Oculus GO - The little sideloading guide

It seems making an Instructable these days requires lots of pictures, detailed steps and tons of instructions.So before I try to paste my attempt here, I will point something out for the support team:1. There is little point in including pictures of a VR headset or how to plug a USB cable in. Same for images showing a DOS window and the command typed in it - they are the same as in the instructions...2. With little to no option to create an Instructable that requires actual code usage and properly embedded picture, let alone good editing options: How do you suggest one would accomplish this taks?3. With no category to post such Instrucables it is my personal opinion that these catergories need quite some updates! They are still the same as years ago despite life evolving around it...If you just went into the mobile VR world then you might feel a bit restricted compared to what you know from your smartphone.Over the months firmware updates provided us with some much needed things but a bit is still left out. In this Ible I will try to show way to get a bit more out of your GO. Be aware that a lot of it still requires a bit of manual work and a computer.If you are just curious then please read on and you might still find something interesting that you did not know yet.Getting started...One thing we certainly need is a way to access the GO and to install additional apps on it that are not available in the store.For this we need to activate the developer options. Unlike your normal Android device this step works only from the device you paired with your GO. Go into the settings and there look for the developer mode. Once you try to activate it Oculus requires you to sign up for a developer account. All this of course needs to be confirmed through Email activation, you know just to make it complicated and get more info about you ;) From there it is straight forward and like on any Android. Activate USB debugging, pair with your computer by USB cable and on the GO authorise the connection. Please also tick the box to make this permanent as otherwise you will be prompted every time. In case you are not so familiar with this just Google how to use ADB on Android - it is simple. I will add the required files and drivers in a later step dedicated to it.If you need more help getting the right options done or where to find them, please consider the great help for this offered on the Oculus developer sites. It makes sense to spent some time there as you find a lot of good info that might come in handy once you really want to get serious.ADB - A must have...You will find the drivers and all, as said, a bit later. ADB is the Android Debug Bridge. It allows us to get access to the (user)available file systems, do some basic tests and if supported even flash a firmware or make a backup.If you already used ADB for another Android device then you will only need the drivers for the GO. Otherwise you need to set up the enviroment for the Debug Bridge first. In the downloads will be a simple installer for this purpose. It is vital that you authorise your computer on the GO, best to tick the box to make it permanent.If you open a command prompt where you have ADB installed you can do some simple tests. Setting all required paths and system variables in Windows would allow you to access ADB functions from any folder on your computer. The later might be easier if you do not want to copy all related files into your ADB folder. Makes no real difference though and is up to your preferences.The command ADB devices should show you now that your GO is connected by listing it. If nothing shows up then please check the USB debugging option is set in the developer options. A reboot might help too in some cases. With this sorted we are good to go, almost at least...How to install "unknown" apps?As you might have noticed there is no playstore and all available stuff in the official store is VR based.Getting some essential apps on it seems to be impossible.Again the help offered by Oculus in the developer sections is a vital source, so please don't be afraid to read there ;) There are two basic ways of doing things on a device with so many restrictions.1. Just use ADB install packetname Where packetname is the filename for the app in question, for example Netflix.apk. With all apps you need in one place this is quickly done.2. Use a dedicated app installer or manager for the job. I will include one that actually works with the downloads. Same fore more detailed instructions.The thing is though that only apps designed and signed for VR will show up in your normal launcher. All other (supported) Android apps will show up in "unknown sources" in your library. Apps not supported for this purpose won't show anywhere! For them you need a dedicated launcher, which will be placed in the "unknown sources" section ;)Why do I spoon feed you here you might wonder? To be honest: If you already read some terms and basics it will be much easier to remember. Repetition is the key ;) I see little point in providing a simple to follow list of intructions as a week later you would struggle to do it again without the list in front of you.Our first unknown apps!Deciding what you might need in apps is one thing, knowing in what order you can safe hours of your life is another. I simply don't think you want to juggle with ADB whenever you want a new app that is not available in the official store. So for starters we will need something that is able to install apps for us. And since we can't use it without something to find and start it we also need an app starter. Basically like HALauncher for Android TV.The detailed instructions for this can be found with the downloads. First the app starter is installed, it will provide us with a living room like view onto a big screen. On the screen you will find all apps that are otherwise invisible to you. Some might tempt you to try them out - just don't! Unless you really know what you are doing you have a good chance to do something bad. Use the apps you know and the apps you added but none of the tempting system apps you might see.The APK installer will show up there too and is used to make installing apps a bit easier. You can copy them now onto your GO's internal storage and use the app installer to install them - how easy is that? Another option I included is the Aurora store - a fork of the YALP store and