Note to self — use the reboxing service

Shipping something a fair distance? Pack it well or use a packing service. I learned a lesson the hard way.

Chalk­ing this one up to a learn­ing exper­i­ence, as well as an increased aware­ness of the risks in ship­ping overseas.

I found a nice and inter­est­ing vin­tage com­puter — not really a pock­et com­puter as this thing is huge, but not a full-sized com­puter either. It’s a NEC PC-2001.

It looked fine in the pho­tos, though being sold for ‘junk’ or not work­ing. That’s fine, some­times it’s a simple fix, some­times not. This unit looked clean and had potential.

This is the front view before it shipped.

I should have noticed…

It arrived in a bubble mail­er. No hard pack­ing around it, just a couple of lay­ers of bubble wrap and the bubble mailer.

Upon open­ing it, I saw some wear marks that did­n’t appear in the online pho­tos, but oth­er­wise it booted up and ran. Nice! For untested and parts, it turns out I had a work­ing unit.

So I cleaned it up a bit and set it aside for a deep­er inspection

A week passes

Time to open it up and take a good look.

Oh, wait, what’s that big black blob on the LCD screen? It was­n’t there before. And it’s coin­cid­ent­ally in the same shape as that wear mark and dent in the paint above it.


Well, I’ve not popped it apart yet, but I’m guess­ing there’s a small crack in the LCD which is caus­ing this. Not sure if there’s a fix but plan­ning to investigate.

But, the big take-away for me is:

When using an over­seas pur­chas­ing agent that offers repack­aging, use it! It would have added maybe $5 to the over­all pur­chase price, and I would have some recourse if the unit arrived as it did. As it is,  well, I just leveled up a little bit in the vin­tage com­put­ing game with a prac­tic­al lesson.



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