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[Articles Home]  [Add Article]  

Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?

Ray Swan (NV2A) on August 18, 2008
View comments about this article!

Has civility with one another gone the way of taking your hat off in a restaurant or not cursing in front of children?

I have purchased most of my equipment at Hamfest and from eBay. Of the last three transceivers I've purchased only one was accurately described. This has me wondering, do I have to start buying all my gear new as I have no way of knowing the used gear is any good if we can't trust the ham we are doing business with to be honest. Character has been described as what you do when know one is looking. Is that it, you don't know the guy at the Hamfest or on eBay so it's okay to sell defective equipment.

Don't give me the "buyers beware." We all know that and it doesn't hold water if you can't spend a few hours with the gear you are buying to test it out under every conceivable situation. We have to be able to trust each other in our business dealings.

Is it just me or have others noticed the unwritten rule of hams being fair with fellow hams taking the deep six for greed? It would be interesting to hear how you've been cheated but please, no call signs here. I'd also like to hear any social redeeming stories of guys who have gone out of their way to treat you right. Call signs might be nice for this one.

Ray NV2A

Member Comments:
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Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K4ELO on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
In the last 3 years I have purchased several boat anchors on eBay from different sellers and a used transceiver directly from a ham in a nearby state. All have been exactly as described.
The used xcvr was in almost perfect condx.
None of them disappointed me.
There are honest sellers and maybe some not so honest and maybe some that are unaware of defects.

73,
Wayne
K4ELO
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K4MC on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I, too, have been burned with a purchase of used ham gear, both on EBay and at a ham fest. In each case, the non-operational status on the equipment was obvious when power was applied that one could only conclude the seller was intentionally misrepresenting what he was selling.

I was able to test one item before I left the ham fest and found the dual band VHF/UHF rig had no audio output. I returned it to the seller and he swore that it worked the last time he used it and reluctantly refunded my money. Later that day, he again had it out on his table and was telling another prospective purchaser that it worked fine. When he saw that I over heard him, he pulled it off his table and told the buyer that it was not for sale.

The second item was an RFC two-meter amplifier that had both output transistors blown. This purchase was over EBay and the seller was unwilling to provide a satisfactory resolution. I now own true boat anchor.

Both these purchases were from “fellow hams”. I feel what is happening in these cases is representative of what is happening in society – “situational ethics” – and can be found from the tailgate tables of a ham fest to the Oval Office (depending on what the definition of “is” is).

I will now only buy used gear from someone I know personally.

Wendell
K4MC
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by NE5C on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've been very blessed using Ebay when I have purchased "From a Ham Operator." Especially when they are more than happy to communicate with me answering my questions.

It is the "Non Ham" who has a peice of gear for Sale that worries me the most. Especially with descriptions like; I am unable to check this gear out, or I was told this gear worked fine, by the person I bought it from! Or I believe thay just used it for CB operation!

Some things said just leave a fellow with one choice!

"RUN FOREST RUN"
;-)
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KB9CRY on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Alright, another Trolling article !!!
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N4CQR on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I'v bought and sold on eBay since 2002. Never had a problem with a buyer, seller or product. eBay itself however is another matter.

C r a i g
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N4CQR on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Oh, and One other thing, eHam and QTH habe been 100% positive.

C~
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by W4LGH on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have heard to many horror stories from people who bought off eBay, and I also know several people around town that go out and buy up any "Junk" they can find and sell on eBay. Now this doesn't make everyone oh eBay dishonest, but has been more than enough to keep me away from it. Only tried one purchase on eBay, and it was for a really nice (NEW) metal detector. It had no reserve, and I had the winning bid @ the end of the auction time. I was informed by the seller that he wasn't going to let it go for that amount of money. This was totally wrong, and I haven't tried again on eBay.

I have both bought and sold Ham equipment on eHam, QRZ and QTH, and with the exception of one item, everything else has been what it was stated to be, and in the condition that was stated. Guess I have been lucky, but it's a "Buyer be ware" world out there, and the old saying, "If it sounds to good to be true" it probably is. Ask questions, analyze the answers, and if the person doesn't want to answer your questions, move on. Another good piece of advice is buy everything thru PAYPAL, and but their "Buyer Protection" At least this way, you have some recourse to take. Sending a certified Money Order is like sending cash, except you can prove you sent the money, doesn't mean you will get it back!!! If you have to have the item being sold, and the seller won't accept PAYPAL, but only a money order, get a USPS money order, as you can file a claim with the USPS as Mail Fraud.

Also these people who say they accept PAYPAL plus the 3% paypal charges them, that to is against Paypal policy and the seller agreed to this when he opened his Payal acct. Let Paypal know about this. I have never charged anyone the additional fee, as it is more than worth it to me for them to handle the transaction, and I know the money is there!

Hope this helps, its worked fairly well for me.

73 de W4LGH - Alan
http://www.w4lgh.com

 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KE5KDT on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I'm relatively new back into ham radio after a 35+ year break but overall my dealings (about 40 items including about 14 radios) on eham, qth, qrz, and ebay have been very good. Of course there are feedback forums where you can put down your experiences with transactions. Good place to check.

My observations are that some folks are like me, they do not use all the modes on the radios and may have no clue whether some function may be working correctly or not. Everything breaks eventually and after shipment/transit jostling and initial powering up the odds are a bit higher that something could fail. I've had several shipping disasters that are clearly not the fault of the seller.

If I buy a radio that has to be shipped, I try it quickly on the functions I use and let the seller know. I've had offers of refunds when something isn't just right and I do the same when selling to others. Probably a good idea to reach an agreement before purchase as to what your recourse is if it doesn't function properly.

Often I just take it to the ham store in San Antonio and let them check it out and sell it for me. Yes the commission is hefty but they take the responsibility.

Naturally there are jerks out there in all hobbies and walks of life, but all in all I'd say that hams are more likely to be honest with other hams about their gear. You be a good guy to deal with and you will have a clean conscious and a good reputation with God and man.
Bob KE5KDT
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K1CJS on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Trolling article? No, I don't think so. This is an excellent short article concerning honesty. It would be considered a trolling article only to those who willfully --and regularly--misrepresent the items they are or will be trying to sell.

E-Bay states all sales are a BINDING contract between buyer and seller. If a seller refuses to sell the item he offered for the final bid price, he is breaking the contract and can be barred from e-Bay. If he wants to sell an item at a minimum he should set a reserved price.

Personally, I've been burned once, at a local hamfest. I was sold a transceiver which didn't have a PL tone feature built in, but was told it did. The radio did work, but I wouldn't have paid the price I did if I knew it had no tone board in it.

I too think its a sign of the times--greed, the thought that "I'm going to get as much as I can for my stuff--junk or not" and the general dishonesty that seems to be more of the rule these days rather than the exception. I too will only buy used from someone I know or someone/somewhere where I can 'test' the item I'm buying. Other than that, forget it.

Oh, and e-Bay? Forget that too--but just because the pricing and the shill bidding makes it more economical to get items elsewhere.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K1CJS on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Oh, and one other thing--sometimes someone will sell an item they believe is in working order. If the item doesn't work--or doesn't work properly--and you don't try contacting the seller of the item to see if they'll 'make it right', then you have nobody to blame but yourself.

Most hams ARE honest, and if they were to be told that one of the items they sold or traded wasn't working, they WOULD make it right. Although there are some dishonest hams around, I've found most to be honest and willing to make amends if they've sold or traded a non-working piece of equipment to another ham.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K0BG on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
With respect to ebay....

Any prospective buyer should take the time to read their policies, in depth! Further, if you plan on using PayPal (a division of ebay), take time to read their policies paying particular attention to misrepresented merchandise.

If you take this advise, note that most of the protection is towards the seller, not the buyer.

When you rate a seller, he has the option to have (undeserved?) bad reports removed from the listing, making the value rating system moot.

Most sellers hold merchandise paid for by check, personal or otherwise. Often, this delays shipments for several weeks, although cashed checks typically clear in less than 24 hours nowadays.

Regardless of what the author suggested, ebay is the best example I know of when it comes to the Latin phrase: caveat emptor.

Alan, KØBG
www.k0bg.com
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N8KOM on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have bought and sold equipment on eBay, QTH.com and eHam. Probably around one hundred radio equipment related transactions over the last 10 years. I have had 99% good experiences, and I think it is because I look carefully at pictures or ask for pictures, I ask questions before the deal is done, and I don't expect to get something for nothing.

Maybe I will come across a deal once in a while, or something I have for sale will sell for slightly higher than expected. I will say that I think your odds of getting "burned" on a transaction are only slightly reduced by seeing equipment "in-person" at a hamfest.

My opinion is that the best used equipment is now being sold via on-line and eBay (top dollar for top goods), and the "lesser quality" equipment is what is (more often than not) offered at hamfests.

In the few transactions that I feel were "bad", one was clearly due to poor packing / shipping, another was a great difference in opinion regarding what "excellent condition" really means, and another where the seller clearly did not understand how to operate or check what he was selling. All points which have been raised here.

Steve
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KB2DHG on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Most of my used amateur equipment has all been purchased on EBAY...
So far I got what was described... I do ask a lot of questions and most of all conferm that if I am not happy can I return it?

We MUST remember that with any electronic device of a vintage nature, there has to be some deficiencies unless told otherwise!
I think for the most part you won't go wrong if dealing with a ham. I would be cautious dealing with anyone who is selling equipment that is a non ham or can't describe the performance of the equipment... So the bottom line in any used purcase, ASK QUESTIONS AND MAKE SURE OF THE RETURN POLICY!
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by AC5UP on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
30 years ago I was a regular at the First Saturday swapmeet in Dallas and the most of the Hamfests in North Texas / DFW.

One of my fondest memories was the OM who replied to my question about the working condition of a radio with a detailed description of the bandswitch that needs to be jiggled sometimes, the left dial light that winks out every now and then, the s-meter that sticks at the high end of the scale and where to tap the case to clear it, the slight hum in the audio when it's cold... It was fairly rare at that time to hear the words: "I'm selling it for a friend and he said it works".

30 years ago it was not uncommon for sellers to accept personal checks and sellers didn't need to keep a constant eye on their goods lest the small items near the front of the table walk off on their own.

Then it started to change.

In the 80's the First Saturday sale morphed into a computer swap and grew by leaps and bounds. I haven't been down there in over 10 years and don't miss it as I've outgrown that phase and the odds of being ripped off seem to have increased significantly. In the 90's there were issues with sales tax collections, FBI busts of pirated software vendors and compliance with city event codes. What a difference.

Same deal with eBay.

The only time I shop eBay is when I need some truly exotic stuff that can't be found locally, and I haven't felt the need for about the past four years. Maybe people really have changed, but I have a hunch it has more to do with large scale swaps and on-line auctions being more attractive to the less scrupulous among us than the smaller venues.

(?)
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K3AN on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Auction sites tend to have the highest prices. Think about it. If you're the winner of an auction, it automatically means that nobody else thought the item you just bought was worth what you just paid.

Eham's Classified page and swap.qth.com are my preferred sites for purchasing ham gear online.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by AC2Q on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Hardly a "trolling article" as some have said.

I have had 100% satisfaction on eBay buys from Licensed HAMS, and 100% BAD from "others".

In no case do I buy anything that states "I don't have the ability to test this" or " Sold as Is, but guarenteed not DOA" those are just weasel words for "IT'S BROKE"

In general I would say eBay is a great place to SELL, but a poor place to buy. I have found far better deals at hasmfests and the various on line SWAP boards.

It's a pity the 3898 Traders Net no longer exists, guess I am showing my age =0)
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K6CRC on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have over 700 feedbacks on eBay. Mostly stamp/coin and audio related. I have been burned twice by sellers --- mis-labled stamp, dirty amp sold as "near new". As a seller, only once. Someone waited until day 29 to say they never got an item. PayPal re-imbursed them without giving me a chance to prove it was delivered. After 30 days, they don't care.

Given the crap sold at local swaps, I have to use online to find stuff. QRZ and eHam have been fine, as has eBay,as a whole. Get use to the 1% scammers, that is just part of the new world.

The real problem is PayPal. Use the credit card payment option, not the checking acct one if you can. At least you have the protection of the credit card companies. PayPal won't protect you. No support phone number, nor will they read you emails. WITH PAYPAL, YOU ARE ON YOU OWN.

When possible, I use USPS Money Orders for expensive items.
 
Not a chance  
by KA4KOE on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Don't trust anyone you have never met. AND, especially do NOT buy anything from RADIOMART on Ebay.

Philip
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WX1F on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
"Also these people who say they accept PAYPAL plus the 3% paypal charges them, that to is against Paypal policy and the seller agreed to this when he opened his Payal acct. Let Paypal know about this. I have never charged anyone the additional fee, as it is more than worth it to me for them to handle the transaction, and I know the money is there!
73 de W4LGH - Alan"

That's an Ebay rule...not PayPal! Ebay calls it "Fee avoidance". As for charging someone that extra 3%...it makes the term "Cheapskate" come to mind. :)

 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KC2FTN on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've never had a problem/issue with eBay, and I've been using it for almost 10 years.


Mike KC2FTN
www.hamwave.com
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N4CQR on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
K3AM Said "Think about it. If you're the winner of an auction, it automatically means that nobody else thought the item you just bought was worth what you just paid."

Well, yes. That is the way auctions actually work. eBay or otherwise. And the reasion they are called auctions

Whether is is a radio, television, car, house, cattle, horses or farms. The highest bidder takes the cake!

C r a i g
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KC0NIB on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have had a mixed-bag of outcome buying from Ebay. I've yet to buy from off of these boards but that may happen at some point. The items off of Ebay when I go back and examine the page, there are clear indicators that someone is unloading junk that they ultimately would be recycling and are just looking to recoup some of their loss on the junked item. I've been burnt on an HT, and on an amplifier.

