Hey all, I've recently had an eBay deal go bad, and I'd like some perspective. I'm going to leave out some details, because I'm not trying to defame anyone's character, but I'm currently resolving this issue with the seller and eBay, and I want to make sure that my own perspective isn't skewed before I stick to my guns. The deal was for an electric bass, advertised as fully working, but it arrived with an electrical problem, apparently a bad pickup. Getting it properly repaired will cost $150 to start, and that's assuming that my time is free. The seller is insisting that the bass was working fine before he shipped it. The bass was well-packed and shipped by UPS, and the box had no apparent damage when I received it. First, how likely is it that an electrical problem like this can happen during the shipping process? It seems extremely improbable to me, but know knows, maybe UPS has some new bomb-scanning technology that involves Faraday cages or something. I know there's a non-zero probability that the problem happened as soon as I plugged in the bass and turned on my amp, but given the vintage of the bass (1980), I have a difficult time believing that it would hang on for all that time until the very moment it got into my hands. Second, in the process of trouble-shooting the problem, once the pickup became suspect, I had removed the panel to the electronics cavity and took a reading with my multimeter. I'm not an EE, but I've been an electronics hobbyist for years (retrocomputing and vintage arcade games, mostly). Being cautious and inexperienced with troubleshooting these things, I was guided over the phone by my instructor who is also a guitar tech. Because of this invasive method of diagnosis, the seller is now claiming that the bass is no longer in its original condition, and thus he shouldn't be held responsible for it. (Never mind the fact that that the problem existed before I did this.) So, given the dodgy state of the sale, did I cross the line? And where is the line that separates "user-serviceability" versus "monkeying with the hardware"? Is there anything I should have done differently? That's it in a nutshell. Your thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks and happy holidays.