Recently I was on ebay, and just searching around for various John Deere parts, and I just can't believe the amount of reproduction parts being made. Stuff that should be fun trying to find, is now being reproduced in quantites that make them not so rare anymore. Let's take a John Deere integral hitch set up for instance. You had to search for possibly years to find one, and when you did come across one, you had to pay anywhere between $100-$200 for the complete set up. Well, now I see they are being reproduced, almost identically, and selling for the same price range as an original. At first when I heard hard to find items were going to be reproduced, I didn't think the idea would be so bad, but now, I think it will really hurt the value of the oringinal pieces. These people are reproducing these items so good, that you can't hardly tell the difference between the repoduction part from the original.
So I ask you, how do you guys feel about reproduction parts? I only have original parts on my tractors, and haven't brought myself to the point of buying reproduction parts. Is this wrong? Am I getting too anal about this? I figure if I'm going to spend the money in buying a certain hard to find part, I might as well spend a couple extra dollars to get the original, right? Do you feel your tractor's value goes down if it has hard to detect reproduction parts on it? Are you willing to skip the fine details just to finish a project? Are you the type of person that would try and pass off a reproduction part as an original, or would you be honest enough to let your buyer know that he isn't getting a completely original tractor?
When I first started collecting tractors back in 1989, I found great joy in searching for and finding something rare. I never would have imagined that I would have the collection that I have today, and believe me, it took a lot of hard searching, bidding, and sometimes, a lot of disappointments. However, they are all original, or have original parts put back on them that were missing. It was fun and well worth the patience. But when I look at the inventory of reproduction parts and pieces available today, I just can't help but feel like I've been robbed. The value of my collection just doesn't seem to have the same zest that it once had.
I'm not knocking down the guys out there that are reproducing parts, so please don't get hard feelings or send me a personal message. I'm just wondering who will make the final decision of knowing when enough is enough, and realize that you are hurting the value of the rare parts. You can't keep reproducing the hard to find parts, because it's really taking the joy out of us serious collector trying to find them!