I've read through the entire thread.
It is the Seller's responsibility to ship the rod and provide a tracking number to the Buyer. The tracking number is essential to determine whether the rod was shipped by the Seller and whether it was delivered to the Buyer's shipping address.
If the merchandise was never received at the Buyer's shipping address and (as has been repeatedly stated by friends of the Seller) if the Seller accidently lost the receipt & doesn't know the tracking nbr, the Seller is at fault.
The Seller should contact the Buyer, explain the unintentional snafu, and reimburse the purchase funds to the Buyer.
Losing the receipt with the tracking nbr is an error that could happen to anyone, but it is still the Seller's responsibility. Without the tracking number, the Seller has no proof he shipped the rod.
Btw, the shipping vendor (usps, fedex, ups) probably has all that info in their computer system. Even the u.s.p.s. tracks parcels by shipping address, date, and origination point.
Until a shipping # is produced as proof of shipment this is a no brainer. The burden of proof is on the shipper, not the buyer, case closed.