A tale of eBay, Rockler and how I got my Magswitch starter kit.

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by TopamaxSurvivor posted 03-27-2011 10:01 AM 8940 reads 0 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I took the plunge today! I finally bought a Magswitch featherboard at Rockler. I have been eyeballing them for a long time, but too stingy to let go of $70! I thought I would just get a couple magnetic switches to make up my own. The other option is just making up an expanding rail to fit in the miter slot. Neither have gotten done, but I have been watching eBay for bargains on magnetic switches.

Low and behold, I found one with about 900 pounds pull with a shape that that would easily work for a shop made feather board. The guy was apparently selling some stuff from a machinist’s estate. He had over 4,000 sales, but a 99.5% positive. Anyone can run into an unreasonable buyer and get a few negatives, but I have learned the hard way to avoid sellers with less than 99.9% positive.

Most of the items weren’t worth shipping alone, but he said he would combine anything that fit in a flat rate box for $12.95. That sounded reasonable enough. I won a few items with no other bidders; a machinist’s protractor and the magnetic switch among them.

After a few days, I got a nonpaying bidder case in my inbox. I contacted the seller. He said eBay does it automatically. With the way eBay corporate has pushed the sellers to only take payments through Pay-Pal, raised their prices and generally done about everything they can to push reasonable people away, it did not surprise me to hear that they would start picking on buyers. To make things fair, why not pi$$ o&& everybody involved in a transaction. After all, that is the corporate way in American management, isn’t it?

I just ignored the first one. A day later, another. I contacted eBay by email telling them the seller agreed to flat rate box shipping. I received an email telling me to call their customer service line. After another unpaid case, I called eBay. I was told the seller was doing it and he was the only one who could stop it. I always treat others the way I expect to be treated. I do not have the proper temperament to be dealing with a liar as well as an obvious imbecile. I contacted him telling him to remove all the unpaid item cases he filed while I was still bidding his items per the shipping agreement. He made no mention of any time limit in the original contact. All of this happened in a little over a week.

Along comes my regular Rockler email with the usual 20% off coupon. They seem to be in my inbox every week. I haven’t been there since the first of the year. I am beginning to lose hope that the coupons will escalate to 30% off ;-)) I was passing within a mile of Rockler today. The temptation was too great! I could resist no longer! ! My will power totally failed me today! ! ! I printed the 20 off, gave up hope of 30 off, gave up hope of finding cheap mag switches and brought home a real, genuine Magswitch reversible featherboard starter kit.

The words “starter kit” sort of scares me. What could, or will, this lead to?

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

13 comments so far

View patron's profile


13722 posts in 4585 days

#1 posted 03-27-2011 10:20 AM

a cheapskate bites the big one
in a roundabout way lol

thanks for the info on the net buying and selling
i look but haven’t bought there yet
as the rules and shipping elude me

today i did buy a recliner off of craigs list
it had a picture
so i sent my phone at work
the first guy didn’t show
so the man called me
he said he had many local interests
but i was the second one to respond
so he wanted me to have the chance before others

i knew him to be an honest man through this
and went and bought the chair after work

for $100 !

there is so much hype and confusion
on the web
i lucked out on this
i buy from stores for this reason
if it is a bad deal
i can send it back
and get my money back

like they say
if it sounds to good to be true
it probably is

let us know about the mag-switch
i’ve been eyeballing it too

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


22410 posts in 4920 days

#2 posted 03-27-2011 10:32 AM

Looks like you can kick back in style when you aren’t in the shop!! ;-))

Most people are good honest folks like the rest of us. Once in a while, you run in to a real nut;-( I learned years ago to asked about combined shipping policy and rates. Some use the shipping price to make their profit margins while selling below cost.

About a year ago, some people were trying to sell an expensive diamond ring on Craigslist around here to make their house payment. The husband was killed by the robbers that showed up at the house. I would only meet people in a public place if I were selling something like that.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


22410 posts in 4920 days

#3 posted 03-27-2011 10:36 AM

By the way, GRumpy posted a Magswitch rave review about 3 yrs ago.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 4111 days

#4 posted 03-27-2011 02:22 PM

Bob, I would be interested in seeing how you come out on this kit so keep us posted. I used to buy on Ebay all of the time. I had a a good record but after all that I’ve heard I’m a little reluctant to start back.

David, now you can sit back and take it easy in style after a hard days work on your new shop addition. :)

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View spunwood's profile


1202 posts in 4080 days

#5 posted 03-27-2011 03:32 PM

I just got the magswith with vertical featherboard off of amazon for a reasonable price. I would give it very good reviews, but take its advice, you do not need to give it a ton of pressure or it may move during operation or make it too hard to move the piece through. I use it when using a molder head (non through cut) to keep vertical and horizontal pressure on the piece. I love the quick set up.

-- I came, I was conquered, I was born again. ἵνα ὦσιν ἓν

View longgone's profile


5688 posts in 4553 days

#6 posted 03-27-2011 04:52 PM

I have 2 magswitch featherboards and like them alot. I bought one of them with at Home Depot for $39 and the other on craiglist for $20 from a guy who bought a new table saw with a granite top without thinking about the fact he could not use his magnetic featherboard with it.

