Used bass clarinet?

From the mailbag:

I recently read your blog post that you wrote years ago about acquiring a bass clarinet in Paris. That inspired me to contact my friend there to follow your steps, but unfortunately I have to wait until November to try horns in Selmer factory. My friend came up with an alternative plan of which he tried the only Selmer instrument in a shop in Paris. As I need a bass sooner than later, I am hesitant to fly out there to try just one instrument. It is 7500 Euro, which is incredibly cheaper than here though. What would be your advice?

So, that's a great price. But as with anything that seems too good to be true, I'd get nervous.

I would definitely want to try something like that out before I dropped 7,500 Euros (or Drachma or Dollars) on it. In fact, I would want to try any horn before I put down any money I wasn't prepared to lose.

Now, if you know someone there whom you trust, that could be an option. But beyond that Caveat Emptor!