How to Buy a Used Tool


Cisco the HSS blogging cat here… Enough about wine for the moment… And now for something completely different…

Should you have the woodworking inclination, given these tough economic times there are great deals on used equipment to be had out there… Consider the 10″ radial arm saw below…

That’s a $700 – $1200 near-new workhorse purchased for $100.

So what’s the secret to finding these sorts of deals? Brace yourself…

  • First, make Craigslist your best friend. Study it every which way to Sunday.

  • Know your tool. Don’t wander into a purchase because something “looks good”.

  • Buy quality. Old no-name junk is even worse than new no-name junk.

  • How is the tool structurally? Are there rattles? Binding spots? Slop? Is the thing rusty or broken?

  • Make sure that the equipment is complete including manuals and accessories.

  • Can you get replacement parts? If not, walk away.

  • Will your shop hold the beast? Be honest!

  • Can you move the thing? Again, be honest!

  • Overall, what’s your impression of the tool and its owner??? If it looks like the owner was Attila the Hun, do a Dione Warwick and walk on by.

  • Plan on spending 25% of what you would on an equal new tool, and at the same time getting 99% longevity and functionality – it’s a buyer’s market. Don’t be afraid to walk away.

  • Finally, when the time comes and you’ve found the perfect deal… Pounce!

    We’ll be in those frugal racks… Two cats blogging…

    Wine Glossaries

    * Nat Decants: A thorough glossary from Natalie MacLean, noted wine writer, speaker, and judge.
    * “The Independent Consumer’s Guide to Fine Wines”
    * GLOSSARY of Wine-Tasting Terminology (Version 1.4 – Jan. 1995): A thorough collection of definitions from Anthony Hawkins.

    Beer Glossaries

    * ratebeer: Now that’s a straightforward name!
    * beer-pages: Roger Protz and Tom Cannavan say that “it’s all about beer”.
    * A fine collection of Beer dictionaries.


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