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Sell My Retro is an auction website dedicated to older retro and vintage electronics and computers. The designers and creators of these original machines could only have dreamed about the computing power available to us today and the functionality afforded to us via The Internet.

Here Digger talks to Rich Mellor, founder of Sell My Retro, whose expertise and enthusiasm for these retro machines has resulted in the creation of this targeted auction website which brings together buyers and sellers of retro computers, arcade games, calculators and electronics.




BBC Microcomputer




Digger: What is your background Rich and what are your retro passions?

Rich: Although I have a varied business background, including being a solicitor and programming auction websites, I have been involved primarily with Sinclair computers since I launched RWAP Software in 1986. Initially known for writing reviews in Sinclair QL magazines and bug fixing third party programs at the time, I have slowly evolved into an a full time retro computer and electronics dealer, sourcing and obtaining new and replacement parts, such as keyboard membranes and chips for a wide range of vintage computers.

Recent years have seen us bring new products such as the DivIDE Plus (for the ZX Spectrum) and ZXpand (for the ZX80 and ZX81) to market, to help encourage development of new hardware and software to help maintain interest in these much loved computers, as they continue into their third decade.

Digger: And can you please tell us how Sell My Retro started and how the company has evolved into what it is today?

Rich: SellMyRetro was born out of a need to reduce my monthly costs for selling - with around 65% of my sales going through eBay, following their last rise to 10% final value fees, I was paying over £150 per month in eBay fees. I therefore looked for a strong platform on which to base my own auction website ( and chose the emerging Enuuk auction platform in 2009, partly because I was able to write my own improvements to the software. Since then, SellMyRetro has continued to grow with over 1/2 million page views per month, and it continues to be a vehicle for promotion of retro items, with buyers secure in the knowledge that there is a knowledgeable retro computer enthusiast behind the auction site.

Digger: Please tell us more about the services on offer from Sell My Retro that bring buyers and traders together.

Rich: As well as providing a general trading platform for both fixed price and auction style items, SellMyRetro includes the ability for traders to advertise their own retro websites free of charge by opening a free store and linking it to a specific category. Stores can then include links to their own sites. Each category can also have a short wiki attached to provide general background information on the items which tend to be contained in that category, which can help both attract traffic and also provide buyers with more information over the types of products they may be interested in.

The site also includes a page which pulls in the latest hot topics from retro based forums, helping buyers and sellers to keep their finger on the pulse.

As well as providing its own forums, SellMyRetro is also closely linked to social networking sites, posting details of item listings to Facebook, Google Base and Twitter, as well as providing RSS feeds which can be used to feed specialised pages on Facebook. We are also respected members of several retro forum sites, which we use to help promote the rarer items to be found on Sell My Retro and have our own mailing list of over 3000 retro computer users, gleaned from our trading relationships over the past 25 years.



Sinclair Spectrum

Sinclair ZX80




Digger: There’s nothing more nostalgic and retro than one of these retro games and machines. Are they still relatively easy to find?

Rich: Finding the retro computers is still fairly easy - the problem is finding good working examples of the machines. Some of the computers sold into the millions, whilst for others the market was limited to a few hundred machines. As a result, prices can vary from around £5-£10 at the bottom end of the market (where people just want a machine to try out hardware ideas) up to £1000s for the rare models. Software is also still readily available from 99p upwards, with new titles being created thanks to the availability of emulators and PC tools, plus interfaces which mean memory cards can be used for loading and saving games on the actual computers (rather than having to rely on temperamental tape based media).

Digger: Why is vintage, retro and nostalgia such a big thing in so many people's lives?

Rich: We all like to think back to earlier days, when (a) we were younger and (b) you had a closer affinity to the products you purchased. For example, many computer courses nowadays, only teach you how to use the standard packages which you will come across - without providing you with the tools and knowledge as to how computers and electronics actually work at a physical and electronic level. This pre-packaging of items restrains true artistic flair and talents and in fact, many people who learnt how to program computers (for example) now use the same machines to teach children about how computers and electronics work.

Digger: What are the best sellers and what would be the Holy Grail as far as collectors of retro gadgets and machines are concerned?

Rich: The best sellers have to generally be hardware - either parts to keep existing machines going, or the rarer models of machines (early issues or those which never made it past the factory). Whilst one of the rarest vintage computers is the Apple 1 computer, which sell for around $15,000 each and there are only 40-50 machines in existence, computers from some of the lesser known British computer firms which seemed to spring up and disappear in a matter of weeks during the 1980s are probably even rarer, with machines such as the Dragon Professional, of which 3 computers are known to exist (it was only ever a prototype computer). The Holy Grail is probably one of the computers which were produced as a special one-off, such as the white one-millionth Sinclair ZX Spectrum, or the 9ct Gold Sinclair QL made by London Jewellers Aspreys in 1985.

Digger: Where are your customers coming from and what customer feedback/comments do you get?

Rich: Customers are from all over the world, with a large concentration in western Europe. The majority of customers tend to be middle aged, although there are a surprising number of 20 somethings now taking up an interest in vintage computing, reflecting their continued benefit as a learning tool and incentive to create small projects. Customer feedback tends to be very positive, with many people glad to be able to breath life back into 20-30 year old machines and to reminisce by playing games which use just a handful of colours, and do not run at a rip-roaring pace.

Digger: What are the best and most enjoyable aspects of Sell My Retro?

Rich: The close relationship you build up with the customers - many of whom place repeat orders, or move onto expand their collections and knowledge. Each day is different, as people ask different questions and advice, and it is surprising what some people find stored away in the back of their loft-space !

Digger: What are your plans for Sell My Retro and the other strands of your business in the future?

Rich: We continue working closely with a range of developers to bring new products to market to help provide either replacement parts or new features for vintage computers. The past 12 months has seen increased activity for the Sinclair ZX81, with plenty of new software releases, as well as the ZXpand SD card reader, and ZXpand AY sound interface having been released. We are working on a simple method for this to be ported across for use with the earlier Sinclair ZX80 home computer. We also enjoy the challenge of bringing these old machines back to life, and one of the major projects over the past 12 months has been to get replacement keyboard membranes manufactured here in the UK for a wider range of computers (the Enterprise 64/128, the Cambridge Z88, the Sam Coupé and ZX80 as well as our traditional product lines), and it would be nice to extend this range of products to encompass even more machines over the next 12 months.

We also continue to improve the software behind the website, taking account of new features in the base software (Enuuk PHP Auction) and also incorporating our own modifications, many of which are born out of the independent forums which we set up to discuss this exciting auction platform, and requests from users either using our own website or intent on setting up their own auction sites.




Commodore PET

Sinclair QL








Sell my retro is an auction website dedicated to older retro and vintage electronics and computers. is a new trading place to bring enthusiasts and traders of retro computers, gaming machines and other electronics equipment together in one place.

We all know how difficult it can be when searching in Google to find which are live sites and which sites can actually sell you equipment or undertake repairs, let alone finding that elusive bit of rare hardware or software. It can also be very useful for anyone looking for props or old equipment for use in a museum or history display, or even within television programmes and films. helps bring buyers and traders together, by incorporating a dedicated auction website and a wiki to hold background information on the retro computer scene.

Anyone can list items in the dedicated categories, and traders can decide to open a webstore. Webstores form a place for traders to advertise their services and to form a web-presence, as well as developing their brand.







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