Bought fake chip on ebay, now what?


Old 06-25-13, 07:17 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Canada
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Bought fake chip on ebay, now what?

This will be more opinion based then anything as the monitary value is just not worth it.

I bought a NEW bluetooth odb2 reader which is advertised as being the ELM327 PIC chip (from china).
The first time connecting it I noted all the adapter specs within my software (noted PIC program was identified as version 1.5.
Device worked once (barely). One first start, paired and connected to PCM. Without disconnecting (so no power outtage), restarted the vehicle and it dropped PCM communications (PIC chip failed).

Assuming I bought a fake unit (it was $13 delivered, so if it fails, it wasn't a huge lose), I contacted the seller to indicate that it worked once, and that was it.
So now I'm in a back and forth with the seller. They have me try one of three codes to pair (not the issue), I do that, it fails to connect the the PCM. Do something else as per their instructions, fails, then back to being told to pair it using one of 3 codes. Almost sounds like an endless loop, but hoping not.

After a quick google search, I found that version 1.0 of the ELM327 PIC code was left unlocked, so it is the version being copied. Also noted, my version is 1.5, which never existed. Should be either 1.3a, 1.4b or 2.0.
This is confirmed a fake (copy of version 1.0).

Now, given there is no real monitary value here worth spending money to win anything, should I;

A. Continue trying to work out with the seller on a resolution (omitting I know it's fake)?
B. Let the seller know I've confirmed they sold me a fake (possibly drop communications)
C. Notify ebay (not seller)
D. Drop it and move on
E. Other

I'm not expecting huge or really any gain out of this. Heck, if I got my money back or another fake, I'd be happy.
I'm just wondering what direction others would take.
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Old 06-25-13, 10:27 AM
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I would choose option 3. ebay and paypal (not sure if that's how you paid) pride themselves on resolving disputes. If you received something different than what was sold, they will follow-up on your behalf. At a miniumum, you should receive back your money, and if they get multiple disputes from one seller, they may take more decisive measures. Plus, when you initiate a dispute, you should just have to provide the same information you provided above, and let them do the work. Then move on with your life

Good luck!
Old 06-25-13, 11:02 AM
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Mike, personally, I think I might try to bluff the seller by sending him an email & let him know that you have found out there is no such cookie & he sold you a fake. Ask him to return your payment + shipping + shipping to return the fake product or you will pursue the case through ebay (& Paypal if that was the way you paid). Most sellers will try to resolve the situation to keep positive feed back & to keep any issues with ebay from arising.
After that, if you don't get a positive reply from the seller, then I would go to ebay & Paypal etc.

Good luck
Old 06-26-13, 03:34 AM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: United States
Posts: 2,446
Northern Mike having bought and been stung a few times on e-bay I know how you feel. Once I bought a tripod that I thought I would give to my aunt and the thing looked like it had been dragged through the mud. It was only the case that had been dirty so I decided to keep the tripod but I told them I wasn't satisfied and that I was going to give them a neutral rating.

I have had other things go wrong too and sometimes the dealer will give me at least a partial refund of what I am buying. Other times it has been a replacement like the time a memory chip for a laptop was lost in the mail and I had paid for insurance for it. That dealer dragged his feet though and I told him I had his phone number and was going to call him because just sending messages wasn't working.

So maybe asking e-bay for the dealers phone number and calling that person or at least telling them that you will call them if they don't resolve the problem will work. If the dealer is at least half way good he will not want to be called and will go ahead and offer to send you a refund. If that doesn't work and trying to call the person gets you nowhere then inform e-bay of the problem.

Just like the moderators here of which you are a great part of e-bay likes to be informed of bad dealers. Bad dealers give e-bay a black eye and they don't want that they want a safe buying community. I haven't bought on e-bay in a while but might in the next few months or even sell some things. E-bay has always been good to me in handling things.
Old 06-26-13, 04:16 AM
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The joys of ebay and now Amazon as well.
I will admit, if I had spent a few minutes before ordering and realized the version of software they said it had did not exist, I would have picked up right away.
Besides the PIC programming being counterfeit, the unit was no good. I checked with a couple other co-workers that play with the odb2 connectors and most of us are running the fake software (pick up these units for $10-$15).

I'm kind of hoping they offer a replacement. If the bluetooth portion on the replacement is solid (this one isn't), I can remove the circuit board (they used a board and components instead of an IC) and replace it with the proper PIC chip with the latest and greatest software.

The kicker with ebay is you can't simply go with the higher priced items. In a lot of cases, the high priced item is the exact same unit as the cheapest item.
Going forward, I think ebay will only see cheap component purchases from me. Anything more than a couple bucks will be a brick and molder shop or through a site with a physical address on this side of the pond.
That being said, the pack of 100 LEDs I ordered showed up last night. $3.50 USD for 100 bright White LEDs. That is what I paid for 2 blue LEDs when I was back in college. White was a pipe dream.
Old 06-26-13, 07:52 AM
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.................wait until he tries those LED's and finds out only a handful are good
Old 06-26-13, 09:42 AM
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.................wait until he tries those LED's and finds out only a handful are good
haha, I only need a handful out of the 100.
Pretty hard to counterfeit LEDs (component LEDs, not fixtures for bulb replacements or anything).

If I have time and am bored (unlikely), I'll hook up all 100 and see how many fail and how bright 100 LEDs are.

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