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Recent AFOL; figuring out Bricklink.

I'm trying to understand the color lists that are retrieved by searches in Bricklink.

Using Bricklink, I searched for part 3068a (2x2 tile without Groove), and looking at availability, and so forth.

Four categories of color lists are given in Bricklink:

Lots for Sale

On Wanted list

Price Guide info

Known Colors

The colors displayed in these categories puzzle me. For example, how is it possible for a color to be in the "Lots for Sale" list, and not be in the "Known Colors" list? Other possible discrepancies exist in these lists.

What do these lists of colors represent?

Here's a link to the available color lists for part 3068a:

https://www.bricklink.com/v2/catalog/catalogitem.page?id=17085#T=C

For part 3068a, I scraped the data, looking for differences.

Here's a screenshot of part of the results, highlighting a couple of colors that are in lots for sale and are priced, but are not in the known color list:

Partial list of colors for part 3068a in brickline, showing available lots for sale, and priced, but with unknown colors?

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Lots for Sale - this contains colors in which current part is being listed for sale.

On Wanted list - this shows which colors Bricklink members have added to their "wanted list". It doesn't mean parts in this color have existed. Most likely this being used to add non-existing color to list of wanted items and mark for notification. In such case if wanted item ever to appear for sale (and seller pushed this notification) person with desired item would be notified.

Price Guide info - here you can see sale/price history for each color for the past 6 months as well as items currently listed for sale.

Known Colors - here you can find colors which appear in released sets. Bricks in this list are tied to set inventories produced by community of Bricklink. If there ever be an error with inventory or it has alternative selection of bricks, this is being addressed by fixing or adding an alternative inventory for the same set. Every Bricklink member is welcome to make these fixes.

There could be several reasons why there are more colors for sale than on a list of known colors:

  • An error is an obvious thing. It is quite easy to make a mistake while listing individual part for sale if it has been produced in similar colors, or has variety in shape (with/without groove). Some shades of Blue and Pink are hard to distinguish. Shape differences aren't always so easy to notice too.

  • Some parts you see for sale may have been prototypes, test bricks or produced for specific project (like life-size LEGO Bugatti has a ton of non-existing parts) which may have made their way somehow from the factory. This is not something you could request for as LEGO is trying to not let these items into the market.

One more thing to note. If you find a part in odd color and it isn't listed as HTF (Hard To Find) or Special Color, this is most likely a mistake while listing. Odd parts have quite a high value (depends on availability). Although it doesn't hurt to contact the seller to confirm the case before ordering.

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