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Gear Swap Etiquette
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Martin Clark
(Marty_Mcfly) - F

Locale: Southeast US
Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/16/2013 07:50:45 MDT Print View

Fellow BPL forum members,

I've been a member here for awhile and when I began as a member here I was really happy about buying used gear here. I enjoyed that it was possible to find high quality lightweight backpacking gear without paying retail.

Therefore it saddens me to write what I'm writing.

The past 2 shelter purchases I've made on here were not accurately explained in the item description. I'm not angry, I don't want my money back from either one of these people. But the first time it happened I discounted it to being my part for not doing more to determine the state of the gear. This past time I realized that most people mis-accurately represent their products in order to sell them. People will say the shelter is barely used, or not describe that it needs guylines or other smaller issues. There are other trends on here where it seems that almost everything on here has been used 1, 2, or 3 times. Which is either true (and sort of sad), or we really need to use more descriptive terms such as gently used, moderately used, etc.


Adopting this police will allow us to be better sellers and buyers here.

I'll step off my soapbox now

Chris Schmidt
(christo60) - M

Locale: Midwest (Ozarks)
Further thoughts on etiquette on 03/16/2013 08:05:24 MDT Print View

I agree with your concern. This forum only works on trust since the only real recourse is public shaming. I have had a mediocre experience so far. I am not willing to buy something both sight unseen and with no more description than "Acme camping item", for example. If I am the first to post interest and to PM interest with questions, shouldn't I be given the chance to purchase it first? The good people on this forum are very willing to line up.

Stephen M
(stephenm) - MLife

Locale: The Great Lakes Bay Region
Re: Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/16/2013 08:05:25 MDT Print View

Hi Martin,

That's unfortunate you had those two experiences, I would contact the sellers to talk it over.

I sell a lot of kit I am not using anymore on gear swap and always list its exact condition and put photos up, when buying I often ask a lot of questions and have passed on items that did not feel right.

Bpl Gear swap works so well because the trust members place in each other and I am sad if this is not the case.
I also only buy off people that have a posting history on other threads besides gear swap.

Have a great weekend,

Stephen

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Further thoughts on etiquette on 03/16/2013 08:11:49 MDT Print View

"If I am the first to post interest and to PM interest with questions, shouldn't I be given the chance to purchase it first?"

Not necessarily, IMO. I can't tell you how many times someone has PM'd me with questions, I answer, and then never hear from them again. Meanwhile, I've lost the opportunity to sell it to someone who wanted to buy it because they've found another or something else while waiting.

My general rule - if you just ask questions, you're not in line to buy. If you tell me you want to buy it but have a few questions first, you're in line to buy. But if you don't respond soon after I answer your questions and I have others wanting to buy, I'll send you one last email. If that goes unanswered by the end of the day, I drop you off the list.

Long way of saying that for gear swap to work, there has to be clear communication and mutual respect.

Clayton Mauritzen
(GlacierRambler) - F - M

Locale: NW Montana
Re: Re: Further thoughts on etiquette on 03/16/2013 08:20:14 MDT Print View

+1 to Doug.

Jeff McConnell
(Catalyst) - F
Re: Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/16/2013 08:21:10 MDT Print View

That's too bad you've had those experiences.

"This past time I realized that most people mis-accurately represent their products in order to sell them."

I don't really think this statement is true. I think most people tend to have good experiences with gear swap here which I believe is a credit to the type of people on BPL. While it would be nice for all sellers to include a long accurate description of the product, it's not realistic and it's really up to the buyers to do our due diligence and make sure we're getting what we want in a product. Asking a lot of questions helps to ensure that you know what you are getting. I've done this with everything I've purchased here and luckily I have never had a problem. If you take issue with a product you received not being as described, you should address it with that seller.

Also, I look at products being used/sold on here more than once not as a bad thing but as a good thing. For a lot of ultralight gear you don't really know what you're getting until you order it because you can't see, feel, and touch it in a store. Gear swap provides people the opportunity to try gear out and sell it for close to what they paid for if it turns out they didn't like it or it doesn't fit their needs. Just my 2 cents.

