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Stretching the definition of "lightly used" until transparency is achieved . . .

Discussion in 'Regulators' started by Bigbella, Feb 22, 2019.

  1. Bigbella

    Bigbella ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: San Francisco
    I was recently doing some work for a friend who, lamentably, went eBay foraging, for "a deal'" much as I tried to discourage him. The listing was from a seller, supposedly located in the Midwest -- by Midwest, I hope that I made it clear, that I was referring to Oslo, Norway, which turned out to be the physical location of the items, which came as quite a surprise to him. "Oh, I didn't tell you?" was the seller's response.

    Apparently, eBay now allows for a 7000 kilometer margin of error, in terms of a seller's location . . .

    My friend dropped by a box, barely held together with strapping tape. Inside, was a Poseidon Atmosphere mask from circa 2010; an older XStream first stage; an XStream octopus; a Cirrus double gauge; and a few low pressure hoses. He asked me about my first impressions; and I told him that the hoses seemed quite nice.

    The mask and second stage free-flowed uncontrollably, when the regulator was pressurized, as everyone in the room anticipated; but there were more significant things to consider. The IP, for example, exceeded 12 bar -- higher than even the specs for the Cyklon; and was creeping upwards.

    The following photos illustrate what I have typically seen, in terms of most used equipment -- and the pitfalls often associated with it. It is rarely ever a deal . . .

    The first photos depict what appears to be vermin damage to the Atmosphere inner mask. It appears chewed. Other photos include corrosion to the seized valve assembly of the Jetstream PP; corrosion to the pressure plate (actually pitted; I have never seen that); the corroded adjustment screw; the OPV, which required a full twenty minutes of ultrasonic cleaning at 50˚C to even remove the valve piston from a solid plug of salt; and spectacular corrosion to the combined upper and lower pin guide, a part which no longer exists in quite that form. What wasn't shown, were the slew of o-rings, which could not be removed intact; that, and several grams of sand in the FFM; and the Atmosphere's visor clamp, a total loss, its screws forever rusted in place.

    Afterwards, I had to take a hose to my work mat, to remove the filth.

    In his pursuit of a bargain, he now has an invoice for several hundred dollars in replacement parts, should it even be restored; and a good amount of labor, if I really put the screws to him, for not taking my advice. Also, since the first stage is an older model, it requires a specific upgrade kit -- something my friend never even considered or heard about, while impulse buying . . .

    Attached Files:

    Schwob and tmassey like this.
  2. lexvil

    lexvil ScubaBoard Sponsor ScubaBoard Sponsor

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: jamestown, ca.
    education doesn’t come cheap.
    buddhasummer, tmassey and StefinSB like this.
  3. chris kippax

    chris kippax Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Australia
    The best way to Learn.... The hard way
    buddhasummer and tmassey like this.
  4. Bubblesong

    Bubblesong ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Massachusetts
    $600.00 for this crap! I checked the ebay sold listing, no full photo of the item from all sides. He can and should open a case on EBay.
    POSEIDON ATMOSPHERE Scuba full-face mask slightly used | eBay

    Dude got ripped by an EBay Shark

    Who kept his selling location dark

    Rarely has he quibbled

    But this mask done got nibbled!

    SB lights torches from this kind of spark!

    Edit: By the way, all his positives are from sellers, not buyers.
    Second Edit: By the way, I have been happy with the things that I have bought on Ebay, but they are peripheral, like Dive Navigator, or Fish ID cards, not regulators. I sold my hard-to-fix regulator for lunch money here on EBay to someone that can fix his own stuff.
    Umuntu, descend, kelemvor and 5 others like this.
  5. Bigbella

    Bigbella ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: San Francisco
    He is currently in that process and I have been providing photos of each little surprise that I come across.

    I was told that the seller balked at the notion of probable vermin damage and, actually sent my friend a note, coyly suggesting that it may have been "nibbled on by a cod," along with a smiling emoji.

    No kidding . . .
  6. StefinSB

    StefinSB ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Santa Barbara, CA
    Sounds like the seller is a jacka$$. Hope your friend gets it resolved in his favor.
  7. Bob DBF

    Bob DBF Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: NorCal
    The condition says used but fully functional. I've used that phrase to have every dispute resolved in my favor with eBay, with full refunds. The sellers, other than one, told me to keep it since they didn't think it was worth paying the freight back. I assume that they were hoping, since they were lower value items ( sub $100), most buyers would not dispute and eat the cost as a lesson.

    On another site I use, the policy is no refunds, and their pictures and discriptions leave much to be desired, but they are cheap. I was looking for some SPGs to replace some vintage ones that died, so I bought three reg sets, figuring they were crap, for the SPGs. Two auctions, three regs sets plus some other items, $50 including shipping for everything. My problem is two sets worked well, the third free flows but the ip locks, I didn't want more projects.

    Point is you have recourse on eBay if the item does not work as advertised, and sometimes you can get lucky. Even if everything on my other site was bad, not likely considering the volume, it was only $50.

    BRT likes this.
  8. Bigbella

    Bigbella ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: San Francisco
    The latest news from my ill-fated friend, was an idle question, posed by the seller, wondering whether the chewed inner mask could be -- believe it or not -- "patched like a bicycle tire?"

    He used my immediate response, "Oh, f**k no!"
  9. Scared Silly

    Scared Silly Regular of the Pub

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: on the path to perdition
    Fleabay now has a really good buyer protection policy. Your friend should take advantage of it.

    That said, years ago before Fleabay had such a policy I was bought an item that was used but in condition. Others had many questions about the condition. The seller responded no problems. I bought the item and in the end found it not as described. Fortunately the mfg was local so I took it to them for a repair estimate which I sent to the seller. The seller's reply, "I guess your definition of 'good condition' is different than mine" and refused to do anything.

    So being before fleabay had a good policy my only option was to do a credit card charge back. AmEx came through and granted it. But it was through Paypal which was none too pleased. Paypal froze my account and said I needed to return the item with proof I shipped it. AmEx did not care what I did.

    Now being pedantic I followed Paypal instructions to the letter, I returned the item with proof it was shipped. The proof was the USPS proof of shipping receipt. Here was the kicker, I returned it COD (again this was before Fleabay required the seller to pay for return shipping). Now the COD charges included the shipping costs, ~$20, plus $20 for the beer I gave the guys at the mfg who did some repairs for free, and $20 for my time.

    I sent the proof of shipping off to Paypal, who initially said was not adequate, they wanted tracked proof it was received. After some back and forth PP finally admitted they were not clear on their instructions and unfrozen my account. About two days later, the item comes back, the seller refused to pay the COD charges. Then I get a nasty note from the seller which I did not send a reply. I figured at that point the seller could come get the item (slim chance as they were 1500 miles away). About a month later, I get another nasty email that they have called the police. At that point I laughed at this was a civil matter.

    Some six months later I resold the item but locally so whom ever bought could personally inspect it and see it warts and all. Never heard from the seller again ...
    kelemvor and Bob DBF like this.
  10. Bigbella

    Bigbella ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: San Francisco
    Here's a little gem, which I have never witnessed to this degree -- an internal o-ring, with an intact shard of salt cutting through it. I had always seen the aftermath . . .

    Attached Files:

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