Buying Tek equipment on eBay or on Swap meets


 

I have been buying "stuff" at ham swap meets for more than 40 years. I have
been doing the same on eBay for 21 years.
They each have pro's and con's. eBay was already a significant sales site
for test equipment 21 years ago when I started buying Tek stuff on it. I was
sure eBay would drive the ham swap meets out of existence in a few years.

Several of our members have commented that this has happened. Fortunately
that is not my experience. I am pleasantly surprised to see that ham swap
meets have remained viable and that as far as I can tell there are as many
as there always were. Here in the Pacific Northwest US, not far from
Tektronix there are 4 major ham fests each year: Rickreall OR (February),
Puyallup WA (March), Seaside OR (June), and Rickreall OR (October).

All four have remained about the same size as near as I can tell over the 20
years that eBay has been competition for them. This comes as a happy
surprise to me each year. Maybe this has something to do with the proximity
to Tek.

Dennis Tillman W7pF


Paul Amaranth
 

Hi Dennis,

This must vary by geography. I've been going to swaps for 30 years and
probably about the same (20 ish years) on ebay.

There used to be a number of really large swaps in the Detroit metro area
(bought my first Tek scope, a 453 for $300 thirty years ago at the swap
at the Dearborn library).

These have pretty much fizzled out over the years. The number and
size have drastically decreased. There are a couple smaller ones that
are still active, but the volume is way down. The largest in this area
is the Dayton hamfest. The last time I went to that was after they
moved out of Hara (fortunately I missed the year of the great sewage
fountain event) and it was pretty disappointing as well. Part of that
may be the kind of cheap surplus items I am interested in may be
getting hard to find. Well, we'll see next year when they open it up
again. I'm a TE junkie as well and not interested in radio, so that
also limits things.

Shipping charges are getting bad on ebay; I really hate paying more
for shipping than the item I want. I try to console myself with
the notion that I would have paid that in gas to get whatever it
was. It does cut down my activity though.

Paul

On Tue, May 04, 2021 at 08:38:06AM -0700, Dennis Tillman W7pF wrote:
I have been buying "stuff" at ham swap meets for more than 40 years. I have
been doing the same on eBay for 21 years.
They each have pro's and con's. eBay was already a significant sales site
for test equipment 21 years ago when I started buying Tek stuff on it. I was
sure eBay would drive the ham swap meets out of existence in a few years.

Several of our members have commented that this has happened. Fortunately
that is not my experience. I am pleasantly surprised to see that ham swap
meets have remained viable and that as far as I can tell there are as many
as there always were. Here in the Pacific Northwest US, not far from
Tektronix there are 4 major ham fests each year: Rickreall OR (February),
Puyallup WA (March), Seaside OR (June), and Rickreall OR (October).

All four have remained about the same size as near as I can tell over the 20
years that eBay has been competition for them. This comes as a happy
surprise to me each year. Maybe this has something to do with the proximity
to Tek.

Dennis Tillman W7pF






!DSPAM:60916a6d220353562810273!
--
Paul Amaranth, GCIH | Manchester MI, USA
Aurora Group of Michigan, LLC | Security, Systems & Software
paul@AuroraGrp.Com | Unix/Linux - We don't do windows


 

On Tue, May 4, 2021 at 05:57 PM, Paul Amaranth wrote:
Shipping charges are getting bad on ebay; I really hate paying more
for shipping than the item I want. I try to console myself with
the notion that I would have paid that in gas to get whatever it
was. It does cut down my activity though.
Hi Paul,
your are very right: shipping, even if perceived expensive, is still a lot cheaper than driving cross country, wasting time etc... Many people do not realize that.
I've never conceded to Ebay's pressure to keep shipping (postage plus everything else) low. Unfortunately many people complain, and sometimes they do 100s of km to save 30 Euros shipping. They do not want to understand.
There are exceptions, however. Once I sold a Wandel&Goltermann SA. Heavy item, actually two pieces, so I had to pack two large boxes. Made it 80 Euros total, took a lot of time getting the boxes and everything. To my surprise the buyer qualfied the shipping costs as appropriate and those that complain as "brain dead".
cheers
Martin


Greg Muir
 

Dennis,

I think one of the major aspects of comparison between eBay and swap meets is the prices of items. I, too was enamored by eBay in the early years given the prices people were asking for things. This convinced me to buy more off of eBay than take the time to stop by swap meets and was the time when I made a majority of purchases off of eB.

