I want more". Then I proceeded to buy all of the other modular buildings, and really felt the gap. So I decided to buy it with this year's bonus - little did I know the prices have skyrocketed. I just paid $675 for it, and not because of the 'rare' red bricks (I'm not even sure which ones they are!), but because now my MB collection is complete. I feel OK about it because I helped out a local LUG member who sold it to me as he had recently been laid off and needed the money. Shhh, don't tell my spouse!
  • Mars_Needs_LEGOMars_Needs_LEGO USAMember Posts: 23
    edited April 2011
    My regrets are as follows:

    1) Cloud City
    2) Jabba's Sail Barge
    3) Arkham Asylum

    I think in hindsight I was hoping to catch them on clearance, as each of them seemed rather overpriced at the time. I remember seeing Cloud City pictured in a Tuesday Morning brochure, but the nearest store was hours away and by the time I could get there, they were long gone (assuming any of them ever hit the sales floor).

    Years later, I was able to get some of the Batman sets I'd stupidly put off buying (Batcave, Batcopter, Bat-Tank) thanks to another Tuesday Morning clearance sale, but the Asylum was not to be found. I've since acquired the Nightwing and Poison Ivy minifigures, and that helps alleviate the pain to some degree.
  • el_rey95el_rey95 Member Posts: 2
    For me it's 2 sets from the Diver's theme...
    6560 - Diving Expedition Explorer
    6559 - Deep Sea Bounty

    So expensive on Bricklink and ebay now...
  • princedravenprincedraven Essex, UKMember Posts: 3,768
    For me it is the UCS Falcon. Just could never pull the trigger. When it went on clearance, I was away and couldn't get the order in before it sold out. I therefore ordered my Death Star a few weeks ago when rumors started to swirl that it was on it's way out. Wasn't gonna happen to me twice :).
    Death Star on it's way out? Seriously? 10188?
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,288
    ^It's been available for two months shy of 3 years, which is a very long time for a set these days.
  • HuwHuw Brickset Towers, Hampshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,452
    My regrets are as follows:

    1) Cloud City
    2) Jabba's Sail Barge
    3) Arkham Asylum
    That's pretty much my list as well. CC is a rubbish set but the figs now command a King's Ransom. The Sail Barge is a great set, with great figs, but was only available from LEGOshop.com for a matter of months, and easily missed.

    The moral of this thread must surely be if you want a set, buy is as soon as it becomes available, you never know when it's going to be discontinued. Back in the 1990s sets had a shelf life of 3 years, now you're lucky if it's a year.
  • rocaorocao Administrator Posts: 4,288
    ^Your point is still taken about the risk of missing a set, but I believe 6210 Jabba's Sail Barge was available for nearly a year. In this case, the database is mistaken about the first availability date. I recall it being released mid 2006 and not Oct 2007 (it is a 2006 set after all)
  • GalactusGalactus NLMember Posts: 255
    Clearance? What are you guys talking about? I've only seen LEGO on clearance once or twice, and when I got home and checked the prices on ebay, they were about the same
    @jb15: where do you live? Nearly every big retailer (Walmart, Target, Kmart, etc) and Lego.com and Lego shops all have clearances. The tricky part is getting in on them before they're gone -- it really is a matter of constant vigilance and luck.
    I'm in the Netherlands and the toy shops here have a pretty small collection. There never are any polybags, modualar buildings, large scale models, UCS's or any of these 'special' sets, and the clearance prices usually are still higher than most online shop prices.

    My only regrets so far are the SW sets I had the chance to buy after I came out of my darg ages, such as:
    - 7670 Hailfire Droid & Spider Droid
    - 7673 MagnaGuard Starfighter
    - 7678 Droid Gunship
    - 7679 Republic Fighter Tank
    - 7681 Seperatist Spider Droid
    I actually missed all the SW sets before that, but have been able to get quite a few of them already.

  • EricEric Queensland, AustraliaMember Posts: 376
    I regret missing out on the 8421 Mobile Crane, but back then I was only 12, and it was well out of my $12 price range. :/
  • StuBoyStuBoy New ZealandMember Posts: 623
    I wasn't into collecting the Star Wars line when it was released, but I regret not getting a 10179 UCS Falcon. Now that I'm collecting SW the only way I'm going to build one is to buy all the parts for it!! (I'm about 80% complete). The purchase I'm most happy with is the Tantive IV for half price because of a badly damaged box!
  • crazylegocrazylego Member Posts: 4
    my biggest regret happened around 2 years ago... i went to the lego store with 130 dollers to spend...my 2 choices where the cafe corner or the motorized AT-AT, i figured the cafe corner would be around a while, so i bought the AT-AT 2 months later the cafe corner went bye-bye, and the at-at was around for another year! but you live and learn, besides i have tons of other great sets, so i dont need to feel bad about missing out on one
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