Buying used horns internationaly

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JCBone
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Buying used horns internationaly

Post by JCBone » Tue Aug 24, 2021 9:16 am

I need a new horn and as someone who lives in a small country with limited options, I was forced to turn to facebook marketplace. I found something I liked and decided to purchase it. What I thought would be a relatively simple transaction turned out to be a huge research project on all the little details and how to avoid all the nasty tricks ups paypal, and customs try to employ in order to get the most money out of you. It's been a bit of a headache but what can you do.
Last edited by JCBone on Tue Aug 24, 2021 11:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
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SwissTbone
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by SwissTbone » Tue Aug 24, 2021 10:49 am

Well you can't do a lot... here's how I do it. And it works 99% of the time:

First and foremost: make sure the horn is packed well. I go the extra mile when packing a trombone up. But I also make sure, a seller knows how to pack up a trombone well. I have stepped back from buying trombones when I felt a seller wouldn't do this right. There are some very good posts here on that subject.

Make sure a box doesn't get longer than 100cm. Some European countries will charge you quite a lot if you exceed that limit.

I prefer shipping and getting trombones without cases. Keeps weight down and is actually safer than with a case.

When I buy from the US I always ask to ship with usps. They seem to work with most other countries postal services wich again keeps costs down.

When I ship, I use swiss post for the same reason.

Always attach a proforma invoice to your shipping. Makes import and export faster and cheaper as customs accept it as a proof of value without asking questions. No questions = fast and less fees.

I always try to avoid PayPal. It's just stupid expensive.

Anything else you had problems with?
ƒƒ---------------------------------------------------ƒƒ
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hyperbolica
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by hyperbolica » Tue Aug 24, 2021 11:36 am

I did a successful multi-horn swap with a person in France (I'm in US). It worked well, so it can and does work. I've sent and bought several horns and other items internationally, and aside from delays, never had a serious problem. I'd add a couple of things. I suppose it's different getting stuff out of the US as opposed to getting stuff in, but here are some ideas I try to follow:

- make sure you at least kind of know the person you're transacting with. They've got to have a reputation, good or bad, and that helps with the decision making process
- it helps if you buy from a real store, they should know what they're doing and may offer some more tips
- trying to avoid paypal charges with F&F could really backfire on you in an international trade.
- totally agree with the USPS shipping and with the size constraints driving the price from expensive to super expensive
CalgaryTbone
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by CalgaryTbone » Tue Aug 24, 2021 3:56 pm

UPS is a drag for International shipping. I've also had much better luck with USPS. It's not just instruments - I remember getting a birthday gift (a book - $20 - 35). The fees, particularly paying for a company to walk the item through Customs, came to the same or more than the cost of the gift. The government postal organizations for individual countries usually have people to walk the package through customs, rather than having to hire a Customs Brokerage to do that for them. A shipping quote that looks to be the same or cheaper is actually often much more expensive.

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Macbone1
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by Macbone1 » Thu Oct 07, 2021 11:07 am

I stopped trading horns internationally because of shipping damage that seems unavoidable. After 3 tries (England and Italy) l was disgusted at the high repair bills for both me and the recipient once the horns shipped. All were packed very carefully and all except one was in a hard case. Good luck.
Keep moving forward.
hyperbolica
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by hyperbolica » Thu Oct 07, 2021 11:38 am

I'm a book author, and once I donated a couple boxes of signed books to a good cause. Shipping - just across the border to Ontario Canada - cost me more than it would have cost to just buy the books for them from Amazon Canada.
Macbone1
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by Macbone1 » Thu Oct 07, 2021 1:16 pm

😮😮🤨
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brassmedic
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by brassmedic » Thu Oct 07, 2021 4:31 pm

Macbone1 wrote:
Thu Oct 07, 2021 11:07 am
I stopped trading horns internationally because of shipping damage that seems unavoidable. After 3 tries (England and Italy) l was disgusted at the high repair bills for both me and the recipient once the horns shipped. All were packed very carefully and all except one was in a hard case. Good luck.
Damage is usually because of the hard case. Unless you do an extraordinary job of getting packing material inside the case to the point that the horn can't move at all (and most cases aren't really designed to do this), there's a good chance the horn can be damaged. It's inevitable that the package is going to bounce around in transit, and every time it does, a horn that's loose in the case (even if it only moves an inch) is going to slam against the inside walls of the case. I've seen it dozens of times. People think "it's in a hard case so it's protected", but you open the case, which is perfectly intact, and the bell is crushed in a manner similar to being dropped on the floor.
Brad Close Brass Instruments - brassmedic.com
Posaunus
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by Posaunus » Thu Oct 07, 2021 4:40 pm

brassmedic wrote:
Thu Oct 07, 2021 4:31 pm
People think "it's in a hard case so it's protected", but you open the case, which is perfectly intact, and the bell is crushed in a manner similar to being dropped on the floor.
You are SO right, Brad. Had this happen to me when i innocently shipped a trombone that I thought I had packed securely. Intact case; crumpled bell. Just try to get USPS to honor their "insurance!" :horror:
Macbone1
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by Macbone1 » Thu Oct 07, 2021 5:03 pm