But over the years eBay sellers have gotten rather greedy asking prices for items that are absurd. I think this has reinforced the need to continue with swap meets where people know what they are selling and are aware of what kind of price it could bring. Besides, if you didn’t like the price there is the opportunity to talk face-to-face with the seller to see if you could bring the price down. And to add to this you had the ability to actually inspect the item before buying.

These days I marvel at times about items I have bought off of eBay for less than $100 that are selling now for prices up into the thousands and in far worse condition that what I possess (I won’t get into the audiophile arena here lest I draw lightning). And more “marveling” occurs when people actually buy them at today’s prices.

If I decide to liquidate some day it might be a problem since I live in an area of the country where nearly all people around here don’t know who Tektronix is let alone understand test equipment.

Greg


Dave Seiter
 

Most ebay shippers (myself included) try to minimize shipping costs as much as possible (of course, there are exceptions like dealers), but costs keep going up. Amazon has trained people to think that shipping is free.  I stopped selling (ok, shipping) scopes on ebay because the shipping was more than the cost of the scope itself, sometimes much more.
One of the last ones I shipped was a 7844 to Germany over ten years ago.  It sold for $277 with four plugins, but the shipping was about $375.  The customer used his corporate DHL account to get a good price, and it was (I checked).  I was worried about the trip, but it survived intact.  The only issue was that one of the harmonica connectors had vibrated off.
-Dave

On Tuesday, May 4, 2021, 09:20:28 AM PDT, Martin <musaeum@arcor.de> wrote:

On Tue, May  4, 2021 at 05:57 PM, Paul Amaranth wrote:
Shipping charges are getting bad on ebay; I really hate paying more
for shipping than the item I want.  I try to console myself with
the notion that I would have paid that in gas to get whatever it
was.  It does cut down my activity though.
Hi Paul,
your are very right: shipping, even if perceived expensive, is still a lot cheaper than driving cross country, wasting time etc... Many people do not realize that.
I've never conceded to Ebay's pressure to keep shipping (postage plus everything else) low. Unfortunately many people complain, and sometimes they do 100s of km to save 30 Euros shipping. They do not want to understand.
There are exceptions, however. Once I sold a Wandel&Goltermann SA. Heavy item, actually two pieces, so I had to pack two large boxes. Made it 80 Euros total, took a lot of time getting the boxes and everything. To my surprise the buyer qualfied the shipping costs as appropriate and those that complain as "brain dead".
cheers
Martin


Daniel Koller
 

Hey all, Possible THIRD option:   E-cyclers.  The last time I went to a Hamfest (due to Covid and also having other things to do, that was at least 3 years ago, to the Manassas Hamfest in the summer) there was a Tek 545B being sold along with a lot of other stuff by an electronic waste recycling company that had come to the swap meet.  I think in this case it was Potomac e-cycling.   
It seems to me that is a wise decision on their part because unless there is a lot of gold in the unit, they'll get more selling it for a few tens of $$ at a swap meet than they will gain in recycling the metals, AND if they are being true to their goals, they keep more waste out of the waste stream (for a time at least, till the new owner dies and his family has to e-cycle the thing, sorry to be blunt about it).
 So, I might do some on-line searching and calling around and see if some of the nearby dealiers have "junk showrooms" where they store their stuff with plans on selling them at swap meets.
  Dan

On Tuesday, May 4, 2021, 11:38:19 AM EDT, Dennis Tillman W7pF <dennis@ridesoft.com> wrote:

I have been buying "stuff" at ham swap meets for more than 40 years. I have
been doing the same on eBay for 21 years.
They each have pro's and con's. eBay was already a significant sales site
for test equipment 21 years ago when I started buying Tek stuff on it. I was
sure eBay would drive the ham swap meets out of existence in a few years.

Several of our members have commented that this has happened. Fortunately
that is not my experience. I am pleasantly surprised to see that ham swap
meets have remained viable and that as far as I can tell there are as many
as there always were. Here in the Pacific Northwest US, not far from
Tektronix there are 4 major ham fests each year: Rickreall OR (February),
Puyallup WA (March), Seaside OR (June), and Rickreall OR (October).

