Post Number: 3
|Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 7:40 pm: |
Longtime Alembic lover finally able to buy a seasoned bird. Don't mean to sound corny, just referring to that unique tailpiece that I've grown so fond of. Because of budget constraints, I've been trying on eBay. I thought I had lost out on the 04 MK a few days ago, but just today got a "second chance" offering to buy it at my bid price, which was lower than 27 other bids. EBay email appeared to be legit & my eBay page indicated a second chance with proper links to pay it now, very official. The seller only had 1 feedback, so my thought is that with a higher ticket item like this very desireable bass, such a set up could be lucrative for a scammer. Payment was offered as MO or cashier check, NOT PayPal, so I'm not comfortable about accepting the second chance offer unless I could pay via a more secure method.
In a bidding stage question to the seller, the seller indicated that the serial number was 04MJ13233 and the top wood was "zebra maple" in his words. He had indicated that the bass came from Alembic at a cost of $7500. Does something sound fishy to anyone out there? I really want a very special Alembic, so please help me do the right thing to get one. Thanks so much.
Post Number: 804
|Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 8:21 pm: |
Alembic bidders are often targetted by eBay second chance scammers. I received several bogus second chance offers on basses I bid on during the last few months of 2004. It may be that this new mode is an evolution of the scam to try to get more bites.
It certainly looks fishy...
Post Number: 311
|Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 8:27 pm: |
I just dealt with a 1 feedback seller and was lucky enough to get my money back. First I'll give you a couple suggestions, then I'll tell you what happened to me:
1) Email the seller and tell him you want to talk to him live. During that conversation, ask him to email you a picture of a specific part of the bass. An area of YOUR choosing. This is to confirm that he actually has the instrument.
2) If you decide to go through with the deal, use a US Postal Service Money Order and send it "CERTIFIED MAIL SIGNATURE REQUIRED". Make certain that you keep records of the money order number and the certified mail number.
I bid on and "won" a Crown amp at a ridiculously low price. The buyer didn't take Paypal, so I sent a USPS Money Order. Just as I was about to drop it in the mail, something told me to send it certified mail. After I sent it, I emailed the seller to let him know I'd sent it and to provide him shipping info. That evening, after the Post Office had closed, he emailed me that he'd had a fire in the basement where the amp was kept and wasn't comfortable selling it. He said he would sent my money order back when it got to him.
Since I had sent it certified, I was able to call the Post Office in North Decatur Georgia and have them stop delivery on the letter. I did eventually get the money order back.
Be very very careful.
Post Number: 120
|Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 8:29 pm: |
Inger, be very careful, as I have received a bogus 'second chance offer' on an ebay item just last week (not music related). If your bid was considerably lower than many others, than I would be very wary of that offer. Usually, second chance offers are made to those who just missed out by a few dollars at the very end, but not 27th in line. If PayPal is not offered, then do not proceed without an escrow account. I have never heard of "Zebra Maple"...Zebrawood, yes; Flame Maple, Tiger Maple, Bird's Eye Maple, Quilted Maple, Burl Maple, yes, but not Zebra Maple. Something sounds not quite right here, so be very careful. Alembic's are common on Ebay, and this forum is probably the best bet for obtaining the axe you've dreamed of, so be patient and wait for something and someone you're comfortable with. Better safe than sorry...just my .02 worth.
Post Number: 805
|Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 8:35 pm: |
The bass is a Triple O model in zebrawood. Only one pic of the bass in the case is posted on the auction. The bidders' names are hidden as well, possibly to prevent bidders from communicating with each other to realize that there are multiple second chance offers being made. You can't tell how many bidders there actually were, but the highest four or five bids were made by the same person.
I would be extremely careful about proceeding.
Post Number: 26
|Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 9:32 pm: |
the seller has only one feedback rating. no way in hell would I proceed.
Post Number: 377
|Posted on Friday, March 18, 2005 - 10:03 pm: |
I wouldn't touch E*Bay with YOUR ten foot pole, with the exception that the seller was a business that you could call, verify, etc.
Used ALEMBICs are great buys, relative to the cost of a new one. I would urge you to watch the various ALEMBIC dealers listed in the ALEMBIC website; for instance, BASS CENTRAL, the ALEMBIC dealer in Orlando (widely respected by all of us here in this forum) has a drop-dead gorgeous coco-bolo Mark King for $3499. I'm sure some time spent on the web would find more. You can trust with these guys you're not sending your money to some crackhead/scam/etc.
For a real blood pressure check, go to Ed Roman's website (the Vegas ALEMBIC dealer), click on 'rants', and read his list of E*Bay scams for a real eye-opener.
I really believe in supporting the remaining locally-owned/specialty music stores, especially guys like BASS CENTRAL that are bass-only. Remember, they have to convince Mica and Susan they're behaving ! !
J o e y
Post Number: 35
|Posted on Saturday, March 19, 2005 - 7:49 am: |
Good for you for being cautious,
I noticed a 28 bid total...if I'm right the offer must have been about half of 2000?
It seems the legit owner would never let a Bass like that go for that price.
Post Number: 44
|Posted on Saturday, March 19, 2005 - 11:52 am: |
2nd chance offers... be very careful. Malthumb's advice is right on. Last month I bid on a McIntosh amp and I got three 2nd chance offers after the auction ended. Each had a different e-mail address. Each claimed to be the seller. All of them seemed to be legit (with all the Ebay logos and links). What they didn't know is that I knew the person that won the auction. He had already received the unit and he wasn't putting it up for sale. These bogus 2nd chance offers usually want cash payment through Western Union so that they can't be easily traced afterward. Be very careful.