I had packed into all the air spaces in the case l thought, still there was damage. Maybe not the best job.
I have received just as bad or worse, too.
Keep moving forward.
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imsevimse
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by imsevimse » Thu Oct 07, 2021 5:49 pm

I've bought my horns from ebay (about 40 buys) and a couple if times a horn has indeed been damaged in shipping. It has been because of a loose mouthpiece in the box or a horn that bounces around because of too little packing inside the box. Unusual, because most arrive as expected. I have never sent anything back because I have been able to mend horns myself.

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DougHulme
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by DougHulme » Fri Oct 08, 2021 1:46 am

I have shipped or had shipped perhaps 30 trombones from the US to the UK, almost all by USPS over the years. Only once did I have a problem with a crushed bell. That trombone was packed well and was sold by Quinn The Eskimo and he didnt argue the toss, he refunded my money and didnt ask for the horn back, the refund paid fopr the repair - a gentleman! Whilst most of what Brad says is absolutely true I have to say that packing a trombone absolutely rigid in a hard case might not protect it in a bell end drop. The idea of packaging the trombone in the hard case is to prevent gentle movement but the packaging needs to have some 'give' in it so that it acts like a shock absorber should the dreaded drop occur. Polystyrene cone up the bell usually does the trick by transferring the energy further up the bell where it cant crease so easily. The very best idea is to pack it well in the hard case then put the hard case in a box with plenty of shock absorbing chips or bubble wrap. The only problem is size when shipping... Doug
brassmedic
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by brassmedic » Fri Oct 08, 2021 2:05 am

Posaunus wrote:
Thu Oct 07, 2021 4:40 pm
brassmedic wrote:
Thu Oct 07, 2021 4:31 pm
People think "it's in a hard case so it's protected", but you open the case, which is perfectly intact, and the bell is crushed in a manner similar to being dropped on the floor.
I don't bother with the insurance because I've been told it's not worth it.

You are SO right, Brad. Had this happen to me when i innocently shipped a trombone that I thought I had packed securely. Intact case; crumpled bell. Just try to get USPS to honor their "insurance!" :horror:
Brad Close Brass Instruments - brassmedic.com
brassmedic
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by brassmedic » Fri Oct 08, 2021 2:07 am

Wow. Super quote post fail there, but hopefully you get the idea.
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SwissTbone
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by SwissTbone » Fri Oct 08, 2021 2:16 am

I try to ship trombones without cases whenever possible. It's just a lot easier to pack them up safely without the case.

The box also is much lighter...
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CalgaryTbone
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by CalgaryTbone » Fri Oct 08, 2021 12:37 pm

I put this in another thread on this topic, but worth adding it again. Ilan Morgenstern has a good video on YouTube about packing a horn without a case (which he also endorses). I used his method, which includes adding a cardboard tube (for pouring concrete into to make footings for decks, etc.) cut to size. The cardboard tube does not add much in weight, but adds extra strength and rigidity to the cardboard box. Lots of styrofoam shipping peanuts and bubble wrap. I also put a piece of cardboard between the slide and bell section (with tons of "peanuts" on either side, to make sure that they couldn't shift positions and bang against one another. The horn was very secure and couldn't move in the box, but it was held in place by styrofoam and bubble wrap - no hard surfaces to bang into the horn. It made the round trip for some repairs with no issues. I found a tube that worked well with the "lamp box" from UHaul - my usual go-to box for shipping a trombone. I recently shipped a horn for consignment sale in the case - very well packed. It arrived with a small bell crease. Ironically, I had just had a crease removed before shipping it. Live and learn!

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afugate
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by afugate » Sat Oct 09, 2021 6:09 am

Maestro Morgenstern's video.


Bonus points to the good maestro for the use of Yakety Sax and the narration. :lol:
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Posaunus
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Re: Buying used horns internationaly

Post by Posaunus » Sat Oct 09, 2021 10:22 am

afugate wrote:
Sat Oct 09, 2021 6:09 am
Maestro Morgenstern's video.
Extraordinary! :good:
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