All four have remained about the same size as near as I can tell over the 20
years that eBay has been competition for them. This comes as a happy
surprise to me each year. Maybe this has something to do with the proximity
to Tek.

Dennis Tillman W7pF


Michael W. Lynch
 

On Tue, May 4, 2021 at 10:38 AM, Dennis Tillman W7pF wrote:


I have been buying "stuff" at ham swap meets for more than 40 years. I have
been doing the same on eBay for 21 years.
They each have pro's and con's. eBay was already a significant sales site
for test equipment 21 years ago when I started buying Tek stuff on it. I was
sure eBay would drive the ham swap meets out of existence in a few years.

Several of our members have commented that this has happened. Fortunately
that is not my experience. I am pleasantly surprised to see that ham swap
meets have remained viable and that as far as I can tell there are as many
as there always were. Here in the Pacific Northwest US, not far from
Tektronix there are 4 major ham fests each year: Rickreall OR (February),
Puyallup WA (March), Seaside OR (June), and Rickreall OR (October).

All four have remained about the same size as near as I can tell over the 20
years that eBay has been competition for them. This comes as a happy
surprise to me each year. Maybe this has something to do with the proximity
to Tek.
Dennis,

"Swap Meets". . . . It would be nice if we had anything besides crappy flea markets selling everyone's household scraps and used clothing stores. Those of you who are so fortunate to live in these areas that have large populations and have several such swap meets are truly blessed. Those of us in the hinterlands have about three choices, E-Bay, Craigs List and Facebook Marketplace. I am reduced to scouring these three and hoping for a miracle. I drove to Dallas and bought a 485, 465, 2213 (scopes all "worked", sort of) and two Scopemobiles for $150. Those kinds of finds are the exception rather than the rule for me, even factoring in that I drove 600 miles to get them. Taking that into consideration, $60 to ship a scope to my home is looking like a screaming deal. E-bay Prices have just gone out of sight, with people charging crazy prices for instruments, just because they have "TEKTRONIX", "HP", R&S or "LECROY" on the front panel. Many times it is obvious that the seller has no idea of a value, they just see another similar looking box with knobs and a CRT and slap a huge price tag on it.

--
Michael Lynch
Dardanelle, AR


 

My friend, Rens Tel, who lives in The Netherlands, found a clever way around the international shipping costs for a 7934 Storage Scope he bought on eBay from a seller in the US. The 7934 is the 500MHz version of the 400MHz 7834, and it is not very common at all so he was lucky to find one here in the US.

He had it shipped to me to save on the shipping, then about a year later he and his wife, Ludy, came to Seattle for an extended vacation, stayed with us at the beginning, travelled around the Northwest US for several weeks, came back to us at the end of their trip and ... this is the clever part ... we packed up the scope very securely and Rens checked it in as part of his luggage on their return trip to The Netherlands. By international agreement all international passengers are allowed to check in 50lbs (22.6kg) of luggage.

Dennis Tillman W7pF

-----Original Message-----
From: TekScopes@groups.io [mailto:TekScopes@groups.io] On Behalf Of Dave Seiter
Sent: Tuesday, May 04, 2021 10:03 AM
To: TekScopes@groups.io
Subject: Re: [TekScopes] Buying Tek equipment on eBay or on Swap meets

Most ebay shippers (myself included) try to minimize shipping costs as much as possible (of course, there are exceptions like dealers), but costs keep going up. Amazon has trained people to think that shipping is free. I stopped selling (ok, shipping) scopes on ebay because the shipping was more than the cost of the scope itself, sometimes much more.
One of the last ones I shipped was a 7844 to Germany over ten years ago. It sold for $277 with four plugins, but the shipping was about $375. The customer used his corporate DHL account to get a good price, and it was (I checked). I was worried about the trip, but it survived intact. The only issue was that one of the harmonica connectors had vibrated off.
-Dave
On Tuesday, May 4, 2021, 09:20:28 AM PDT, Martin <musaeum@arcor.de> wrote:

