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Author Topic: Charleston or Richmond Fest? on same day  (Read 5063 times)

Posts: 12


« on: January 23, 2012, 08:21:50 AM »

Which one usually has the larger flea market?
I sorta live between the two.

Gary K4GPB

Posts: 54

« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2012, 05:06:37 AM »

I haven't been to either of these before, so I can't comment on which is better.  I live about 2 hrs drive west of Richmond, so I'm planning on attending that hamfest.  From all the responses that you have had so far, I think you should plan on going to the one in Richmond.  That way, we will know that there will be at least two of us there!  I'm looking forward to meeting you.   Smiley

Gerry, KK4GER

Posts: 54

« Reply #2 on: February 05, 2012, 05:57:51 AM »

Well, I went to the Richmond 'fest and can't say that I was overly thrilled with the experience.  This was my first hamfest.  When my wife and I arrived, we couldn't believe the number of people there and the length of the line at the door.  We then realized that there was a gun show in the building next door, and the line was for that show.  There were, however, a substantial number of people at the 'fest as well, though no waiting line, which was good.  Another surprise was the number of people my age and older, 60+.  There were very few young people there, which I find a little disappointing.

IMO, it was a typical arena show with inflated prices, and much more junk (=trash) than useful ham components and radios.  There was only one main radio manufacturer there, Yaesu, and they did, in fact have a very nice booth set up with radios to handle, lighted and plenty of support documentation (brochures).  (I sure did like the FT-950; the 2000 and 5000 were nice to look at, but I figured at this stage in life, I couldn't possibly live long enough to learn what all those buttons do!)  If you were looking for cable, connectors and the like, there were plenty of choices, though pricing was inflated for the show atmosphere, in many cases.  (I did grab some power-pole connectors even though I new I could get them online at about half the price.)

I know the saying, "One man's junk is another man's treasure," but really.  What amazed me  was the number of people selling obviously broken items for premium prices.  (I was warned about that.) There were very few used transceivers and even fewer that were were "fully operational."

Well, all-in-all, it was a good day out with the wife, but it was a long way to travel for lunch.  Smiley


Posts: 12


« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2012, 01:03:08 PM »

  • I've been going to hamfests for almost 50 years...this one was one of the most crowded!

    Many, many Kenwood/Yaesu hybrids rigs for sale higher prices than what they get on eBay. However, shipping adds up for these older radios.

    Prices on microphones, station accessories were below recent closing prices on eBay.

    Some of the radios were so dirty and dusty! The host club has a test bench to try before you buy.

    New Chinese HTs and their pricing are dragging down the price of their (used) Icom/Yaesu/Kenwood/Alinco peers.

    PowerPole prices are at:

Posts: 3289

« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2012, 06:54:16 PM »

I attended the Frost Fest too. Arrived at noon.   I noticed the younger crowd was rapidly thinning out by that time, but they were there.  At closing time there were still several hundred people there.

Despite the fact I missed the morning hours the crowd was still excellent by any standards, and actively looking and more importantly, buying!   I hear three commercial vendors complaining how painful their feet were and that they hadn't been able to sit down at all.   I filled my pockets with doodads for various projects without spending a fortune this time.

Very few real boat anchors, but what  I consider a outstanding variety of used gear from the 70's on, from beginners sets to top end.  Prices seemed to be more reasonable than at any time in recent memory.  It was possible to find a radio to match any budget.   (If anyone expects mint showroom ready radios at a hamfest, you are dreaming).

Once again the Richmond area hams outdid themselves.  Thanks guys!
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