This is actually an extension of the topic "Kanstul Repairs", but I feel this needs it's own space.
As an extremely budget conscious individual, I have shopped on Ebay and made trumpet purchases there. Every time the horn purchased had issues...typically piston / valve issues, but sometimes cosmetic problems as well.
My hard learned lessons are now shared with all of you...I will never buy a horn on Ebay again! The cost involved (original purchase price plus needed repairs) would have been better spent on a NEW horn, with a factory warranty and dealer support. Kanstul comes to mind here, but feel free to insert your own personal favorite manufacturer.
For those of you who will buy trumpets on Ebay, do yourself a favor -
1. Make sure the seller is the original owner of the horn
2. Ensure that the seller is in fact a trumpet player
3. Find out when the trumpet was last disassembled and thoroughly cleaned / oiled / lubed
4. Get photos of the horn in a completely disassembled state
5. Obtain the serial number to research manufacturing data and history
6. If the seller does not provide a return policy, do not waste your time
I'm sure most (if not all) of you already operate in this conservative manner when making an Ebay purchase. This post is primarily aimed at those who may be new to this forum, or have not made an instrument purchase on Ebay before.