So you have an excess of used hunting gear on your hands and want to turn it into a nice stream of profit for yourself by selling it off.
This desire is an admirable one. Many hunters upgrade their gear on an annual basis; buying new equipment well before the old stuff has run out of life. While it’s good to keep a few spare items on your closet shelves or in your mudroom cubbies in case you lose or ruin your current gear, there is no reason to have piles of hunting clothing or boxes full of other gear sitting in the garage collecting dust and grime. Whether it’s old rifles you aren’t using anymore or a spare tree stand that you can no longer store at home, selling your gear may well be the way to go.
The first thing you need to do when you decide to sell your used hunting gear is to build up an inventory of the stuff you want to sell. Take notes in a notebook as your sort through your gear, noting brand names and ages of the items you want to sell. Later, you can put this all into a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet and use it for easy reference as you decide where and how to sell your used gear.
As you look through your stuff, you also need to take note of the condition of the items you have on hand. Some of your stuff will probably be in “like new” condition. Other items will be falling into disrepair. As a general rule, use the honor system when selling used gear – especially if you are offering it online and buyers are making purchases sight unseen.
Don’t pawn off worn out hunting clothing on someone else, and absolutely don’t try to sell a busted treestand to another hunter. You don’t want to be the one responsible for the serious injury or death of another hunter, even if it’s someone you don’t know at all. Sort through your stuff judging condition as you go, then add that information to your spreadsheet.
Once you have your gear all cataloged, you can move onto the market research phase of the process. This is where your spreadsheet will really come in handy: go through your items list and use brand names and product years to find your gear online.
In most cases, you will find somewhere where that gear is for sale, whether it’s still available new from the manufacturer or is going for used prices on eBay. Take note of those prices and the condition of the items for sale, and then use that information to set list prices for your own stuff. With all the information collected and your prices sent, you will officially be ready to put your gear up for sale.
If you are looking to do primarily web-related sales, eBay or Craigslist.org are great places to start, just be sure to incorporate shipping charges into your asking price if needed.
If you’d be more comfortable doing in-person sales, you can look around town for places that might take your stuff. For instance, some rifle shops run trade-in or buy-back programs that can get you cash for your guns – which is especially useful since you can’t sell firearms on eBay. You may also have a hunting friend or two who would be interested in taking some of your gear off your hands, so don’t be afraid to ask around.