Stephen M
(stephenm) - MLife

Locale: The Great Lakes Bay Region
Re: Re: Further thoughts on etiquette on 03/16/2013 08:22:11 MDT Print View

Well said Doug.

John S.
(jshann) - F
Re: Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/16/2013 08:26:16 MDT Print View

This is at least the second complaint like this.

Never buy gear without asking questions (how many owners?, all parts present?, condition of item?) and seeing pictures.

Edited by jshann on 03/16/2013 08:31:22 MDT.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/16/2013 08:32:25 MDT Print View

I love the self policing that goes on in Gear Swap. Rat out the bad ones. I have bought and sold here for years. Never a bad experience. Too many crazy low ball offers, but hey.


But why start a new thread on this. The OP commented on this one last month. Same topic.

http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/forums/thread_display.html?forum_thread_id=73270&skip_to_post=624794#624794

Speak up and tell us who they were. Otherwise will have to detective work in your post history to figure it out.

Edited by kthompson on 03/16/2013 08:39:30 MDT.

Jeff McConnell
(Catalyst) - F
Re: Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/16/2013 08:45:02 MDT Print View

"Speak up and tell us who they were. Otherwise will have to detective work in your post history to figure it out."

While I like the self policing too, I think the OP needs to actually contact the seller to explain his displeasure and give him a chance to work it out first. (I'm assuming this hasn't happened since he mentioned he doesn't want his money back in the first post)

Edited by Catalyst on 03/16/2013 08:46:15 MDT.

Daniel Russell
(Superfluous_Grizzly)

Locale: Creation
here we go again.. on 03/16/2013 08:47:32 MDT Print View

No offense to the OP... but these threads are getting old. Do we really need another? It seems like every week a similar thread is started and it receives 100's of comments, distracting the intentions of gear swap. I come here to look at gear, not read someones bad experience.


I think this is what the Chaff section is for? See you got me sucked in and now im another contributor.

Edited by Superfluous_Grizzly on 03/16/2013 08:50:38 MDT.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/16/2013 08:48:34 MDT Print View

"I think the OP needs to actually contact the seller to explain his displeasure and give him a chance to work it out first."

+1 reasonable.

+1 for posting this in the correct forum, which is not this one.

Sorry Dan.

Edited by kthompson on 03/16/2013 08:49:44 MDT.

Travis Leanna
(T.L.) - MLife

Locale: Wisconsin
Re: Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/16/2013 12:00:44 MDT Print View

Personally, I think that if there are legitimate issues with a Gear Swap transaction, they should be posted in Gear Swap. Keeps everyone more aware of any B.S. that goes on.

Edited to include that I think the FIRST course of action is to work it out off the boards first. Often things are not much more than misunderstandings and can easily be cleared up with little harm done. If that doesn't work, then proceed to the boards. You may not be happy, but it will certainly make the community of who to possibly be aware of.

Edited by T.L. on 03/16/2013 13:16:11 MDT.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/16/2013 12:55:44 MDT Print View

I hope Eugene will sell his Evernew here one day. Just for you, Travis. :)

Edited by ben2world on 03/16/2013 13:09:16 MDT.

dave e
(hipass) - F

Locale: Los Angeles
selling on 03/16/2013 13:12:22 MDT Print View

If you have issues with an item you should always contact the seller.This is how issues are resolved on ebay.Obviously,it is bothering the OP enough to post a thread about it here.I dont think thats fair to the seller nor does that do the community any good by not mentioning a bad seller in the case that he is bad.The sellers in the op's case could be honestly ignorant about selling.

Travis Leanna
(T.L.) - MLife

Locale: Wisconsin
Re: Re: Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/16/2013 13:13:13 MDT Print View

Aww, thanks Ben! :)

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/16/2013 13:19:40 MDT Print View

Really, folks...

Just be a good consumer and practice "buyer beware."

I think part of the problem (which I perceive to be the exception, not the rule) is that people are so afraid that someone will buy the item first, they don't take the time to ask the questions they need to ask.