able to work without any playstore requirements. Downside is that the VR controllers are not fully supported yet as it is more aimed at TV sets. A BT touchpad works though if the controller or a gamepad fail. I only included Aurora as it could be a nice alternative one day with full VR support. Just search or browse for all the apps available in the playstore and install what you like. Be aware though that not everything will work with the remote. Some games and apps can be operated with a game controller though.It is getting nicer already ;)By now you might have already installed some things as you just could not wait to skip to the downloads.Well, can't really blame you, can I?Anyways, we now have the option to install more apps that we know from our non-VR Android devices. Oculus might make it harder in the future though - or they see it the same way and offer ready to go options one day. Till then it is up to you....Youtube VR might be nice but it is also still quite buggy and lacks some basic features. So getting a modded Youtube app could be a way out if you need comments for example. Kodi is still a must have for many Android users, especially the sport nuts with us. A filemanager is also something most Android users value. I will include some but again it comes down to what YOU prefer here. And with a basic way to install apps now you can also remove them again if you decide they don't work as expected.Get a bit used to the app launcher and how to install apps. Sideloading is fine for those used to it but some might prefer to just copy some apps on the GO and them use the installer with the remote. In the near future we will get support for external sorage, so using a USB stick or SD card in a reader will make the USB cable obsolete for file transfers. Some headsets already support it, so chances are by the time you read this yours will too. Although it still is a good way to keep your GO charged while copying big files ;)Precautions and Words of WisdomIt all sound nice and easy now but there are dangers you need to be aware of! Installing apps or games that are not fully designed for the GO or VR use can mean crashes. A lot will work but that does not mean it will keep doing so. A firmware update could one day end the support for sideloaded apps that are "non-VR". Especially messing with the app launcher can mean sudden disaster. Things you normally can not see are often hidden from you for a good reason. I will take no responsiblity for problems you caused by misusing system apps !Console emulators are a lot of fun and there are ways to even stream them from your PC in reasonable quality on a low end computer. But these and some demanding games also cause a lot of CPU usage. As the system is not optimised for 2D content it can mean that your battery runs out faster. In some cases you might not see the warning to charge, so be aware of time when immersing yourself.Stay away from any app or game that requires playstore components! Play Games for leaderboards might be no issue, especially if you don't need this feature. Online gaming like multiplayer actions will not work if it requires Google services for it! Similar story for hardware you don't have. If it is only designed for touchscreens than it might not work with the remote. And if it does not support gampads either... Apps that only support the wrong display orientation are a no go too.What Non-VR Stuff Actually Works on the GO?A lot and it will be possible to do even more. There are already streaming options for your own videos like Skybox, Moonplayer and they all support DLNA servers too. So watching normal, 3D or VR movies from a media server is no problem at all already. Getting games to work is another story all up. ALVR is a good platform to stream VR games from your PC to the GO. Unlike the Rift you won't even need an overpowered gaming PC for it. Virtual Desktop is a paid app but well worth the money if the support and features keep going as they do right now. With it you can use your computer or laptop from the GO. Watch movies, surf the net, play games. The GO more or less becomes a normal Windows computer only that you have the screen right in front of you.It will certainly be possible to code a simple VR app that works as a shortcut for non-VR apps. Like how right now you get the pic and description for a VR exerience and a button that starts the stream in the player. Downside is the requirement to certify such an "app" to make it visible in the normal launcher.Downloads and Instructions....Finally you get to the point where you can actually download something :)To make it all a bit easier and to ensure I won't miss a vital bit I did a factory reset on my GO to start from scratch :(Things might change in the future, so I will include the instructions as texfiles with the download.If I see a real requirement for screenshots I will include them with corresponding filenames.I think this way it is easier than scrolling through an Instructable as you can just print it all directly.Those without an account (yet) might value this too.Based on the feedback, questions and general comments I will change the contents of the download accordingly.Same for download links to avoid bloating up the download with outdated files.Easier for you (if you read this a few months from now) to download the newest files directly from the source.So don't be too disappointed if the download seems to contain less than what you expected.What seems to be missing will have links in the instructions.No files will come from unverified or unsecure sources!Whatever I include in the downloads directly will be checked for malware of all kinds.The same standards are true for the sources I provide.So no clickbait, ad sponsored re-directors or such crap.Please read the detailed instructions carefully, then read them again while actuall following the steps on your GO or computer.Do not blindly read it and jump onto doing it the first read!For ADB commands just copy and paste them - I might write some batch files though, so check for them in the instructions and make use of them.Things might not work out as planned, so if in doubt double check all the steps taken.What is in the provided instructions is tested on my GO's and works on the firmware version current of this writing.Download the guide and files from FilefactoryIn case the PDF in the download is not detailed enough, just ask in the comments ;)

