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We live in a society that is incredibly wasteful and many of us do not think about the impact we are having when we throw away perfectly usable items. Did you know that, in the UK alone, each of us throws out seven times our own body weight in waste each year? That’s around 400kg per person!
If you have a passion for woodworking, there’s a good chance that you’ll want to upgrade your tools every now and again, and that’s absolutely fine. But instead of dumping your old tools in the bin, it would be much more eco-friendly to sell them on to someone who can get use out of them. Even if there is a problem with the tool, you can often sell it for spares and repairs.
When it comes to buying second-hand tools, there are a lot of options to choose from. You don’t always have to buy brand new and if you use your noggin, you can often come across some excellent quality used tools for a fraction of the original cost.
In this guide, we’ll be giving you an insight into the world of buying and selling old woodworking tools and we think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at what you can achieve.
Why Would You Want To Sell Your Old Tools?
Woodworking is a skill that is continually developing. The things you learned, in the beginning, are now likely second nature but there’s always something new to discover. This means that your old tools might no longer meet your needs so it becomes necessary to replace them. If you’ve been tempted to chuck those old tools in the bin, take a step back and think about how you might benefit from selling them.
Make A Profit
By selling your old tools you are, above all else, making some money back. If the tool you no longer need cost you quite a bit to begin with, it makes sense to try and earn some of the investment back. You’ll then be able to put that money towards buying a replacement that is better quality and will serve your growing needs much more efficiently.
It’s Eco Friendly
Earlier, we touched on the fact that Brits are throwing away an astonishing amount of rubbish each year. While much of that is general household waste, some of it comes in the form of unwanted items including tools.
Shockingly, in the UK, as much as 23.9kg per capita of electronic waste is discarded annually. What’s really sad is that the UK is the second highest offender, falling only behind Norway. Included in this electronic waste are unwanted electrical products that can range anywhere from an old fridge, to TVs, smartphones, toasters and of course, your powered woodworking tools. By selling these on to somebody who could use them, you’re certainly doing your bit for the planet.
Even if you are looking at selling hand tools, this is still a viable way to reduce waste each year. As they say; reduce, reuse, recycle, and you can be a part of that!
There are some woodworkers out there who were left tools in the will of a family member or who perhaps purchased tools many years ago that are still in excellent condition. Naturally, you aren’t going to want to just throw these out just because you don’t need them.
Fortunately, there are a lot of specialist companies out there that will sell your antique tools for you. Of course, they will take a cut of the profit but it usually isn’t much; you can expect to give away between 15% and 25%. You’ll know that your tools are going to a good home and you’ll reap the financial benefits.
Reasons To Upgrade Your Tools
If you’re considering selling your woodworking tools, the chances are that you have not found them to be as useful as they once were. As we mentioned, woodworking is a progressive hobby and as you develop your skills, you may need more advanced tools.
One of the main reasons that you should consider upgrading your tools is for greater functionality. Tools that you purchased as a beginner may have been suitable for their purpose back then. But now that you’re a little more advanced, these tools might not have the best functionality and may not allow you to create the type of projects you would like. In essence, you will be able to achieve far more in terms of the complexity, intricacy and quality of your work.
Moreover, you may want tools that offer better performance as this will make them easier to use and the results will be evident in your work. In addition to this, you’ll find that upgraded tools are far superior in terms of quality and so will last much longer and do a better job.
Places To Sell And Buy Used Tools
Your options are anything but limited when it comes to choosing a place to sell your old woodworking tools and perhaps even find a great price on an upgrade.
Selling used goods online has never been easier and while there are a lot of platforms out there, eBay is often considered to be the best. Sellers are protected so if there is a buyer dispute and you have upheld your end of the bargain, you won’t lose out on anything which gives you excellent peace of mind.
One of the great things about eBay is that it is a global marketplace so you have a much wider potential audience. You won’t need to worry about the cost of shipping to far-flung places as this falls on the seller and you can set your shipping fees when listing the item. All you will need to do is take the package to the Post Office and have it sent.
However, you should keep in mind that, while eBay is one of the best places to sell used tools, you may end up getting a lower price because of how flooded the market is and if you’re not willing to offer a decent price, somebody else will be. That said, you’ll almost always sell your tools.
Car Boot Sales
If you’re willing to get up early on a Sunday morning and have a decent number of tools to sell, along with other items perhaps, then a car boot is a great place to sell. You will get hagglers so be willing to stand your ground to get a good price but in the end, it’s usually an enjoyable experience.
What’s more, you’ll have the opportunity to take a look around and see if there is anybody selling better quality tools so you can sell yours and get your upgrades all in one place. Of course, the one thing to be careful of here is that there are no guarantees. You could purchase a used tool at a carboot with all the promises in the world that it’s fully functional, only to get it home and find out it’s a dud. Your rights as a buyer at a car boot are very limited.
Freecycle is a website where people can give away unwanted items. You won’t earn any profit by using this website but if you’re looking to upgrade your tools then there’s a chance you may stumble upon something very special.
The website operates according to your location so you’ll find a lot of local advertisements. If you’re in a hurry to get rid of your tools then Freecycle is a great option as so many people are clamouring to get their hands on quality equipment without the cost.
It won’t always be possible to sell your woodworking tools at auction, but in some cases, this is worth looking into. You’ll need to be selling tools that are in very good nick and most auction houses will look for professional tools. If your equipment meets both of these specifications then you may be in luck.
Moreover, you’ll usually need to have a job lot of tools that would sell for a lot more money than the average hobbyist would be willing to pay. This may be something that would suit a house clearance or for someone retiring from woodworking.
There’s a bit of a process behind it and each auction house will differ slightly but generally speaking, the auction will be advertised a few weeks in advance so your potential buyers will be able to research what they want to buy making it more likely that a fair sale will be made on auction day.
Good old Facebook; is there anything it can’t do? Apparently not; the giant social media platform now has everything from dating to gaming, news to business pages and of course, Marketplace. Here, you can sell second-hand goods regardless of style, quality or functionality.
People are always on the prowl for a bargain so even if your tools aren’t in the best working order, there’ll likely be someone out there who will want to take them off your hands. OK, you might not get the highest price but it’s better than nothing.
If you’re selling high quality, functional tools then you’re also likely to find a buyer here. But beware, people will try to haggle so, much like the car boot, you need to stand your ground. It can be helpful to list the item for a higher price than you’d like so that when people do make offers, you’re not losing out!
If it has been a while since you first set up your workshop, you may have gotten everything you can out of your tools. While many of them may still be in good working order, they might not be suitable for your advanced level. But instead of throwing them out, there are lots of places you can sell them on. Not only will this allow you to earn a little cash to go towards upgrades but it’ll save the environment and will help out a fellow woodworking enthusiast. There’s really nothing to lose.