Call Search
     

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Community
Articles
Forums
News
Reviews
Friends Remembered
Strays
Survey Question

Operating
Contesting
DX Cluster Spots
Propagation

Resources
Calendar
Classifieds
Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement
About eHam.net

   Home   Help Search  
Pages: [1]   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: used transceivers? Good idea or not?  (Read 871 times)
KG6WHN
Member

Posts: 48




Ignore
« on: July 09, 2009, 01:30:22 PM »

I am looking at some used radios that I'd like to buy and I'm wondering if buying used is generally a safe, economical thing to do (i.e. I don't want to be buying someone else's problems).  I don't mind if something is lightly used as long as it's functional without any undisclosed "features".  Is it risky to buy used radios or generally ok?  I have seen some models that I'd like to buy but they're typically only a bit cheaper than new so I'm on the fence about whether the savings is worth the risk?  Basically, I have a IC-718 presently and am considering adding (yep, I'm not giving up my 718..it's a good radio in my opinion) one that'll do 6/2M as well.  I should also say that my background in electronics makes me confident that I could probably repair something if needed, but I don't want to have to if I'm dropping anything in the neighborhood of $1K+ to purchase.
Logged
WB2WIK
Member

Posts: 20666




Ignore
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2009, 01:37:45 PM »

Sure it's a good idea, usually.

A few good rules to go by:

1.  If it's priced only a little bit less than the same rig "new," that's not a good deal.  Just walk away.

2.  Buy a rig from someone close by so you can "test drive" it (try it out, get a demonstration) before exchanging cash for hardware.

3.  #2 precludes buying stuff sight-unseen, such as via eBay.  Good idea.

4.  If the rig appears to work properly and looks to be in good condition physically, ask:

-Do you have the original carton?
-Do you have the owner's manual?
-Do you have the accessories the rig came with (including a microphone, spare plugs and fuses, whatever was in its original accessory pack)?

If the answer to all three of those is "yes," there's a very good chance the owner took good care of it and treated it like you would have liked.  If the answer is "no," chances are the rig is a multiple resale (points to problems) or the owner just didn't care much about the rig (also points to possible problems).

A used rig that is still available "new" today should sell for at least 20% less than the new price.  25% or 30% less is not uncommon, and starts to become a good deal.  Remember when buying used from a private party, you don't pay sales tax, so in CA this alone can save close to 10%.  When buying "locally," you also don't pay shipping, which can easily save $50.

WB2WIK/6
Logged
K9KJM
Member

Posts: 2415




Ignore
« Reply #2 on: July 10, 2009, 12:31:39 AM »

Almost all of the radios I have ever owned were "Pre-owned"  

WIK points out some good concerns.

I try to buy direct from a fellow ham, Either at a swapfest in person, Or from a classified ad on QRZ  or here on Eham.   (I really avoid places like Ebay for buying!)

I also agree that you need to check all the ham dealers to get the discounted NEW price so if you buy used, You will be saving a lot. No point to pay close to the price of a new one for an old used radio!
Logged
KB9CRY
Member

Posts: 4283


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2009, 07:15:38 AM »

My K3 was the first brand new rig I ever bought.

I still have and use a mess of used rigs.
Logged
AB4ZT
Member

Posts: 179




Ignore
« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2009, 01:42:50 PM »

In the 20 years I have been licensed I have owned several rigs and none have ever been new.  I just can't bring myself to pay the "new car" premium.  I have never had a problem with a used rig I bought, just take care as WB2WIK says.

Also, if you buy a brand new rig of a model that just came out, you effectively become a beta tester, and you get to tell the manufacturer about all the problems you found.  Check out the first reviews of recent rigs and you will see that is (generally) true.

73,

Richard
Logged
AA4PB
Member

Posts: 13032




Ignore
« Reply #5 on: July 13, 2009, 05:15:04 AM »

You can also buy used from places like Amateur Electronic Supply (AES) and Ham Radio Outlet (HRO) where the equipment is bench checked and you get a warrantee. Of course you pay a little more than buying from some guy at a hamfest.

When you buy from an individual there is always the *possibility* of the rig having problems that he doesn't even know about. For example, maybe it doesn't work well on 10M but he never uses 10M or its got terrible key clicks on CW but he never works CW.
Logged
N2UGB
Member

Posts: 179




Ignore
« Reply #6 on: July 13, 2009, 06:52:31 AM »

I agree with the purchase of a used rig from a recognized amateur radio dealer for the reasons previously stated. And, if you like Ten-Tec, you can ask what they have in a used rig. Those folks know their own product. If you buy from them, you will know a tech has checked it out.
Logged
K6REA
Member

Posts: 283


WWW

Ignore
« Reply #7 on: July 18, 2009, 07:01:40 PM »

I have bought dozens of used transceivers on ebay.

No problem ever.

Kevin
K6REA
Logged
WB5JEO
Member

Posts: 805




Ignore
« Reply #8 on: July 18, 2009, 08:51:34 PM »

My first two rigs were hand me downs from my father, so they don't count. My next was a TS530SP off eBay that worked perfectly. I still have it. The next was a TS-440S off eBay. It also works perfectly. I also bought a 2-meter all mode off eBay that doesn't work. It was cheap, and I took a chance. AS-IS means AS-IS. You have no complaint if it's screwed up. "Not DOA" just means it will light up and do something, not necessarily something useful. "Not DOA means nothing when it's "AS-IS." Just about everything on eBay is AS-IS. If you're considering taking a chance, ask pointed questions. Does it receive properly on all bands? Does it produce full power out on all bands? Is there any problem at all with transmit audio? Any modifications? Is the tuning knob smooth? If there is any sort of evasive answer, forget it. Forget all "my dad was using this before he died, and it worked." Forget all "I don't know much about this stuff" or "I don't have the X to test the Y." I guess what I'm saying is that I figure I've run out my luck with used rigs on eBay. I sat down and added up all the money and time I've got in tower antennas, and accessories and decided penny pinching on the radio was silly. So yesterday, I unpacked my new FT-950.
Logged
DRSTRANGENUT
Member

Posts: 4




Ignore
« Reply #9 on: July 19, 2009, 02:39:25 PM »

I, too, have bought dozens of used transceivers on ebay.

No problem ever.
Logged
Pages: [1]   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!