Posted by Downunder35m 5 weeks ago  |  last reply 5 weeks ago


Updated e-mail address doesn't change in the newsletter mailing

Changed my profile's e-mail address and confirmed it, and it shows under my profile. However I still get newsletter e-mails under the old e-mail address. I assume they're two different databases, but then how do I delete the old address from the newsletter mailing database?

Posted by SAVAJ 9 years ago  |  last reply 5 weeks ago


Embedding YouTube Video Bug

When I type in the URL for my YouTube video, it either says, "There was an error embedding the file," or, "URL not valid." Can somebody help me? P.S. The reason that this is in "Burning Questions," is because when I began to select the category to put it in, the category "Bugs," was not there.

Posted by DIYEnPointe 1 year ago  |  last reply 5 weeks ago


Calling all blind makers!

Hi everyone,Instructables readers may already know about the community of blind woodworkers from pages like ww4b.org. The university I am affiliated with (OCADU), and my research group are interested in bringing the expertise of all blind woodworkers into more and more classrooms. This includes post secondary institutions (colleges, universities), makerspaces, and anywhere else it might be useful. We currently have an open dialogue with some professional blind woodworkers, and have enrolled in woodworking classes at non-profit facilities for the visually impaired. But we are looking to learn from anyone else who has first hand knowledge of teaching woodworking (or other kinds of making) to visually impaired students.If this sounds like you or you are interested, please see the details at this instructables link: https://www.instructables.com/id/Blind-Woodworkin...If you have more questions, feel free to pm me.The instructable provides an option to do the survey via phone, but if you want to jump right into the anonymous online survey, here is a link.https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdoRLx0lC...BestEric

Posted by 3164382 5 weeks ago


Instructables PRO memberships GIVEAWAY!

Hello everyone :)I have a bunch off PRO memberships and decided to make a giveaway :)To enter the giveaway you must to the following:1) Watch my last video in full ( will help to rank it ) - https://youtu.be/O9ev4U4-bsg2) Like the video3) Comment on it4) Share it with your friends and familyIf you did the above please leave a comment here stating that you did all of them and you would like to enter the giveaway ;)Let's see how many people are in a need of a PRO membership :)

Posted by Giulia Art 7 weeks ago  |  last reply 5 weeks ago


I Wrote an Instructable to Enter an Open Contest, but Can't....

I wrote this instructable to enter the plastics contest, published it, but now cannot tie it to the contest, due to close three days hence. What's with that? Do I have to delete my instructable and re-post it?

Posted by KellyCraig 8 weeks ago  |  last reply 5 weeks ago


Can some one make this sewer cam?

Can someone make the sewer camera at this link? http://www.dtldeals.com/  It looks really easy.  The only thing I can't find right now is the color camera with LEDs (This is not an IR camera, which are easy to find.)

Posted by jeffpaulwilson 8 years ago  |  last reply 5 weeks ago


Feature Requests: Instructables Editor

Insert TablesCan we have an easy way to insert tables in an Instructable? It's a really arduous task to use the HTML editor to display information in a tabular form.Some use cases for tables: Parts & Material List - includes Part specifications, type, quantity, link, etc Electronic Connections - E.g: If an Arduino is connected to a sensor. The Arduino pins are in one column while the sensor pins are in another column. Explaining Code Snippets (see attached image)Embed GitHub Repository Maintaining code is made easy with services like GitHub especially if you want to make updates or bug fixes. You may have come across an Instructable wherein the code no longer works since it was based on outdated libraries & dependencies. It also encourages users to collaborate thereby keeping the code updated. You can also store electronic schematics, 3D printing files, laser cutting files, etc. Code SnippetsI know its currently possible to highlight code within an Instructable. Example:digitalWrite(led,HIGH); In the above case, the entire line is a code snippet.But what if my intention was to explain the function 'digitalWrite()' and instead only want to highlight the word 'digitalWrite()'.This is how it will look in the current editor:If the pin is configured as an INPUT, digitalWrite() will enable (HIGH) or disable (LOW) the internal pullup on the input pin.Just my 2 Rupees.#Feedback

Posted by Jonathanrjpereira 6 weeks ago  |  last reply 5 weeks ago


Ipod touch for droid

Would you guys consider a ipod touch for a droid a good deal. The ipod has a 40$ case and is a 8gb.

Posted by silentassasin21 8 years ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Ideas for a wire chess set.