I have made two purchases on gear swap. Both were perfect.

I have sold a few things here, and the purchasers were thrilled. All of what I sold was in response to a WTB, with one exception.

The majority of my transactions resulted in very happy recipients, as I just give away any gear I no longer want.

Edward Zwibel
(YetiEddie) - MLife

Locale: Sunny San Diego
+1 to Nick on 03/16/2013 16:01:36 MDT Print View

Seriously, I've tried, bought, sold, rebought, and kept the best things for me and my huge family on here. Which has turned me into a bit of a gear-swap whore. It has however allowed me to hike with, and try the entire marketplace of UL gear. I cannot overstate the value of this, or the ability to outfit a total of 8 people in my family through this site. All, with the exception of 1 transaction, was flawless. The one that was less than ideal was due to my not asking the right questions and being hasty, as Nick alluded to. These people have my trust. And if you look at my profile, you can see it's a ton of transactions. I've learned so much. And I love this stuff. But it's on the buyer...... And reasonability.

Warmest regards,

Ed

Martin Clark
(Marty_Mcfly) - F

Locale: Southeast US
Thank you to everyone who responded on 03/16/2013 18:36:34 MDT Print View

I didn't mean to offend anyone by bringing this up within the gear swap thread, I'm sorry if you feel this is the inappropriate place for it. But I posted it here because I feel like the problem is one WITHIN the gear swap community. Therefore i felt this the most appropriate place to handle it. The community is right that if there are disputes with transactions that it needs to be brought up between the buyer and the seller. An example i have is that I recently sold a ikea stove setup, and due to there being a problem with the buyer not being satisfied I gave a refund. I think the key here is to treat others as we want to be treated. I do love the community. Other that the few snarky people that post on these forums. I am grateful for such a wealth of information and good people. I appreciate the advice, whether it is what I want to hear it or not.

Edited by Marty_Mcfly on 03/16/2013 18:41:35 MDT.

Greg F
(GregF) - F

Locale: Canadian Rockies
Dont get what youre asking for on 03/16/2013 20:03:26 MDT Print View

I dint think setting up categories for the condition of an item will make a difference. You are still relying on the seller to honestly evaluate his or her gear. So without adding a large beuracracy I dont think their is a solution other than buyer beware.

If you actually think you were cheated and the buyer refuses to accomodate them by all means shame them. But ensure you include pictures and the exact woring of the original post so that people can fairly evaluate if your definition of barely used or like new is too stringent.

J Dos Antos
(Damager) - M

Locale: Redwoods of Santa Cruz Mts
Gear Swap is great! on 03/18/2013 08:54:54 MDT Print View

Though I'm new to BPL, I've been a UL backpacker for years, and I'm so grateful I've found this site and the Gear Swap section. Like other posters have previously stated, I now finally have the opportunity to experiment with gear at a fraction of the cost of buying brand new gear. I've landed a couple pieces at a discounted rate.

The OP also mentioned that sellers say items are used 1, 2, or 3 nights, and it's a frequent occurrence, maybe too frequent. Actually, doesn't it make perfect sense that most of us have to buy our UL gear sight unseen from cottage companies, then test it on an initial trip and see if it works for us?

For instance, I bought a SMD Lunar Duo 2 for my GF and I, then we broke up after we used it for one trip. So I sold it on here for a great price. I didn't want to return it to SMD, since it was a brilliant piece of gear with no defects. It's not SMDs fault I'm lousy at relationships.

It's up to us to ask questions, and ask for detailed photos. That's what I did. For the most part nowadays, if you're savvy enough to buy and sell gear on forums, you probably have a camera of some sort. I post plenty of photos, and ask for photos from all angles. Problem mostly solved.

Oh, and I also think it's up to us to make sure if a seller is consistently posting misleading ads or selling bad gear, that we make sure the BPL community is aware of that fact.

Anyway, I'm glad to be a part of the BPL community after all these years, and I thank all of the posters who post accurate, honest info. This is the type of site that makes the internet such an incredible resource.

