Consignment corner at Epic Sports a bargain hunter’s heaven

Posted June 24, 2011, at 7:03 p.m.

If you’re like most outdoor types, you have one or two of nearly everything — and often three or more.

A true gear head can never get along with only one stove, one cook kit, one canoe, one kayak or one tent. No-siree, the more the merrier. He who dies with the most toys wins, right?

Maybe you’ve gotten beyond that mental state, and maybe you’ve been thinking about selling something here and there, but what to charge or where to sell it has been keeping you from making room in the gear box.

Have you considered consigning the items for sale in, say, a local store, and unloading them for money or credit? (Then you could update the larder with something new.)

Brad Ryder, owner of Epic Sports in Bangor, has been thinking about that concept now for a couple of years. Customers at the store that caters to outdoor recreationists have asked as well, Ryder said. So a few weeks ago he decided to stop thinking about the concept and try it out.

In what I’ll call Consignment Corner over in the back, Ryder cleared out some space for you and me to display our wares. (Well me when I get to that point where I stop accumulating.)

Everything from footwear, clothing and outerwear, to packs, to canoes, kayaks and roof racks is eligible. Ryder reserves the right to refuse items and asks that clothing and gear be clean before being brought in for consignment.

There’s a piece of stockade fence that’s being used to showcase pictures of three downriver canoes for sale, a rack of clothing and shelving holding hiking boots and day packs (at least as of this week).

Here’s how it works if you’re looking to sell something and it passes muster (clean and free of defects). The item will be sold “as is” with no warranties. If you consign an item, the store will sell it at a fixed and agreed upon price. You have 90 days to sell it and if, for some reason, it doesn’t sell, you have 30 days to pick it up.

You pay the store a commission for the sale. You’ll get 70 percent of the sale price if you take cash, or you may elect to take store credit worth 80 percent of the value of the sale. Sales taxes are paid by the buyer at the time of purchase.

In the short time that the consignment corner has been open, Ryder said, his biggest hurdle has been keeping items on the shelves. Just a sign in the window has been the only outward indicator that the “shop” exists. Yet response has been good, he said.

As an example of what you might expect to see for sale, Thursday afternoon there several outstanding bargains available. If you were in the market for canoes, there was a package of three downriver canoes (available individually as well) for $1,000. And there was an aluminum Thule pickup truck rack with two sets of Malone wing kayak saddles for $400 (the package would retail for around $1,000). On the clothing rack there were numerous bargains on name-brand outerwear.

So whether you’re in the market to add to your collection or shrink it, it’s worth a look next time you’re downtown. I know I’m stealing another peek at an item I saw there. I just have to figure out how to slip it into the house undetected. (Just kidding. I’m actually at the point of thinking twice about more gear, except if it’s a stove or lantern, you never can have enough of them.)

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