I was thinking about doing a wire chess set. Since it was suggested by CaitlinsDad over here: https://www.instructables.com/community/Requesting-feedback-on-a-Fire-Breathing-Dragon-tes/ Came up with this. These are rough (obviously), the rook should have crenelations and I did the king and queen in the same piece. It's like 5 AM and my fingers hurt from working on a wire Nine Tailed Fox (from Naruto) for my son. So, I took a short cut. The picture should make it clear how I'm planning to make things look. The knight is abstract, it always bothers me when the horse is the only thing with any detail. The pawn is about 1/2" x 1" tall, the queen would be just under 2" tall, the king is about 2 1/4" tall, both by 1" wide, the other 3 are about 1 1/2" x 3/4". It is done in 18g galvanized steel. Anybody still reading? Great! I'd love to get some feedback, good, bad, anything to either confirm it is just the best thing ever OR how it could be improved towards that goal. So don't hold back. Cheers.

Posted by Thrasym 5 years ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Wanted: Crosman M1 Carbine

I'm looking to buy a Crosman M1 Carbine from the late sixties or early seventies. My relatives in the Midlands had one when I would visit them, and I miss that plinker to death. I asked them about it and they said they sold it at a yard sale a while ago. Now that I'm in Ohio, I can own one legally, but can't seem to find one. The rifle is out of production, and every Goodwill, thrift store, and garage sale I've been to has yielded nothing. So, if anyone has one of these rifles in preferably functioning condition and with the wood furniture and "magazine", I will gladly buy it. A broken plastic rifle with no magazine I will also accept. If anyone either is willing to sell theirs or knows where I can acquire one, please let me know.

Posted by DrWeird117 7 years ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Cable Wall Fishing Device - HELP!!!

Hey guys - I'm stuck on a project that I know your inventive minds will help me come up with a solution. I'm a long time lurker and first time poster :). I'm looking to make my own 'magnepull'. This device, which you can view at www.magnepull.com, is a magnetic system that assists with wall fishes. It helps you pull cable through the wall (which I do on a daily basis as a cable tech). I can't simply afford to spend $100+ for the magnepull device. All of your ideas and help are appriciated in advance! Thanks! Joe

Posted by jslitzker 10 years ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Call for contest judges

Hi everyone! You might have noticed we're running tons of contests these days. We need judges more than ever to make sure our contests keep running smoothly and fairly! The judging process is fairly simple and normally involves looking at contest finalists and rating them on a scale from 1-9. Judging is typically open Friday afternoon through Monday night, though some of the larger contests have judging that runs for a week. Time spent judging is around 30 minutes to two hours - it all depends on how thorough you are! If it’s not a good time for you to judge when we contact you, no worries. We always try to assign more judges than we need in case something comes up. You can find out more about judging a contest here. Don't worry!  Judges are selected after finalists are selected, so volunteering to judge will not affect your chances of being a finalist in any contest you enter. To be eligible to judge, you must have posted at least ONE instructable. Let us know which contest categories you're interested to judge in the comments below: Food Living > includes Home and Craft; so please just say Living if you are interested in either or both of these. Workshop Outdoor Tech Play NOTES: If you are interested in Halloween we'll pick judges based on categories/entries we get in the contests. Costume > Living   Decor > Play, Outdoor, and/or Workshop  Prop > Living and/or Play   Food > Food   Things will depend on what types of finalists we end up with. For example: If we were to have a lot of Tech finalists in Decor, then we would pick judges from that category as well to judge that contest. If you list categories you want to judge, but also say you would judge any, it gets a little confusing. Please try to either pick categories OR say any contest.  Thanks for helping us keep the site awesome!

Posted by jessyratfink 5 years ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Problema installazione marlin su anet a8

Salve a tuttiho provato a installare marlin su anet a8 e ho un problema.dopo aver fatto l upload vedo sul display della anet il logo marlin con la versione ma non ho tutte le voci del menu di marlin, in pratica quello che vedo sono dei punti interrogativi dopo le coordinate x,y e z, credo che ci sia un problema sulla scheda.inoltre ho letto da qualche parte che mentre si esegue l upload, sulla scheda dovrebbero lampeggiare alcuni led, cosa che non avviene.premetto che arduino compila correttamente marlin e non ho errori sia in compilazione che in upload, solo che la scheda sembra sorda.se qualcuno ha qualche idea sarebbe un aiuto.grazie in anticipo

Posted by ssibelius 6 weeks ago


Can you help me identify this glassware?

I found this glassware in my lab at work and I'm wondering what it's used for. It is a regular tube with a inlet and a outlet on the side. Any ideas?

Posted by EmelíaE 6 weeks ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Staedtler Marsmatic 700: Tehnical Drawing Pen Maintenance

Greetings peoples, Anyone had any luck reviving Staedtler Marsmatic 700 technical pens that were put away dirty and not used for a while. I just got my hands on a set of seven (retails for ~US$150) for $10, and have so far tried taking them apart completely and washing them in soapy water. So far I'm getting some gray, watery ink from the tight spaces I couldn't dry completely, but no or very little ink is flowing from the cartridge. Any ideas?