Kurt Lammers
(lammers8) - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Thank you to everyone who responded on 03/18/2013 12:03:00 MDT Print View

I think the occasional caveat emptor is appropriate in this space; for me I think it's really important that first time sellers take note that many of us won't bother even PMing about an item that isn't well represented w/actual photography. For example there's an item FS today that I might have been interested in, that's posted w/stock photography.

Assume that your educated BPL audience knows what the item in question is: what we'd like to see is precisely what condition yours is in. I don't think that's unreasonable, your idea of "like new" and mine may differ. The items I've carefully purchased from the swap were always well represented, and have always been received meeting 100% of set expectations.

Edited by lammers8 on 03/18/2013 17:44:54 MDT.

Dena Kelley
(EagleRiverDee) - M

Locale: Eagle River, Alaska
"Gear Swap Etiquette" on 03/18/2013 12:09:24 MDT Print View

This is one of the reasons that on gear like tents, jackets or backpacks I won't consider an ad that doesn't post photos of the actual item. For one, it's just good practice to show a buyer what they're getting and not expect them to google it. And the photo needs to be the item being sold, not a stock photo off the seller's website. Tents should be set up when the photo is taken.

One thing I wish people would do is not delete the sale price after they sell it. I often search gear swap to find out what an item has recently sold for to determine if a price is good or not, and it's getting more and more common for the sellers to delete that information.

Edited by EagleRiverDee on 03/18/2013 12:54:36 MDT.

Stephen M
(stephenm) - MLife

Locale: The Great Lakes Bay Region
Re: "Gear Swap Etiquette" on 03/18/2013 12:12:36 MDT Print View

Dena,

I think the reason folk delete the price is they often may have accepted a low ball offer.

Karple T
(ctracyverizon)

Locale: Mid-Alantic
"Gear Swap Etiquette - Photos on 03/18/2013 12:23:15 MDT Print View

I can understand posting Photo's of a fairly used item that has some wear and tear but if something is in new or near new condition what more will you get from the owners photos? (I have items up now with stock photos)

If you have done your research on an item and know about what you are buying and can get it in great shape for less than buying from the retailer I have never needed photo's of the original item. I often get a much better idea of what it looks like off the manufacturers site than from photos any a seller here has posted.

There are times of the year and weather conditions when I am not setting up gear outside to take pictures : )

Stephen M
(stephenm) - MLife

Locale: The Great Lakes Bay Region
Re: "Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/18/2013 17:15:41 MDT Print View

One thing I have noticed when doing business via PM on gear swap is a lot of folk never say hello or thank you.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Re: "Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/18/2013 23:48:50 MDT Print View

"One thing I have noticed when doing business via PM on gear swap is a lot of folk never say hello or thank you."

Since we're on the bitching track... many posters on this forum don't give thanks for responses either -- but simply continue with the next batch of questions.

Marcus Strohm
(afterburner2020)

Locale: SE Texas
Re: "Gear Swap Etiquette" on 03/19/2013 06:46:11 MDT Print View

"One thing I wish people would do is not delete the sale price after they sell it. I often search gear swap to find out what an item has recently sold for to determine if a price is good or not, and it's getting more and more common for the sellers to delete that information."

Pitching in my $.02, I usually remove prices due to the fact that the items don't always sell for the stated prices in the thread so I find it easier to remove it rather than change it. I also feel that each transaction is individual enough (sellers in different areas, items in different conditions, etc) that sellers and buyers should find their own prices, not go off comparing to everyone else.

If you don't like the price, ask the seller if they will come down. In my case as long as its reasonable (not lowballing "will you take $20 for that Trailstar thats in great shape?") I'll come down on my price and find the gear a new home.

Edited by afterburner2020 on 03/19/2013 06:47:45 MDT.

Greg F
(GregF) - F

Locale: Canadian Rockies
Re: Re: "Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/19/2013 07:05:41 MDT Print View

"One thing I have noticed when doing business via PM on gear swap is a lot of folk never say hello or thank you."




