You might want to get away from ebay, and hit some flea markets, and garage sales. I don't follow plane prices, but sound like you may be paying a lot more than you need to Last time I bought planes was two very nice wooden planes, no restoring needed, for $20 and $25, if I recall right, at a small flea market. I could have gotten some decent condition metal planes for considerably less.
"It ain't what you're told, it's what you know." - Granny Weatherwax
Some days, the supply of available curse words is insufficient to meet my demands.
Call me a craftsman, artisan, or artistic, and I will accept that. Call me an artist and you will likely get a quite rude comment in return. I am not a @#$%ing artist.