On Tue, May 4, 2021 at 05:57 PM, Paul Amaranth wrote:
Shipping charges are getting bad on ebay; I really hate paying more
for shipping than the item I want. I try to console myself with the
notion that I would have paid that in gas to get whatever it was. It
does cut down my activity though.
Hi Paul,
your are very right: shipping, even if perceived expensive, is still a lot cheaper than driving cross country, wasting time etc... Many people do not realize that.
I've never conceded to Ebay's pressure to keep shipping (postage plus everything else) low. Unfortunately many people complain, and sometimes they do 100s of km to save 30 Euros shipping. They do not want to understand.
There are exceptions, however. Once I sold a Wandel&Goltermann SA. Heavy item, actually two pieces, so I had to pack two large boxes. Made it 80 Euros total, took a lot of time getting the boxes and everything. To my surprise the buyer qualfied the shipping costs as appropriate and those that complain as "brain dead".
cheers
Martin












--
Dennis Tillman W7pF
TekScopes Moderator


Jim Strohm
 

Ahh, surplus tourism!

That sounds a lot like how I got my Johnson Invader 2000 back in the last century. A friend invited me to the SF Bay Area for a summer vacation at about the same time my ex-girlfriend invited me to Vegas on her high-roller gambler dad’s nickel.

A few days before my flight back to Texas, I found the Invader 2000 in a radio shop for something like $400. With another $100 for excess baggage charges, it went home with me and my ex-girlfriend actually helped load it in the trunk of her car.

It wasn’t true love — more like quid pro quo. Don’t ask. Just wait for my memoirs.

73
Jim N6OTQ

Sent from my quenched-gap spark transmitter.


-
 

LOL! I went to a Hewlett Packard conference in Portland, Oregon in about
the year 2000. While I was there a local friend that I knew from the
internet, but had never met in person, showed me around the area and to
some good surplus outlets that no one else was aware of. Big dirty
buildings but crammed FULL of old electronics. One place had just heaps of
HP manuals and I bought hundreds of ones that I had never seen before. I
packed them in a huge box and it was HEAVY and I knew that I was going to
get severely beat up with excess weight baggage charges on my flight home
later the same day. But when I got to the airport in my taxi and got the
box out at the curb, the porter tried to pick it up, *and failed*! He
basically just said "No way, man". So there I was stuck at the airport with
a huge box full of manuals that they wouldn't ship and with my flight
leaving in about 40 minutes. In depression, I started non-stop calling my
friend that lived in town and leaving messages on his answering machine. He
finally came ZOOMING into the airport and up to the curb about 3 minutes
before the Final Boarding Call for my flight! I basically just threw the
box in his car before he could even get out and said "I'll call you later"
and then ran to catch my flight. He eventually repacked the manuals into
smaller boxes and then sent them to me. I've since provided over 800 rare
manuals to the Computer History Museum and a couple of other archive sites.
I still have the HP-120(IIRC) CPM computer that I also found on that trip
and very wisely shipped home. We demo'd it at the HP conference the very
next day after I found it and it worked flawlessly and everyone there was
amazed at how fast it was with only a Z-80 CPU and 64k of memory.

On Tue, May 4, 2021 at 4:11 PM Jim Strohm <jim.strohm@gmail.com> wrote:

Ahh, surplus tourism!

That sounds a lot like how I got my Johnson Invader 2000 back in the last
century. A friend invited me to the SF Bay Area for a summer vacation at
about the same time my ex-girlfriend invited me to Vegas on her high-roller
gambler dad’s nickel.

A few days before my flight back to Texas, I found the Invader 2000 in a
radio shop for something like $400. With another $100 for excess baggage
charges, it went home with me and my ex-girlfriend actually helped load it
in the trunk of her car.

It wasn’t true love — more like quid pro quo. Don’t ask. Just wait for my
memoirs.

73
Jim N6OTQ

Sent from my quenched-gap spark transmitter.






Lawrance A. Schneider
 

I live in the willy-wags of Maine. About the only way go getting anything is ebay or CraigsList. If someone else lives in Maine, I'd like to know how they (you) get anything without resorting to the above.

Thanks, larry


Oz-in-DFW
 

It's pretty clear that eBay has had a significant impact. The volume of stuff sold there is so great, it can't *not* have had an impact. Dayton nee' Xenia is a good example. Before eBay it had several folks selling recent vintage HP and Tek. With the advent of eBay that dwindled to nothing over less than five year. I still see stuff at the local fests, but the nature of the content is now largely floor sweepings.

There are certainly other significant effects - the aging of the ham radio hobby, liability and venue cost, etc. but eBay is a major factor.