I think that is more a function of the terrible pm system. Its seems like a very non personal way of communication. I find when you switch to email after the initial pm people use better grammer, full sentances and more polite langauge

Edited by GregF on 03/19/2013 07:07:16 MDT.

Jennifer Mitol
(Jenmitol) - M

Locale: In my dreams....
Re: Re: Re: "Gear Swap Etiquette on 03/19/2013 10:53:30 MDT Print View

Well I for one would like to thank each and every one of you who I've bought gear from...I've never had a bad experience and everyone has been so nice! And for all the help I get on the other forums. I've pestered so many of you with so many questions and have gotten great responses, including several that make me pee my pants with laughter. Love you guys...

Now someone please buy my stuff.

Jane Howe
(janeclimber) - MLife
feedback on 03/19/2013 11:14:18 MDT Print View

A topic is being brought up again and again, that is because people are interested in it.

So far I have got good experience using Gear Swap. Here is my two cents.

I usually post a note on the original thread and thank the seller publicly if I am 100% satisfied with the transaction. This is my way of thank the seller and (I hope) to help the seller to build his/her reputation for future transactions.

Michael Gillenwater
(mwgillenwater) - M

Locale: Seattle area
Making an efficient marketplace on 03/19/2013 12:46:11 MDT Print View

On the point of deleting prices... Actually, it is one of the fundamental aspects making a marketplace more efficient, fair, and honest that prices should to public and transparent. This is why we have exchanges, and why secret proprietary trades often lead to market failure and corruption. I am not saying we have issues with corruption here. But my economist antennae got perked up by the comment below. Price discovery and transparency is fundamental to a good and fair marketplace. So I would argue that publishing the price for which something sold is to the benefit of the community and should be considered good practice.

Dena Kelley
(EagleRiverDee) - M

Locale: Eagle River, Alaska
"Gear Swap Etiquette" on 03/19/2013 13:55:09 MDT Print View

I, too, have had nothing but good experiences on my purchases off of gear swap.

On the pricing thing I mentioned, my reasoning is similar to what Michael said but more basic- Gear Swap can be an amazing research tool to determine market value of an item. But it's useless if people delete their final asking price out of the ad. The seller has that right, but if everyone does that then Gearswap loses part of it's usefulness to the community. I suppose you can just say every item is worth what a buyer will pay for it, but I sure prefer to know the price range the item has sold for previously, especially if it's not an item I'm very familiar with.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Pricing on 03/19/2013 14:09:30 MDT Print View

The pricing issue is interesting. One example really doesn't tell you much and there are many variables: condition, color, size, model changes and variations, rarity, recent manufacturer discontinuations and buyer urgency.

I use a rule of thumb that a used item in good condition is worth 60% of its street value, +/- the variables listed above.

Do keep in mind that there are offers and counter-offers behind the scenes and that the price shown in the post my not reflect the actual sale price.

Also consider that shipping can be a significant part of the sale price, particularly with large bulky items like a framed pack.

Aaron Davis
(ardavis324) - F
Re: Re: Pricing on 03/19/2013 14:13:25 MDT Print View

"I use a rule of thumb that a used item in good condition is worth 60% of its street value, +/- the variables listed above."


I definitely appreciate and agree with this. I often find it absurd when items are being listed at 90%+ of original cost. I'd never pay more than 30% off a piece of used outdoor equipment. I know they get sold at a premium here, but I find it laughable. Only good thing is if I want to sell something, I guess this is the place to do it.

Edited by ardavis324 on 03/19/2013 14:19:17 MDT.

Ben 2 World
(ben2world) - MLife

Locale: So Cal
Re: Pricing on 03/19/2013 14:49:53 MDT Print View

Aaron,

I've found that people are usually willing to pay for quality UL products at 80% value or thereabouts -- if the items are in essentially new condition. It's significant savings for much the same thing.

Edited by ben2world on 03/19/2013 14:52:29 MDT.

