I have to second Rev and WetRivrRat, 50 posts is a nice starting point, to get an idea of whom you are dealing with. I broke one of the rules/suggestions for purchasing from this site. Im was not happy with the purchase, however it was my fault, because I did not do my research. Now I do the research, I look at whom I will be purchasing from, what their history is. I also see some gear go through three or more buyers on this site, what they paid and how the item was described.
I have found PayPal to be helpful in a dispute. I have not used PayPal to settle any disputes on this site, however, I have used it on E-Bay and with a vendor. I pay with my Visa Card which holds many tools to help if the need arises.