--
Oz (in DFW) N1OZ


-
 

I'm on the opposite side of the country but don't you have some sea ports
there and a navy base? (Also large airports and/or universities) If so then
I can guarantee that there are a lot of civilian companies near them that
support them and that have very sophisticated TE and that also frequently
discard their old equipment for newer models. Seek out those companies,
see if they have surplus disposal auctions and also see if they just send a
lot of the TE and other electronics to electronic disposal companies for
recycling. Seek out those disposal companies see if they will sell any of
the "scrap" to you. It's not like shopping at Sears where you can go in
and pick the exact model that you want, it's more like digging for car
parts in an automotive junk yard, but can guarantee that you will find and
then *want* things that you never imagined! You have to persistent and
probably have to visit them over and over and over so be friendly to them
and *respect* their property and equipment and don't leave a mess behind or
they won't let you return. They never know what is coming in in advance so
you need to visit them over and over again, so I said, stay on GOOD terms
with them.

IMO shopping on Ebay is for people that are too LAZY to go out and look
for the items that they want. It's more convenient and you won't have to
get your hands dirty but it is expensive. OTOH when you start getting into
really specialized TE such as HP 3458 meters, then you're probably not
going to find one locally and you may have to resort to E-Greed. But hang
onto your wallet if you do!

Also have you tried placing WANT ads on Craigslist, Facebbook
Marketplace or in the newspapers not only in your town but everywhere
within driving distance? Years ago, even before E-bay, a friend of mine
installed an incoming 1-8oo number on his phone line. Then, even though he
lived several states away, he placed I-want-to-buy-HP want ads in all of
the newspapers surrounding several of HPs biggest US manufacturing plants.
He had hundreds and hundreds of calls from people who had worked at HP, or
one of their family members had, and they all had HP items that wanted to
sell. He had an account with UPS at the time so he would buy their items
and have them drop them at UPS and UPS would send them to him. The key to
his operation was to make it as simple and as easy and as cheap as possible
for the sellers to sell and send their stuff to him. No E-bay, no PayPal,
no (then very expensive) long distance phone calls. Just call his 800
number, tell him what you had and if you made a deal, then drop the item at
UPS and he would send you a check or money order. If you're willing to
drive and pick up the item in person, then I think that this approach would
be extremely effective for buying from people that have old big heavy TE
that they don't want to test or have to box up and ship. IMO you would be
MUCH better off picking scopes up in person since you could be sure that
they didn't get damaged in shipping and avoid the expensive packing and
shipping fees. Buf it that is impossible, then you could have the seller
drop the bare item off at UPS or FedEx and, for a fee, they will pack it
and ship it to you. Beware the fee though! The last time that I did that,
UPS charged me $100 just to box up a HP 9826 computer and that was at least
20 years ago! If you're going to have equipment sent to you, you might
also consider getting some very well built boxes and sturdy foam that the
TE will fit into and then ship the box and the packaging to the seller so
that they can pack the TE into it and then return it to you.

On Wed, May 5, 2021 at 8:54 AM Lawrance A. Schneider <
llaassllaaass@gmail.com> wrote:

I live in the willy-wags of Maine. About the only way go getting anything
is ebay or CraigsList. If someone else lives in Maine, I'd like to know
how they (you) get anything without resorting to the above.

Thanks, larry






Michael W. Lynch
 

On Wed, May 5, 2021 at 09:35 AM, - wrote:


you could have the seller
drop the bare item off at UPS or FedEx and, for a fee, they will pack it
and ship it to you. Beware the fee though! The last time that I did that,
UPS charged me $100 just to box up a HP 9826 computer and that was at least
20 years ago! If you're going to have equipment sent to you, you might
also consider getting some very well built boxes and sturdy foam that the
TE will fit into and then ship the box and the packaging to the seller so
that they can pack the TE into it and then return it to you.
Good suggestions for finding equipment.

On the other hand, Having Fed Ex or UPS "pack" any CRT scope is a real risk of total destruction. Many such stores are clueless about how to pack a heavy and fragile scope. If they do it right, it is going to cost a fortune. I recently had a 475 shipped to me for repair. It was packed by those "experts". The scope had two layers of bubble wrap and a few scoops of packing peanuts, that is it. The owner said that they charged him $40 to "pack" the scope. The scope was actually sliding around in the box as you moved it. The only thing that saved the knobs was the fact that they left the handle up so the handle stopped the knobs from hitting the end of the box. Miracle was that the scope was not otherwise damaged.