Posted by shooby 10 years ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Member page featured projects

On my profile page, when I try to change which projects are visible at the top and hit save, it never finishes and will still say "saving" after a few hours. Has anyone else had this issue?

Posted by BakkerJo 6 weeks ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


gas station-type driveway bell?

 Any thoughts on how to rig up one of those bells that dings when a car drives over it, like at a gas station?  We's love to put one across the end of our driveway...

Posted by sarahfish 8 years ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Prize suggestions and feedback needed! What would YOU like to win?

Hi everyone! Here at HQ we're always planning contests, but sometimes we run out of prize ideas. :D I would love to hear any and all suggestions for products you guys would like to win! I'd also love to hear feedback about prizes we've offered this year - what did you like? What didn't you like? Do you prefer getting a shiny new electronic toy or a prize pack more suited to the theme of the contest? Have a suggestion for a contest theme? Check out this topic!

Posted by randofo 5 years ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Best Recipe

Hey everyone,     What is your best recipe? It can be something you made up or something you just found in a cookbook. I want to hear all about your cooking adventures! I will post my recipe for curried spinach soon.

Posted by nerdfighter73 7 years ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


The secret to storing Loquat for wine making!

If you don't know what Loquat means then just look it up on Google or Wikipedia ;)Mostly used as ornamental trees in the warmer climates Loquat fruits come into season right when the summer is on your doorstep.Although the fruits are delicious and high in nutrients, vitamins and so on: Most people do not even bother to try them :(So if you spot them please give the fruit a try and you might get hooked as did.The biggest problem of using Loquat for more than a direct snack is not the seeds inside.They are quite big and you figure ways out to get around them.Biggest hassle is how the fruits ripen.Unlike most real fruit trees there is fixed time.When the first fruits are ready then the last migh be ready about 3 or even 4 weeks later.And depending on the local wildlife you really need to check daily for ripe fruits....So how to do it properly then?Loquat goes bad really fast no matter what you try.Eat them quickly as otherwise they go off.Don't bother...Those are common answers you get from people who had those trees for years in their gardens.The trick however is really simple:Do not plug them off, cut them off!Some half decent pruning sizzors work great here, especially the smaller types.Cut the stem of the fruit so at least 5mm are left on the fruit.Without the hole from ripping the fruit off and handling it with gentle force there will be no damages or open areas ;)Like that the fruits stay fresh for a few days in your fridge, just make sure they are kept quite loose.Do not just fill a big box with them and hope all fruits survive the pressure ;)If in doubt layer them on soft foam strips or cardboard - works really well if can find complete clusters that are ripe enough.If you have access to more than one big tree you can get enough to even make a really nice wine from it.You need to be quick though, so let me tell you how I do it:Prepare a big enough fermentation vessel, in my case a 25 liter plastic drum, purpose made...Add about 10 liters of warm on prefably filtered water, some sugar and a good amount of your prefered brewing yeast.My personal favourite here is port wine yeast ;)You should prepare this drum once you can collect enough ripe fruits on a daily base.Prepare the fruits by removing the stems, the hard spot at the bottom and then cutting them in half.A small spoon can be sharpened to help to get the seeds out if have some with many little ones hiding.Have a pot with boiling water ready and put about 250 to 400 grams of prepared and cleaned fruits in it per load.A quick heating is essential as you want to keep the cooking time as low as poosible.90 to 120 seconds should be enough to get the heat throughout the fruit - please check every now and then that the fruits are quite soft now.This step is vital to prevent self fermentation - you only want your yeast cultures to work on the fruits ;)Squash the fruits when adding them into your drum.To make a full 25 liters with just a table spoon of sugar at the start you will need about 10 to 12 kg of fruits for a high volume and sweet result.The best option due to the constantly changing sugaar content in the fruits is to go with the flow.Stick to max of about 15 liters per 25 liter drum.Monitor the sugar content and alcohol level.Port yeast dies off at a bit over 14%vol of alcohol.Although some strong ones go up to 18% here...If the alcohol level goes over 10% while the sugar content is still quite high then you add water until you get down to about 7%.If the sugar content goes down too low you add more fruits.With still enough active yeast you can even transfer half oa drum to a new batch once the drum is getting too full and the sugar content is still too high.Just a matter of getting used to working with ongiong adding of fruits and water to compensate the time it takes to get enough ripe fruits.Of course there is always the option to go low and start with 5 liter canisters instead....

Posted by Downunder35m 6 weeks ago


Problem with enrolling a class

Hi everybody, I'm facing a weird problem about enrolloing the woodworking class: as soon as I take a lesson the screen becomes "greyed" and I can't click the enroll button. Could anyone help me?