Kurt Lammers
(lammers8) - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Re: Pricing on 03/19/2013 15:01:33 MDT Print View

"The pricing issue is interesting. One example really doesn't tell you much and there are many variables: condition, color, size, model changes and variations, rarity, recent manufacturer discontinuations and buyer urgency."

I'd add seasonal use to that good list, as with retail you'll often find bargain value here on say snowshoes in the Spring; when I've compared prices in the past on my own items I've considered listing I look for when it was sold to help determine reasonable pricing. Unfortunately I haven't been willing to part w/any gear yet :)

J Dos Antos
(Damager) - M

Locale: Redwoods of Santa Cruz Mts
Pricing on 03/19/2013 15:24:03 MDT Print View

It makes some sense to me that people want to see the price of what an item sold for, but there are many variables such as condition, shipping, etc. My policy is to offer an item for a fair price based on use and condition, not extract the most dollars out of my fellow ULers' wallets. I'm on as tight a budget as anybody on this forum, just about.

I have no problem going back to my sold items and including the price, but then it seems I have to include the original photos and at least one paragraph, maybe two, detailing the exact condition of the item. Otherwise, without detail, it seems to defeat the purpose of reposting the price. You're just saying this user bought X item from that user for Y amount.

However, if it's the general consensus of BPL forums, then I will go back and update the final sold price in my posts. Forgive me, I'm still learning the proper etiquette.

doug thomas
(sparky52804) - MLife

Locale: Eastern Iowa
Trying to follow GS protocol on 03/19/2013 15:34:48 MDT Print View

Ed Z. I received th Katabatic quilt today, opened it up and found a box full of feathers.....Just kidding, LOL. The quilt arrived in great shape. Looks brand new. The straps and cords look like they have never been used. I'm very happy with the purchase and look forward to many years of use. Thanks for everything. And the trashbag you sent it in will be put to good use too! Just wondering what the gumlike substance was. Looks like silly putty, but smells like bazooka joe. Thanks again. Doug

Edward Zwibel
(YetiEddie) - MLife

Locale: Sunny San Diego
lol on 03/19/2013 15:53:04 MDT Print View

Sorry doug. Silly putty! Doh! The straps and such were never used. One trick pony 4 me. No quilts. Sad thing is I bought three brand new. Ah well. Happy trails friend!

Martin Van Laarhoven
(vtrek)

Locale: NorthEast
one more opinion on 03/19/2013 17:10:20 MDT Print View

I will start off by saying that I have had great experiences with buying things here on BPL. I also very much enjoy being able to access the wealth of information available to me here. But since we are venting...

1) I too would like to know what items have sold for, not so much to bleed my fellow hikers wallets dry (as one suggested) but to be assured that someone is not trying to bleed mine. I am new to light weight backpacking and want decent gear without paying more than I need to. I ALWAYS look up gear before I buy to feel confident that the price is reasonable.

2) What frustrates me is the amount of money y'all are willing to pay for used items. I laugh when I read things like "Sells new for $195, I have only used it six times, asking $185". Then I cry because someone actually pays it!!!

3) Yes, put actual photos of your item (most people do) and give detailed description (most do this too). It really helps those of us who are trying to learn what gear is what.

Again, I think this is a great site and well worth the subscription/membership price. I'm learning a lot and occasionally find gear at reasonable prices. Thanks for listening. (Well reading actually).

Travis Leanna
(T.L.) - MLife

Locale: Wisconsin
Re: one more opinion on 03/19/2013 17:17:44 MDT Print View

While transparency and good prices are nice, remember that Gear Swap is a true free market.

1. An item is posted for a price.

2.Someone buys it because they want that item for the listed price. Its a free market trade, fair and square, no matter how ridiculous you may think of the price.

3. If #2 doesn't happen, the price is lowered until it sells or is taken off the market. What an item is listed for is 100% the sellers prerogative. The free market determines if it'll sell at that price.

Stephen M
(stephenm) - MLife

Locale: The Great Lakes Bay Region
Re: one more opinion on 03/19/2013 17:19:00 MDT Print View

MlD kit does seem to sell close enough to the retail price, this is mostly because of the delays in getting it new.
Some manufactures such as Hilleberg and Western Mountaineering do not allow retailers to sell at a discount so these items sell at
a premium if new or barely used.