I would agree that you would be better off sending a proper box, packing materials and instructions for the seller to use to ship the instrument.

--
Michael Lynch
Dardanelle, AR


-
 

I don't know about FedEx or UPS but the local electronics companies near
me all use the foam in place machines and they are very effective at
preventing damage to electronic equipment. I'm surprised that UPS and Fedex
don't use those. That would be something that the shipper really needs to
check on before paying FedEx, UPS or anyone else to package an item. OTOH
not even foam in place is going to prevent damage if UPS drives a forklift
fork through the box, or prevent breaking the neck of a CRT if a careless
handler drops the package from several feet in the air.

My strong opinion is that if you want to buy these big heavy old scopes,
then you need to be willing to drive and pick them up in person, regardless
of the distance.

On Wed, May 5, 2021 at 11:16 AM Michael W. Lynch via groups.io <mlynch003=
yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:

On Wed, May 5, 2021 at 09:35 AM, - wrote:


you could have the seller
drop the bare item off at UPS or FedEx and, for a fee, they will pack it
and ship it to you. Beware the fee though! The last time that I did that,
UPS charged me $100 just to box up a HP 9826 computer and that was at
least
20 years ago! If you're going to have equipment sent to you, you might
also consider getting some very well built boxes and sturdy foam that the
TE will fit into and then ship the box and the packaging to the seller so
that they can pack the TE into it and then return it to you.
Good suggestions for finding equipment.

On the other hand, Having Fed Ex or UPS "pack" any CRT scope is a real
risk of total destruction. Many such stores are clueless about how to pack
a heavy and fragile scope. If they do it right, it is going to cost a
fortune. I recently had a 475 shipped to me for repair. It was packed by
those "experts". The scope had two layers of bubble wrap and a few scoops
of packing peanuts, that is it. The owner said that they charged him $40
to "pack" the scope. The scope was actually sliding around in the box as
you moved it. The only thing that saved the knobs was the fact that they
left the handle up so the handle stopped the knobs from hitting the end of
the box. Miracle was that the scope was not otherwise damaged.

I would agree that you would be better off sending a proper box, packing
materials and instructions for the seller to use to ship the instrument.


--
Michael Lynch
Dardanelle, AR






stevenhorii
 

The problem I’ve seen with even very good packing is internal movement. All
the parts inside something being moved are going to have kinetic energy.
While you might keep the outer case of an instrument in good condition
because of the packing material, the bits inside will still experience
forces from bumps and they generally do not have the shock-absorbing
packing of the entire instrument. I have had shipments (fortunately not any
of the Tek scopes I had shipped) where the item arrived in great external
condition, but a heavy internal part (think transformers, though they are
usually pretty well anchored) came loose from it’s glued-on attachment and
crashed into a control shaft, bending it. Fortunately fixable.

When I pack stuff myself that has internal movable or heavy parts, if
feasible, I tape them down or use some readily-removable packing (not
styrofoam peanuts, please!) to keep them from moving. Or I put padding
around the parts so if something should come loose, the padding will limit
damage. This may sound crazy, but one thing I’ve done when sending stuff
home is to use some of my laundry (think t-shirts or sweatshirts) as
interior padding. That way, it provides protection for the internals of the
item and I get my laundry home (though with the shipping delay) without
packing it in my luggage! I’m going to launder that clothing anyway, so it
does not matter if it picks up some dust and dirt from an instrument
interior.

The foam-in-place stuff is expensive for small-volume shipping. However,
there are pre-packaged systems that have the material in bags. These are
designed for small-volume shippers. Here is an example:

https://www.uline.com/BL_7708/Instapak-Quick-Room-Temperature?pricode=WS372&AdKeyword=instapack%20quick%20rt&AdMatchtype=e&gclid=CjwKCAjwhMmEBhBwEiwAXwFoEZmeTB4FOcECgtp5wfmO6PzzHS7EXmuEpnrvycoMeFuNOETbulhqnhoC0GEQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

I have no conflict of interest with Uline or Instapak. I have received
shipments that used these and the items arrived in excellent shape. I do
have some concerns about disposing of this stuff, though.

