Am I being scammed? PB 17"

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by tomcoolj, May 10, 2012.

  1. tomcoolj macrumors member

    Aug 31, 2006

    I think someone is attempting to scam me on eBay. I sold a 17" PowerBook on eBay) 1.5GHz that was working perfectly before I sent it, no problems whatsoever.

    The person received it at 2.00pm and I received a phone call at 8.30pm saying its not turning on. I rang him straight away, I thought it would be because the battery was dead and it needed a bit of charge.

    I then thought maybe the keyboard connection was loose (although didn't mention where it was).

    The guy rang me back about an hour later and said he found a loose cable under the RAM slot. I know this is the connection for the keyboard / powerbutton. The connection on the motherboard had completely broken off.

    The ribbon that should go in the ZIF connection is plastic underneath, so theres no way it could have turned on without the connector.

    I accepted the return for it, and I now have the PowerBook back in my possesion. Although, its now worthless because the keyboard connector is soldered to the motherboard.

    I find it difficult to believe that the keyboard connecter could have fallen off during the shipping. It was packed very well, and had no dents or scratches on.

    I was thinking of trying to find the serial number that is flashed onto the logic board? Can this be done, because I have no way of getting the machine on.

    Or if you have any other advice that would be great, as I'm extremely worried.

    Thank you
  2. Liquinn Suspended

    Apr 10, 2011
    Seems a bit odd to me. Why is this in the Macbook Pro part of the forum if you're on about a PowerBook? I'm not sure what to do here if it was me.
  3. nickjf20 macrumors member

    Jan 2, 2009
    Why would you instantly think it was the keyboard power cable ? Unless it's fallen out before ...

    My guess is it dislodged during transport, the guy thought he could fix it, opened it up, broke it, then you accepted the return being good guy greg, and then you were saddled back with your PowerBook albeit now broken and worthless.
  4. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    It does seem weird that you would somehow just assume the keyboard connection cable was bad. Did you know it was possibly tampered with at some point in the past?
  5. tomcoolj thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 31, 2006
    Thats a very good point. I thought it was a power surge at one point due to the charger not being Apple (replacement Chinese one).

    Then I said on the phone to the guy maybe a connection came loose somewhere. I didn't specifically say keyboard, I meant anything from DC board to keyboard cable.

    At this point I accepted the return, and then the guy just happened to find out it was the keyboard cable. (How would you know to look under the RAM slot?)

    Oh I forgot to mention, this guy repairs computers I can see it in his ebay history. He also mentioned to me how he can re-ball and re-flow graphics cards, which seems very advanced... Thats why I'm so suspious
  6. williamspalex macrumors newbie

    Apr 25, 2012
    I don't see why you think you're being scammed? I highly doubt anyone would take the time to bid for something on eBay, only to get a computer, purposefully break it, and go through the trouble of sending it back just to "scam you." Maybe I'm misunderstanding the post, but I'm not seeing a scam here. Also, if this is about a PB, don't post under a MBP forum.
  7. qijianjonathan, May 10, 2012
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2013

    qijianjonathan macrumors member

    May 10, 2012
    Ann Arbor
  8. negativzero macrumors 6502a

    Jul 19, 2011
    First rule of eBay, make it very clear to buyers you will not be accepting any returns. If it was working perfectly before being sent over, there should be no reason why the powerbook won't work unless it had been tinkered with which I very much believe is the case right now. Its the seller's fault for breaking the powerbook and your fault for accept it being returned. Its a hard lesson but you gotta learn it sometimes I guess.
  9. Krazy Bill macrumors 68030

    Krazy Bill

    Dec 21, 2011
    I'm still lost. You think he stole your logic board and swapped it with a bad one? Is that the scam?
  10. Medic278 macrumors 6502a


    Feb 1, 2012
    New York
    I also am not sure here what the scam? Best I can tell is what Krazy Bill said, do you think he swapped your logic board? Or whats the scam? And why is this here?
  11. bmacir, May 10, 2012
    Last edited: May 10, 2012

    bmacir macrumors 6502

    Apr 2, 2009
    It could very possibly be a scam. This guy could have taken spare parts from your powerbook, replaced them with defective ones and then ask you if he could return it. All free of charge!

