What should I buy to get started ( vibewise: not a lot of money to spend)

Can anyone suggest what I should do to get started playing? Should I get something cheap just to see if I like playing vibed/xylophone? I live in Boston and tried to see if there was a store where I could try out an instrument to see which ones I would prefer the feel or tone of ( you know, something at least to aspire to, even if I can't afford much now) ..even called Jacks Drum shop...there doesn't seem to be a store, lots on the web.
I would even be interested in trading, as I have a few collectible guitars that I might part with.

i don't think a cheap instrument will inspire you to play. what about renting one?

the other thing is the instruments kind of hold there value. so if you bought a good one, you could prob sell it a few years later for around the same price, if not more. esp if you're handy and can fix it up, assuming you buy a used one that needs a little work.

if you're buying used then look for a musser m55.
if you're doing new consider the omega. it's an amazing instrument.

I agree with Tony. A used M55 is a great place to start.

How much are you looking to spend?

just remember this. if you're cheap you will pay for it. get it? or if your'e broke you will pay for it. get it?

a cheap instrument sounds like crap. and then you play some thing that sounds awful. how are you supposed to get into it? you know?

maybe for a little kid or something. maybe then anything works. but if you're an adult, sound matters. get a decent instrument and if you hate playing it after a couple months, sell it. you'll most like make you're money back. and if you lose a few hundred consider that the rental fee or whatever else helps you rationalize the loss! but i never understand when adult guys buy instruments that sound bad.

i get the money stuff, and if you're poor or broke, i know. but then try save or do with out something else. vibes are pretty much investments. and if you're handy then it can really be an investment! you fix up a beat up m55 you got for 2000 and then sell it for 3 grand.

To get a nice vibraphone. Maybe ebay off some gear you don't use etc..save up
I bought a cheap vibe fresh out of school because I was broke and impatient. It was a bit of a mistake, can't really take it out because I'm afraid it won't go back together. I have done a fair amount of practicing on it but it's not as enjoyable as a pro vibe. I am now doing whatever I have to in order to buy a real instrument. Oh and trying to sell an old cheap vibraphone seems difficult. One other thing I want to mention is that practicing on a vibraphone with non-graduated bars is a drag after a while and it seems most vibes that you find for a few hundred bucks will be non graduated.

+1

since you're in boston, one thing i might suggest would be to go to the music schools around boylston st - berklee, NEC, boston conservatory - and check the bulletin boards to see if any students are trading up from their student axes.

or just find somebody in the percussion department and ask if anyone's got something for sale.

boston conservatory especially has a lot of mallet players - marimba especially, because of nancy zeltsman, but also vibes.

between those three schools you are probably in one of the greatest concentrations of mallet players per capita in north america!!

good luck!