Posted by Roncino 6 weeks ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Post Your art

Just post anything you've drawn of painted or made or whatever. Here is a guitar picture I've been working on. Sorry if you can't see it all. I couldn't get it to work right. I modeled it of of the G-400.

Posted by heavy.metal.nguyen 11 years ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Old How-To Books

I've always been a fan of old how to books. They often have tips and techniques you don't find in contemporary books. Sometimes they are just plain strange. Other times they are painfully outdated, like an old Popular Mechanics article I came across that shows you how to improve your toaster by adding asbestos to it. Last weekend I stumbled upon this old doll making book at a thrift store. The entire book shows how to make dolls in a kind of odd folk art style, and would never get printed today.In spite of the fact I don't really have room for more books right now, I couldn't help myself and bought it anyhow.Has anyone else come across any interesting how to books lately, or have favorite classics in their collection?

Posted by randofo 7 weeks ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Unofficial K'nex Anything Contest

This is the unofficial knex contest! There are a few other knex contests with a certain theme, but in this contest, you can enter anything! Let's get on to the rules: How to Enter: Make a instructable that uses knex. Make a comment with a link to the instructable, than I might accept it. Your instructable has to be made in 2017 or up. You can have three entries entered at a time, but only one of them can win. What to Enter: Enter an instructable that is mostly knex and has instructions. If it uses to much non-knex, than I won't accept it. It has to have good instructions, or it won't get accepted. If it is something small, I will make it to see if it works and to see how good it is. A big ball machine will be accepted if you have instructions of some of the elements. When Will It Be: It will start now and go to November 1. If I get 20 entries before the ending date, I will quit the contest regardless of the date.    Prizes: There will be a grand, first, second, third, and runner up. Grand Prize: Follow from me, votes on all your ibles that you have in contests, and a 3 month pro, and your winning ible in a knex contest winners collection. First  Prize: Follow from me, vote on all your ibles that you have in contests, and your winning ible in a knex contest winners collection. Second Prize: Follow from me and your winning ible in a knex contest winners collection. Third Prize: Vote one of your ible, and your winning ible in a knex contest winners collection. Runner Up: Your winning ible in a knex winners contest collection. If you have any questions, please ask! That's all! Have fun! Current Entries:   Element Force's Shotgun Turret for the TR8 The Knex Inventor's Toothebrush Holder KneXFAN200's Fidget Spinner KneXFAN200's Annoying Clicker Box

Posted by random_builder 1 year ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Pictures cut off

I started writing a new Instructable and noticed that when I use the preview function the pictures are cut off and therefore weirdly off centre. For some of the pictures it doesn't really matter, but some like I said look weird (as shown in the pictures). I don't see why there is a need to cut the pictures. Is this just an error and will it look better once the instructables is published?

Posted by BrittLiv 10 months ago  |  last reply 6 weeks ago


Instructables unusable on an iPad unless logged in.

Instructables is unusable on the iPad due to advertisement redirects constantly taking you to a new page. Horrible “Congratulations!!!! You won an Amazon or Walmart Gift Card! Pop ups and redirects. Please fix! This happens in Chrome or Safari in multiple IOS versions. This has been happening for several weeks now.

Posted by Frankincell 1 year ago  |  last reply 7 weeks ago


Hotwheels Track size?

For a future instructable, I need to know; What is the size of Hotwheels track. ie the inside wideh and the height of the side walls? Any help appreciated.

Posted by motleyjust 9 years ago  |  last reply 7 weeks ago


Instructables login issues

The site seems to be logging me out as I am browsing the instructables. I tried to re-log in but it wouldn't let me. I am using firefox, just downloaded it to my computer last week since I saw that the site is best viewed with that browser. Really kind of annoying because then I can't view a whole instructable on one page. Dennis

Posted by foothillfrontier 8 years ago  |  last reply 7 weeks ago


VR gaming parties anyone?

Last week I was "volunteered" by friend to help setting up a rented and empty factory building for what he called a VR gaming party.My job was down to somehow get enough cables and power outlets from that rented industrial power box inside the building.And well, organising about 800m of network cables with routers, switches and whatnots :(After a hard days work and testing all we went for a well deserved beer.Next day I pooped in to see how the computers are going and where things like tables, catering stations, portable toilets and so would go.Well, the later ended outside for various reasons...To my surprise all hardware was basically boxed in and then padded all around.And although not even running at full capacity the computers already created a lot of heating the building.(Mind you we getting into the summer here)The most confusing thing was seeing several elevated work platforms with people creating a maze of wires about 2.5m above floor level.Now it dawned on me that this "party" might slightly more than what I was used to in my gaming years.Was curious enough to ask if I could jump in again when the actual thing starts and was invited for a quick test later that night.Walking around in an empty building while thinking you are inside some racing game was a strange thing to say the least.I learned why there where two people around me and my brain not always makes the right decisions without the sensory information provided by my ears matching what my eyes see.A bit later when most players where set up and active I realised that this type of VR is not for me.Ever seen those movies where someone has really bad halucinations and tries to fight against something that is not really there?Yes, that is exactly how it looked like LOLSometimes all is in slow motion then suddenly they jump shoot their virtual guns and go for cover...I guess if you are not in it then you just won't understand.Watching the screens for a while I could at least find some relation to the action but it was like another world if you know what I mean ;)What do you think will the near a slightly further future bring us in terms of virtual reality?Will it affect us as badly as social media and mobile phones already do or will it bring some real benefits for everyone?By the way: Virtual Reality Cars are already in the design visions!Self driving cars that put you into another world while driving - why think you sit in the car if you can put the seat back and immerse yourself into a virtual beach?

