There are lots of sellers of gear on eBay, we are just one of many. Every now and again, we run across another seller doing something too blatant not to bring to light. What I mean by this is that in 9/10 cases, you are taking the word of the seller to establish the provenance of the item. Many buyers like to know the history of the items they are purchasing, and that in turn can lead to higher sale values. This is the way with many militaria collectibles.
The problem occurs when unscrupulous sellers use this knowledge to game the system, and lie about the history of their items in an attempt to extract higher sale values. We've brought issues like this to light in the past, and unfortunately another instance has surfaced. Today's offender? Zone5TacAir.
In this image, you can see a custom modified combat shirt made from an NWU Type III shirt and Under Armor shirt. These aren't uncommon, and we've sold a few SEAL used tops made just like this by a local tailor. The only issue? This top isn't from a SEAL. It's from a local airsoft player that is a friend of the shop. He noticed the shirt online, and then noticed all of the fake "history" listed on the auction page.
Could be a simple mistake, right? It's possible, but unlikely. The shirt quickly shot up to a bid price of around ~$150.00 USD. At that point, our contact sent a respectful eBay message to Zone5TacAir to clear up the errors and see if they'd come clean.
Instead, the message was ignored. Who wants to pull an item that will sell for hundreds of dollars with a false back story? The message went unanswered and the shirt sold for $237.28.
At the end of the day, a buyer has a $237 fake that cost less than $40 to make. Was this intentional? That's up for you to decide. We intentionally describe exactly where we got an item, be it a SEAL, fellow collector, or otherwise. Sellers without a moral compass may not do this. You get to vote with where you spend your dollars.