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carlsson
June 14th, 2007, 12:36 PM
I'm not sure if this fits best in Rants or Humor, but since it currently makes me laugh, I post it here.

Anyway, two (three?) weeks ago I won an eBay auction for a BBC Micro in untested condition. I still don't even know what is included, other than the bare computer and a tape recorder. For that reason it went relatively cheap, but of course there is always the issue of expensive shipping from the UK. Using regular post, it would cost at least 52 to Sweden, which I find a bit heavy for a 5 item that I don't even know if it works.

As means of alternative couriers, I've heard of Parcel2Go, who most of the time act as DHL resellers, probably filling up spare cargo space on the more expensive business freights. Those couriers will collect the package at a given address, you can not post it to their central.

A few days passed before the seller accepted this kind of shipping, under the condition that I booked and paid directly for the service, so he could get paid for the item only. I acquired his home address, phone number and details about the package (dimensions, weight) and booked a collection last Friday, June 8th.

Unfortunately, the seller was not at home when the DHL guy arrived, so we had to try to reschedule the collection. For some reason, despite that it was me who had booked the shipping, the order was recorded in the name and email address of the sender which I figured out when I need to fill out an online form for failed collection. Finally I got a message that they would make a new attempt on Monday, June 11th during those hours I had written that the seller was at home.

Since then, I have heard nothing. The online service has no indication of whether the package had been collected, and thus no identification number that I could use to trace the parcel. The seller also didn't contact me.

Parcel2Go has a live chat function that I've tried to get in touch with for the past few days. Today I got in touch with a girl working at customer services. I described the problem and gave her my order number. She was away for a few minutes, apologized for any inconvenience and asked if I would like the package to be collected tomorrow? I almost went "WTF" but calmed down and again told her the hours the sender is in and they could schedule a new collection attempt tomorrow, Friday June 15. I also notified the sender about this.

Now, until this point this sounds more like a rant than something to laugh about. You see, I worked overtime until 9 PM, went to the food store and then home. What awaits me in my mail? Well, a delivery note from DHL, who have attempted to deliver my parcel today at lunch time, and now I can pick it up from their depot. The name of the sender tells me this is the same package that I asked about a few hours earlier, and appeared to not have been sent at all. :shock: :lol:

Oh well, I'll get to pick it up tomorrow, see what's inside, if the computer is functional or not. It'll be fun to hear from the sender about his confusion, in particular if a DHL guy will arrive at his place to pick up a parcel that was collected already on Monday...

apple2fan
June 14th, 2007, 02:28 PM
That’s great! But try this one. I bought a Kaypro on eBay and it was being shipped UPS ground and it was supposed to get to my house on Monday, but it didn’t show. I contacted the seller and he said he had shipped it the same day I had bought the item. So I waited a while and it never came. After 3 months it still had not come! The seller would not contact me and ups said that it might have been lost in the mail. So after a while I filed a claim, and the next day a beaten up box showed up on my door step. Well, I opened it up and all that was inside was the keyboard! I was pissed! The guy forgot to put the computer in the box with the keyboard! The guy is now a “no longer registered member” and I still haven’t gotten my money back. And the computer has disappeared into thin air. Well at least now I know not to buy from sellers with a feedback score of 92%.

(this happened last year)

Anyways I hope you get your package unharmed. (:

dongfeng
June 14th, 2007, 02:55 PM
At least it is hopefully arriving. Just have to see if it is in one piece :p

Parcels2Go currently have an IBM AT in transit to me. I am also keeping my fingers crossed...

carlsson
June 14th, 2007, 10:17 PM
Ayep. I've read horror stories how parcels arrive beaten-up beyond recognition, far worse than regular post services mishandle packages. How much of this is truth and how much is fiction is impossible to say. Since a high-profile shipping company such as DHL powers the service, could they afford to deliver a horrendous (but inexpensive) service to private persons at the same time they proudly present their rather expensive services for business to business?

dongfeng
June 15th, 2007, 01:57 PM
My two parcels I sent through Parcel2Go did actually arrive today (next day delivery, even though I paid for the cheaper 2-4 day). However, they did pick the only hour in the day when nobody was home! But that's not their fault.

I'll go to the main depot tomorrow morning to pick it up, hopefully it will have arrived intact...

carlsson
June 15th, 2007, 02:42 PM
That's also a bit of fun. On the delivery note from DHL, it said their depot is open between 16.15 and 18.30, or something like that. I arrived around 18.10 and found the door locked. A guy saw me, opened the door and was sour like a lemon: "We already closed for today, 18.00".

-"But this delivery note says 18.30", I showed him.

Anyhow, he brought my package and wished me a nice weekend, despite I had arrived past closing hours. Some delivery guy at DHL will get a notice about not putting false information on the delivery notes on Monday...

Oh yeah, since I already posted this on two other forums, here are the pictures:
http://www.cbm.sfks.se/pics/bbcmodelb.jpg
http://www.cbm.sfks.se/pics/bbcmodelb2.jpg

Tonight, I have disassembled the computer and cleaned the case with soap/dish water (I didn't have any Jif at home) which made it slightly better. Now I'm cleaning every keycap. The tape recorder will have to wait until later to clean it up.

apple2fan
June 15th, 2007, 03:04 PM
Not too bad considering the wait.

Erik
June 15th, 2007, 06:06 PM
Nice kit! Glad it all arrived intact! :D

carlsson
June 16th, 2007, 12:14 AM
Yep. Did I mention that the seller used an oversized cardboard box, and not an inch of packing material? The computer was at the bottom, the tape recorder next to it and all the tapes in plastic bags on the top. It is a miracle how the box didn't break or the goods weren't damaged in the shipping.

dongfeng
June 16th, 2007, 12:17 AM
That's really cool, especially the amount of software you have! I see you have the keystrip for Elite, do you have the game too? What ROMs are installed?

If you need a disk drive, they usually go pretty cheap. There's some on eBay at the moment.

carlsson
June 16th, 2007, 12:49 AM
No, Elite was not included. As far as I can tell, only Basic is installed. I have already looked up disk drive options, but I need to install a whole array of chips before that: 8271, a number of logic chips and a 2764 EPROM. At the moment, a 2764 is the only part I have at home. Supposedly it is rather simple to modify a 3.5" PC/Amiga drive and install a suitable DFS if one wants a 3.5" drive to your BBC (just like my Master Compact already has, but I'm unsure if one can get ADFS).

nige the hippy
June 16th, 2007, 01:09 AM
the rom images of the ADFS are available. try this one

http://www.nvg.ntnu.no/bbc/dir.php3?dir=rom//Acorn/fs

the site "The BBC Lives" is pretty excellent for all things beeb

you can link to the homepage from there.

bbcmicro
June 16th, 2007, 02:45 AM
If you can't find the disc upgrade parts, then this guy sells an 8271 upgrade kit with all new parts.

http://www.beebshop.co.uk/
http://www.beebshop.co.uk/8271.html

A smidge expensive but then he did have to persuade some chip manufacturers to make him a batch of dicontinued ICs.

dongfeng
June 16th, 2007, 03:29 AM
I might actually have a spare 8721 chip if you want it! I'll have to dig out the box and check.

carlsson
June 16th, 2007, 04:33 AM
Thanks everyone. I haven't even begun looking for all the other chips. 25 for the kit seems a bit steep. If I would've insisted on getting a diskdrive configured Beeb, I would've looked more closely and could've bought computer + drive for 20 + shipping. This one I paid 4.70 + shipping.

Hmm, an off-topic thread that went incredibly on-topic, how's that for a change?