On that note, I have had some good results to. So; it can go either way.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WD4SCZ on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I really like laughing at the obvious ones, like where a guy peddling an HT-40 claims full 75 watt output on all bands, but then says since he has no antenna or dummy load he didn't check transmit.

Or the seller whose eBay ID is an extra class callsign that couldn't tell if a CW filter was installed in a radio he claimed to have restored.

I've had better luck on the various lists, be it Heathkit, Boatanchors, Ten-Tec, QRP etc. Those guys are fans of the various marques, and I find them to be pretty honest in their evaluations.


 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N3OS on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Well, over the years I have purchased only five items which "pissed me off" a bit. Three on-line and two at local hamfests. Of those five I repaired three myself (one tuner, one amp, and one filter) but I had to have the biggest purchase, a transceiver, repaired by the professionals. The fifth item I had to sell "as is" for parts at a local fest. In that case the seller had to know the unit didn't work as repairs had been attempted unsuccessfully by the seller. The crack in the PCB with the solder on the tracing was all too evident within the unit!


In each of the four "questionable" transactions I could not say with certainty that the seller was aware of the problem when they sold me the item! Even with the transceiver I couldn't "scream" at the seller. When I contacted him regarding the rig he assured me that it was functional when he boxed it up. (The seller's packing was not as I would have done it, but that's another issue.) I concluded that the unit might have been damaged by the shipping firm but again no sure proof. I had to have the rig repaired by someone with the skills and equipment. Since the cost of the transceiver's repair amounted to half the amount I paid for the rig the expenditure represented a "large metallic threaded object placed in a dark spot". Most uncomfortable!!


I recently went to a local hamfest with items to sell myself. The main item I wanted to sell was a complete HF station. I didn't sell it there but it wasn't for lack of interest. Anyway, I had a power supply amongst the items comprising the station and I had one ham express interest repeatedly but we couldn't agree on a price. He offered less than I was willing to let it go for. An extra PS can sometimes be handy so I decided to keep it. As it just so happened I needed to use it a few weeks later and I found it was not functioning properly. I HAD NO IDEA THIS WAS THE CASE AT THE FEST. I'm glad I had not sold it! My reputation is important to me. I have since gotten the parts from Mouser and made the repair. Still not for sale. My point is that it just may be that the seller was not aware of the "problem." I want to believe that anyway...

I am a retired cop and can be pretty damn cynical to say the least, but I've been reasonably impressed by the honesty and integrity of my fellow hams over the years. Yes, just as it is throughout society, we do have a few bad apples in the basket but not many...
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N4KC on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Really, you just need to be able to translate what the seller is saying. Examples:

"It worked fine the last time I used it."

TRANSLATION: "Back in 1957, the filaments glowed and it hummed when I powered it up."

"I'm just selling it for a friend so I don't know anything about it."

TRANSLATION: "I bought it from some friendly guy at a hamfest and when I turned it on, all the smoke inside the components escaped."

"If you can use a soldering iron, you can fix a couple of minor things and have a great rig."

TRANSLATION: "If you have an advanced degree in electrical engineering or worked as a design tech at KenIcSu, you might be able to get it to make a squawk or two."

"It only needs a couple of diodes replaced."

TRANSLATION: "Even if the parts were available anymore for such a monstrosity, it would take far more to make this dinosaur breathe again than you probably have in your bank account."

"Needs alignment."

TRANSLATION: "Needs euthanasia."

"I'm taking a loss on this beauty just because I need the room in my shack."

TRANSLATION: "Please, please, please get me out from under this clunker. If I drag it back home, my wife will continue to withhold affection until I find some dolt who will!"

"They just don't make them like this anymore."

TRANSLATION: "The manufacturer is defunct, the stores that sold them are now Pottery Barns, and anybody who made parts for the things are still in prison."

"Just replace the caps in the power supply, and you'll get another twenty years out of this classic."

TRANSLATION: "The EPA has declared my QTH a toxic waste site and the kids have been acting funny since the last time the transformer melted down and set off every smoke detector within a quarter mile radius."

"Make me an offer."

TRANSLATION: "I'll pay YOU to take this son of a buck!"

Really, I doubt there is any big difference in honesty from years gone by. eBay and the Internet give more opportunity for shenanigans, but I've had nothing but good luck in my several transactions.

Still, caveat emptor is not a shrimp-and-pasta dish.

73,

Don N4KC
www.n4kc.com
www.n4kc.blogspot.com
www.donkeith.com





 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by W4VR on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Just like any other used merchandise business, there are crooks and cheats out there waiting for you. I buy my stuff new, and even then I sometimes get a lemon.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K3AN on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
C r a i g ,

My point is that you almost always overpay when you buy something at auction. That's why I like swap.qth.com and this site's classified page.

K3AN
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by AB7E on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've been an eBay user for almost eleven years, with well over 300 transactions, and have only been burned twice ... once by a non-ham with over a hundred favorable ratings who then fleeced the next 50 buyers, and once by a ham who packaged an item so poorly it arrived broken. If you talk with hams who do a lot of selling to other hams on eBay, though, you'll find that they get cheated by buyers (other hams) amazingly often. A common trick is to claim an item is defective or was damaged in transit and then demand a price discount, or to simply claim it never arrived. Ham buyers are no more honest than ham sellers ... maybe less so since they don't have a reputation to maintain.

The eBay rating system is probably the best protection a buyer has for assessing the honesty of a seller (I think eBay recently dropped the review system for buyers). I rarely buy from sellers with only a few prior transactions, and I always read the actual reviews to get a feel for the seller's attitude. If he has shown that he is willing to remedy previous problems, I assume he is at least honest. If he shows arrogance and lack of accountability in dealing with buyers, I steer clear.

In most cases, you cannot count on either eBay or PayPal to step in and correct a problem transaction. As one of the previous postings stated, their policies mostly protect the seller but even so are pretty ineffective.

eBay can be a good place for buyers to find an occasional deal, and it is a terrific marketplace to get low prices on commodity items from high-volume, low overhead sellers. It's also probably the best place for sellers to reach a wide base of potential customers. It's infested with a few rats, though, and they aren't only sellers.

Dave AB7E
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KD7HVL on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Hello to all: Reading down thru this, I see ya some where burn't and some did OK. I myself have been both a buyer and a seller on ebay, I have been burn't and I have pruchased bargins. What some of you do not realize is there is another side of this also from a sellers stand point. I have sold HF amplifiers only to be told they don't work and when I get them back in after refunding the money, find out they do not have the same new finals. Pair of new 3-500s' get pricey,
Transceivers that I checked out and are transmitting full power just fine, but when I get them back in finals blown and the SWR sense/ALC circuit is toast due to transmitting with out a load. I can go on. If your kick in amateur radio is reapiring this stuff it does not take long for you to know what happens to makes parts fail. Yea Ebay is a auction, and if you buy, remmber that its' an auction, no more, no less, then going to your local home town auction to buy a car, tractor, and now houses(this means figure your going to have to put something more into it, unless you know the seller personally). Just remmber some hams' still have ethics and then there are the bunch that just don't give a dam and are into it for the money or personal gain. I guess it goes back to "don't let a few bad apples spoil the bushel basket", or something like that. I appologize for venting but it feels good.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WA8MEA on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Are expectations too high on the part of the BUYERS????

I often joke about people who go shopping for $1000 used "yard cars" and expect a "new" car out of the deal. You'd better be prepared to spend AT LEAST $1000 to get it up to snuff.

I go into a ham radio transaction the same way. If I buy a used rig, I KNOW I'm going to have to put some money into it.

NOBODY gets a NEW rig when a used rig is advertised. I believe the author has answered his own question about whether he should go back to buying new rigs. If that's what you are expecting, you'd better buy new.

Perceptions vary as much as people. My "EXCELLENT CONDX" might not be the same as your "EXCELLENT CONDX".

73, Bill - WA8MEA
http://HamRadioFun.com
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K9FON on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Ok here goes.
Swan 700 CX bought on Ebay. exc. Operates like it shoud no issues. Rebuilt power supply came with rig.

Kenwood TS 830S bought off of QRZed. exc. Arrived at my shack in MINT cont! Operates great! Now main rig!

Icom 746 bought off of Ebay. exc. arrived at the shack looking like it was barely used. Works great! My main digital rig. used weekly.

Heathkit SB 614 monitor scope. Bought off of QRZed. Looks like it was hardly used. Works great!
So far most of all my dealing have all been great.
But what burns my buscuits is the prices ham are now asking at the hamfests. Then if they dont sell the items they simply say oh well i know it will sell on Ebay. This crappy attitude is what is killing the hamfests. GREED!!
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K9FON on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Addenum;
Most of the guys i have dealt with were pretty much all old timers that had been hams for 40 years or more. I dont know why but the older guys seem more honest to deal with. JMHO!
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by W5ROY on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I mostly buy new from ebay stores. I have bought a few used items, and just like the slug I am awaiting, there are the shysters out there. I like QTH, Eham and QRZ, for honesty. Seldom get burned there and have a good track record. Remember when you buy used, there are NO warranties. It is hard to explain the condition of a rig to others, that are expecting new for the used price. At a ham fest, I request that it be powered up and I generally take a watt meter, and a dummy load for testing purposes. Once the deal is made, I consider it MY problem if any arises. Feed back on Ebay is useless any more. Every body wants good feed back, and so they only give good to get what they want. It's your hard earned buck, spend it wisely. 73 Good luck de W5ROY
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K5UJ on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
This is/has clearly boiled down to a referendum on eBay with pretty much two possible opinions: eBay good; eBay bad. My first eBay deal went sour but that may have been a good thing for me, for I learned quickly that: when the deal goes South, all of the eBay promises and guarantees go South with it (they'll try to patch things up for a fee so they're making money on everyone, even loosers, and that fee gets you some half-hearted emails to the seller asking him to play nice) and the disadvantages of internet store-fronts, and pseudonyms that allow people to hide become apparent.

But more important, unlike a lot of the general public, hams have alternatives to eBay for commerce that are to me, far better. If I want to sell a piece of ham gear I can list it for free on qth, eham or any number of narrow-casting email "reflectors" where I can set a price, terms, and find all kinds of things out about the customer once I have a call-sign to work with. I have way more control of the deal that way, and if I'm the customer, I know who the seller is (once I have his call-sign, and do I need to say no call-sign = no deal?) so if I want to, I can go see the goods in person and negotiate with cold hard cash. Paypal? Sorry, Paypal doesn't close a deal like a wad of hundreds.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by AB7E on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
K9FON: "But what burns my buscuits is the prices ham are now asking at the hamfests. Then if they dont sell the items they simply say oh well i know it will sell on Ebay. This crappy attitude is what is killing the hamfests. GREED!!"

That's moronic. It isn't called greed ... it's called an open market. Why on earth would ANYONE sell an item at a discount price when they could get fair market price for it?? I bet you wouldn't. Not everyone is trying to give away stuff ... most plan to use the proceeds of the sale to buy something else.

Dave AB7E
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by AC2Q on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
K9FON writes:

But what burns my buscuits is the prices ham are now asking at the hamfests. Then if they dont sell the items they simply say oh well i know it will sell on Ebay. This crappy attitude is what is killing the hamfests. GREED!!
----------------------------

Having been on the "other side" of the Hamfest Table, I must take issue, an Item is worth what someone is willing to pay, and I have had MY fill of Traveling to a hamfest, setting up a table, sitting there for the whole day, and be "offered" half what I am asking. Example: SSB electronics 2 meter masthead preamp and control sequencer. Cost new $320, current production, as new condition, I even had it setup so potential buyers could TEST IT, asking $150. Best offer at the Hamfest: $75. Sold on eBay for $260.

So I'll see your GREED and raise you CHEAPSKATE =0)
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KO4XJ on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have bought a few things off EBay, QTH or QRZ and some big dollars items.. a Omni VI and an TT Orion were the two biggest items. Since most of these items where too far to drive to and spin the knobs I called each seller at least twice and the Orion seller three times to get a feel for their reason and ask questions. Both sellers stated everything as it was. I bought a TT 238B from a women in Ca who was selling it for a family of a SK. I did look her up on eBay and she had a good rating. My only "bad" item was either a rotator plate or tower bracket and the guy stuck it to me in shipping.. you know sell for $25 cheaper and ship for $30 more!! I called him on it and he gave me a song and dance so I gave him a bad review and stated why.

I even had the seller at Huntsville last year tell me if the Tarheel screwdriver did not work, he would refund my $$ and gave me his ARRL VEC card with his phone#... I like that type of seller...

John
KO4XJ
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N0TAN on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I buy some of my equipment new and some from EBay/Craig's List. I haven't bought much at ham fests.

I ocassionally sell on EBay and I always accurately describe the item and offer a money-back, DOA guarantee. However, due to the fact that I don't know the technical prowess of the buyer, I always limit the refund period to three days. That should be enough time for you to examine the equipment and make sure it works as advertised. If it doesn't meet your expectations in any way, then you are only out the shipping you pay to send the item back to me.

I like buying on EBay better than at ham fests, because it is easier to find the EBay guy and sort out any issues than it is to find the Ham fest guy. Plus the EBay feedback system is a pretty good way to judge a seller's history. Especially now that they have changed it so that sellers can't give buyers negative feedback. Buyers are now more honest in their assessment of a seller than they were before.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WA8MEA on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
So I'll see your GREED and raise you CHEAPSKATE =0)
----------------------------------------------------
I'll take your CHEAPSKATE and raise you ANOTHER CHEAPSKATE!

I once had a ham buy a book from me for $12.95. He returned it after reading it, wanting his money back!

His reason? He claimed he already knew everything in the book....