Another mistake I’ve experienced is using styrofoam peanuts. Shippers will
assume they stay in place but they act like a fluid. You can try this
yourself if you want to experiment. Fill a box with styrofoam peanuts, put
a heavy object (please - something that can take it or that you don’t need
- like a rock) on top. Close the box and shake it. You will likely find the
object at, or near, the bottom. If you pack the peanuts tightly enough or
combine them with barriers to restrict movement, then this won’t happen. If
I do use peanuts, I try to use the biodegradable ones made from starch. To
limit movement, I put them in bags and pack those around the item - it
prevents item movement and makes unpacking much easier. Plus, the packing
peanuts can easily be collected for re-use or put in your mulch (I’d be
cautious about that - edible stuff in mulch may attract rodents).

I admit, all of these packing methods are indicators of my tendency towards
being obsessive-compulsive. And no, I won’t use a formal shirt or cashmere
sweater (if I had one) as packing material! I have used disposable baby
diapers (no, not used ones!) for packing when I was away from home and did
not have rolls of bubble wrap or sheets of kraft paper to use - it’s a long
story, but they worked just fine.

Steve H.

On Wed, May 5, 2021 at 11:37 - <rrrr6789@gmail.com> wrote:

I don't know about FedEx or UPS but the local electronics companies near
me all use the foam in place machines and they are very effective at
preventing damage to electronic equipment. I'm surprised that UPS and Fedex
don't use those. That would be something that the shipper really needs to
check on before paying FedEx, UPS or anyone else to package an item. OTOH
not even foam in place is going to prevent damage if UPS drives a forklift
fork through the box, or prevent breaking the neck of a CRT if a careless
handler drops the package from several feet in the air.

My strong opinion is that if you want to buy these big heavy old scopes,
then you need to be willing to drive and pick them up in person, regardless
of the distance.

On Wed, May 5, 2021 at 11:16 AM Michael W. Lynch via groups.io <mlynch003=
yahoo.com@groups.io> wrote:

On Wed, May 5, 2021 at 09:35 AM, - wrote:


you could have the seller
drop the bare item off at UPS or FedEx and, for a fee, they will pack
it
and ship it to you. Beware the fee though! The last time that I did
that,
UPS charged me $100 just to box up a HP 9826 computer and that was at
least
20 years ago! If you're going to have equipment sent to you, you might
also consider getting some very well built boxes and sturdy foam that
the
TE will fit into and then ship the box and the packaging to the seller
so
that they can pack the TE into it and then return it to you.
Good suggestions for finding equipment.

On the other hand, Having Fed Ex or UPS "pack" any CRT scope is a real
risk of total destruction. Many such stores are clueless about how to
pack
a heavy and fragile scope. If they do it right, it is going to cost a
fortune. I recently had a 475 shipped to me for repair. It was packed
by
those "experts". The scope had two layers of bubble wrap and a few
scoops
of packing peanuts, that is it. The owner said that they charged him $40
to "pack" the scope. The scope was actually sliding around in the box as
you moved it. The only thing that saved the knobs was the fact that they
left the handle up so the handle stopped the knobs from hitting the end
of
the box. Miracle was that the scope was not otherwise damaged.

I would agree that you would be better off sending a proper box, packing
materials and instructions for the seller to use to ship the instrument.


--
Michael Lynch
Dardanelle, AR










 

someone wrote:

I don't know about FedEx or UPS but the local electronics companies near
me all use the foam in place machines and they are very effective at
preventing damage to electronic equipment. I'm surprised that UPS and Fedex
don't use those.
Back in the late-90s the local UPS facility (actually UPS, not a franchised storefront) had one of the foam-in-place machines for public use (the paying public; I'm sure you had to be preparing a package for UPS shipment to use the machine, or maybe you paid per use, I don't recall the details now). I helped a friend ship a Northgate CP/M computer and we packed with the expanding foam. It was easy to use and very effective, but I can imagine that a clumsy customer could have made a terrible mess if they were not careful with the dispenser.

-- Jeff Dutky


John Ferguson
 

Way OT, but.... runaway foaming

A new man made a delivery of catalyzer to a refrigerated trailer builder we worked with.  They were insulated with poly-urethane probably same thing UPS was using.

The trailers were foamed by erecting a mandrel inside the trailer and a shell on the outside so that the liner and the outside would stay parallel under foaming. They did this in a building designed for this purpose.

