Buying tools online from overseas sellers?

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Forum topic by Brett posted 10-11-2014 01:32 PM 1495 views 0 times favorited 2 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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661 posts in 2858 days

10-11-2014 01:32 PM

Some of the hand tools offered on eBay by overseas sellers have pretty good prices, even when shipping is included. What experiences, if any, have you had when buying tools from overseas? How long does it take for your purchase arrive? Are there any precautions I should be aware of when buying from these vendors? (This question is not intended to be disparaging towards sellers who don’t live in my country; I realize that I am an “overseas seller” to some people, so I tried to word this question in very general terms.)

-- More tools, fewer machines.

2 replies so far

View tefinn's profile


1222 posts in 2612 days

#1 posted 10-11-2014 02:17 PM

It really depends, you’ve got a lot of variables there.

Are they new or used tools? Large power tools or small hand tools? Are they from an individual vendor or a commercial manufacturer/retailer? What country are they coming from? What country are they going to? You also have to be aware of any import duties or taxes that may be involved depending on what, from where or from whom you’re buying (sucks when something shows up and you need to pay import/customs duties).

I restore old power tools and have personally had good luck dealing with individuals from all around the world. Check their feedback, see what others are saying. Contact the seller if you’re unsure about any shipping/taxes that might be extra. I shy away from anyone that looks to be a commercial retailer or wholesaler that may be selling knockoffs (mostly sellers from China with tens of thousands of feedback).

-- Tom Finnigan - Measures? We don't need no stinking measures! - Hmm, maybe thats why my project pieces don't fit.

View bigblockyeti's profile


5255 posts in 1895 days

#2 posted 10-11-2014 07:25 PM

I haven’t bought any tools, but a few AC adaptors for an LED lighting project I was incorporating into a cabinet I was working on. The first two worked perfectly, so I ordered 8 more and they only lasted ~15min. before burning out. The seller offered to take them back and return my money, but shipping was on me and that alone was twice what I paid for them in the first place. Anything electronic or with moving parts now has to have a good return policy before I’ll consider it.

-- "Lack of effort will result in failure with amazing predictability" - Me

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