    In the best case scenario he modified your powerbook, possibly breaking it and THEN asked for a return.

    In any case you shouldn't have accepted the return. By opening it, he lost any right to ask for a return, even if you were willing to accept returns in the first place.

    Next time you'll know what to do.
  12. salacious macrumors 6502a

    May 15, 2011
    power book scam?

    I think youl find this answers your question

    Attached Files:

  13. LachlanH macrumors regular

    Oct 5, 2011
    Usually a scam involves them selling YOU broken laptops and not refunding you.

    I guess the stolen logic board theory is possible.... does seem like a lot of effort on his part though, especially given that he had no way of knowing if you were going to accept a return before he bid.

    I hope you weren't scammed.......because that would be a pretty scummy move.

    Agree with above posters though, in future, an item sold on Ebay is sold as is, no returns allowed. Sometimes you just have to stop being the good guy. :)
  14. tomcoolj thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 31, 2006
    To confirm, I think the logic board has been swapped out for one with a broken connector on it.

    Looks like I'm just going to have to refund him and take the hit and learn from the process.

    Having a refund policy wouldn't make any difference, I would still be forced to accepted the return by eBay anyway.

    I'm going to start putting warranty stickers, with serial numbers on from now on.

    Thanks for the opinions
  15. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    ^ what makes you think that? Is there a serial # on the MLB? If so, is it the same one that is on the case?

    Something is fishy.
  16. tomcoolj thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 31, 2006
    I think that because the person I bought it repairs computers, so he definitely has the ability to quickly swap the logic board over for a faulty one.

    The problem with the connector, I just can't see how it could possibly come off. I had it working less than 24 hours before it arrived with the seller.
  17. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    OK but you're not answering whether or not you can prove that the MLB was swapped. The only way I'd say you could do this is if there was a seal broken (though I don't recall there being anything like that on the PB) or if the MLB has a serial # that matches the rest of the machine.
  18. tomcoolj thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 31, 2006
    Ah ok. I was asking in my first post about finding the serial number on the logic board, the one that is flashed on by Apple? I thought that would prove it either way.
  19. paulrbeers macrumors 68040

    Dec 17, 2009
    We are talking about a Powerbook are we not?!?! You really think someone would go to all the trouble of swapping a motherboard on a laptop (which is a multiple hour ordeal) of a computer that is what 6+ years old?!?! I could see if someone was buying a 2009+ MBP, but a 6+ year old powerbook?!?!

    Seriously, they wouldn't be worth the time to swap the motherboard!
  20. tomcoolj thread starter macrumors member

    Aug 31, 2006
    The logic board costs £100 minimum still, and I reckon it can be done in an hour so they're some people out there that would try it I guess
  21. LachlanH macrumors regular

    Oct 5, 2011
    Don't suppose theres some sort of database that matches component serials with chassis serials?

    If you haven't refunded the money yet, call the guy out on your suspicions and see what he says.
  22. paulrbeers macrumors 68040

    Dec 17, 2009

    I'm going to point you to the picture of Sweet Brown above.... "ain't nobody got time for that..."
  23. bmacir macrumors 6502

    Apr 2, 2009
    out there there are people with plenty of spare time on their hands, unfortunately.
  24. coolbreeze macrumors 68000


    Jan 20, 2003
    Sounds like a classic case of buyers remorse. He won this one. Unfortunately.
  25. robo456 macrumors 6502


    Mar 3, 2008
    New Jersey
    Just a side question here... how did you ship it? UPS/FEDEX? Was it insured?

    If so, you should have made a claim right off the bat when he said it wasn't working when he received it. The carrier usually asked for pictures of the box, and more importantly how it was packed...

    But still a little confused. :)


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