73, Bill - WA8MEA
http://HamRadioFun.com
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KC0RBX on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have bought a few things off ebay with no negative results. I do know people who have had a bad experience or two but generally have good experiences. There are bad apples in every walk of life. So, I have a few rules I follow when buying on ebay:
1. I check their feed back but don't rely on it
2. I buy from detailed written descriptions
3. I ask questions of the seller about the item
4. I buy only from sellers who have several pictures of several angles which match the description written.
5. I trust the guy who takes the time to describe even a scratch on an item
6. I do not buy from the guy who only has one fuzzy pic.
7. If it is electronic and has some sort of visual indicator that shows a display or L.E.D. lit up that improves the chances of me bidding on it. Even better, for something like a transceiver, if they take the time to connect a dummy load and wattmeter to the radio and key it up to show output in the pic, I might bid on it.
8. If it seems too good to be true it probably is.
9. If they seem to be lacking in information there is probably a reason. Ask questions. Better yet get a phone number if you can. You can tell more from a voice.

Happy bidding and from the words of Ronald Reagan, "Trust but Verify"
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N0TAN on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Oh. One more thing about Ebay. Ebay is an open market driven by market forces. If you don't use trickery to try to artificially guarantee a high price, then you will always end up getting a fair market price for the item. Whether that's good or not I'll leave to you.

When I sell on EBay, I always set my starting price at $1, never use a reserve, and always run 5-day auctions.

Reserves stifle competitive bidding and keeps the ultimate price artificially low, and long auction times just delay the auction. The real bidding doesn't happen until the last day, but you need some time for people to stumble across the item while killing time on EBay. 5-days is good. I have run three day auctions and didn't notice much of a difference, but I still usually use 5-day auctions. many people use alerts that notify them when something they want is listed on EBay. They don't need a long auction time.

The reason I sell like this is that I trust the market. An open auction on EBay will always result in your selling the item for what it's truly worth at that point in time. Reserves, high starting prices, long auctions and other trickery always result in lower prices. If you are scared to sell the item for what it's truly worth, then don't play on EBay.

Sometimes that results in your being disappointed and sometimes it results in your being pleasantly surprised. Over time they wash each other out and you end up doing fine.

Before you choose to sell anywhere, log in to ebay and use their advanced search tools to look at completed auctions for the item you are selling. That will give you a good idea of what it is worth. If you are selling at a Hamfest, print out the search and show people what the item has recently sold for on EBay as a way to counter ridiculously low offers at the table.

And that's all I have to say about that.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by VE3ES on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
This is more a reflection of society in general than e-Bay or ham radio ops specifically. I remember purchasing a receiver amplifier from a flea market vendor at the Dayton Hamvention about 30 or more years ago. The box looked to be in great condition, the product, now long out of production was still a current production model and at a price about where such a used version would be. The seller offered up that it was in great working order....although of course, out in the flea market at Hamvention there was no way to test it. I bought it and got home to find a burned out interior. Most likely an 11m lid who figured that if he put a kilowatt into it he'd get even more out.

The point here is that such nonsense has been going on for many generations and it truly is a "buyer beware" world out there. At least on e-Bay you can bitch out a vendor with a review...
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KI4WAF on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Nobody wears hats anymore (except for bald guys' baseball caps).
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K3WVU on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've bought and sold on Ebay since 99 and have never had a problem that I haven't been able to resolve. Yes, there are dishonest sellers, but they're usually easy to spot IF you read the item listing in detail and research the seller's feedback history.
Alan, K0BG, had good advice, but he was wrong on one item.....Ebay will no longer remove negative feedback in the vast majority of cases. In addition, negative feedback can no longer be left for buyers. This can be good or bad, because I've probably encountered more dishonest buyers than dishonest sellers. The most important thing is to use some common sense when using Ebay, and if you have ANY doubt about the product or the seller....don't bid.

73

Dwight K3WVU
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KG6TT on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Nearly all of my gear (and there is a lot of it... just ask my XYL) came from eBay. To date I have bought (mostly) and sold (some) over 400 times. I have had far worse dealings buying directly from hams or from simple listing websites then when I have bought off eBay. That isn't to say that there aren't bad deals to be found on eBay, but with a little practice and planning and... detective work... it is possible to avoid the mine fields of unpleasantness and subjective dishonesty. Shipping disasters are for another topic.

When I first started buying on eBay I had some unpleasant surprises but over time I learned some important fundamentals that I follow. Maybe some of them will be useful to you?

1. Most important. Never want something so much that you aren't willing to walk away. I have learned that there are other bidders out there with more time and money on their hands then what I have... realistically... when they are bidding against me the only way I can win is to get stupid. It use to be easy to see who they were from their screen name but eBay has made that difficult now by hiding most of the actual names. Still I can look at bidding patterns.

2. Try to do some research before hand... watch auctions over time to see the typical prices/value for items you will be looking for. Check out the closed auctions before making any bids. The closed auctions only go back a short time and will give you the prices others are thinking about who may be bidding against you.

3. Have a 'firm' maximum price in mind. Also have an idea what a great BuyNow price might be... but don't be so excited by a cheap BuyNow that I jump too quick... read the listing carefully.... if you miss it by a few minutes it wasn't meant to be. I have found a number of GREAT early auction BuyNows. And I have got a few clinkers because I let the low price create a sense of urgency that stopped me from reading the listing thoroughly.

4. Understand that there are bidding cycles on eBay... times of the day.. the week... the month...and the year when average prices are up or down. Knowing these patterns can help you find what you are looking for at the price you want. Also understand the 'me too' auctions... auctions for identical items that immediately follow a closed auction that went for a very high final bid. These 'me too' auctions are often over valued.

5. Never bid early in an auction unless it has a good BuyNow and the listing reads without issues (more on that later). I always make my one and only bid (the max I had in mind) in the last 20 seconds or so, unless I will be away and it is an important auction. In which case I make the one 'max' bid before I go and let the chips fall where they will. I avoid making an early 'mark in the sand' as it just leads to 'who's bigger?' sort of contest that always gets expensive and silly. Instead I use tools like Firefox Companion for eBay to keep track of what I am 'watching'.

6. Highly recommended. Never bid on any auction that does not accept PayPal. That is just one of my non-negotiables. I don't like it when they ask for more money if PayPal is used, but that is another topic. Basically, the few.. very few... eBay problems I have had were easily solved if PayPal was in the transaction but a total pain if I had sent 'money' directly. If the seller doesn't accept PayPal I pass. There will always be another opportunity.

7. If it is an item where cosmetics or completeness is an issue... Pictures! Lots and lots of clearly viewable pictures. Are the pictures of the items actually being sold? If there are none or few or hard to see I ask the seller to send me more. If they don't there is to great a chance that there is something they don't want me to see so I move on. I usually ask some very exacting questions regarding cosmetics as well.... often I suggest a scale such as 'rate the front panel, bezel, and knobs on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being brand spanking new...' Sometimes I get the reply... 'it is already boxed up a ready for shipment so what you see in the photo is what you see...' I move on.

8. The description! I read this for not just what it says but what it doesn't say. For example if the seller says just 'Works Great' with no mention of the cosmetics then I can expect it to be well used physically if not abused. If this will be an issue I move on. If they say they have no way to test it I generally move on as well.

9. Communication. I generally send at least one question. If the seller is prompt (within a day)in response that is good... if I don't hear from them for several days... or not at all... I move on. When they say they will be out of town till after the auction ends... well that may be true... but it is also used as a way to no have to answer questions... I move on.

10. If there are more than one of the same item in auctions I try to not bid on the first of the last as they tend to go for the most. If there are two items I usually go for the last one.

11. Learn to recognize the signs of robot bids if you are bidding before the close minutes. The best way to avoid those all together is to just bid once in the last 20 seconds and be ok with the results.

12. Look at shipping costs. Are they identified? Do they make sense? Does the auction have excessive shipping costs? I get this cleared up to my satisfaction before I ever bid... otherwise... move on.

13. I plan my auctions. I have a list of items ahead of time that I am looking for... with priorities... with average prices... with my max prices. Rarely will I ever consider bidding on something that was not already on my list. Although I may see something that I will then research and add to my list at some point.

14. I set up auction 'watches' that let me know when items important to me have shown up on eBay. This has been very useful to me.

15. I preview current auctions listing them from newest to the oldest. This way I see meaningful BuyNows before they disappear. Only after I have viewed the past 12-24 hours of listings might I change and view the auctions ready to close. The reason I avoid the ready to close auctions (unless there is an auction I planned to bid on) is that far too often they present themselves as 'easy' actions... or reactionary auctions.... like the stuff near the checkout counter of grocery stores or large electronic super stores... stuff you weren't planning to buy but it was there and oh well. It is too easy to buy for the sake of buying something with auctions about to close.

16. If possible avoid the 'Ferreasels'! (a nature-bending blend of ferrets and weasels) who strip the item of everything that can be sold individually and sell in multiple auctions. There are many on eBay who buy complete outfits in one auction then strip them down and resell in multiple auctions... that is how they make their living. If you want the item with those options and you need it complete now, then buying from a Ferreasel will end up costing you much more than what you may have planned on. On the other hand if you are willing to wait to find the options in the future then go ahead and make your max bid on the main item.... understanding that it is not complete. Hopefully it will end in auction before the options' auctions. Don't buy the options first as that will get you to bid far too high on the main item! Frankly, if I smell the sent of a Ferreasel I move on. About a week ago I saw a popular rotor sold off in four auctions... rotor... controller.... essential connectors... and cable (I can understand the cable). To quote Charlie Brown: "Good Grief!"

____________________

73,
Jerry, KG6TT
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K5END on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
by K0BG, "With respect to ebay.... When you rate a seller, he has the option to have (undeserved?) bad reports removed from the listing, making the value rating system moot. "

Alan,

The good news is, ebay says they have a new policy that in effect does not allow sellers to give negative feedback in response to negative feedback from the buyer. Their stated intent is for buyers to provide honest feedback without fear of retribution from the seller. I don't recall the details, but I did read this recently after having made a purchase on ebay.

73

 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N8KOM on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
"My point is that you almost always overpay when you buy something at auction. That's why I like swap.qth.com and this site's classified page.

K3AN"

I disagree - I often see things at hamfests and through online ham sites priced at 10 to 50% more than what the same item consistently auctions for on eBay. I see it the other way too (costs more on eBay than at hamfest). I think the main difference is quality of the item (mint example on eBay sold for $100, so my same junk not working at hamfest is worth $90).

Whatever price an item sells in an auction is EXACTLY the price it was worth at the moment of the sale (market rules).


Steve
 
caveat emptor, for sure!!  
by AE5EH on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Caveat emptor!

Indeed the buyer should beware. It's always a gamble when you buy used "anything". There's even a gamble when you buy new, but at least "new" usually carries somekind of warranty in case it fails within the MFR's specified coverage time.

I Don't see that many good deals on ebay and other sites including this one. Hams have a pathologic predisposition of being cheap, cheap, cheap (among other things). But, wait until they go to sell their own gear. Just yesterday I saw a 897D selling used for $39.00 less than you could buy it new on QRZ. That would be stupid to pay that much for that, when you can buy brand new for approximately 5 percent more. But some poor trusting soul will probably buy it.

When I sell anything I bought new, especially if I had it a while, and used it much, I always sell for no more than 75 percent of the new price I paid for it. That's fair. I usually make a quick sale, and feel good about the sale because I know there's no guarantee how long the the unit will operate under normal condition with out failure. I try to make the risk taken by the seller buying used, fair just incase there is an unsforseen failure after the sale. I take very good care of my equipment, so its unusual that it would fail quickly after the sale unless its abused by the buyer.

Some will say its stupid to sell something that cheap, but I could careless what others think. At least I have a clean conscience, and thats worth more to me.

And, I give the buyer a couple of weeks to play with item after the sale so in case they don't like it for any reason, they can give it back in the same condition they bought it for a full refund. That's fair.

Another thing is, I'm very careful who I sell to. If they are someone who knows absolutely zip about radio and electronics, and/or is a real douchebag to begin with, I won't sell to them. It's not worth the hassle. I'll take my time until I find someone I want to deal with.

And you know what? I've not had a problem one. So far in the past year, I've sold a FT897D w/accessories, FT950, 706MKIIG, ICU&V82, FT7800, & FT2000D. I made the sale with a clean conscience and very happy buyers. The buyers were happy with the sale, and nothing was ever returned.

Even though there's a lot of greedy, slimey sellers out there, I don't have to be one. Neither does anyone else.

But there always will be those greedy, slimey ones no matter what.

Caveat emptor is correct!
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WY3X on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
My reputation in selling things I have used to another ham operator means more to me than the $ I might make. In many cases, I have thrown things in the trashcan that I just purchased rather than passing the broken item in question on to another ham. If I think it is salvageable, I'll list it as "BROKEN- AS-IS", but never "needs TLC", which is a cop-out, unless I precisely describe the exact problem and why I am incapable of fixing it. When I sell something as UNTESTED, it doesn't mean that I plugged it in and couldn't get it to work, it means I either don't have time to test it because it will take more than 5 minutes, or I don't know HOW to test it! And you can take that to the bank! Usually, when you say UNTESTED, you're inevitably going to get pennies on the dollar. Why would I sell something untested and settle for $ if I knew that 5 minutes of testing would get me $$$$$ unless I really, really didn't know how to test it or didn't have the time? Sometimes testing is just not worth it. Like spending an hour with something on the air when it's only going to sell for $50 in tested condition. Sometimes I just don't have the test equipment required to properly test something. I have absolutely no way to test any 1296MHz gear, and recently sold some in untested condition. I have nobody within range to get a signal report from, for one thing! It's fun to buy/sell/trade/swap used gear- to me that's part of the hobby. I've been able to try out lots of older gear that I otherwise would not have been able to try if I didn't get into that part of the hobby!

