Teuila Fuatai is a reporter for the NZ Herald

Weather rock: What punters viewed

A retro trike which was made by Tauranga man Keith Riddell and is now used as a mobility scooter was among the most-viewed items from a Bay of Plenty Trade Me seller last year.

Mr Riddell said the red and silver trike, which received about 33,700 views, was the only one of its kind in the world.

"We had people in the States ... and in Finland asking for them to be made."

The trike, which failed to sell on Trade Me, was eventually sold to an Auckland man who used it as a mobility scooter, Mr Riddell said.

Two items salvaged from the Rena wreck were also among the most-viewed items from Bay of Plenty last year.

A lifeboat from the vessel clocked up nearly 74,000 views and sold for $20,800. Proceeds were donated to the Tauranga region Child Cancer Foundation. A Mercedes Benz, which received about 37,000 views, sold for $13,851. Proceeds were also donated to the Child Cancer Foundation.

The most popular auction item was a coffee table made of computer chips, which registered 75,736 views.

A "weather rock" from a seller in Taupo was the fourth most viewed auction from a Bay of Plenty seller.

According to the "weather rock" listing, a wet rock equals rain and a dry rock means a fair forecast. Despite registering more than 35,200 views, the rock failed to sell.

Nationally, the right to bring down the quake-damaged Radio Network building in Christchurch rated as the most popular auction last year.

Nearly 460,000 views registered and the winning bid was $26,000.

Jayden Halliwell, aged 6, who was having cancer treatment at the time, set off the explosion after receiving permission from the eight demolition companies which combined for the winning bid.

The space on the bottom of a Wellington woman, reserved for a tattoo of the winner's choice, took out second place. Tina Beznec's "Your tattoo on my bum!!" was viewed 355,899 times before being won by Auckland strip club Calendar Girls with a bid of $12,450.

Trade Me spokesman Paul Ford said several auctions on the 2012 most-viewed list had been "firsts" for the site - including Ms Beznec's tattoo space.

"It's been a pretty creative front from sellers."

An auction for the right to rename a man, which received more than 95,000 views and sold for $2021, had never before been done on Trade Me, he said.

The auction was the eighth most popular auction.

A woman out to make the most of a break-up managed to rake in $355 and 89,688 views for selling the GPS spots to her former boyfriend's favourite fishing spaces in the Coromandel. It was 10th on the most-viewed list for 2012.

Music lovers and Marmite auctions created lots of traffic, Mr Ford said.

An auction for two days in the studio with Neil Finn and the sale for an original Miles Davis 1955 signed single were the third and fourth most viewed auctions.

Marmite auctions took out the fifth and sixth places. A 25kg tub of the black spread registered nearly 153,000 views and sold for $2115. A 500g jar, which had been burnt in a house fire, was checked about 146,000 times and sold for $200.

However, an auction has yet to rival the 2006 sale of a handbag used by former All Black Tana Umanga to whack his Hurricanes teammate Chris Masoe - the most popular in the site's history.

"More than 1 million people viewed that ... and that was before we had Facebook or any social media," Mr Ford said.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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