Craigslist, the website started by San Francisco resident Craig Newmark in 1995 as a private email list distributed among friends, has ballooned into a one-stop shop for everything from knickknacks to apparently, accessories for ductwork fabrication. And unlike classifieds, most listings are free.
As part of my job, I receive regular alerts through search engines like Google whenever news or posts containing words or phrases such as “ductwork” or “HVAC” show up in the sites they monitor. On occasion, I receive notifications that a seller on a local Craigslist site is listing ductwork or others sheet metal products for sale.
I’ve never contacted any of the sellers, and I wonder where they got these materials. Were the excess inventory or left over from a job? Were they stolen? Did they come from a sheet metal shop? Does the shop owner know these items are available? Maybe the owner is the person selling them.
I find it hard to believe that very many contractors would decide to check out the online equivalent of a rummage sale if they needed a few parts. But plenty of people with access to ductwork seem to think it’s a good idea, based on the listings I found.
What do you think of the practice? Do you ever buy sheet metal accessories from unconventional sellers?