A Pork-Free Gear Bailout Plan

Unfortunately, plans to forestall the GFC (Global Financial Crisis) don’t include TARP money for fly fishers. Sure, there are fly fishers who invested in gold and have the luxury of picking up the lastest fly rods, reels and waders for full retail. The rest of us, meanwhile, mutter things like “You know, that two-piece 8-weight I have was a real cannon when I had the right line and used a 6-foot leader.”
Well along comes Leland Fly Fishing Outfitters in San Francisco with a pork-free plan to stimulate new gear sales while helping anglers clean out their closets. The Leland Upgrade program is very simple: you send them your old gear, then they sell it on eBay and turn the proceeds into a retail credit (they sell both online and from their San Francisco store). The only fees taken from the sale are those for eBay and Paypal — which essentially means they are providing a selling service for free. And since Leland covers shipping to the shop for anyone within the U.S., it couldn’t be more hassle-free. The Leland crew has two professional photo studios in the shop and plenty of resources to turn an old rod or reel into an appealing sale item. The turnaround from the time they receive the gear to the time store credit is available is around two weeks. In addition to selling rods and reels, they’ll consider other gear (waders, boots, packs) on a case-by-case basis.
Ian McNemar, Leland’s Upgrade manager, told MidCurrent: “Our team spends our days perfecting the sale of used and unused fly fishing gear. We clean it, we research it, we photograph it and we sell it. There is no reason the average fly fisher should sell his or her gear themselves, because this program doesn’t cost them any money, time or energy.”
Selling customers’ gear in local shops is nothing new. Several fly shops around the country are now developing similar ideas to resell their customers’ old gear. But Leland won American Angler‘s Fly Shop of the Year award for 2008 and auctioning used gear is a full-time job for their staff. For more information, contact the Leland Upgrade department at www.LelandUpgrade.com (ebay@flyfishingoutfitters.com, 415.781.3474).

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