As far as ebay goes, I would only use them as a last resort. The certainly do try to push their paypal stuff down your throat. I recently tried to buy something online through an ad I saw on and when it came to the checkout it kept telling me I could not use my Mastercard because I have a payapl account. Needless to say, they will not get my business because I will not let anyone tell me what method I have to use to pay.

View devann's profile


2260 posts in 3936 days

#7 posted 03-27-2011 05:29 PM

Topa, thanks for the post, I’ll be watching to learn more. I’ve been wondering how I was going to use my featherboard since attaching the outfeed table to my tablesaw. I’ve already had to use it so I drilled a hole in my new outfeed table, ouch! My featherboard is shop made with slots in the ends to use on my routertable. It is difficult to clamp to so I drilled holes in the table extensions and use toggle bolts to secure it and the slots to adjust it to the fence.
I’m looking for ideas has to how to secure the featherboad to my tablesaw, any ideas are welcome.

Greg: way to go, not bowing to the paypal bunch.

-- Darrell, making more sawdust than I know what to do with

View JJohnston's profile


1622 posts in 4535 days

#8 posted 03-27-2011 05:33 PM

As already stated, HD sells a Ridgid magswitch featherboard for $30:

Rereading, I guess it’s too late, though. Well, you can always get the Ridgid ones and “harvest” the switches from them if you need to cobble together something custom.

-- "A man may conduct himself well in both adversity and good fortune, but if you want to test his character, give him power." - Abraham Lincoln

View ptweedy's profile


75 posts in 4638 days

#9 posted 03-27-2011 05:53 PM

I bought a mag base from a dial indicator at hf and inlet into a feather board. It works great. Phil

View Servelan's profile


39 posts in 4025 days

#10 posted 03-27-2011 05:58 PM

I’ve only had two memorably bad EBay experiences; one was a drop shipper who lied in his postings and said he wasn’t and had everything on hand; the other was a Thai shipper who gave me excuse after excuse as to why my stuff (all small jewelry making bits) was delayed, then wouldn’t respond when I got the package and it was missing half the order.

About MagSwitch…it started with a picture of this French-style iron table with a marble top. I thought to myself, that would be a cool miniature to make and sell, but coming up with the Corian for the top wasn’t easy. I found one source in Canada, but there was an agreed-upon delay due to the holidays and in the meantime a local fabrication shop advertised on Craigslist that they were giving away Corian scraps, just no picking through the pile. I got there, apparently the first one, and had my pick of about four different patterns, most pieces about 1/4” or less thick, perfect for resawing t make what I need.

So of course, I start looking at the particulars of resawing Corian. I know I’ll need a new bandsaw blade; I’ve run 2×4 chunks and aluminum both through that old thing and I’ll need something with a thinner kerf and probably sharper at this point.

And I needed something to re-saw with. Enter MagSwitch. I now have about $100 of their gizmos to play with.

Fortunately, DH married me with full knowledge of my tool Jones…

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


22410 posts in 4920 days

#11 posted 03-27-2011 08:28 PM

Rockler had some that are considerable cheaper. I would have gone the cheaper route if all I needed was a flat on the table feather board. The reason I went with teh Magswitch is because of the versatility to add high pressure for re-saws. I have wood drying the will never fit through my band saw. I plan on hitting it both sides on the TS and finishing it with a hand saw.

They really push the Pay-pal through your bank account to the point of being a PIA!! I don’t give out bank account numbers with any real money n them. The account Pay pal has for the required epay things I am involved in only has a few dollars in it to keep it open. When I get an etransfer, I move the money to another account within a day or to. There is just too much fraud to take the risk and banks will not discuss their responsibilities, only mine.

devann, Could you attach using the miter slot?

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Bob Kollman's profile

Bob Kollman

1798 posts in 4435 days

#12 posted 03-27-2011 09:24 PM

I like the mag switch stuff.

You sure know how to cut a deal, every time I go on e bay 500

other guys bid on the same thing. I bought a coffee pot that started at

.99 cents and ended up costing over 50 buck plus shipping.

I’m hoping for the Rockler 50% coupon ;).....LOL They’d probably

change it to 5% the exact second I hit the buy botton!!!! :(

-- Bob Kenosha Wi.

View bluekingfisher's profile


1333 posts in 4224 days

#13 posted 03-30-2011 10:03 AM

I bougt a couple of these our side of the pond, I haven’t had the need to use them yet, infact they are still in the wrappers so can’t give any feed back on there performance.

I like you, have had some problems with ebay very recently, I have sold and purchased many items during my tenure however their way of doing things is becoming very onerious and I now look at other means of buying mu woodworking gear. Thankfully most of the stuff I need to sell has already gone…......I must stop buying junk, I must stop buying junk, I must stop buying junk… just ends up being sold on again without being used, or at least used much. Just my input

-- No one plans to fail, they just, just fail to plan

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics