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TRA 2023 Auction

TRA Meeting Auction Description and Rules


Over the years we have seen a lot of auctions and that has led us to a little wisdom on what’s a good auction, what’s not so good, what sells, and what doesn’t.  These TRA Meeting the auction rules are based upon that, and are being put in place to guarantee a fast-moving, lively auction that does not drag into the wee hours of the morning and provides best chance for profit to those providing items.

If there are any questions on the rules below please get in contact with the TRA Meeting staff.  The TRA Meeting staff reserves the right to generally modify the rules based on circumstances, but any modification will be called out to the TRA Meeting staff and attendees.  Rule modifications will not be done for individual registrants.

First of all let’s talk about what sells, and what doesn’t, so you’ll know what to pack!

​What sells

Some items sell quicker and at higher process than others.  The below items have been shown to sell best at TRA live auctions:

  • Unique Triumph memorabilia, especially historical, badges, pins, dealer items, signs.

  • Unique rare parts, period accessories in good condition (badge bars, fog lights), correct tools in good condition, Triumphs toys.

  • New old-stock TR2 through TR4 (NOS) parts, especially if in the correct Stanpart or Lucas boxes.​

  • Clothing - especially Triumph polo and t-Shirts larger that XL.

  • Original Triumph workshop manuals and factory parts catalogues in good condition.

  • Used original distributors, carbs, fuel pumps generators, starters – IF they are clean and in good shape.

  • Baskets filled with local items, wine, and goodies

  • TR2 through TR4 Fenders and TR2-3B spare tire covers in very good condition.


What doesn’t!


Some items just don’t sell no matter how hard the auctioneer tries.  These are the types of items the auctioneer loathes and will be kept out of the TRA Meeting auctions.

  • Any body parts except for TR2-4 fenders and TR2-3b spare tire covers in good condition

  • Parts that don’t rust away, such as used suspension parts and brackets.  Everyone has these.  If  the part is something that normally is in usable condition from an old parts car don’t bring it.

  • Used wear parts such as ball joints, brakes, brake cylinders, etc.  If you took it off to replace it, throw it away, don’t bring your trash here.

  • Large heavy items – nobody wants to take them home either!

  • Boxes of magazines – trust me, we end up giving them away.

  • Dirty parts – if you didn’t think it was worth cleaning nobody else does either.

  • Junk – this is not the dumping ground for parts you feel guilty about throwing away.  No, we don’t want them either….


Types of Auctions


Two types of auctions can happen at a TRA Meeting:

  • Live Auction – this is the traditional auction with an auctioneer.  It is traditionally held the night before the banquet

  • Silent Auction – items are on display and bids are placed on a bid sheet. This is normally open for a wider time period.


During auction item registration the seller will have to indicate which auction the item is for.

​​Auction Team​​

The Auction Team (also called Auction staff) consists of:

  • Auction Team Lead - person organizing and running the execution of the auction.

  • Auctioneer - person that sells the items

  • Item recorder - this person has two responsibilities.  First is logging in the items for the auction, numbering, tagging, and noting any special requests, such as reserves. Also, during the actual live auction, that person that records the auction item number, winner, winner’s registration number, and winning bid amount on a Post-It™ note and passes that off to the Auction Recorder

  • Next Item Selector - person that is in charge of choosing the next item to auction.

  • Action Recorder - person that puts the results of the auction into a data base for payouts.  This person also assists the item recorder in logging in the live auction items.

  • Runner - person who is in charge of getting the item physically to the winning bidder.


There might be other persons required as needed assigned to the team by the Auction Team Lead.

​Types of entries


There are two types of auction entries, split and donation. The seller will be asked which one they want for each item in an auction:

  • Split – 80/20 – 80% of the sale goes to the seller, 20% to the TRA Meeting event.

  • Donation – all proceeds go to TRA Meeting event.



Only registered TRA Meeting participants can put items in the auctions, as well as bid on the auction items.


Live Auction Rules

Total Items in Auction

The total items which will be in the live auction will be around 100.  The exact number will be determined by the Auction Team. No more than about 100 will be accepted so we can complete the auction in 3 hours.

All auction items are juried

Each auction item will be juried to ensure it meets the criteria below by one or more auction team members.  The criteria will also be sent out to registrants beforehand, posted on the TRA Meeting Website, and posted at TRA Meeting registration.  

Auction Item Criteria

  • No junk – used items deemed either unsellable, or worth nothing, will not be entered in the live auction.  Auction team has final say on what is “junk”.  Unsellable items include used suspension parts, used brake parts, stuck carbs, used engine internals as well as other items. If you are unsure contact the TRA Meeting team.

  • ​​No large items with historical track records of slow or non-sales – this includes hoods, trunk lids, radiators, doors, incomplete hard tops, etc. TR2-4 fenders, as long as they are in very good condition, are allowed in the live auction.  The auction team has final say on what is “large”.

  • No heavy items – no items hard to lift and carry. Auction team has final say on what is heavy, but for planning purposes assume it’s over 25 lbs. We do not want to put auction assistants or auction attendees in harm’s way manhandling heavy items in real-time.

  • Auction items must be Triumph related, TRA Meeting themed (such as a goodie basket of local products), or humorous. Auction team has final say on what passes these criteria. Goodie baskets/items for spouses are highly encouraged.  Good humor is truly appreciated.

  • Must be clean – no dirty, greasy, oily items of any type will be accepted. Auction team has final say on what is clean. 

  • No trivial items – items which the auction staff deems do not have a chance for selling above $5 will not be accepted. Auction team suggest such items be bundled together as one item.  

  • Must not “hog” the auction - No more than 5 to 6 items will be accepted from any registration number.  The goal is to allow many participants the chance to sell an item.


​In addition to the above, the following rules will be applied as the Auction Team determines is for the best interest of the auction:

  • If there are multiple items of the same exact item, the first will be auctioned off and the rest will be offered at the same price.

  • Auction team has the right to bundle items from the same seller if it feels that this would increase the chance of a good auction/sale.  This especially applies to printed materials as well as sellers bringing in more items than the five allowed per registration number.  Bundled items will count as one item in the auction.

​​Items with reserves will be accepted, but with the following criteria:

  • Bidding will start at the reserve price

  • If no bids are received in 30 seconds the item will be returned unsold. 

  • No more than 10 items total will be accepted with a reserve for the live auction. 


(Note - in general we discourage putting in parts with reserves.  History shows parts with reserves only sell <40% of the time, and a no-sale wastes time as well as puts a damper on the auction)   

Live auction process

The following is the process followed by the auction team - actors are underlined:

  1. First, the next item selector will choose an item for the auction based on how the auction is going. This item needs to be given to the auctioneer just after the prior item was sold. Once the item is handed off, the next item selector will look for the next item to auction off.

  2. The auctioneer will then tell the auction recorder and the item recorder what the item number is, and will not start the item’s bidding until a positive response has been received from the auction recorder.

  3. The auctioneer will then start the bidding for the item.  Once the bidding has ended, the auctioneer will tell the auction recorder and the item recorder what the result was - who, buy registration number, won the item and what the winning bid was.  The auctioneer will not release an item to the runner until positive responses have been received from the auction recorder and item recorder.

  4. The item recorder will write down the item number, winning bidder, and winning bid on a Post-It™ note and hand it to the auction recorder.

  5. The auctioneer will hand the item to the runner. 

  6. The runner will hand the item to the winning bidder.

…and the process repeats.  One will note that the process builds in a safety check between the auction and item recorders to eliminate any confusion on who got what.

Live Auction Bidding

To bid on an item the bidder must raise their hand high, no nods or small motions will be used as bidding indications. If bidding paddles with registration numbers are provided, they must be used.   Once an item is won, it is given to the winning bidder.


For items without a reserve, bids start out at $1.  For items with a reserve bidding starts at the reserve.  Minimum bid increments:

  • $1-$25 - $1 increments

  • $25-  $100 - $5 increments

  • Above $100 - $10 increments

Silent Auction

Total Items

Total Items in the Silent Auction will be limited to the space available in the Registration table area to display and secure them – probably more than 10 but probably less than 50.

Items in Silent Auction

Type of items in the Silent Auction are usually artwork, gift baskets, Triumph-themed magazine collections, as well as other unique items that have value with folks as they think about them over several hours, rather than have to make a decision in a second or two at the live auction. The auction staff will suggest the Silent Auction if the item is along the lines of the criteria above.

  • Silent Auction will start at when the item is registered and will run until 6:00PM the night of the Live Auction. There will probably be sometime between the closing of meeting registration and opening of the Live Auction parts preview where the Silent Auction items will be locked up and not available for bid during the day.

  • Silent Auction Items will be kept in the Registration Room or behind the Registration Table until moved to the Live Auction Room

  • Each item in the Silent Auction will be given a bid sheet.  Starting bid will be determined by Seller.

  • After the bid sheet is placed out the TRA Meeting participants will have the opportunity to outbid each other for the auction items.

  • Winning bidders need to settle up with the auction team during the times indicated in the TRA Meeting program.

  • Sellers need to settle up with the auction team during the times indicated.

  • Reserves are accepted and will be the opening bid on an item.

Settling Up​​

Winning bidders and sellers will need to settle up with the auction team during the times indicated in the TRA Meeting program and/or announced and/or posted by the Auction Team at Registration.  Do not assume that items can be paid for while the live auction is ongoing unless specifically mentioned.

Other Rules

Rule pertaining to the actual running of the auction, bids, bid size, who can bid, etc. will be posted at the Registration, and also posted on line at the TRA Meeting website sometime after 1 January the year of the meeting.

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