Finding a buyer.

Don't worry, I'm not trying to sell anything to anyone here, in this community. So, this is not a sales post. I just have some sales-oriented questions, because I'm trying to find a buyer for some common--and, some not-so-common--musical instruments. (I'm trying to help my Mom by creating a food stockpile. My mom buys all of the regular, month-to-month staples. I'm trying to create a back-up food supply for both of us, in case something were happen, E.G., losing some of our income, or something similar.)

Well, that's another story entirely. To my questions:

I'm trying to find buyers for some of my musical instruments, to help both of us. I already sold one of them to a local music store. But, I need to find someone who is interested in the others. The store I took it to didn't really have a market for them, although he offered $35.00 for everything. I would like to find someone who is interested in playing them, preferably, because I would like to see them go to a good "home", so to speak. I know that this sounds strange, because I could've just accepted the thirty-five dollars, but I really would like to see an avid musician, or, someplace that knows what my uncommon instruments are, take them. 

Craigslist isn't an option, because my mom is wary of having anyone come to our house. We've been planning to have a garage sale, but my mom is wary of this too. eBay has too many fees, in my opinion. 

So, does anyone know of anything I can do?

Thanks everyone! 


craigslist is absolutely an option, as is any website with a forum/message board devoted to that instrument.

if you don't want people coming to your home, choose to meet them at a local grocery or mall or whatever's convenient for you. chances are, they'll feel safer than going to a stranger's house and it's easier for them to find!
for craigslist, just suggest meeting in a public space. i've met people in store parking lots before and they're very willing to meet there instead of my house. public spaces are usually much easier to find than someones house. just meet in the end of the parking lot away from the doors and tell them what color your car/truck/van is (thats all they need to know). then you can find each other, but still be in a safe public area.
This! Excellent suggestion -- meet at a neutral third location. Then go do errands or something, if you're super paranoid, so you don't lead them back to your house.
That's what I do. I always meet the person at a location about halfway between our places, in public, like a McDonalds or something. I wouldn't want people coming to my place either. It really helps if you have errands to do in that area anyways, in case they don't show up.
Most cl transactions I've done have been in a neutral, safe location. You don't have to meet them at your house.
What instruments are they? Are they things that students at a middle school or high school might need/use?
At the schools where I work there are always postings up in the band rooms from people who are selling used instruments. I sold an instrument this way a few years ago.
I've got two soprano recorders (Those are just the regular recorders that many children learn to play in grade school.) I also have two tin whistles, another type of recorder, a harmonica (key of F) and an ocarina.

Maybe your idea would work for the recorders.
I actually just bought a tin whistle off eBay last week. There is definitely a market there. I saw a fair amount of them listed.
eBay can also be hit and miss, because it depends on your ability to describe the instruments, and the buyer's ability to pick up on what it actually is. I once spent several hours researching D-flat piccolo lengths and pitches because of an eBay auction.

You continue to use the word uncommon. What do you mean by that? Are they instruments you'd find in an orchestra? Ones that school students would use? Are they in odd keys or pitches? Are they old? Could they be considered collectibles?

I'd say your best bet is to first identify all the instruments and what makes them special (if you don't know), and then go from there. Try to do some research on your own, to find out when they were made and where. Once you're armed with that information, you can decide what the best course of action is: try to find a collector, or sell to a school or whatever.
I'm a big fan of ebay. the fees stink but you're getting a much, much wider audience. the buyer pays for shipping. I have made hundreds of dollars selling my old toys on ebay, I wouldn't totally dismiss it just yet. if you don't have luck selling locally, it is honestly your best shot.
If they're unusual because they're no longer played commonly (as opposed to being unusual because only really rabid music fans have ever heard of them) you might find a buyer through your local SCA chapter. http://www3.sca.org/findsca.html

I know it's not unusual for Scadian bards to have a sort of "I have more weird instruments than you and I can play them all!" mentality. It's also not unheard of among filkers, but filkers are harder to find. Though you might also try posting on filk.
Email your local band/orchestra/jazz band directors. A kid might need those.
and not just kids. If you have any colleges/universities in the area check with their music departments too.
You could meet in a public place for Craigslist, so you don't have to have someone come to where you live.
If they're truly unusual or collectible, you might try a museum or a collector. Often, if a piece has some sort of provenance, this increases its value.
To answer: Maybe "uncommon" wasn't the right word....I used it because they aren't instruments that one would play in a traditional orchestra.

I've been playing the tin whistle since I was about eighteen. That's one of them that I'm trying to sell. (I've have two I bought to try them; I've found that I'm happy with my original one.)

This, and eight out of ten people I talk to ask me what a tin whistle is....I'm not being mean by saying that. It's just that I get a bit frustrated with that.
A tin whistle is an instrument that resembles a flute, but is played like a recorder. It has six holes, and differs from the recorder in that the fingerings used to play it aren't as complex.

I'm pretty sure that the tin whistle is an Irish instrument.
I think many can agree that's a damn little known instrument. The last time I heard of one of these was in a high school history course.
can you email me about this? this is somewhat relative to my interests. I'd say more, but it's somewhat personal.

joeyDOTalbinATgmailDOTcom
I would do Craigslist and have the buyer meet you somewhere else, like in the parking lot of a large public place (library, school, etc.). Newspaper classifies could work the same way.
You could also try a pawn shop. Sometimes if the item is not of high value they will just give you cash for it if they believe they have a market for it.
Surprised she doesn't want to use craigslist, it's quite worthy. I've sold lots of crap on there. I also used ebay and half and even LJ and you don't make much money unless you're pushing a lot of product - too much fees. With everything but LJ I mean.

You should just convince her craigslist is worth trying out. If someone goes through the trouble to call because they're interested in a musical instrument, they are probably pretty serious about buying it, especially if they ask to come over. I mean, does EVERYONE in the world have to have devious, ulterior motives? Remind her it's awkward for the person coming over too. Or you could just go to them with the instruments. Seriously, craigslist rocks.