Post by Peter Wieck
I will not, repeat, NOT purchase any sorts of current electronic components
or parts from eBay. The potential for counterfeits is far too great.
When searching for obsolete or discontinued parts, needs must when the
devil drives. Unhappily.
I need the likes of Digikey, Mouser and Newark out there and their continued
existence is worth the few cents I might save otherwise.
Melrose Park, PA
How can there be counterfeits for packages of small parts? For example I
bought a pack of 300 resistors of assorted values. They are just generic
resistors. When I got them, I tested a dozen or so, and they were within
tolerance, so I was satisfied. If they were not within reason, I would
have complained and gotten a refund.
I also recently spent many hours on ebay, buying packs of 5 or more
common generic connectors. After spending around $40, buying from or 8
sellers, I now have a good selection of plugs, such as RCA male and
female, 1/4" guitar cord plugs, F connectors, and so on... I'd never get
anything accomplished if I had to place an order each time I need a
common plug, or a resistor. I plan to order a selection of caps soon
I buy NOS tubes from ebay. There is no other place to get them unless
you just stumble across someone who has that sort of thing.
I also get vintage equipment from ebay. Unless craigslist has something,
there again, where the heck else would I find that stuff.
About the only way I could see counterfeits for electronic parts would
be if someone sold cheap generic caps and re-labeled them as Sprague or
something like that. That hardly seems worth the effort for low cost
Other stuff from ebay such as jewelery, clothing, watches, and stuff
like that would be more likely to be counterfeits, like a cheap watch
that is labeled as a Rolex. But I dont buy stuff like that on ebay. My
ebay shopping is mostly just electronic parts, vintage electronics, some
tools, and car parts.
I did get screwed several times in the early days of ebay. For example,
I bought a computer that literally went up in smoke when I plugged it
in, and a power saw which was actually cracked in half, and a book that
apparently had gotten soaked. Back then it was hard to get a refund. The
guy with that computer told me to mail it back and I will get a refund.
But the shipping cost to send it back was 80% of the sale price. I ended
up just saving the drives, RAM, mouse and keyboard, and tossing the rest
of it in the trash.
These days, ebay really does protect buyers very well. Last year I
bought a used laptop computer with XP loaded on it. It did not work
properly at all. The seller gave me a refund, and I did not have to mail
it back. Afterwards, I wiped the hard drive, installed XP myself and it
has worked well ever since. The hardware was fine, it was just the OS
that was defective.
I also bought a starter for my tractor, when I got it, it was dead. The
seller sent me another one (which worked), and told me to toss that dead
one in the trash (I saved it in case I ever need parts from it).
I have been quite happy with 99% of the stuff I have gotten from Ebay in
the last 5 years. About the only thing I got lately that was not
satisfactory, was a $2 cable that goes from the 1/8" stereo plug on a
computer (audio) to two RCA jacks. It works, but for some reason, that
1/8" plug seems a little too thin, and dont make a good connection.
Rather than make a big deal out of it, I just chopped off that 1/8"
plug, and soldered on another one.
I'd probably order more stuff from places like Digikey, Mouser and
Newark, if there were not large minimum orders and shipping fees. Not to
mention that I have great difficulty accessing their websites on dialup
(Yea, I know thats my own problem, but if those sites were not
overloaded with java scripts and CSS files, I could proably use them).
If it was not for ebay, I'd not be able to work with electronics at all.
The only electronics store nearby is Radio Shack, (25 miles away), and
they are peobably going out of buisiness real soon.