Our hero drove up to the hydrant and found that the connector on the hose he had didn't fit the hydrant, so he came up with an adaptor and then proceeded to fill the resin tank with catalyzer. The resulting pressure of the newly catalyzed resin was enough to burst a diaphragm in the system such that the building was filled with foam, as in FILLED.  It was a lightly constructed building in East Texas and although I never saw the result, the building took on the appearance of a sausage.

Our firm was hired to fix it.  Chain Saws worked the best although they did cause some damage to the equipment.

john

On 5/5/21 2:41 PM, Jeff Dutky wrote:
someone wrote:
I don't know about FedEx or UPS but the local electronics companies near
me all use the foam in place machines and they are very effective at
preventing damage to electronic equipment. I'm surprised that UPS and Fedex
don't use those.
Back in the late-90s the local UPS facility (actually UPS, not a franchised storefront) had one of the foam-in-place machines for public use (the paying public; I'm sure you had to be preparing a package for UPS shipment to use the machine, or maybe you paid per use, I don't recall the details now). I helped a friend ship a Northgate CP/M computer and we packed with the expanding foam. It was easy to use and very effective, but I can imagine that a clumsy customer could have made a terrible mess if they were not careful with the dispenser.

-- Jeff Dutky




Dave Seiter
 

I don't like using peanuts for anything heavy just for this reason.  I bought a bag (cubic yard, I believe) of peanuts about 2008 and I'm still using it (of course, I keep adding to it from incoming boxes).  When I have resorted to them, I pre-shake and over stuff, so that the box bulges a bit.  No losses so far.  
What I really like to use is polyethylene planking.  Not only does it provide cushioning, it can give structural support to less than ideal boxes. I used to get piles of it from work, but now it's hard to come across.
-Dave
-----------------------
Another mistake I’ve experienced is using styrofoam peanuts. Shippers will
assume they stay in place but they act like a fluid. You can try this
yourself if you want to experiment. Fill a box with styrofoam peanuts, put
a heavy object (please - something that can take it or that you don’t need
- like a rock) on top. Close the box and shake it. You will likely find the
object at, or near, the bottom. If you pack the peanuts tightly enough or
combine them with barriers to restrict movement, then this won’t happen. If
I do use peanuts, I try to use the biodegradable ones made from starch. To
limit movement, I put them in bags and pack those around the item - it
prevents item movement and makes unpacking much easier. Plus, the packing
peanuts can easily be collected for re-use or put in your mulch (I’d be
cautious about that - edible stuff in mulch may attract rodents).


Lawrance A. Schneider
 

On Wed, May 5, 2021 at 10:35 AM, - wrote:


You have to persistent and
probably have to visit them over and over and over
Hi,

I'm a 75 year old ECE student at the university. When they 'get rid' of something I'm there looking and maybe accepting. I've gotten things from the Physics Department (my digs years ago) and from ECE.

As to 'visiting over and over', the Ship Yard is three hours away and the Naval base is 5 hours away; Maine roads are not the best. I do use Craigs List and our local Uncle Henry's.

Maine is not a hot bed of electronics. I moved from Chicagoland to Maine because I like 'the willy-wags'; I also like Quantum Mechanics and Neotherian Rings but that is another story. I gave up a very promising carrier in physics to live here - I made a very conscious and deliberate decision to stay here. When I awake in the morning, I remind myself "I don't have to 'go home' after vacation; I LIVE HERE". I was an instructor at the Uni for years (Physics and Mathematics) and then was offered a job in the Postal Service at more then 3 times the pay! Having a family, I accepted the job; going from grant to grant is not fun. I ended up being an Electronic Technician for the PO. When I retired, I went back to the Uni as a student.

I've built my own home twice out of trees (lumber) I dragged out of my woods with my draft horse. I've repaired farm machinery and sold it for better equipment. I've repaired computers for friends and at work. In all, I've had a lot of fun (excluding the PO which was a JOB) maintaining, designing and building lots of stuff. I'm 75 and a 100% disabled vet; I've have had over 40 surgeries including 4 knee replacements and 2 shoulder replacements; I definitely appreciate Dennis's wife travails. I'm worn out physically; I have an electric chainsaw and we both run out of power at about the same time. Thus, I now play with my computers and do electronics.

I'm not hurting for 'equipment', especially at the Uni, but I am envious of what I hear many of you make note of.

Thanks, larry