Posted by Downunder35m 7 weeks ago  |  last reply 7 weeks ago


What are some good long distance friend pranks?

So my friends got me with a prank, so now I need to prank them back. Two of my friends, I either don't have access to their house, or I am not able to see very often. One friend, I created an ad to have people call him with their best Chewbacca impressions. But I am stumped on what to do for my other long distanced friend.

Posted by KaylaR44 2 months ago  |  last reply 7 weeks ago


Cutting Hardened Steel

So here's my situation... I've lost the key to my U-lock - I'm fairly certain it fell out of my pocket while I was sitting - somewhere :/... Any recommendations on how to cut it? After chewing up 1 hacksaw blade to it's dull tomb, I'm fairly certain it's made from hardened steel. Bugger. From past expirience, bolt cutters don't play nice with hardened steel :p Recommendations? oh, and it's a decent lock - picking isn't an option :/

Posted by trebuchet03 11 years ago  |  last reply 7 weeks ago


Arduino Outdoor Security System - PIR Motion Sensor, Security Lights, Intruder Warning/Alarm & Blynk Notification

I would like to ask your suggestions on how to build an outdoor ESP2866 security and sensors combo. I have seen separate postings on PIR and lights around the site and in other websites so I thought it would be doable. I knew Arduino then but only paid close attention when I realized that my x-10s are outmoded but z-wave devices are expensive. So I am learning about it, how to sketch and trying to understand C++ more. My dream is to build an outdoor ESP2866 combo, powered by an AC120v-5v module, with two PIR motion sensors, three 120v relay switches (two relays for two sets of security floodlights and one relay for an amp/wave speaker with mic), a photo (dusk/dawn) sensor and temperature/humidity sensor (for a future thermostat). Operationally, I imagine that it could be armed and disarmed through Blynk. When armed at daytime, a motion will trigger a low volume intruder MP3 warning alert with 10 minutes of security lights at night. But if the trigger persists for more than 5 minutes, the security floodlights will blink, a loud intruder alarm will sound and push phone notifications. What will be the best way to sketch these? What is the better way of wiring them together? How could I make multiple ESP2866s in the same WAN work together for an event? The desired function is if an alarm event is triggered in one of the ESP2866 that would also set off blinking lights and alarm sounds in the other ESPs. Thanks for all your help.

