Anybody with Experience selling on Reverb? Advice needed...

GiGuitar

Member
Messages
5
Hello everyone,

I am new to forum and I am hoping somebody out there has some good wisdom for me. Last week, I sold a vintage amp on Reverb.com. I went to my local amp dealer just before shipping and had the amp tested to ensure it was functioning well. We tested out the amp and there were absolutely no issues. The shop owner also gave me a an appraisal for the amp for a value greater than I sold it for.

Here is the problem:
Yesterday, two days after the delivery of the amp, the buyer is telling me that the fuse blows after a few minutes of cranking the amp on high volume. I sent him reply explaining how everything was inspected beforehand and that there were no issues. I explained to him that number of things could of caused the issue, including a faulty power source, mismatched ohm setting, or possibly a burnt out tube. It may have possibly been damaged in transit (even though there was no visible damage on the packaging.) He replied saying that he believes what I said is true about testing the amp beforehand and that he will bring the amp to a local tech to have it looked at.

My question is, at this point what can I possibly do? My listing was "As-Is" and I have a no-returns policy, however, after reading about horror stories of PayPal always siding with the buyer I have reason to be afraid. It seems like my only options are to take the amp back in damaged condition (so I will have to eat shipping costs as well as repair costs), offer to cover the repairs, or potentially wait until the buyer files a dispute with PayPal. At this point he has not asked for any compensation but I also have no real proof other than his word that the amp is having an issue. At the same time, this buyer may actually have a legitimate problem. It is hard to figure out whether he is telling me the truth or lying.

I spoke with Reverb customer support and they told me to file a claim with the courrier (FedEx). From what I have been reading on various forums though, it seems like filing a claim with FedEx will most likely result in it being denied. I did purchase shipping insurance for the appraisal value and the buyer had to sign for it. So my question is should I go ahead and file a claim with FedEx right away or wait to see what the buyer says after he gets back to me about the tech guy?

Any advice is greatly appreciated.
 
Last edited:

sleewell

Member
Messages
10,588
see what his tech says and go from there. it could be a really cheap and easy fix.

they will side with the buyer though so consider what the cheapest option will be if you don't want the amp back.
 

blues

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
6,427
Did you hear back for the buyer after he took it to get looked at? Did you come here because you think the buyer is a member of this forum?
 

GiGuitar

Member
Messages
5
No I have not heard back yet about it being looked at. I did not come here thinking the buyer is a member of this forum. I came here because I am new to selling on Reverb and I wanted to get some advice from people with more experience with these sort of things.
 

JefeMaximo

Huge Member
Messages
2,397
It sounds like you are on the right path. Shipping vintage amps always is a roll of the dice, and I try to avoid it if I can. Even if there's no visible sign of damage, the amp certainly got bumped around during shipping, which may have caused something inside to give way (a solder joint broke free, etc.) Hopefully, it will be something visible that the buyer's amp tech can ID and fix.

I think you can forget getting any result from a FedEx claim - especially if there's no visible sign of shipping damage. It's a struggle even when it's clear that they destroyed something.
 

Blue Strat

Member
Messages
30,722
Wait until you hear back from the tech. If it's simple and cheaper than paying shipping costs then it's a no brainer.

If it's not simple and cheap, put yourself in the buyer's position and react accordingly. Short of that, if you plan to continue selling on Reverb are you comfortable with the possible repercussions of not appeasing the customer?
 

GiGuitar

Member
Messages
5
Wait until you hear back from the tech. If it's simple and cheaper than paying shipping costs then it's a no brainer.

If it's not simple and cheap, put yourself in the buyer's position and react accordingly. Short of that, if you plan to continue selling on Reverb are you comfortable with the possible repercussions of not appeasing the customer?

This makes sense. After this experience I do not think I will use Reverb again to sell. I realize that there are more risks involved than I originally bargained for. The only reason I really used it in the first place was because I had trouble finding a local buyer, so I figured I'd give selling online a shot. It was amp that I no longer had use for so it made no sense letting it collect dust.
 

GiGuitar

Member
Messages
5
Why would they suggest that? Was the box damaged when the buyer received it?
Even if the box is damaged ie corners of the box are pushed in, FedEx will still say the amp wasn't packed correctly.
They throw stuff on conveyor belts and then in and out of trucks and planes.
If you didn't wrap in in bubble wrap, then put it in a box, the pack THAT box in another one with packing materials between the boxes, you didn't pack it correctly per FedEx and UPS.



Did you ever operate it this way? If not maybe there was a problem with the amp before you sold it.


The amp was packed for the apocalypse. The inside chassis was packed tightly with bubblewrap and foam and the amp was wrapped in about 2 inches of bubble wrap. I then placed the wrapped amp in a heavy duty boxed lined with foam. I then bubblewrapped this box. I attached renforced cardboard panels on all 4 sides to the wrapped box. Then I placed this box in an outer box, also lined with foam. The box was sealed with 2 rolls worth of tape and I had 4 sides of the package marked with fragile and heavy in bold and large letters. I also photographed this whole process of packaging.

Like I said, right before packaging the amp, I had it tested and left on for close to an hour. It was tested at very high cranked volumes and at low volumes. There were no issues.
 