Martin Van Laarhoven
(vtrek)

Locale: NorthEast
Re: Re: one more opinion on 03/19/2013 17:52:52 MDT Print View

Thanks for responding. I get it, but it is still frustrating. It's like people getting paid millions of dollars to play sports while Police and Firemen (those who protect us) don't. I get it, if people are willing to pay the money then it's their money. I for one, don't patronize "professional" sports, and, I don't buy things that are priced what is in my opinion too high. Now, having said that, I will confess that I have had to adjust the price I was willing to pay in order to get the item I want. I feel that used items should be somewhere near 50% off but I have learned that on a lot of things 30% off is a great price and I have had to do that, both here and on Hammock Forums. In the end I have been a happy buyer in every case, poorer yes, but happy too.
marty

Michael Gillenwater
(mwgillenwater) - M

Locale: Seattle area
Re: Re: one more opinion on 03/19/2013 18:04:51 MDT Print View

"True free markets" can be pretty crappy places to do business, assuming we are even clear what we mean by the term.

Suggested reading:
Reinventing the Bazaar: A Natural History of Markets
John McMillan
http://www.amazon.com/Reinventing-Bazaar-Natural-History-Markets/dp/0393323714

OK, I'll try and get off may academic soap box on this one.

Dena Kelley
(EagleRiverDee) - M

Locale: Eagle River, Alaska
"Gear Swap Etiquette" on 03/19/2013 18:22:44 MDT Print View

""I too would like to know what items have sold for, not so much to bleed my fellow hikers wallets dry (as one suggested) but to be assured that someone is not trying to bleed mine""

^^^ This. I'm not a seller on Gear Swap, I'm a buyer. I want to get the best value I can for my money. I don't try and negotiate anyone down on their price- something about offering less than someone wants makes me feel wrong- so I wait until I see an item I want for a price I think is a good deal or at least reasonable.

Sometimes I'm looking for an item that no one has for sale on Gear Swap, and I can at least look on Gear Swap to see what that item has sold for historically and then at least know if the price on ebay (or whereever) is good.

Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: "Gear Swap Etiquette" on 03/19/2013 18:35:58 MDT Print View

If you post a picture pasted from the internet, I will not buy it. It almost seems the seller does not want to show it because of the shape it may be in.

The holds especially true for ebay.
Because of my little golden rule, I have never had a problem with any of the above complaints.

So for proper etiquette, I would say, post the "actual" picture of your gear and post the pictures of the blemishes.
This way the buyer absolutely knows what they are getting.

Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: Re: "Gear Swap Etiquette" on 03/19/2013 18:38:39 MDT Print View

Oh, my bad, on craigslist, I bought a current model of a zero degree down bag (from the posted stock picture).

Turned out is was the crappy model from before that I could have bought new for the same price since a lot of places still had the older models in stock.

Yes, I was upset.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Pricing on 03/19/2013 18:46:55 MDT Print View

"Sometimes I'm looking for an item that no one has for sale on Gear Swap, and I can at least look on Gear Swap to see what that item has sold for historically and then at least know if the price on ebay (or whereever) is good."

Of course. eBay is a good sounding board for mass market items. The tricky stuff is the cottage gear and general UL niche market gear, which is the real strength of Gear Swap. You don't see much in the way of a used Cuben pack or shelter other than here.

A Golite Gust went for $200 on eBay lately, so it's not all apples and apples comparison.

And there is nothing wrong with being an educated buyer! I always compare new on the web against used here or anywhere else. Many times you will find a sale, better color, etc, etc. Sometimes you find that product has issues that you weren't aware of.

There is a cost/warranty line that you need to consider too. Buying a used air mattress is a good example: you pay more for a new one at REI, but that warranty is an iron clad insurance policy too. Likewise for cameras and electronics--- used may be great, but when the prices are too close to retail, warranty can trump the bargain.