As far as eBay goes- no more eBay for me. 380+ and only 2- feedback, and it was all shot down by another user- a cyberstalker with the eBay user name APPBOONE. Put them in your blocked bidders list! Read about him/her/it at ripoffreport.com under the assumed name(s) Maria Spencer, Jason Spencer, I.R. Heck, and others. The only solace I have is that I know he/she/it will be arrested for felony cyberstalking if they set foot in my county! This person also screwed another ham operator in Canada as well, so I guess this person must enjoy making ham ops the target of his/her torment.

-KR4WM
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K2ID on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
If you put a person desperate for money in the same room with someone desperate to save money, whatever their reason; you have a recipe for trouble.

The dictionary meaning of "Greedy"

1. excessively or inordinately desirous of wealth, profit, etc.; avaricious: the greedy owners of the company.
2. having a strong or great desire for food or drink.
3. keenly desirous; eager (often fol. by of or for): greedy for praise.

The seller fits definition number 1 but the buyer is defined by number 3. One desires profit while the other desires to save money or get something of high value for less.

The majority of the rest of us seem to be defined by number 2. At least in my case. :)

Con men always count on the greed of their mark. Greed can be called frugality, cheap, bargin hunting or whatever but it is still a strong desire to get something for less than it normally costs. With that comes risk. Hey we all want a bargin at one time or other but I learned a long time ago, one bad purchase can offset all the money I saved on my previous "bargins" so I only buy new or not at all now.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by W4KVW on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I bought a USED Mosley TA-53M from QTH.com ad placed by Kevin(K8SU)& when it was assembled & on my tower it had issues that could not be found while in the air.I contacted Kevin & we agreed I would send him the antenna back since it did NOT work for some reason.Kevin took it upon himself to call Mosley Electronics in Missouri & order & pay for a NEW TA-53M & have it drop shipped to my home for the price I paid him fo the USED TA-53M.I could NOT talk him out of it no matter how much I spoke with him!I have NEVER met Kevin but assure you I think he's a "GREAT" guy who goes BEYOND what ANYONE would ask of them.By the way the USED antenna was tested with an MFJ-259 on the ground & in the air & all was OK.When power was ran into the antenna from the rig all systems were NO GO.Anyway thanks too KEVIN(K8SU)I have a NEW
TA-53M(2006) on my tower & NOT a USED one.Kevin is a "CHRISTIAN" man & will ALWAYS be a FRIEND & brother in CHRIST!GOD BLESS KEVIN & his family! }:>) I have had one BAD deal from QTH.com but took a loss & lived with it.The other party felt we were even when it was over but NOT in my opinion & I know he knows it was NOT fair as well & he says were even so HE fells OK about it NOT me.I can live with it & it appears he can as well.

Clayton
W4KVW
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WB4M on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've both bought and sold on eBay, and had more hassles selling than buying. Some refuse to pay after winning bid, others emailed me practically accusing me of running a scam, etc. My only experience of being "burned" was a purchase from here on eHam, not eBay.
Sometimes its best to go ahead and buy something new and pay a bit more than go through all the hassles of eBay/eHam, while risking the chance of being "romanced" in the process.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by AB0RE on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
"The good news is, ebay says they have a new policy that in effect does not allow sellers to give negative feedback in response to negative feedback from the buyer. Their stated intent is for buyers to provide honest feedback without fear of retribution from the seller. I don't recall the details, but I did read this recently after having made a purchase on ebay. "

This is true.... but the flip side of the coin is that eBay now calculates your positive feedback percentage differently, weighing only the past 12 months into the equation and counting negative AND neutral feedbacks against your percentage.

I had ~70 positive feedback and was left one neutral feedback from a seller attempting to retaliate. The neutral feedback dropped my positive feedback percentage to 66.67% as it only weighed in the last 12 months. The good news is that the seller is no longer a registered user so for whatever reason eBay dropped the feedback they left for me.

I've had better luck selling on eHam / QTH / QRZ, although I've gotten burned a few times. I rarely buy used equipment anymore because of the misrepresentation and minimal savings from the new prices. I do, however, like to try out different equipment, and appreciate getting a fair return on my equipment when selling it online.

73,
Dan / ab0re
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by AE5EH on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
by K2ID on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!


"If you put a person desperate for money in the same room with someone desperate to save money, whatever their reason; you have a recipe for trouble.

The dictionary meaning of "Greedy"

1. excessively or inordinately desirous of wealth, profit, etc.; avaricious: the greedy owners of the company.
2. having a strong or great desire for food or drink.
3. keenly desirous; eager (often fol. by of or for): greedy for praise.

The seller fits definition number 1 but the buyer is defined by number 3. One desires profit while the other desires to save money or get something of high value for less."

Kind of a waste of words isn't it? I think we probably knew that already?


But this one made me think of something you left out...

For greed...

2. having a strong or great desire for food or drink.


The majority of the rest of us seem to be defined by number 2. At least in my case. :)

No that is just part of it. The other part of the connecting truth needs another word. It should be "gluttony";)


glut·tony
Pronunciation: \ˈglət-nē, ˈglə-tə-nē\
Function: noun
Inflected Form(s): plural glut·ton·ies
Date: 13th century
1 : excess in eating or drinking
2 : greedy or excessive indulgence

Hey....notice that it had greedy in there ;)

Another ham radio pathologic predisposition.

And........lets do a little modification to further clarify using 2, and adding to it.


*having a strong or great desire for food or drink* with a propensity for GREEDY or excessive indulgence that leads to a physical condition often observed at hamfests known as OBESITY!

Maybe that's what you really meant, huh?

YES!!

But you want to be good with words so find one that fits the modification better. Hams are smart right?

Perhaps there is some cutesy ham radio term/jargon for that?

 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WB2WIK on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I believe In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash.

I've rarely been happy or satisfied with anything purchased via eBay which is why I haven't used it for anything in a long time. However, I've been completely satisfied with stuff I can check out first prior to buying it. So, I only deal "locally."

My best deals have come from garage sales, incredibly enough. I guess a lot of ham gear in garages here in the L.A. area.

Last month saw a mint R390/URR (Collins) at a garage sale, and the seller was asking $150. I plugged it in, used a length of solder as an antenna, plugged in headphones (which he also had, for $10 more) and it seemed to work fine. However it reminded me why I don't have one of these: They're a pain to tune around with. Other than that, it's a very nice receiver.

I didn't want it but left it for some other ham or SWL to pick up...but I did leave a note tagged on it "checked out, works fine 7/27/08" or something like that, along with my callsign and phone number, to save somebody else from having to test drive it.

I've also seen Heathkit Twoers, Sixers, Gonset "Gooney Boxes," Gonset amplifiers, HQ-180As and all sorts of stuff at (literally) neighborhood garage sales. Neighborhood meaning within walking distance. I picked up last last Tek scope at a garage sale two blocks from here: Perfect condx, with carrying case, two probes and manual for $150. I see them on eBay all the time for $500 or more. Suckers.

WB2WIK/6
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N4VET on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have bought items on Ebay, at Hammfests and on eHam.
I have never had a bad deal on eHam.
Bought and sold many items.
Hamfest come in second place.
Bought items that were as stated and bought items that I never should have.
Ebay comes in last place.
Two out of three items are not as stated.
However, if you check feedback before placing a bid you have a good chance of doing fine.
I have found that if you are looking for an item and you go to eHam for a few weeks you will find what you are looking for and at a better price than the other two sources.
With eHam you also do not have to deal with bids.
At times with the bidding you pay more because you get into the I have to have it at any cost.
If you pay a fair price and don't try to get a better deal when you know how much the item is worth you should have good Karma.
Cheating does go both ways and buyer should also be honest.
Dan/N4VET
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K6ZWB on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Sorry your having problems, but I'd chalk it to bad luck!!! I have been dealing on eBay and Craigs list as well as Ham Fests for many years and have yet to be burned. I would get to know as much as you can about the seller. You know, home adr., phone number, occupation, years licensed, various interests and any thing else you can think of. This may not make sense right away but the point is the more you know, the more of a gut feeling you can build on the seller. Sometimes the seller may be a down and out liar and a thief but fortunately they are few and far between.

73 and good luck.

Rick K6ZWB
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WA3LWR on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Over the last 35 years I have both bought and sold ham equipment locally, via QST and on Ebay. Usually things went well, but in one case I had bought an estate ICOM 701, marked 710, and thought it was fine. I sold it and made $100, but the new owner informed me of a major problem. I told him to send it to ICOM and I would pay the bill, It cost me $174 but I kept my word and he was happy with the radio and I felt good about the transaction. On Ebay I once bought a VHF SWR/WATT meter, that was semi functioning and would have cost too much to repair, but once is not a terrible rate and the seller may not have known the problem existed.
Most hams are honest.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by ECHOFOX on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've had, both, good and bad experiences with eBay to the point where I've sort of learned what to look for and what to watch out for.

I used to bargain hunt, i.e. I would try to find what I'm looking for for the absolute lowest price. Often, the items were mis-described or mis-catagorized in a way that did not easily come up in broad searches and, thus, did not receive many bids keeping the price down. Often these items were posted by those who had no idea of what they were selling and were incapable of accurately describing the item. While good deals can, indeed, occur this way, all it takes is one "lemon" to sour (pardon the pun) the eBay experience and put an unsatisfying dent in the wallet.

Learning from my mistakes, I no longer bargain hunt in this manner. If there is an item that I want, I do my best to interpret, both, what and how an item is being described and am, sometimes, willing to pay a premium for that hard to find item. I'll, of course, check out a seller's feed back for, not only a score and "Great eBayer A+++" comments, but also for what that seller sells. Does that eBayer sell mostly Ham and electronics related items or does that eBay run a "virtual garage sale"? Also, I'll ask the seller relevant questions about the item, usually in reference to its condition, original ownership, modifications, etc. If I receive satisfactory answers, typically, I'll bid. I've not had any negative eBay experiences when I use this approach.

If one is "playing games" on eBay, then one will eventually lose. If, with wide eyes, one treats bidding/buying on eBay like the business transaction that it is, then one is more likely to have a satisfying eBay experience.

73
EchoFox
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by AH6GI on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've bought at hamfests and ebay. I concur with the advice from KA4AOE (RadioMartin), N0TAN ($1 opening), KG6TT (General strategy).

I don't have a problem with broken, tattered, or defective radios, as I'm a "fixer".

In fact, I've noticed that there are others like me who are attracted to listings that say, "This thing doesn't power up", "It smells of smoke", "It makes a humming sound, that's all".

Put a boatanchor up for bid with those comments and a bidding war is likely to break out. The reason, we KNOW we can fix it.

My best find was a guaranteed dead SB-303, "If this radio starts working within 10 days, return for a full refund."

The problem was that the Power Supply circuit board wasn't seated. I jiggled it in and the radio came alive.

de ah6gi/4

 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by HAMMERTIME on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Are expectations too high on the part of the BUYERS????

I often joke about people who go shopping for $1000 used "yard cars" and expect a "new" car out of the deal. You'd better be prepared to spend AT LEAST $1000 to get it up to snuff.

I go into a ham radio transaction the same way. If I buy a used rig, I KNOW I'm going to have to put some money into it.

NOBODY gets a NEW rig when a used rig is advertised. I believe the author has answered his own question about whether he should go back to buying new rigs. If that's what you are expecting, you'd better buy new.

Perceptions vary as much as people. My "EXCELLENT CONDX" might not be the same as your "EXCELLENT CONDX".

73, Bill - WA8MEA
http://HamRadioFun.com

Spoken like a ham who has burned a few guys in there time on a transaction!
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by HAMMERTIME on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Oops, I meant "their" time!
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by W7ETA on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
"Has civility with one another gone the way of taking your hat off in a restaurant or not cursing in front of children?"

I don't curse in front of children and rarely with adults. I have a "baseball" cap that I ware in "diners" because my hair is a mess after I take off my motorcycle helmet.

"Of the last three transceivers I've purchased only one was accurately described."

"Is that it, you don't know the guy at the Hamfest or on eBay so it's okay to sell defective equipment."

Everything I sell is accurately described.

Sometimes items I receive from eBay are better than I expected; sometimes its obvious that the seller didn't fully disclose information; sometimes, well, they lied.

Most often, I'm not buying ham gear anymore. Plus, I just pass on items I'm unsure about.

73
Bob
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KA8OCN on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have been cheated more at Hamfests then on eBay. On eBay I have some protections in place.

If its a expensive piece of equipment I always use a credit card to pay via Paypal. that gives me 2 layers of protection is all goes bad. First one is Paypal itsself and the second is the credit card company will pull the money back with only a letter from me.

I find a bad seller much easier when I have his or her equipment and the credit card company pulls the payment back. I use a credit card not a Debit card. In only 8 years I only had to do that 3 times.

I have not been burned at our local swaps where I know the person or at least he is known in the local Ham community. Dayton is where I have been burned and now I would not consider to buy anything expensive that is not very plain if its good or bad.

I have had some shipping damage but most of that is because I have the Mailman from Hell! I have seen him throw packages on our porch because he did not want to get our of his car.

73 to everyone, Del
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by CBISBACK on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
KA8OCN wrote:
If its a expensive piece of equipment I always use a credit card to pay via Paypal. that gives me 2 layers of protection is all goes bad. First one is Paypal itsself and the second is the credit card company will pull the money back with only a letter from me.
======================================================

Are you sure about this?

The credit card transaction is between you and Paypal, not between you and the seller of the item. You would have to get Paypal to take action in this example.

I've got it, by good authorit, that the credit card company will not intervene in 3rd party transactions such as you describe.

If you had a beef with Paypal the CC company would intervene because the transaction was between you and Paypal.

Check it out. The person who explained this to me is someone who is a professional in these matters.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KB3MXU on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
The only way a credit card does a charge back is in a case of fraud or an actual non delivery of an item.
If you send a letter to investigate-they do. Proof of delivery is all they need to end the claim for charge back.
People need to remember that there is no law giving you return rights if you are unhappy with the item. It's simply a courtesy by most retailers and it can be denied by any store.
Some say it's a contract and can be cancelled in 3 working days-however that is also not true in most cases.
Buying local is the best.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KI4WGI on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
"Put a boatanchor up for bid with those comments and a bidding war is likely to break out. The reason, we KNOW we can fix it."

Now I know whos always bidding against me!

Personally I love buying "for parts or repair" rigs. Got me a FRG-7, HW-7, HW-101, a SB-104 chassis, and a S-38 (and lost more!). Working in some aspect of electronics since '79, I'd better be able to fix this stuff!

Funded most items by selling off unneeded stuff (sold a 8088 & 8087 processor combo for $20), paid for a Rycom manual in return. In fact, I got my HAM ticket just over a yeae ago, sold off most of my vintage PC stuff (on eBay) to focus on radio.

 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N0AH on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I only trust HRO these days. No more internet sales or making 500 mile drives-------
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by QRZDXR2 on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
ahhh good article that is about time.

I sold a radio to a ham that was across town. Checked it out and made sure it was as advertised. Sold it because he really wanted it. A week later I get a call back saying it doesn't work. He wanted his money back right away. I couldn't believe that it was not working. So being that he was a new ham I decided to go get it and give him his money back.

When I got home I hooked up the radio. Sure enough it didn't work. I opened it up and surprise their is a big hole where someone had takent the PLL board out of the radio. No wonder it didn't work. I felt ripped off.

Two weeks later he is talking to one of his buddies that was saying he had the same radio like I had sold this guy.. be he got his from off of ebay, it didn't work, but is now working fine.

Later I heard from several others that they overheard the two of them talking about how finding the PLL board for this other guys radio. great gratitude and helpful and worth the every penny of the 25 dollars he sold it for.

When his bud came on I asked him how he like his new radio and his entrance to ham'n. He went on to tell me that without his frind selling him the PLL board for his radio... well you get the picture.

It made me so mad that I junked the returned radio and to this day refuse to sell/or give anything to any of the local hams be they new or old.

Buy new and you have some backing if the radio dies. Buy used and you get ripped off most of the time.

I have had sellers reply, after you ask them how old the item was, Oh I have had it for a year now. When you get it you find out its 5 years old. Then when you ask about it again... the seller says, Well I got it from a flea market a year ago... how long I have had it.

Deception, lie, misleading ? It all gets down to they have your money and you can't do a thing about it. Most have been ripped off, so its just passing the buck on, they way they see it.

Then again most new hams don't know what they want so they go pay high prices for big ticket items only to find out they don't like 'em. They then want to recover their losses, so they say, and are over what one can buy new for when you tack on the shipping and insurance cost. And when you get it you have a used radio to boot.

But lets not stop their. Commercial vendors see a has idea that they can make money on and without asking walk away with all the the idea without any consern to the ham's effort. Some of these vendors, which I advise others, not to buy from because of there business attitudes. (one reasion you don't see many hams come forth anymore with novel state of the art build-it projects. Even the ARRL takes from hams who publish (richard measures) and when done call it theirs charging non-members access fee to read it. Don't think so? what are you paying for the rag per year? Does any of that money go to the authors of articles? Is the info open and free? Or is it "members only" to read it in the information file? Did the ARRL pay for it--no-- did they sell the rag publishing it--yes

Is that stealing? Can non-members have access or contrib-- nope

All's fair in love and sales jocking for the hams dollar in equipment. Just depends who is whistling on the way to the bank with the other guys money.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KE4ZHN on August 18, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I only deal with amateur friends I trust to buy used gear from. Never bought from eBay never will. Ive been burned on hamfest junk and will most likely never buy anything expensive from a hamfest again. Why take the chance? Id rather buy new so it has a warranty or buy from friends who aren't liars and thieves out to screw their fellow amateurs.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K9CTB on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
As E-bay raises listing prices and all the nickel-and-dime fees for pics and fonts, etc., prices will continue to rise. The more I have to pay for a given piece of gear, the more I'm going to want to know the exact condition it's in. Therefore, the less attractive e-bay purchasing becomes. You simply can't plug it in. Sellers know this, and some combat the problem by offering a return policy. If you don't see one on a high-dollar piece, it's a warning sign. Some other warning signs on e-bay are below, but you can come up with many more all by yourself:

1 - The word "mint" on a piece of gear that is over 2 years old. "Mint" is for coins. It means human hands have not come into contact with the piece. Not everyone who frequents E-bay is a CCA game-show host.

2 - The words "I was told...", relating to operational condition or capabilities. It means "it don't work".

3 - Seeing a CB frequency on the display of an amateur transceiver if you're even lucky enough to see a powered-up pic. It means "the MARS mod was done" - by a PLUMBER! ;-)

4 - Make note of people looking for "shipping boxes" for riceboxes on eham, qth.com and others. Chances are, you'll correlate the callsign on e-bay two or three weeks later, when the same guy tries to bilk an extra hundred for a rig because he has "the box and inserts."

Hamfests are by far the better deal. There's a better chance you'll get to know the guy you're dealing with, and maybe even plug the box in and see for yourself the condition it is in.

73!!

K9CTB
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K9CTB on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
On the paypal "+3%" thing, someone brought up the idea that it's against paypal policy. While that's probably morally correct, they (ebay) don't really care as long as they get their cut.

Usually, it's a greed thing. If a seller adds this, he's telling you he won't negotiate the price, and that if you send him 3% more than his price, so much the better (for him). He's also telling you he's in the business of selling ham gear, and using the free boards for advertising. He views 3% of every sale from his inventory as a recoverable sum. If I really wanted something from a seller with this approach, I'd send him my offer - shipping and all - take it or leave it. It's a hobby and I can wait for that prize ricebox from the next guy. Paypal is a convenience and related to something called the "cost of doing business". Send a check or M.O., and if it's a stiff, you're stuck. At least with paypal, you have a little recourse.

73 de K9CTB

 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N4CQR on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Quote: On the paypal "+3%" thing, someone brought up the idea that it's against paypal policy. While that's probably morally correct, they (ebay) don't really care as long as they get their cut."

Yes they do too. Paypal is owned by eBay. And yes, they expect their cut - from both sources.

C r a i g
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K0PD on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
So far every radio i've bought on E Bay has been as described. For one i take time to read there feed back and like another had stated i unless it is cheap or other wise worth taking a chance with stay away from not tested or lack knowledge about the equipment ade's. But if they offer to except item back and also have good feed back i will trust them.Also i stay away from the outfits that make there living selling others good's as a buisiness as usually there knowledge about the equipment is only word of mouth and there shipping and handling charges are usually way to high which say for a $500.00 item with S/H of $50.00 and your cost to return and await refund hardly makes it worth the gamble..
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K3PRN on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have been 100% happy with tyransactions on e-ham.net and qth.com. I have had problems with E-Bay and no longer buy or sell at their site. I have found hams on e-ham.net and qth.com reliable and honest.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K3PRN on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have been 100% happy with tyransactions on e-ham.net and qth.com. I have had problems with E-Bay and no longer buy or sell at their site. I have found hams on e-ham.net and qth.com reliable and honest.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N0CGF on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have been licensed for 30 years and have NEVER bought a NEW manufactured Radio, I only bought many NEW Heathkits to build when I was first licensed. Over the years my equipment has been bought USED off the Traders Nets on 80, 40, and 20 Meters. When I have received the equipment it was just like a NEW radio when I removed it from the box and I save thousands of dollars. But then the Seller on the Traders Nets listed the radio as "like new" condition. My ebay dealings was as expected when it was stated "AS IS" but then I love to debug and restore radio's.... 73's N0CGF
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by RFDANNY on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Your "Charge Back" information is NOT CORRECT. Everyone please ignore it. PayPal cautions you in their user agreement that "charge backs" will be paid by YOU. If you look at their "chargeback" FAQ, you will see that they consider a "chargeback" the price of "doing business", and caution that you should prepare for it.

I sold a $250 item to a ham in Mexico. He had good feedback (although low, 2), and paid right away by PayPal. He even left positive feedback for me. He then did a "chargeback" claiming unauthorized use of credit card.

Despite the PayPal investigation, my documents, delivery proof, and the buyer's own e-mails and positive feedback left, guess who NEVER got their $250. Me.

If you have a chargeback on PayPal, there is a very good chance that you will never see your money or equipment again.

Become very familiar with PayPal's seller protection policy. You have to follow ALL of the many rules if you want to come close to protecting yourself.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WA8MEA on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Your "Charge Back" information is NOT CORRECT. Everyone please ignore it. PayPal cautions you in their user agreement that "charge backs" will be paid by YOU. If you look at their "chargeback" FAQ, you will see that they consider a "chargeback" the price of "doing business", and caution that you should prepare for it.

I sold a $250 item to a ham in Mexico. He had good feedback (although low, 2), and paid right away by PayPal. He even left positive feedback for me. He then did a "chargeback" claiming unauthorized use of credit card.

Despite the PayPal investigation, my documents, delivery proof, and the buyer's own e-mails and positive feedback left, guess who NEVER got their $250. Me.

If you have a chargeback on PayPal, there is a very good chance that you will never see your money or equipment again.

Become very familiar with PayPal's seller protection policy. You have to follow ALL of the many rules if you want to come close to protecting yourself.
-------------------------------------------------------
This is also a standard practice for credit cards.

I hate to say this, but if someone really wanted to use/abuse the system, they could have a new rig and not even pay for it. The credit card rules/regs are so pro consumer and anti-business.

Bill
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by VA1CQ on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
"My point is that you almost always overpay when you buy something at auction. That's why I like swap.qth.com and this site's classified page."

Huh? At an auction, you pay the true market value since you have other interested parties bidding. That is the true value of the article for sale. To the contrary, a seller using a classified ad is risking selling at a deflated price since that seller must guess at the market value. Auctions are the fairest way to sell for all concerned. Ebay prices may seem high because there truly are a lot of people interested in the best old equipment.

Murray
VE7HA / 7J1AQH
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by VA1CQ on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
"Auction sites tend to have the highest prices. Think about it. If you're the winner of an auction, it automatically means that nobody else thought the item you just bought was worth what you just paid."

Auction sites have the correct prices. Using your logic, it means you paid exactly one bid increment too much. That might be a couple of dollars. That seems like a good deal to get what you want. I'd rather not use your logic..I prefer to think you just paid approximately the fair market value.

Murray
VE7HA / 7J1AQH
 
RE: Not a chance  
by VA1CQ on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
"Don't trust anyone you have never met. AND, especially do NOT buy anything from RADIOMART on Ebay."

This is a nonsense comment on both points. Meeting somebody doesn't ensure a fair sale. The specified vendor has far, far more satisfied customers than dissatisfied. If you are going to comment, make them considered comments, please.

Murray
VE7HA / 7J1AQH
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by NS5M on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've bought used rigs from eBay and off of QRZ/eHam, and one new rig from a well-known dealer. I came close to getting burned on one eHam deal (an IC730 that needed a bit more help than I thought), but all others have been fine. Bill at B&B brought the 730 up to snuff at a reasonable price, so my net cost wasn't far off the high end of eBay auctions for that radio. On another deal (TS570DG), the seller wasn't familiar with the rig (his dad was SK, seller wasn't licensed) and failed to ship the power cord. An email solved the problem within 2-3 days.

I've never sold on eBay. In both local sales (members of same club) and sales via eHam/QRZ, my policy has been USPS Money orders preferred, but personal checks are fine (I don't have/want a PayPal account), I wait 7-10 days for clearing. My price includes shipping & insurance - no "extras".

Once I ship the gear, buyer has 7 or so days after receiving it to test it, play with it and satisfy himself that it's as represented. If he wants his money back, I'll refund it 100% less shipping once I get the gear back in the same condition in which it was shipped. (Yes, I take photos before shipping)

So far, it seems what I've sold has been accepted without complaint. Just lucky, I guess ...

Sometimes even 'buyer beware' isn't enough. If buying at auction it's best to set a limit and stick to it. And most important, any deal that sounds too good to be true, is.

73,
Jim N5VT

 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by VA1CQ on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
"I picked up last last Tek scope at a garage sale two blocks from here: Perfect condx, with carrying case, two probes and manual for $150. I see them on eBay all the time for $500 or more. Suckers. "

Let's see..plane ticket to L.A.: $500. Overnight hotel: $80. Meals, rental car to get to garage sale...the correct price of something depends directly on a person's situation. Paying $500 for that item could make good monetary sense to somebody who doesn't live in the centre of one of the largest ham communities in the world.

I'm seeing a lot of goofy comments this morning, or am I in a bad mood?

Murray
VE7HA / 7J1AQH
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WA8MEA on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I picked up last last Tek scope at a garage sale....
------------------------------------------------------
This is another EXCELLENT source if you're into classics, antiques and boat anchors!

I go garage saling with my XYL simply because I do run into treasures from time to time. Antique Grundig and Hallicrafters shortwave receivers. Scopes. I found a Stewart-Warner AM radio & phonograph....FOR ONLY $5!! And it works!!

Classic Rat Shack "Patrolmen" style radios are in big supply. Old CB's that can be converted over to ten meters.

I even found an old Motorola VHF two-way back in the days of crystal scanners, and put in a crystal bank of five popular county frequencies. The five crystals cost more than the radio! ($20 vs. $10....)

73, Bill - WA8MEA
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WA8MEA on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Remember:

“All hobbies suck. But if you keep at it, you might find at the end that you’ve managed to kill some valuable time.”

