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#6841931 - 08/01/17 08:54 PM Gun Auction Etiquette
roadkingtexas Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 03/10/13
Posts: 58
Loc: Denton County Texas
I have a question. Would appreciate your thoughts on this as I am in a quandary about how to proceed.

First, I have used auction sites before to both buy and sell (mostly buy) and think I have a good feel for the proper etiquette, but perhaps I am wrong. I do try to follow the golden rule - do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

I recently won an auction for a used handgun and paid for it. The firearm was duly shipped by the seller and received by my FFL. Upon receipt and inspection (by me in the presence of my FFL) I noticed two things. 1) the firearm was described in the auction listing as having factory installed night sights; however, the firearm I received did not have night sights. It had contrast sights. 2) The slide had a noticeable "hitch" in it when it was racked. It would rub against the frame when released and either not fully return to rest or return to rest after a short delay (the "hitch"). Neither me nor my FFL could see anything that was obviously obstructing the slide action.

Upon returning home, I emailed the seller and described the issues. He emailed back and said he would gladly refund my money. Sounds good right? Except it will cost me $50 to have my FFL box and ship the firearm (his standard costs for FedEx and insurance) and it has already cost me $20 in FFL transfer fees to receive the firearm.

The Question - am I a total a/h for asking the seller to refund not only what I paid him but also my return shipping and transfer fees? In other words, I am not sure that I should be out the $70 to get a refund on a firearm that was incorrectly described in the auction ad. And before I ask the seller for the additional money I would like to know what the community thinks about this.

Since this particular auction site does not really have a customer service option to address this without filing a formal fraud claim (which I am loathe to do at this stage), I am bringing it to y'all for input. Thoughts?
_________________________
Thanks!
Doug

"A man with an experience is never at the mercy of a man with a theory."

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#6841937 - 08/01/17 09:01 PM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: roadkingtexas]
RiverRider Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 11/11/07
Posts: 7269
Loc: Wise Co.
Id request that the seller pick up half of that in the event that he says he's not going to reimburse you for it all. I think you'll just have to take what you can get.
_________________________


Originally Posted By: Ronald Reagan
It's not that liberals are not smart, it's just that so much of what they know isn't so.

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#6841961 - 08/01/17 09:19 PM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: roadkingtexas]
roadkingtexas Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 03/10/13
Posts: 58
Loc: Denton County Texas
Hate to think you are right, but thinking you may be....going to ask him to man up, but be prepared for the worst.
_________________________
Thanks!
Doug

"A man with an experience is never at the mercy of a man with a theory."

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#6841969 - 08/01/17 09:23 PM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: roadkingtexas]
jeffbird Online   content


Registered: 03/09/09
Posts: 2379
You say you sell occasionally.

What would you do if you were the seller and received this refund request and explanation?

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#6842040 - 08/01/17 10:29 PM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: roadkingtexas]
Grizz Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 02/28/08
Posts: 6652
Loc: Granbury, TX
I don't know about the issue with the slide, but the seller may be taking that line because he doesn't know the difference in the sights. I see ads all the time on gunbroker which are obviously posted by people who aren't "gun guys". I've seen multiple ads calling fiber optic sights night sights. I've never gotten to sense these people are intentionally trying to screw people, I think they're just ignorant.
As far as your question, I would try to get the seller to at least split the shipping. Whether they did it intentionally or not, the gun was not advertised properly. Did they not post any photos showing the sights?
_________________________

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#6842101 - 08/02/17 05:08 AM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: jeffbird]
roadkingtexas Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 03/10/13
Posts: 58
Loc: Denton County Texas
[quote=jeffbird]You say you sell occasionally.

What would you do if you were the seller and received this refund request and explanation?

If you are going to operate online, your online reputation is everything. If a buyer were unhappy for any legitimate reason that I as the seller should have known - bad information in the ad, or a firearm that had an issue, if the seller asked for legitimate reimbursement of hard expenses, I would pony up the money and protect my online reputation. But that is me.
_________________________
Thanks!
Doug

"A man with an experience is never at the mercy of a man with a theory."

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#6842104 - 08/02/17 05:21 AM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: Grizz]
roadkingtexas Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 03/10/13
Posts: 58
Loc: Denton County Texas
Originally Posted By: Grizz
I don't know about the issue with the slide, but the seller may be taking that line because he doesn't know the difference in the sights. I see ads all the time on gunbroker which are obviously posted by people who aren't "gun guys". I've seen multiple ads calling fiber optic sights night sights. I've never gotten to sense these people are intentionally trying to screw people, I think they're just ignorant.
As far as your question, I would try to get the seller to at least split the shipping. Whether they did it intentionally or not, the gun was not advertised properly. Did they not post any photos showing the sights?


If he were a new seller I would agree, but he has transacted about 60x on this site alone according to their information. I don't think he intentionally did this. I think he didn't spend enough time figuring out what he had before he sold it. But don't you think it is the seller's responsibility to verify the information he is using to characterize his item? In other words, I would expect that anything that I either sold or purchased would be "fit for use". If something is not right, scratches on the slide, an FTE or FTF issue, should it not be disclosed? And to answer your question he posted only two pics - left view and right view with no clear pic of the sights.

