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#57286 12/29/05 05:35 AM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 247
I've had good luck on ebay, with over 60 buys, a good deal of it motorola radios/accessories..I've only had a couple of problems.. one DOA lightmeter (seller took the return after some stalling), one wrong model motorola SVA (easy return after I pointed out the error, and that I needed the listed model.), and one short shipment on a dutch auction (seller shipped second item as soon as I notified him). I've never recevied negative feedback, or had to leave any.
I think the biggest single item that I have bought was a IFR service monitor for $3000.

I've gotten some real deals, mostly due to finding things that had incomplete descriptions, or in the wrong category, and knowing what I was looking at.

I generally wait on bidding until the last couple minutes of the auction.. otherwise the price gets driven up.. if you do it right, you can sometimes snag items for dirt cheap while folks are looking the other way.. I've also had items snagged out from under me, so it goes both ways..

I got a older panasonic phone system a few weeks ago for a $53 + shipping. I was able to add a few additional cards for $10-20 each, and have ended up with a working system that I will be installing for a non-profit that I work for, which has a seriously limited telecom budget.

As other have said:

know what you are buying
know what it is worth
know what it is worth to you
know how much you are willing to spend.
watch out for shipping gotchas.

beware of shipping internationally, or even canada-> us.

#57287 12/29/05 07:51 AM
Joined: Jul 2004
Posts: 9,795
Likes: 15
"beware of shipping internationally, or even canada-> us."

I have bought and sold in Canada, Europe and even Australia/New Zealand. No problems. Just be sure what the shipping is going to be. The funny thing is Australia/NZ shipping seems to be faster and cheaper than Europe. My wife gets her "drug gum" from NZ.
It gets here air express in a couple days about half of the best US price we can find.

Greg Fretwell
#57288 12/29/05 12:29 PM
Joined: Nov 2003
Posts: 127
My eBay experiences have been quite positive for the most part- got some really good deals on spec-grade receptacles and switches from one seller a little over a year ago. In fact, I bid on some "4-way pilot light" switches from the same seller; did some more research and could not find such an animal though 3-ways are listed in at least one catalog (it really didn't matter to me for my purpose). Got the switches, checked them with my trusty VOM and they were two-pole switches but the markings on the back are identical to some 4-ways. So I e-mailed the seller and informed him.

The guy refunded my money and said I could keep the switches. All nine of them.

Yessir, you do have to use caution on eBay and it is deleterious for recovering impulse buyers (so is Costco for that matter but that's another topic!). But there can be some good deals, you just gotta shop around.

Think I'll put that old Megger I bought on eBay a while back to good use today; gotta figure out why that new 20A multiwire circuit popped when I cut the ribbon...

No wire bias here- I'm standing on neutral ground.
#57289 12/30/05 09:04 AM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 135
I just got thru an ordeal with an auction I won about a month ago, I bought a pair of tail-lights for my truck and the auction was for a pair of used OEM tail-lights, the seller shipped me a pair of after-market clear tail-lights that are illegal in my state to use on the road.
Thru Ebay I got all his personal info including full name, address and phone #. I tried contacting him several times and he never responded.
I filed a complaint with Paypal.
The seller had 10 days to respond once Paypal contacted him, he never did.
The judgement was awarded in my favor because he never responded.
I got a credit for the full auction price including shipping and handling posted to my Paypal account.
I have not had any mention of returning the product I was shipped.
I was very impressed I didn't think I would get anything and was ready to eat the $11 I paid.
I could not be more satisfied with the service I was provided, I never spoke to one person and all it took was 5 minutes to fill out the online forms and 10 days later I have an e-mail saying that the funds have been refunded to my account.

#57290 12/30/05 12:06 PM
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,520
the auction was for a pair of used OEM tail-lights, the seller shipped me a pair of after-market clear tail-lights that are illegal in my state to use on the road

The ones which are totally clear and you are supposed to use red bulbs? As I understand it, they are completely illegal throughout all 50 states, since there are no DoT approved red bulbs.

Some late-model cars over here are now using tail lights with a clear outer cover, but a separate red lens behind it. I think they might be O.K. Stateside as well, so long as they have the appropriate red refelctor added as well.

Peronally, I don't like the look of them anyway. What's wrong with regular red-lensed lights like we've used for decades?

#57291 12/30/05 12:58 PM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 135
Yea I think the clear ones are an ugly fad, I don't even see them at all anymore on the roads here in the states.
I just had a broken tail-light on my truck so I wanted to replace it, I thought "For $11\pair why not replace them both so they are weathered equally.
Anyway I got my $11 back, I have an ugly pair of tail-lights that I got for the time I spent dealing with the guy.
After all this I have found another pair on Ebay, won that auction and have what I was originally looking for without a penny lost.

This guy had 100% feedback (until I got done with him), everything looked legit but he still tried to rip me off.
I will still continue to shop on Ebay when I am looking to save a few $.

#57292 12/31/05 02:16 AM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 247
US->Canada is not a problem, but some people have reported delays with items going from Canada->US (reportedly due to customs and/or the post office)

I have bought items from Canada, and the UK without problem, but I thought I should pass on the caution.

#57293 12/31/05 09:11 AM
Joined: Aug 2001
Posts: 7,520
I've only ever sent items to the U.S. from here a couple of times, but never had any queries on delays. That's not enough to really build up any sort of reliable picture on possible customs/postal delays.

I get stuff sent U.S. -> U.K. quite regularly, and have never experienced any problems.

Yea I think the clear ones are an ugly fad, I don't even see them at all anymore on the roads here in the states.

Those us with U.S. vehicles here have enough trouble sometimes with vehicle inspectors who don't know the rules they are supposed to be enforcing.

If I had a nickel for every time some inspector or cop has raised his eyebrows about the red rear turn signals or amber parking lights, well, I wouldn't be rich, but I'd have a few dollars! [Linked Image]

[This message has been edited by pauluk (edited 12-31-2005).]

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