Homer Simpson
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KA8SYX on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I must be really lucky, because I have not yet had any bad experience using eBay to either sell or buy stuff. In 1999 or 2000 I sold a Panasonic portable SW/AM/FM receiver on eBay, with a reserve price and asked for the buyer to pay shipping so to consider that when they placed bids. Turned out the winning bid came from Japan, and after securely packing and insuring the radio I didn't make nearly what I would have liked on it. That's my fault, not the buyer's, I should have set my reserve higher.
The one time that I came away smarting from a purchase wasn't on eBay; it was either from here on eHam or on ARRL's radios online. I purchased a used HF transceiver after just a little haggling with the seller, and along with the final sale price I included money for optional insurance (man, in retrospect, was I glad I did that!!!) When the rig arrived, it was badly damaged because the seller had single-boxed it with a few sheets of balled-up newspaper. And if that wasn't enough, the rig, the box and the newspaper all stunk of cigarette smoke. So, very glad that I'd purchased insurance, I filed a claim with the USPS and they honored it without issue. I found a guy in Kentucky with experience repairing this particular rig and began negotiating a price for repairs. As it turned out, the postal insurance claim paid only for the radio repairs, not for the shipping to or from the guy who repaired it. In the end, the whole affair cost me the shipping round trip from Florida to Kentucky and back and the time spent while the repairs were ongoing (several weeks.) So, like I began with, I think I must be pretty fortunate after at least a decade of buying/selling used stuff online.
Where in years past, ham radio probably attracted a disproportionately large number of people with greater civility, cordiality and conscience, I merely think that the cross-section of U.S. amateur radio operators now more closely resembles that of society at large. With that shift in demographics the prevalence of violations of trust has likewise increased.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by VE6JJO on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Maybe I've been lucky but I've had nothing but good luck on EBay. Its occurred to me on a number of occasions that I really am taking a chance every time I bid on something, particularly the older or vintage gear that fascinates me so much. I mean, think about it. I'm potentially spending a great deal of money to buy a very old piece of electronic equipment with an unknown past and that was probably quirky when it was new based on a couple of pictures and(if I'm lucky) a one paragraph description. I can't turn it on, spin the knobs or try operating it. Most times, the seller offers a refund if the gear isn't as described or if its DOA but the postage isn't included in the refund offer. Big deal? Well, yeah it could be - postage is getting ridiculous, try looking up what a well packed 38lb FT-101 costs to ship up here to the Great White North....and then back again if necessary...

Anyway, lucky me, it hasn't been necessary and I'm willing to take the risk inherent in this hobby that I like more and more all the time.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by W8EZT on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Sadly, I too, no longer buy "big ticket" ham gear through e-bay. The straw that broke the camel's back was a year ago spring when I purchased a used FT-920 from another ham - he claimed it "worked perfectly". I did my homework before bidding. He used his call as his e-bay id and though he only had 9 feedbacks, they were all positive. I looked his call up - he is an Extra class licensee, an officer and trustee for his local ham club, and a VE. A bit of web searching revealed he was an engineer for a nationally known drug company, and had a personal web site showing his kids, hobby, etc. All the info I uncovered suggested he was a trustworthy individual with integrity, so I placed a high bid and won the unit. I paid another $60 for shipping (and insured the package) and he promised it would be double boxed.

When the package arrived, I notified him that it had a bit of a rough ride (the outside box had a corner stoved in and a small puncture on one side), but the inner box was well packed in shipping peanuts and undamaged.

Within 15 minutes of testing I determined that the ATU (Antenna Tuning Unit) was inoperative on many bands and the attenuator didn't work at the 6 and 18 db settings. When contacted he claimed it was working perfectly when he shipped it and this was from shipping damage and I should file a claim with the shipper. I also noticed dust on all the knobs (in one position) and when confronted with this, he admitted it had been sitting on a shelf for about a year before he sold it. I started getting repair estimates and suggested several different ways the transaction could be satisfactorily resolved (from returning it to having it repaired and him paying the bill) but his response was to blame shipping and tell me to claim insurance (which would have been insurance fraud in my opinion) and beyond that, he would do nothing to compensate me. My recourse was negative feedback (and under Indiana law, small claims court - which is still an option - 2 yr. statue of limitations).

Last winter I researched the FT-920, downloading the service manual and schematic. It turned out that the ATU problem was NOT the well known FT-920 ATU problem (RF getting into the ATU CPU and scrambling tuning memory settings), but rather that the shafts on the servo motors had slipped in their couplings, resulting in the variable capacitors not being able to rotate through their full range. The attenuator problem turned out the be a fractured surface mount resistor in the attenuator section. Neither of these problems had anything to do with shipping. Had I not the technical skills (and equipment) to fix it, I would have been stuck with a lemon. It's very disappointing to find a ham who as a VE and club license trustee exhibits such a low level of honesty and personal integrity. This behavior reflects very poorly on the entire ham community. Imagine if a new, relatively inexperienced ham ended up getting this "deal".

So, no more big ticket ham radio e-bay purchases for me, and especially no purchases from a ham named Terry.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K3DC on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I recently bought a MFJ-259B off eBay.

It was a week and the unit had not arrived. I finally emailed and they shipped it USPS even though the auction stated UPS. I would have preferred real tracking over pseudo tracking. I asked why it was shipped so late and why it was sent via USPS.

"It came back from UPS with a defaced label and I shipped USPS to make it arrive faster."

Well I was very happy it came fast. They shipped on Friday, I received on a Monday. Faster than UPS from the same address.

Everything looked okay. The unit appeared as though it had seen some better days. I opened it up to install batteries and the AA holder had been removed. All that was left was the wires. The auction stated that it was battery powered and was tested.

I returned the unit but still needed one. I bought a new one off GigaParts for $215 (free ship). The one off eBay cost be $221 + $12 to ship. It then cost me $11 to ship back. It was much older than the new one.

I noticed the seller that sold me the unit had sold MANY amateur related items.

1. Why and where did they get all that stuff.
What was the motivation.

2. Why were the AA holder cut out?

The bottom line is that a new 259B costs $270 list and I paid $221. In hind sight maybe that little of a discount is not worth it for a unit that is used and with a questionable past. Maybe the seller buys SK equipment?

Next time I'll check GigaParts first. I should have thought better before bidding but I feel many people do the same. 259B's on eBay can go for $20 under list! Not a great deal anyway.

The seller still provided a good service and provided NO problems taking it back. They will receive positive feedback. I just need to think before I click "Confirm Bid" next time.

73, KI4YMD


 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N0TAN on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I am in the market for a new Icom IC-7000 and there is a newish one (lightly used, purchased in March, so 5 months old) on EBay that looks promising.

I called Icom and asked to speak to their warranty department. The woman I spoke with told me that Icom only warranties their equipment for the first owner. ALL subsequent owners, no matter how new the equipment is, are out of luck...

So, If you are buying a use Icom. No matter how old it is, it is out of warranty.

I wonder what they do for gifts?

I did buy a Yaesu once from a local ham and when I attempted to attach the RMK to it, it died. Yaesu warrantied it with no problems.

So, the used market for Icom is obviously no good, while the used market for Yaesu is still a good option.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KE4DRN on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
hi,

The good guys and gals outnumber the bad sellers,
just have to take time and resist the 'gotta get it now'
fever that is going on Ebay right now.

I sell all over the world on ebay, eham and qth
and mostly buy on ebay.

All my deals were good, just like at a hamfest.

On the plus side, think of how many
tons of ham and test gear that was
'saved' from the trash can by those
dealing on ebay ?

73 james
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K7LA on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
In the past I have had excellent bargains on eBay, however I limit myself to lots within 100 miles that I can pre-inspect before bidding. eBay has raised their listing fees and that in turn has inflated gear prices that sellers are willing to accept.

The last couple of years I've done even better at silent key (estate) sales sourced through local radio clubs. The XYL and family just wants to get rid of the electronic gear and move on, and there certainly is no shortage of hams dying off. That's the way it is.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K6JPA on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've purchased and sold over a hundred radio items on eBay, and have never had a problem. I am over descriptive with any known issues with items I've sold, with lots of photos, with 100 percent feedback (ebay: jpallan) and feel as though I have not been taken for a ride with anything I've purchased. Guess I've been lucky.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WA8MEA on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
So, If you are buying a used Icom. No matter how old it is, it is out of warranty.
------------------------------------------------------
I make a deal with ALL of my buyers that if the equipment is still fairly new and under warranty, I will return it on behalf of them should it ever need repair. (Having a ham radio business helps. But, anyone should be able to promise such a simple favor.)

This way, there isn't a problem with the warranty "rules". (I've never understood why a car can have several owners over the life of its warranty, but an amateur transceiver radio can't.)

73, Bill - WA8MEA
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KE5GK on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Since the Garden of Eden there have been lies and liars.

My experience is by and large very good when buying used gear. Ask questions and then more questions.

I once saw a sign on a hamfest table that said. "Be sure and ask about our 90 and 90 guarantee!" The seller said that meant the gear was guaranteed for 90 seconds or 90 feet from his table, whichever came first!
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KC2WI on August 19, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've never had a problem with ham gear I bought on eBay from hams, including my Icom 746Pro and Alinco DX70T which are still are working great.

But, as someone else mentioned here, I did have a problem with a radio I bought from RADIOMART. Definitely not in perfect working condition as described. I managed to get a refund but I was still out return shipping and it was a hassle.

I would only buy from a ham who is willing to give his callsign and answer any questions.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by VE3LNY on August 20, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have had several good experiences and a couple of bad ones buying stuff on ebay. As a result of the bad experiences I pretty much stay away. I always think that there's a chance I'll get screwed again. Ebay and the vendors hurt themselves, but I guess its the bottom line that counts.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KD8Z on August 20, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
The problems I see on eBay and related auction type sites is that some people will pay almost any amount for an item they want. This inflates the prices everywhere and costs the little guy without deep pockets. Later you hear this guy saying "I was robbed" well, was he robbed or was he going into a deal with blinders on? Personally I absolutely hate auctions, save for local farm auctions, they are a blast, but eBay type auctions are dangerous, a deal is a deal, you can't back out if you get bad vibes after you made the offer without "bad feedback" horse hockey. I have bought from eBay, but I prefer the buy it now or the items that have a set price, that way I know what the cost will be. Ultimately I prefer the ham sites, they aren't better, but at least its a ham selling the item and they can tell you more about the item than a seller that normally sells ceramic dolls.
 
RE: Not a chance  
by K9VQ on August 20, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
""Don't trust anyone you have never met. AND, especially do NOT buy anything from RADIOMART on Ebay."

This is a nonsense comment on both points. Meeting somebody doesn't ensure a fair sale. The specified vendor has far, far more satisfied customers than dissatisfied. If you are going to comment, make them considered comments, please.

Murray
VE7HA / 7J1AQH "

Murray, This is not nonsense. Just Google RADIOMART and read all the articles and blogs from people burnt by Radiomart.

Rick
K9VQ
 
RE: Not a chance  
by WB9JTK on August 20, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
RE: auction sites... the "last straw" for me was a non-paying winning bidder. That tied up my item for an extra month and what a bunch of headaches.

Now for a shameless plug... due to the headaches and restrictions with auctions, I created www.SecondHandRadio.com .

Like has been pointed out, even at a hamfest there is no protection for buyers or sellers. But instead of all the fees and rules that ebay has, its just like an ad in the newspaper, only with pictures and searchable.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by W9LVM on August 20, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
What I love on Ebay is the AMP SECTION, where the cb'ers sell their amps and list them for amateur use only and the amps have never been approved by FCC! Ebay does not care enough to remove these amps because they make the selling fee! Hams should report these to Ebay because we get the blame for TVI around town!
 
RE: Not a chance  
by VA1CQ on August 20, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Murray, This is not nonsense. Just Google RADIOMART and read all the articles and blogs from people burnt by Radiomart.

Rick
K9VQ

Rick, I'm not a defender of Radiomart. I too was suspicious of that seller. I engaged him in correspondence. I was satisfied from our communication that there are two sides to every story. The customer is not always right. Radiomart is a high volume seller. He has 10,662 transactions logged, and a 98.6% positive rating for last 12 months. As I said, the vast majority of customers are satisfied.

I would approach Radiomart as I would any seller on ebay: with a great deal of caution. But I would still buy from him, realizing that most sellers sugar coat their descriptions of what they sell.

Murray
VE7HA / 7J1AQH
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KY1V on August 20, 2008 Mail this to a friend!

I have not experienced any unfortunate dealings when buying used gear. I have sold plenty of gear here on eHam and on a few items on eBay. I have never had a complaint, but I believe I accurately describe the gear.

I bought an FT-1000D once and the guy described it as mint. When I got it, it was quite grungy. I spent a few days cleaning it up and resold it a few months later for what I paid, less shipping. The new buyer was quite happy.

I think most hams are honest. There are a few that stretch the truth and a few more that are dishonest.

Perhaps the online selling mechanisms are flawed.

I am building an online classifieds and I would like to know your opinions on how to improve on the current system. I am sure eHam would like to know also and probably QRZ, all great places to buy and sell gear.

A few things I can think of is categorizing condition. For example, some people say "never smoked near" or "few hours of use". I think creating these common condition references would be beneficial in helping the seller more accurately described the condition of the equipment. Fields such as Acquired (new, used), Years Owned (1,2,5,10 years) Smoking (yes/no), Cosmetic Appearance (mint, like new, few scratches, chipped, bent), and so forth, would be go along way in helping describe the condition of used equipment.

Perhaps the ham sites also need a feedback system like eBay, but I am not certain that works either. I see lots of sellers with negative feedback that continue to sell. Is there a better way?

