I’ve found through personal experience that drum kits and drum-related gear are actually incredibly easy to sell. However, selling your gear for a decent price and having a smooth interaction with potential buyers is a lot more rare.
In this guide, I’m going to explain everything you need to know about selling your drums. I’ll list a few places to sell your kit, and then I’ll offer tips that I’ve learned make the process a lot easier.
You likely want to get as much money for your used gear as possible, so here’s what you need to do.
- Where to Sell Used Drums
- How to Sell Used Drums
- Tips for Selling Used Drums
Where to Sell Used Drums
Your two options are to sell your drums somewhere local or sell them online. When selling them online, you’ll need to create a listing. That will act as the advert, and then people can meet up with you after seeing it.
When selling it in person, you have to approach people or places that will likely be willing to buy your set.
Most music stores have second-hand sections, so they’ll be happy to buy your gear from you. I’ve learned that this is the easiest and safest way to sell your drums.
I’ve sold so many pieces of gear to my local music store, and they’ve either paid me for them or given me store credit for my next purchase.
The problem with this method is that you’ll get the least amount of money for your drums. Music store owners are well-known to lowball you, as they know that you’ll have a much harder time selling your drums somewhere else.
So, I wouldn’t recommend trying this method first. Rather, come back to it later if you can’t sell your kit for more somewhere else.
Most schools have music programs where they teach kids how to play various instruments. That may include drums, so the school would need to own a decent drum set.
Even if the school doesn’t offer drum lessons, it’s likely that they’ll have some sort of band program, leading them to still need a drum kit in one of the classrooms.
I’ve had a bit of success with this in the past, offering my drum set which I knew was an upgrade from what the school I approached already had.
School music programs have yearly budgets to stick within, and they may be able to buy your gear from you.
Facebook Marketplace is my favorite platform to sell used items. I’ve sold and bought hundreds of things on there, and it seems to be the current go-to option for people, even becoming more popular than eBay.
The beauty of Facebook Marketplace is that it’s easy to use. I also enjoy the fact that you can check out someone’s Facebook profile who has messaged you to get a general idea of if they’re a reliable buyer.
All you need to do here is make a listing and then people will message you to see if it’s still available. You’ll then need to meet up to sell your kit, or you can ship the kit to someone if you find them to be trustworthy.
eBay is the classic popular site for selling drums. While it doesn’t get as much attention due to the rise of Facebook Marketplace, it’s still a solid platform to use.
The one big benefit of eBay is that people can bid for your kit. If someone has decided to buy your used drums at a certain price, someone else may offer more so that they get it instead. This leads to getting the best deal possible.
I’ve also found it easier to sell things from far away with eBay, whereas Facebook Marketplace tends to work best in your local area.
My final suggestion is to list your gear on drum forums. This method is severely underrated, as dedicated drum forums are where you’ll find the most likely customers.
You can search for drumming subreddits on Reddit and find quite a few where plenty of drummers will be interested. I’ve also found these people to be more trustworthy, as they’re part of a strong community and quite separate from the populated platforms.
I’ve regularly heard of people selling gear for high prices on vintage drum forums. In that sort of space, people will go through a lot of effort to get vintage drum parts that they’ve been searching for.
How to Sell Used Drums
Make Sure They’re In Good Condition
The biggest thing you need to do to ensure that you’ll sell your drum gear for a good price is to keep them in good condition.
When you buy a kit, understand that you’ll likely sell it one day to get something better, so always keep the mindset of maintaining it so that it remains pristine.
If your kit is a bit beat up once you decide to sell it, there are a few things you can do to revitalize the quality a bit.
Firstly, you can replace the drum heads so that the toms don’t appear to be beaten up. If I were buying a kit, I’d want to get high-end drumheads from Evans or Remo. However, I’d recommend getting budget drumheads from any brand. This is just to make the drums look better rather than improving the sound quality.
You can also clean your drum shells so that they don’t have dirt and grime on them. Remove all the hardware parts and give them a good wipe down.
There isn’t too much you can do about rusty parts, but getting rid of dust and grime can make your drums look much better and more attractive to potential buyers.
Take Good Photos
If you want to sell drums online, I highly recommend that you take good-quality photos. The better your photos are, the more likely people are to message you about buying your gear.
I often skip over listings if the photos are bad, as I tend not to trust them as much.
On the flip side, make sure that you’re taking your own photos. I also see people trying to sell their drums by using the stock photos from websites or music stores. This always looks like a scam.
Just make sure that you get your whole drum kit pictured in one good shot, and then you can add a few more individualized pictures of specific parts of the kit. This should include the badge to identify the kit.
Do Research to Establish a Price
The next step is to give a realistic price for your drum gear. When pricing used drums, you should look at how much your drum set costs when it’s brand new. You can also look to see how much other people are selling the kit for if it’s used.
You then need to put your price somewhere in the middle, to begin with. For example, a new Yamaha Stage Custom Birch kit costs between $700 and $900 at a music store. You may see someone selling theirs for $500, so you should try to sell yours for $600.
You can justify your price increase by making sure the kit is in better condition. You could also add in a few more parts that you have lying around to make it more worth it.
Be Open to Bargaining
The other reason I recommend bumping your price up a bit is that you’re likely to have people trying to bargain with you. It’s the nature of selling second-hand musical instruments – people will always try to bring your price down.
Decide on what the lowest price you’re willing to go to is, and then keep that in mind when choosing an initial price for your drum set.
Tips for Selling Used Drums
Record Yourself Playing Drums
Since I have videos of myself playing my gear on YouTube, I’ve found it much easier to sell a lot of my gear compared to friends that have tried.
Buying used gear is all about trust, and the fact that people can watch me play the gear before buying it shows them that our deal will go smoothly.
So, I think it’s a great idea to record yourself playing the drums before selling them. If you don’t want that video to be public, you could send it through privately to people that you’re talking to in the sale process.
Be Very Descriptive In Your Selling Post
My last piece of advice is to be very descriptive in your post, as it will gain more interest than if you were vague.
Here’s a bad example of a listing:
“Yamaha Stage Custom Birch for sale”
Here’s a much better example:
“Yamaha Stage Custom Birch for sale
Purchased in 2015, and has been used as a studio kit since. Great condition, minus a slight bit of rust on the floor tom rim.
- 14” x 5” snare drum
- 10” x 7” rack tom
- 12” x 8” rack tom
- 16” x 14” floor tom
- 22” x 18” kick drum”
If you use all the advice that I mentioned above, you should be able to get a really decent price for your used drum set. Remember to be patient if able, as it’s better to wait a few months to get a good deal rather than selling to the first buyer for a few hundred dollars less.
Again, music stores are the easiest place to sell your gear, but you’ll get the most money back when selling privately.