Post Number: 375
|Posted on Saturday, March 19, 2005 - 12:47 pm: |
Sounds like a scam to me. I've also recieved "second chance" offers after a losing bid on an Alembic. Each time I e-mailed for specific pictures, I never heard back. For an extensive and sometimes amusing summary of ebay scams, check out Ed Roman's rants about ebay. Here is the link:
Post Number: 1515
|Posted on Sunday, March 20, 2005 - 4:27 am: |
I agree with all of the above. When this listing first appeared, as soon as I saw that it was a "private" auction and that the seller had no or very low feedback, it was then my opinion that the listing was probably not legitimate. The fact that the seller wanted payment by money order or cashiers check and not Paypal just makes it that much more likely that it's not legitimate.
Post Number: 4
|Posted on Sunday, March 20, 2005 - 5:28 am: |
Latest update regarding this eBay bass. I finally got a reply to my email to the "seller" regarding payment options. I had told him via email that I still wanted the bass, but because it was still a lot of money, I felt most comfortable using PayPal, also to his advantage since he would get his money faster that way. An alternate payment method would be using the escrow service at eBay. I also said that it was surprising that all higher bidders fell out. My thought, maybe many of those higher secret bidders were intendend to encourage the only interested bidders into a higher bid price for a bass that actually does exist? At this point, who knows?
The seller finally replied via email almost 2 days later that he would only use an escrow service, and that I was the only one still interested in his "Sweetheart". Short.
Since I have been paying close attention to all your kind and wise words of advice, I replied to this email, asking what escrow service he suggested, escrow.com at eBay? I also told him that since there was only one photo of the front of the bass on eBay with limitations, I would really like to see photos of the back of the bass, as well as the front and back of the headstock. Does anyone predict what will happen next?
PLEASE CHECK THIS OUT!!! Please go to basscentral.com and look at the John Paul Jones triple omega basses. Scroll down to the unsold (unless the site's not up to date) zebrawood 4 string. There are 4 sets of photos. The top set is of a different bass than the next 3 sets. Maybe an oversight by Bass Central; however, I think it's the very bass on eBay. Look at the very distinctive wood pattern. That is a one-of-a-kind unique grain in my eyes.
Does anyone know someone at Bass Central that would recognize those photos? I'll call them today, but being Sunday, don't know that they're open. Of course my 3 day second chance ends Monday morning around 9.
I'm not Sherlock Holmes, but this is intriguing.
I read the entire rant section on Ed Roman. Thanks to all of you who have been so helpful.
Post Number: 1520
|Posted on Sunday, March 20, 2005 - 5:57 am: |
I agree, the bass in the first set of pics is the same bass in the ebay listing.
Post Number: 312
|Posted on Sunday, March 20, 2005 - 7:22 am: |
When you call Bass Central, ask to speak to Gard and tell him Malthumb from Talkbass.com referred you to him. I'll have to look at the pictures you described. I saw the bass that Bass Central has in the flesh. Sinful. Just totally amazing.
Post Number: 313
|Posted on Sunday, March 20, 2005 - 7:27 am: |
BTW - There is a club member looking to move a 32" scale Mark King with Series I electronics and another club member looking to move a Mark King with Series II electronics and pistol grip horn. Both have side LEDs and would appear to be better values than the questionable bass. You may want to check them out. Both are guys that have been around the club for some time. One is a very short drive from me, in the event you need someone to, ummm, test drive it.
Post Number: 808
|Posted on Sunday, March 20, 2005 - 8:11 am: |
I believe that the 32" doesn't have Series electronics. From conversations had one of the previous times it was for sale, I believe it has Anniversary electronics set up to look like Series and be ready to take an upgrade.
Post Number: 5
|Posted on Sunday, March 20, 2005 - 1:46 pm: |
Followup. I got another email from this "seller". It included several shots of the bass in an apartment or home, so now I have enough photos for Bass Central to determine if it's the same bass.
The only payment method he wanted to use was www.moneyguards.co.uk . It doesn't make sense for a seller in a small town in Virginia to use a foreign escrow service, does it? I couldn't find it on the main search engines, so I reported the apparent fraud to eBay security. A short time later, the item and seller were removed from eBay.
Yes, you can probably find some good stuff on eBay, and probably many honest buyers and sellers. Lots of easy pickings for criminals and unethical people, though. I'm discouraged by what I've exerienced in just 2 short weeks on eBay...at least 4 bogus second chance attempts!
Although I'm still hoping for a super-Alembic, my quest needs to take a little breather, just a little while.
Again, thank you all for the welcome advise.
Post Number: 58
|Posted on Monday, March 21, 2005 - 7:03 am: |
just a quick comment about Ebay. if there was no place else i could buy a used alembic i would sell my firstborn in order to buy a new one from the factory or the other sellers mentioned in the other posts. in my opinion, as far as alembics go, ebay doesn't exist
Post Number: 5
|Posted on Wednesday, March 23, 2005 - 4:12 am: |
Hi there. Sorry to hear about the Alembic. I bought my first Alembic (Epic, lefthand, 5string) via Ebay. There was no problem with the buy. Maybe I was lucky but one ground rule: If it is too cheap, don't bid.