If so, I am willing to build a module and share the code with all amateur radio classifieds sites, or even compound all classifieds to a single web service with a common database that can serve all sites. That way placing an ad on one site displays it on all sites. Utopia!

David ~ KY1V
UltraDX.com

 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KI4ZCU on August 20, 2008 Mail this to a friend!

Any purchase online is risky unless
it is new and from a respectable outfit.

Sure plenty of online transactions
occur without a hitch. But many people
are mislead, scammed etc.

On ebay you dont know who you are
actually dealing with, just some
user id. Qth qrz is somewhat
better in that most but not all
are valid callsigns.

Ebay feedback is not what it seems.
Ebay could care less about the buyer.
Yes I had one bad experience with ebay
after getting burned. Paypal worthless
too if you get burned. Be sure you
use a credit card when using paypal so your
can dispute a bad purchase. All you will be out
is the shipping charges. UPS and fedex
must be getting rich...

Look at radiomart on ebay. He buys ham
items and waits for enough time to pass
so you cant go back and see what he bought.
Then he sells it. I have watched many auctions
of radiomart. Truly a master in covering
his tracks with the help of ebay. When radiomart
burns someone and gets a negative feedback
he retaliates against the buyer with negative
feedback too. I mean all the buyer has to do is
make payment, right? The sheep lead to the
packing house.

Now for the final caveat. Would you trust
anyone with $500 or more bucks of your
cash for a item based on some worthless
computer generated text describing the item?
Then wait to see if you receive your item and
then if see if its junk or not?

I wouldn't. If you cant touch try and check
out a radio in person I just wont buy it
no matter what the bid/price asked for
or the description states.

Of course if you have boatloads of cash and are
a risk seeker then that may be for you.

For me I dont have boatloads of cash and have
been looking to buy a radio for over a year now.
I am looking for a fair shake and not
to be shaken. Ham radio just involves alot
of $$$$ so I have to make it count.

And yes because alot of $$$$ is on the table
the higher the probablitiy of getting ripped off.

Still waiting to buy.......#$@%$%! !$##!@&
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KA5ROW on August 21, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
e-Bay is a good source for a lot of cool stuff BUT My policy for e-Bay is:
1. Don't buy high dollar items.
2. Poor photos:----- usually hide something.
3. Stay Away:----- very vague descriptions or none at all.
4. Never ever ever ever buy if you see these quotes:
It worked the last time I use it.
The guy I got it from said it worked.
No antenna to test.
It lit up but did no further testing.
Which is one way to sell something that you know that does not work. And your out is. I told you I did not test it.

NOW The Hamfeast response.
You can see it, touch it, and sometimes listen to it.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N4QNT on August 21, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Well, one thing for certain. You will never go wrong dealing with this gentleman.

hamguy123( 5378)
Feedback: 100 % Positive

5,378 E-bay transactions at 100% He is one of the good guys...
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K3MD on August 22, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Over the years have been burned only twice. Purchased an Echo II KLM 432 MHz SSB/CW transceiver at Dayton which did not work and was unrepairable.

Purchased a Ten Tec Argonaut V QRP rig which worked 7 days and then died, Ten Tec said it was unrepairable due to previous unauthorized repair work done on it by the seller. He would not give me my money back. I bought a demonstator directly from Ten Tec instead, has 1 year warranty.

Bought 100 feet of hardline from the Yellow sheet back in the 80's that did not arrive until I got a trucking company to go to the guy's house, load it, and bring it to me (1 state over).

I have had friends scammed on the "second offer" type of deal. I have been attempted to be scammed by people overseas.

I have bought some really nice rigs on EBay, including FT-100D, TR-4, Drake 2-C, Ameco AC-1, NC-270, IC-720A, IC-735. All were as advertised. Had 1 filter which I screwed up putting in and the seller refunded anyway. It was not his fault.

I always sell on EBay "satisfaction guaranteed or your money back". This is borrowed from Sears.

EBay has more really neat used gear than any hamfest. It is totally fun to surf.

Overall honesty in society seems to be going out the window.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by W3KFQ on August 22, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Since people started selling things..(anything) it has always been and always will be..check it out, buy a cheap dc/ac conv. for your car or truck, and fire it up right before purchasing. No signals,no sale. On ebay, get a local ham of good standing close to the seller to intercede on your behalf..slip him a few dollars for his time. I have found the sales of late to be populated with junk..some people don't even make an effort to be up front about condition. Call it laziness, or fraud..the end result is the same.

Robert
W3KFQ

73's
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KE4DRN on August 22, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
hi,

as of May 7,2008 Sellers can only leave
positive feedback for the buyer.

73 james

................................................
When (seller)
burns someone and gets a negative feedback
he retaliates against the buyer with negative
feedback too. I mean all the buyer has to do is
make payment, right? The sheep lead to the
packing house.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N0EE on August 22, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
For the most part when buying I investigate and try to make an informed decision, I've been happy for the most part. I will say I have been ripped off more at hamfests than on Ebay or other venues. Selling is another story. I sold a perfectly working FT101E to a newer ham, yes a ham (Extra Class CB'er). I represented it exactly as it was. He got it and a couple of months later he chastised me because it would start smelling hot running 100+ watts of AM carrier. I would hope it smelled hot, it is, he's cooking it. Operator error(ignorance), end of story. But he still hates me and dogs me to this day... I didn't make him run it for all it's worth and then some... That's why sellers specify Sold As Is, simply because they don't know if you are an incompetent idiot. It's all a crapshoot... Do what you can to protect yourself but be ready for reality when it strikes.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by AI4NS on August 23, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I sell equipment on Ebay, Eham, QRZ, etc. Have not had an issue yet. What kills me is when someone will only sell to someone in the lower 48, no foreign sales, because they don't want to deal with customs. YOU don't have to, the buyer does. It is simply another form that gets filled out and attached to the package. I just sold a TS-440 on Ebay to a guy in Poland. It sold for $200 more than I was offered previously, and about $100 more than average auction price. Foreign buyers don't have nearly the access to equipment we have, especially Eastern Europe. They are willing to pay more, and with the weaker dollar, it is a good deal for them, and me. I have sold quite a bit of equipment to foreign buyers, and got higher prices because of it. They pay shipping, so it is a win-win. I am selling off an SK estate for a friend of mine, and check out and use the equipment for a few weeks before selling. So far all buyers have been happy.

Mike
AI4NS
 
RE: Lower 48???????  
by AH6GI on August 23, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
"What kills me is when someone will only sell to someone in the lower 48"

As an AH6 (I'm on the east coast now but my call is from Hawai'i, that REALLY puzzles me.

What is it about "the lower 48"?

If the deal goes bad, are they going to get in their car and drive from Atlanta to, say, San Francisco and have it out with the buyer? Over a $85 HT or $45 MFJ tuner?

Are they worried about Hawai'ian or Alaskan money and the exchange rate? Or is it the customs forms?

Don't they realize that the "buyer pays shipping" and even if they didn't, the rates are not that much different from USPS, because, well, Hawai'i and Alaska are US States.

Best I can figure, someone started the "Lower 48" business a few years ago, and some hams, being sheep, began bleating the mantra.

de ah6gi/4
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by AH6GI on August 23, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
KI4WGI "Now I know whos always bidding against me!"

"Personally I love buying "for parts or repair" rigs. Got me a FRG-7, HW-7, HW-101, a SB-104 chassis, and a S-38 (and lost more!). Working in some aspect of electronics since '79, I'd better be able to fix this stuff!"

Yep, it's me. I eyeball the pictures well, looking for holes in the front panel, making sure that the major parts are there, original knobs, meter, etc.

On one SB-303, I could see that it had all 3 filters but the seller didn't mention it in the text. I got it for the value of the filters!

It's easy to get carried away in an auction and I've seen the bidding for "guaranteed dead"/"Parts Only" radios go way up there.

Then there was that disaster a few months ago; someone pulled the knobs and tubes from an old radio, declared that the radio was a basket case and had been sent to the landfill.

They included a picture of the radio and sadly, it was restorable.

de ah6gi/4
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by VE6AAO on August 23, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
So far I have had good luck with "ebay" and "Ham Radio Classifieds" bought a couple of transcievers and all sorts of acessories. The only problem I've ever had with Ham radio equipment is Yaesu's refusal to support expensive equipment that is more than a couple of years old. Do get superior service from SGC,Ten Tec and MFJ.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N2WEC on August 23, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have purchased a few items from a couple of very nice Hams right here on eHam. Some items were on the expensive side and or hard to find. To those Hams I say thank you. The 220 module and tone board for my FT-736R worked as advertised and were in the pristine condition promised. As far as ebay goes STAY AWAY. If you want to get screwed that's the place to go. I suggest checking the eHam listings first. I have done very well. Honest folks and usually a fair price.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WA4DOU on August 24, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I haven't sold anything on Ebay but I've bought my share. Most items were reasonably well represented and acceptable but some weren't. Part of the problem is that technical prowess in amateur radio is at an all time low and quite a few lack the understanding and objectivity necessary to accurately assess condition and represent an item, and some have no concept how to properly pack items for shipping. I received 2 bugs from one vendor that wrapped each with a turn or two of bubble wrap and placed them in a common box with crushed newspaper in between. They arrived from the west coast having beat each other until all the plastic parts were broken. That was the last straw for me. I haven't been to Ebay since, now a couple of years. I have a very simple philosophy now:

1) I'll buy it new
2) I'll buy it in person where I can inspect the item
and size up the seller
3) Or I'll do without

It works for me. Life is too short to spend it caught
in the confusion of others.

I sold a Centurion amplifier 2 years ago. Imagining a scenario where someone bought it, damaged it and demanded a refund, I chose to sell it on consignment via Omega Electronics, knowing that Bill had a much better feel for the situation than I did. It was worth 15% commission to avoid that potential pitfall.

I occasionally have bought items via Eham, QRZ or QTH.com and have no complaints. I've sold lots of items in my life via those sites and in person at hamfests. I've never had an unpleasant experience with another expressing dissatisfaction. I would sooner throw an item away than misrepresent it, as another writer suggested.

I have no stomach for dealing with the new breed of estate vultures that are so plentiful these days.

 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KI4CRA on August 24, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have been dealing with qrz,qth, & eham since 2003. I have both bought and sold items on the above mentioned sites, when buying a particular item I always ask for additional photos, I e mail the seller, we have if need be several e mails until we are both satisfied about a particular item. Also when buying, I ask about money back if the item is defective in any way, if not, I really have to ask myself do I really need/want this particular item. I also check the reviews of the item here on e ham.

When selling an item, I always offer a 5 day money back guarantee with each item I sell. I find that if I am selling an item and the buyer e mails me about said item, if the transaction moves along and if the buyer isn't real sure that is when I will offer the 5 day money back, that then usually will be the deal that makes the sale.

Only once have I ever had to refund a buyers money, that was on a piece of equipment I was selling for another individual and did not know anything about. I did refund the man's money and finally did get my money back from the guy for whom I sold the piece.


Only once have I ever been burnt on a deal which I thought was decent enough. Long story short, I traded an 18 month old Yaesu FT-897D, MD-100a desk mic for a Kenwood TS-680, and an Ameritron AL-811 amp. The TS-680 works FB once you learn her secrets. On the other hand the AL-811 was another story altogether. Wound up putting $160 into it. It is now a great working amp, but it cost me, figured on a straight trade and wound up putting money into it that had been earmarked for another item. That purchase will now have to wait till I can gather more funds.

I have bought several pieces from hamfets and have not been burnt. I have maybe bought something that I really really wanted, not thinking and maybe the item did or did not function to my standards. That was my fault. As the old saying goes, "If its too good to be true, then it probably isn't."
I will continue to deal with the websites all except e bay, I will not buy anything from e bay, just my personal feelings on that, have had too many friends that have been royally screwed by both the seller and e bay.

I have gone on and on about buying and selling, I think overall that most hams are honest and try not to screw their fellow hams. The easiest way to get a black mark on your ratings is to screw over someone that you are try to sell an item to. This is an article that will have a lot of feed back both good and bad. But it might just make those that willfully misrepresent their wares to stop and think is this truly a decent thing to do? You know who you are, so I'll leave it at that. Great article, hope to catch you on te air.


73 de Mark
AI4HO

 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N2WJW on August 24, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
My few ebay purchases have been good, items just as described yet I've had a couple of problems with purchases from hams off ham websites like this one, items not even close to description, damaged rigs due to poor packing and just outright getting ripped off...meaning I sent payment and seller just never sent the radio. From my years of trading and buying rigs from websites and ebay I have to say 95% of hams have been right on the money. As far as hamfests, I would say about the same, one or two out of ten so called "working" items never worked.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KD3JF on August 25, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Ray, I have never bought any ham gear from Ebay! Ray are you listening.... None from Ebay. I have bought alot of ham gear... Mostly transceivers used from individuals as well as at Hamfests and I have never been ripped off. The equipment has always worked as it should.

Of course I am a pastor and maybe the Lord has protected me!!

Paul KD3JF
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by HAMDUDE on August 25, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
i had bad luck with e-bay from the beginning, so just gave up, although out of the approximately 25 transactions before giving up, three went well, so i believe it has a purpose, just not for me anymore. hamfests and qth seem to be the prefered outcome for me. but the integrity of the hamfests is down also, althogh much preferred to e-bay, 99 % of my transactions on qth have been good, can't get around as much as the old days so this works for me. used to be very impulsive in my ham radio buying, the last 3-4 years if not on qth, will wait for hamfest or known seller on qth, always works out. the most notorious liars and thieves live in palm harbour and jacskonville in florida, just listen to 3945 at night and learn how to get deals for next to nothing and then screw other hams and then laugh about it on the air, or if you're lucky, get a free commander amp for taking advantage of an estate sale by telling the people "i don't know what that is", but miraculously recovering my memory when re-selling said item.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KA3QOT on August 26, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've made a few ham radio purchases over eBay, and everything was received as described.

