My band is finally getting started but we don't have the money for a pa. Does anyone know the best way to ask another band to use theirs? We'll offer to pay for using it but how much is a fair for borrowing someones (probably) most expensive item? I know most venues it won't be an issue but until we get to that level we're just trying to get on our feet. Thanks for reading.

Current Rig:
Ltd EC1000 deluxe
Ltd FX260
Peavey Valveking 112
Shure Super 55
Shure Pg 58
Behringer Kx1200
You can rent them out, that might be a better idea.
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Squier Precision Bass Special in Antique Burst (LH)
Rotosound Swing 66s, 45-105

On slapping on a bass:
Quote by supersac
pretend its a woman
i have no helpful advice

Just buy a decent keyboard or bass amp. No need for a massive PA for practice and basement shows.
It helps if you're friends with the band and ask beforehand. It also depends how nice the band is, how cautious they are with their gear, etc... My band for example is very generous to lending our PA to other, respectable bands at our shows if they are in need. We won't lend any other gear however (the entire PA setup has warranties up the wazoo, we've already broken it once ), and if the band seems careless or immature, we'll pack it up before they can even say hello, so it's all about making sure the other band thinks they can safely lend it to you in the first place.

Aside from that, you can rent a PA, or just buy a keyboard amp if you want your vocals heard, but don't care about them being understood.
We only let bands we were playing gigs with use our PA, under our supervision, at a show. We usually didn't charge for it, it was part of doing the show. If you want to borrow/rent from a working band, so your band can practice with it, good luck. I wouldn't want to put up with the hassles, much less the added wear and tear to our system. You'd have to find someone much nicer than me, but that might not be too difficult.
You've probably got two issues; the sound at gigs and hearing vocals at practice. When you start you usually play support and there is usually no problem sharing the PA with other bands. There is never enough room for two PA's anyway. Don't take this for granted though, try and get everything arranged beforehand and at least try to buy them a drink.

For practice you need a vocal monitor, believe me your practices will go a lot better if you can hear the singer. We have a Laney 10" monitor (I think its called a CXP110) with a built in amp and it does a good job for £130 new in the UK. When you have your own PA you will go on using this as a stage monitor so your money will not be wasted. You could also use a keyboard amp or a small PA as monitors but these are more expensive.

If you go into the columns at the top of this page you should find a Guide to PA which I have started writing.