I have learned another valuable lesson. smile
_________________________
Thanks!
Doug

"A man with an experience is never at the mercy of a man with a theory."

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#6842117 - 08/02/17 06:05 AM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: roadkingtexas]
Pig_Popper Online   content
Pro Tracker

Registered: 08/16/15
Posts: 1097
Loc: Fort Worth
I ate the money recently on a transaction - about a 100 bucks , it was a heavy rifle

I consider it the cost of doing business

Had you and I decided to reject , not accept the transfer then we maybe could have avoided the FFL fee but honestly you don't know what you don't know until you see and hold the gun first hand, the cost shouldn't be a sellers cost otherwise we'd see a lot less auction activity
_________________________
I smell Bacon

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#6842122 - 08/02/17 06:26 AM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: Pig_Popper]
patriot07 Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 11/06/11
Posts: 1766
Loc: Royse City, TX
Originally Posted By: Pig_Popper
I ate the money recently on a transaction - about a 100 bucks , it was a heavy rifle

I consider it the cost of doing business

Had you and I decided to reject , not accept the transfer then we maybe could have avoided the FFL fee but honestly you don't know what you don't know until you see and hold the gun first hand, the cost shouldn't be a sellers cost otherwise we'd see a lot less auction activity
The cost also shouldn't be a buyer cost. Out of the two, which one could have done something differently to prevent the situation? Only the seller describing the gun accurately would have helped.

I would ask him to cover half and consider my half the cost of doing business on a site with no customer service avenues. I don't do business online at places like that for exactly these type of reasons.

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#6842172 - 08/02/17 07:36 AM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: patriot07]
Pig_Popper Online   content
Pro Tracker

Registered: 08/16/15
Posts: 1097
Loc: Fort Worth
Originally Posted By: patriot07
Originally Posted By: Pig_Popper
I ate the money recently on a transaction - about a 100 bucks , it was a heavy rifle

I consider it the cost of doing business

Had you and I decided to reject , not accept the transfer then we maybe could have avoided the FFL fee but honestly you don't know what you don't know until you see and hold the gun first hand, the cost shouldn't be a sellers cost otherwise we'd see a lot less auction activity
The cost also shouldn't be a buyer cost. Out of the two, which one could have done something differently to prevent the situation? Only the seller describing the gun accurately would have helped.

I would ask him to cover half and consider my half the cost of doing business on a site with no customer service avenues. I don't do business online at places like that for exactly these type of reasons.


It's all circumstantial - so in the absence of written policies you have to assume some risk in doing business on auction websites.

In my case the winning bid was over 1k for a "like new" rifle

Upon receipt it had scratches and deep gouges in two areas and the barrel looked like only corrosive ammo was used - this was an AS-IS auction...

The seller of course says the damage occurred in transit and or my FFL did it, after emails putting all parties in touch he offered a refund less my FFL fee and return shipping.

A hundred dollar loss is much better than a 1k mistake in my book....

Been auctioning for 15+ years the deals are there so looking at this in totality it doesn't bother me (cost of doing business)
_________________________
I smell Bacon

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#6842209 - 08/02/17 08:17 AM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: roadkingtexas]
patriot07 Offline
Pro Tracker

Registered: 11/06/11
Posts: 1766
Loc: Royse City, TX
I mis-read your post - I didn't realize you sent yours back. I agree that $100 isn't the end of the world if the gun wasn't as described. I was really just trying to provide my input to the OP. I don't believe the cost of return should be on the buyer if the seller was the one who made the mistake. But I suppose the seller is already out money for shipping it once too, so there really isn't a great solution in that situation. Splitting the return costs in half makes the most sense to me.

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#6845419 - 08/04/17 02:29 PM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: roadkingtexas]
roadkingtexas Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 03/10/13
Posts: 58
Loc: Denton County Texas
Thanks everyone for your input. After several days and multiple emails, the Seller and I were able to work it out. He gave some credit for the error, and I was able to make the numbers work even though it wasn't exactly the item I thought I was getting. All-in-all a win-win.
_________________________
Thanks!
Doug

"A man with an experience is never at the mercy of a man with a theory."

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#6845718 - 08/04/17 06:31 PM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: roadkingtexas]
RiverRider Offline
THF Trophy Hunter

Registered: 11/11/07
Posts: 7269
Loc: Wise Co.
That's good. Glad you were able to reach a satisfactory agreement.
cheers
_________________________


Originally Posted By: Ronald Reagan
It's not that liberals are not smart, it's just that so much of what they know isn't so.

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#6845963 - 08/04/17 09:56 PM Re: Gun Auction Etiquette [Re: roadkingtexas]
huntwest Offline
Veteran Tracker

Registered: 09/17/10
Posts: 2169
Loc: Albany
I think you pay the shipping back and move on. regardless of the sellers description you are buying a gun sight unseen on the internet.
So I would take my lumps and be happy that the seller would refund your money.

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