The $27 40D

Started Oct 2, 2012 | Discussions thread
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darkfa8
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The $27 40D
Oct 2, 2012

Don't you just hate it when someone gets a great deal? I'm posting about my bonkers Craigslist deal because it seems pretty crazy and because if you didn't know, there are still amazing deals out there to be had.

I had been looking for my first dSLR since I was always borrowing a friend and/or his Canon 20D to assist me with photography for a magazine I write for. Well, my fiance' and I finally agreed that we could set aside some funds to get a mid-level dSLR so we could just work together with our own equipment and not have to rely on anyone else or their stuff to get the work done.

I had gone so far as to buy/rent a 55-250 II lens at BestBuy to get the shots I needed with my friend's camera. I planned to return it after my shoot was done.

After an obsessive search, it seemed the 40D was the camera to have for my needs even though I had hoped a Nikon would come out as a winner. I poked around the classifieds, ebay, Craigslist, etc. I found one locally with a case, memory cards, extra batteries and the 55-250 lens, listed at $449.

After some back and forth in email, a time was set to meet up with this young man to check out the gear. He told me he had an offer of $325 from someone who could meet in 4 days. Fortunately, I was able to get together with him before the other guy.

I show up and the story is his dad used to work at BestBuy and bought all this stuff, took a few pics, stuck the camera in a closet and bought a pro-Nikon dSLR. Several years later he decides he wants to unload the camera, so his son (the guy I met) posts it for sale on Craigslist.

So, I'm checking out the camera, which is in mint condition (had 70 shutter actuations according to EOSInfo, but the file count was 1000) with a brand new, large Nikon carry case, 2 batteries, 3 memory cards, original neck strap, 55-250 I lens, Quantaray UMC filter and everything looked perfect. Then, he pulls out a practically new in box Tamron 28-300 VC lens and says he found this in the closet too and would like to package it with the whole thing since they can't use it with the Nikon. I was visually strapped for cash. I knew I couldn't afford all of this.

So, I told the guy that I couldn't afford this. He stressed that he really needs to just sell it all off and is open to an offer, any offer. He had his laptop with him and shows me pricing on the Tamron on eBay. He flashes a price of $630 on there. I didn't really have much time to investigate what used ones sold for. So, I tell him that I'm will to offer $340 on everything except the Tamron. He really wants me to take the Tamron, so he suggests $450 and that I go to a local ATM to get the extra cash. We finalize on $440. I didn't want to spend more than $400, but knew that this was a insanely good deal to begin with given the condition of everything.

So, 2 days later I shoot with the camera and both lenses. Everything worked great and I decide that I'd keep the Canon version I lens, return the version II to BestBuy and sell the Tamron. I felt the Tamron didn't offer me enough of a quality improvement over the Canon lens for the bulk of the shooting I do and ultimately, a L-series 70-200 or equivalent would really best the best lens in the long run.

To be sure, I took the Canon lens with me to Longwood Gardens and shot well into the night. It worked great and even though it didn't go as wide as the Tamron, I appreciated it being light weight and seemingly like a better bang for the buck given the true purpose of this rig (to shoot action shots in daylight).

So, I put the Tamron lens up for sale and less than 24 hours later it was claimed for $450. With the Tamron sold and after related ebay/paypal fees, my total expenditure for a mint 40D + 2 batteries + wall charger + neck strap + large Nikon case (the protective film hadn't even been taken off the Nikon logo plate) + 3 CF memory cards + 55-250 I lens was $27.

So aside from the slight bit of gloating ... it just goes to show that there are still crazy good deals out there if you happen to be in the right place at the right time. I was and am insanely fortunately.

Next time I'll have to tell you about my Black & Decker cordless electric lawn mower Craigslist purchase, $80 for a $300 mower

I'd especially like to thank all of the members of DPR would lent advice on what gear to go with to get me started!

Now, if I can just find me a 70-200 L for 95%-off, I'll be on a roll

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  • Dan G.

Panny DMC-ZS7
Oly C-750UZ
Canon 40D / Canon 55-200 IS

 darkfa8's gear list:darkfa8's gear list
Olympus C-750 UZ Panasonic Lumix DMC-ZS7 Canon EOS 40D Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS
Canon EOS 20D Canon EOS 40D
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