Slevin

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
2,054
This makes sense. After this experience I do not think I will use Reverb again to sell. I realize that there are more risks involved than I originally bargained for. The only reason I really used it in the first place was because I had trouble finding a local buyer, so I figured I'd give selling online a shot. It was amp that I no longer had use for so it made no sense letting it collect dust.
Reverb is fine for small things and even guitars if you package it well. Amps though is another thing. So many parts that can wiggle and get messed up. I'd definitely recommend selling amps locally even if you have to wait longer for a sale. I've had two amps sent to me that arrived slightly off. I had to take them both to techs but I knew that could be a possibility going in to buying and shipping used amps.

Sounds like the buyer isn't going to try to screw you over and will try to make it work.
 

Astronaut FX

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
8,596
With a tube amp, especially an older one, you can have it tested, gingerly carry it home, and then discover there's an issue. That's just the nature of that kind of gear. It's unrealistic and unprovable to just assume the shipper caused the problem.

Personally, I don't have a lot of respect for a no return policy. In this case, depending on the diagnosis, maybe the best course of action is for both the buyer and seller to split the cost of the repair.
 

blackie59

Member
Messages
1,124
Anytime I sell any amps or cabs on any site I always sell it no return for one simple reason. People get stuff and abuse the crap out of it within an half hour of opening the box and I'm not taking it back after they've destroyed it.

I hope it all works out for the OP though.
 

Mejis

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
998
If it's a high-end amp a flight case can be a good investment. I've had a few amps shipped to me well packed within the flight case (and then the flight case itself packed in a box), and I haven't encountered damage so far.

Some folks (me included) like getting a flight case with the amp too, so can possibly recoup some of the cost in your sale price. A good case should protect the amp shy of blatant abuse by the shipper IMO.
 

JefeMaximo

Huge Member
Messages
2,397
This makes sense. After this experience I do not think I will use Reverb again to sell. I realize that there are more risks involved than I originally bargained for. The only reason I really used it in the first place was because I had trouble finding a local buyer, so I figured I'd give selling online a shot. It was amp that I no longer had use for so it made no sense letting it collect dust.

I can't fault you for that, but I've found Reverb to be a much better selling site than many others. It's simply the nature of shipping vintage amps. Recently built amps, particularly with the original packing materials, are not as prone to shipping issues, but it's still a gamble.

When I first started buying and selling gear, I found it odd that Elderly Music had a no shipping policy for used amps. I now completely understand.
 
Messages
177
It doesn't seem that the buyer is acting particularly unreasonable. It also seems like you did everything you could to make things go smoothly. You definitely have to play the situation by ear.

These are the stakes when you sell anything, online or otherwise. For this reason I advise always listing at the top of what you are willing to take for an item or at least price according to potential for headaches. That way if you end up eating the repair you will still have gotten close to what you really needed.

Good luck.
 

calfzilla

Cynical Hack
Messages
3,870
Do you have a receipt from the tech you took it too? Is he willing to write up what he did exactly and sign it? If so, you're in a much better position. You may even want to open a claim with PayPal yourself first to be proactive, let them know what you did before hand. You can go ahead and open a claim with FedEx. If the buyer refuses to cooperate with FedEx, i.e. doesn't send them pictures etc., then your case is strengthened further. Final thing to ask for is photo documentation of any and all problems found, quotes from the tech he takes it too, and if he complains of any odd noises ask for video clips. You might want to open a PayPal claim yourself first and layout what you've done, what you've asked for, etc..

The only reason I mention the above is that I had a very similar issue with a Vibro Champ I sold via eBay last year. Seller complained of it making an "odd noise" and wanted to return it. I offered to pay for repairs (even though it never made an odd noise for me), but the buyer said they would send a video clip for confirmation. I opened the UPS ticket, they never even answered the phone. Got huffy about having to provide a cell phone saying UPS never tried to contact them. Never sent the video (camera broke). Couldn't record audio on her phone because her phone wasn't working correctly. Closest tech in Jersey was hour and a half away. eBay ended up siding with me because they never came through with any of the information.
 

Telfer

Member
Messages
235
I'd like to know what the fine print says when you buy FedEx shipping insurance.

Is there any?
 

MattC

Member
Messages
1,681
Personally, I don't have a lot of respect for a no return policy. In this case, depending on the diagnosis, maybe the best course of action is for both the buyer and seller to split the cost of the repair.

While I agree that buyer and seller splitting sounds equitable given that both sides sound reasonable and honest here, I don't understand why you have "no respect" for a no return policy.

Joe Blow selling stuff out of his basement/private gear collection is under NO obligation to offer a return policy like a commercial retailer/dealer. As a buyer, I expect a better deal to get less protection, and as a seller, i price my stuff anticipating buyers expecting the same. I don't expect sellers to hold my purchase money in escrow, and I don't want to do the same as a seller. (This is why I sell on CL).
 

Blue Strat

Member
Messages
30,722
This makes sense. After this experience I do not think I will use Reverb again to sell. I realize that there are more risks involved than I originally bargained for. The only reason I really used it in the first place was because I had trouble finding a local buyer, so I figured I'd give selling online a shot. It was amp that I no longer had use for so it made no sense letting it collect dust.

Yeah, I don't think it has to do with Reverb as much as selling anything delicate that has to be shipped. I assume we're in agreement on this.
 

Guitar Josh

Resident Curmudgeon
Gold Supporting Member
Messages
19,762
Your as-is is meaningless (if not for the fact it violates your PP agreement) but that you advertised the amp in a certain way and it was not received that way. At that point, it doesn't matter anymore.

You completely misused as-is. You should have never described it the way you did.
 




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