I've done the same as a seller.

 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K4FX on August 26, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I too have used Ebay as a buyer and seller since 1998 and purchased a lot of ham gear, Rigs, HF Amps, all sorts of stuff, even a 100 dollar Ham M rotor that has been turning my A4S tri-bander faithfully since 2001, I watch out for the "no way to test it" and "worked last time it was used 20 years ago" auctions and deal with hams only on ham gear. Every item has been exactly as described with a few being in even better shape than descibed.

Ebay is a good source for ham gear if a little common sense is used with it.

I have gotten burned only once in all of my dealings and that was on a 35 amp Astron off of this site, and the seller didn't even knew it was bad, he is a well known ham and sells a lot of gear, he was selling this unit for a friend, I fixed it with heavier duty units and never even mentioned it to him.

K4FX
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N5VU on August 26, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've been using Ebay for about two years now and I have had very good luck both selling and buying. I'm an ampaholic so I always cruize the "amplifier" section to see what's out there. So far, every amp that I have purchased is exactly the way it was described. I always stay away from those poor folks who are "selling for a friend" or "selling for an estate." Watch out for the sure sign of "Don't buy this item." when the add says, "that they have no way of testing." Nothing against the seller if he/she isn't a Ham operator, they are simply just trying to peddle something on ebay and make a buck. A word of advice for these critters, "At least do some research on what the heck you are selling."

When I been to every page on the world wide web, I love to go to the ebay amplifier page and laugh it up. You can tell the CBers who are trying to sell their "Boots." Bless their hearts,...they just don't have a clue about amplifiers in general. Some great examples: "1200 watt mobile linear for sale." However they are holding it in the palm of their hand. It's really no bigger than their hand. Oh yes, "It's a 2 pill!" $55 OBO

1200 watt amplifier for sale. "You should use a second battery." If that's 1200 watt output, wow! the input is going to be nearly 2000 watt. 166 amps peak. Might want to think about a 4th battery.

I like the photo of a 4 pill amp that puts out 2000 watts. Darn good gain!

There are the many "10" meter amplifiers for sale. Mavrick, Palomar (Palamor is OK.) Big Texan, Bigger Texan, Bigger Tall Talkin Texan and the Huge Texan Tree Top Tall Wall to Wall Walkin in Tall Cotton Texan.

The only thing these type adds are going to do is collect people who don't know about amplifiers and then they end up being mad because they got ripped off. "But the ad said,..." After all, "The ad said!"

Research, research, research! Know what it is that you are buying. Learn about it's normal quirks and failures.

When I buy a SB-200, I expect it to work. However, I know that these old workhorses are getting on up in age and things need to be replaced. The filter capacitors almost always need to be replaced. Almost every carbon composition resistor is out of tolerence (especially in the meter multipler circuit for the HV). The tubes will probably be weak. Fix all of this, and wa-lah, you have Super amplifier!!! Then, you put it on Ebay with a list of what you have changed. Always include lots of pictures of the inside. Always take the case off and photograph the new replacements and modifications. This will help the buyer "know" that your are not an idiot and you actually want to sell a piece of equipment in good faith.

Cigarette smoke,...ugh. Get ready for a lot of cleaning. But if you know going in, then it's all on you bubba.

Always buy from someone who knows about what they are selling. These people are the ones who will gladly talk freely to you about the item. Know what you are buying. Research it. Get to know your seller. How many amplifier has he sold? If it his first one and he has no way to test it, go to the next add. You won't regret it.

When I buy, I always go to eham and research the reviews when I want to buy something different. I love to restore the SB-200s, play with them for a bit and then sell them.

Be careful, have fun, reasearch and happy bidding!

73, Marcel N5VU
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KI4VVI on August 27, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have made it a personal policy that when I buy anything used on E-bay or at a Hamfest or anywhere e there is no warranty granted to NEVER PUT ANY AMOUNT OF MONEY INTO THE PURCHASE THAT I WOULD NOT BE HURT IF THE MERCHANDISE IS BAD.

That way I won't try to beat myself(or someone else) up should the merchandise not work as expected.

I usually only buy from reputable dealers. Yes, I pay more, but in the long run I'm happier.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by G3LBS on August 28, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have had no problems buying and selling with hams on ebay or eham.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N3QD on August 29, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have been pretty lucky with eBay over the last eight or so years, but I approach eBay with the same caution as a hamfest. I am more likely to purchase from a regular guy than a "junk dealer". I figure that the average Joe with only a few sales under his belt is more likely to properly represent his product because he's just looking for a quick way to sell it and move on to something else. So I suggest this, don't discount eBay all together; just be cautious of the guys that have hundreds or thousands of sales because they may not know the actual condition of the equipment you are buying. I am not suggesting that people with a high sales volume are dishonest, I just feel the occasional seller is more likely to know if something is wrong with a product. Unless I'm looking for a project, I never buy a product that is "as is" or "untested". I'm also leery of the estate sales...there seems to be a lot of those going on at any given time. To me, that's just an easy out if something is wrong.

73,
Mike (N3QD)
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by AA8EE on August 29, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
What would keep a dishonest E-bayer from having a half-dozen of his on-line buddies bid his item up and up and up, in exchange for the same favor to them? Does E-bay try to control this? Keep in mind controlling this would cost E-bay money and reduce their commission...
How about one E-bayer with a number of e-bay identities endlessly bidding up his own items? Does E-bay try to control this?
I don't trust any chicken coup where the fox guards it!
When I buy from E-bay, I Never spend more than I am willing to throw away! Never anything major like a modern ham rig! And never an expensive boat anchor!
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by NL7W on August 30, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I have enjoyed my ham radio related dealings on eBay. All purchases were as described -- only a 1 or 2 varied slightly. I chalk this up to careful review considering the factual eBay presentation, and trusting my intuition. Some of the concrete or factual aspects of the listings I look for:

- Well defined and concise listings with "correct" English and spelling
- Clear pictures matching item condition, with defects described in text
- Listings with "hype" are avoided
- A cursory check of feedback is always accomplished

 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by K3DC on August 31, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I was at the Shelby Ham Fest yesterday and today. Found some good deals and too advantage of those. Found some stinkers and walked away.

One thing that gives me a red flag is seeing a table full of junk and then on the same table a $850 used HF rig. One such table had beanie babies, and other assorted crap. In the middle was an FT-4XX? Not sure the number now but it was priced at $850. If I spend $850 on anything I'm going to have to get a good feeling from who I'm buying it from. No telling where that rig has been and what shape it is in.

 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KC0YEF on August 31, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Ray are you kidding?
Taking my hat off in a restaurant HECK NO! someone stole my Resistol 20x so I do not take my hat off anymore... Amazingly enough no Hams were around except on the menu...

Second off Hams are not the people selling on eBay sometimes they are most times there are not! I call every ebayer on the phone before I buy a piece of gear or Car of Bike!..

At a Hamfest you are face to face so you get their phone number and license plate...know who your buying from...
I picked up my first TS-940S there with 8 extra filters...it is and was the best deal ever....I accidentally didn't sign the check and we actually completed the sale a week later...

Sounds like your not trusting enough or maybe your not a good judge of character.?? to be in the game for used equipment pay a fair price from someone you know or buy new! Stay away from hamfests and never buy from ebay is my advice because I would never let you take two hours to test my equipment not even a Store selling new would let you do that...

Figure the price you would pay add repairs and stick to it...That's how I buy and I usually get someone to check it out for me as well

73
James
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by VE2DC on September 1, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Generally yes... but stuff can go wrong. A couple of examples. I bought a IC-725 on eBay. After using it a couple of hours I had noticed it would drop CW characters. A bit of sleuthing and I found a bad LP filter relay. I ordered a replacement and sent an e-mail to the seller... figured he owed me $10 for the relay... not a big deal. What really upset me was the guy replied with a really nasty e-mail saying the radio was perfect and accusing me of fraud and then added my e-mail address to his blacklist so I couldn't communicate further. This upset me a LOT more than the $10. BTW, changing the relay fixed the problem and I'm pretty sure that ass really did think his radio was 100%, but he was wrong! 2 years later I resold the IC725 to a YL ham in Quebec. I got an e-mail complaining the radio didn't work at all. In 2 years I had never had a problem! She decided to have a techinacally inclined friend give it a once over before she returned it. Turned out the mic connector had become disconnected internally. The point is... stuff does go wrong despite best of intentions... what's needed is communication, not jumping to conclusions.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KB1PHZ on September 2, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I stopped using eBay years ago. I hit a few bidding frauds (which eBay, to their credit, promptly took care of) and it has become as much of a retail outlet as an auction. Add to that the difficulties of sniping, fee and shipping increases which have reduced the price advantage, and I just don't see any attraction in it anymore. Anything new you can generally find almost anywhere else at an equivalent or better price anyway, and from a known dealer.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by N1FLH on September 2, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
The ultimate rip off
How about a ham that rips off a silent key’s wife. Makes a deal with the guy and never comes threw for 10 months. Then the poor guy dies waiting and he denies ever getting the equipment, Send's the widow 3 pieces of junk gear and $200.00 after other hams confront him on it and selling the guys FT-100d worth $600.00 that low life’s call is KI4FSZ
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KC0YEF on September 3, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
MARTIN, That is really bad!
BIKER CALL Love it!

however, off topic but it is worthy of a separate thread. Anyone really interested in posting Callsigns of Hams who rip-off a Silent Keys Spouse? Let the Law suits fly...


>by N1FLH on September 2, 2008
>The ultimate rip off
>How about a ham that rips off a silent key’s wife. >Makes a deal with the guy and never comes threw for >10 months. Then the poor guy dies waiting and he >denies ever getting the equipment, Send's the widow 3 >pieces of junk gear and $200.00 after other hams >confront him on it and selling the guys FT-100d worth >$600.00 that low life’s call is KI4FSZ
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by WA2JJH on September 3, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
Mixed bag for me gents. Great deals and some rip offs.

As an OM a few posts back said..........Assume you will have to do some repair.

From E-barf, I have purchased 4 TR-7s, 2 TS-850's, 2 TS-950SDX's

Every rig was not up to spec, or had CB horror mods, or stopped working within a few hours to days.

How ever I made a bad situation into a good one. Repaired or sent my stuff to Cliff.(best kenwood repair engineer)

My shack consists of one primo TS-950SDX, TS-850, and a nice TR-7/R7 combo.
I also have made a nice profit selling off the working parts of the junker Kenwoods. I have a nice supply of replacement boards for all my rigs.

I have found the Mil spec rigs to always arrive working. On E-barf, I got 2 working HARRIS RF-3200's and one Racal TWT-100.

SHIPPING IS A BIG FACTOR. Nothing less than double boxed will do.
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KE1IN on September 5, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
I've had very good fortune buying ham equipment on eBay. In fact, one of my Favorites Sellers is radiomart. However, I'm a bit fastidious about the equipment coming into my shack. Everything described as **Mint** still needed a little cleaning. But that's my issue, not the seller's.

I did get disappointed with a hamfest purchase once. I bought an external VFO for a rig that when you turned the knob CW, the frequency went DOWN. I took the covers off to look inside, and saw the optical decoder mounted symmetrically over the encoding wheel. All I had to do was unscrew the two screws, turn the thing around, and screw it back down. Problem solved. (And I was quite proud of myself for my cleverness!)

Where I really got burned was buying a rig advertised in ARRL's classifieds, and the ham was only a two-hour drive away. I didn't bother to test it before I paid for it and took it home. When I got it home, I discovered the AUDIO IN pin on the mic connector was broken. When I replaced the mic connector, I then discovered the rig put out crappy audio. Out of alignment? Failed trim caps? Who knows? I was too embarrassed at my own gullibility in trusting him to go back and confront him. I traded the rig for a TNC I wanted, fully disclosing its known problems to the new owner. (The new owner is a work-mate of mine, so being dishonest with him would create some very acute problems at work.)

All in all, my better experiences have been with radiomart on eBay. In one transaction, the listing included the original manual. When the rig arrived, the manual was missing. It had merely been overlooked in the packing, and Martyn promptly mailed it to me.

Martyn's feedback ratings are high enough to qualify for $2000.00 of PayPal Buyer Protection. When there were enough negative feedbacks to qualify him for only $200.00, I read every one of them and concluded that many were simply unjustified. So I still did business with radiomart.

My suggestion for satisfactory eBay purchases--good communication with the seller, especially before bidding, but also after the sale if an issue arises.

73, David, KE1IN
 
Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by VE3WGO on September 6, 2008 Mail this to a friend!
As a frequent buyer at hamfests and on the web (eBay, etc), I assume that any used item I am buying is probably going to have a few problems. Unless a warranty is clearly stated, why would I be so silly as to assume that the seller is going to have checked or tested/aligned everything anyway?

When was the last time YOU checked every last function on a piece of test equipment or on your radio, and confirmed that it works perfectly? Probably a long, long, long time ago, if you ever did it at all. I am the same, and I think most sellers are too.

When somebody is selling something that they say "no way to test it" or "don't know how to test it" or "worked last time I tried it", I simply assume that it needs work or is just a parts unit, and offer or bid accordingly. And on eBay, I can see that there are a lot of intelligent bidders who behave exactly the same way as I do - that is, bid low unless there is a written guarantee.
 
RE: Hams and Trust in Hamfest/eBay Dealings?  
by KI6OVJ on September 23, 2009 Mail this to a friend!
I to have been burned by seller on eham. A HAM N7JFB works a HRO clames after the fact he did not know the Rig had a problem, besides he bought it new on and on.. I have learnd the hard way, you can not tust your fellow HAMs all I asked was for him to work with me and got the besides you took the risk, saved money, I am not responsible routien,
 
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