Posted by EeA2 1 year ago  |  last reply 7 weeks ago


Bug, Suggestion, Feedback! Community sections

Since there is no place for it right now I just created a topic for the purpose of collecting bugs we find.Let me start with a little list I collected so far:1. Confusion!When I create a new topic I need to select a category and channel.So where exactly are these categories and channels?Somehow I struggle to find them anywhere else than in the two drop down menus when creating a new topic.If we have all those drop down options then why can't we make proper use of them?2. List problems!I know there is planned work on the way we see the cummunity section but still...When I create a new topic then it seems to be nowhere.I check again a few hours later and still nowhere.Next day often the same storey.Where does a new topic go and when does it appear in the community section?3. Sorting - this one is already being worked on I guess.We really need a working option to sort postings and replies by time and date and relation.I get notified about a reply and check...Hmm, about 80 replies and somehwere, someone wrote something new...Good if you can copy and past a part of the preview to search for it in the browser manually...Comfort and logic is needed to replace the current confusion and inconsistences.As for suggestions to get the section up to what what both developers and users turn into happy campers:1. Editing options!!!For years this is my number one that not just got more and more ignored but also reduced to nothing.Anyone creating a topic should have direct control over it.This means beain able to create the post in a way the poster sees fit for the purpose.The basic text editing options any Vbulletin or PhPBB board would offer should be available here in a similar way.Embedded text and images in the size and place that fits - either by posters choice for the size on the screen or by providing a fixed sized preview that opens a fullsie view when clicking on it.Code is more important these days than back then when I first asked for option to embed it here.Tags are useful for a lot of things.Add a quote from a previous post or reply, add a code window that allows proper copy and past action for both poster and reader (preferably with highlighted syntax like in Notepadd++, ....You can only provide dedicated help if you have the right tools for it.And you can not ask for dedicated help if you can even properly post the problem due to restrictions and limitations in the editing system.Coloered text, other than for code is not really required but all the basics anyone knows froma real forum would be a great addition.2. Tagging or otherserwise highlighting the areas of the topic.If I already create a post in the technology section than it would only make sense to see a corresponding icon next to the topic in the community section.Same for coding help, mechanical problems and so on.The current sections and categories are outdated and a lot of things are missing.Mabye not in terms of Intructables but certainly for the community sections.3. Structure....Currently it is all one big blob and not even the sorting works (yet).This is perfect for people like me wanting to quickly check if something new was posted but not so good for someone trying to have some fun browsing.Imagine you want to spend some quality time checking what problems people have or what help they seek when it comes to woodworking.No search options, no list options, no categories to explore.Back in the day we had a few sections and a basic sorting option, like by most recent.Someone only interested in helping with coding on Arduino wouldn't even bother here and move on.On the other hand, people with no clue how to fully specify their problem might find a solution just by browsing through the corresponding section.4. Linking Instructables....I don't know the reason for it or the idea behind it but why again is the question section filled with Instructables?And why look lot of Tips like Instructables?I mean if it is for the user to find stuff than it might bind him on the website, but I doubt it will be satisfactory for the user.Questions or tips in regards to an Instrubale should be there- with the Instructable but not in the community section.Add it a tab for the Ible instead...I see little to no point in answering to a question someone has in regards to a specific Ible unless "I made it"....5. Voting and closing...When it comes to forums then one thing all have in common: bloat.People only register to post something but never come back.Topics are solved, done and dusted.Topics gone dormant for months or even years.Great answers or vital details get lost.The list goes on....What it comes down to is that order needs to be restored and maintained.Open an archive section and start moving out.Topics of certain age and with no new replies - gone.Topics where the user never again logged in - gone.Topics voted or request to be closed, closed or gone to the ariche as well.Topics voted to be of general interest pinned somewhere for easy reference - like this one ;)A thread starter got his answer and is happy? Then for crying out loud let him vote or credit the best answer and close the topic.More than three people voted or tagged a topic as useless, not possible or similar - close it so it can one day go in the archive section too.All this and more should create a community section that once again can become an active playground for everyone.A place to seek and find help.And who knows, maybe some of the good old guys might even consider a return and more time spent here....

Posted by Downunder35m 2 months ago  |  last reply 7 weeks ago


Native iOS and Android App Retirement

Hello Community! In an ongoing effort to make sure that Instructables is able to focus its product development efforts where they count most for existing an new authors, we are officially retiring our native iOS and Android apps. Note that this does not affect mobile web. I expect continued investment in mobile technologies for years to come, but we will focus on the experience of people using Instructables through their mobile web browsers, rather than through downloaded apps. For those keeping score, this isn't exactly news. We have not released new versions of either app in over two years, and they have become steadily buggier and buggier during that time due primarily to changes in their respective environments. Android 2 and iOS 5 were current when we released them originally, and Android 7 and iOS 10 are very different beasts. Simply keeping up -- even without adding anything new or fixing any bugs -- requires a constant investment of development time from Instructables, and prevents that time from going to projects with greater impact. The original purposes for the apps were: 1) To lower the bar to Instructables authorship by providing direct access to upload photos taken on smart phones 2) To improve the browsing experience by making it faster Since they were released, mobile technologies have progressed to the point that #1 is no longer a concern. Our mobile web editor already has full support for uploading images directly from your phone. #2 is also coming into striking distance soon, as browser manufacturers begin to standardize their implementation of offline content for mobile web sites, sometimes referred to collectively as "progressive web apps". We'll be watching these technologies closely, and we'll be among the first to speed up your browsing experience with offline components when cross-browser solutions become available. We have already developed (and will continue to expand on) Accelerated Mobile Pages, which mean we display nearly instantaneously when you tap an AMP result on mobile from Google. You can identify these pages via a lightning bolt in mobile search results: In short, the reasons that we developed the native apps no longer apply, and we're dropping support for them in favor of putting those energies where they are able to have greater impact for the community: Mobile Web. The apps will soon be removed from sale from their respective download stores. For existing users who have downloaded these apps and are using them currently: feel free to continue doing so, though we would urge you to upload your Instructable Drafts to the website as soon as possible. While we don't expect the editing process to break, no support is available should you experience issues in the future. You can also use the apps to browse Instructables, though I believe there are already some issues that have started adding friction to this experience. Thanks, all, for your continued support of our vibrant community! ~Devs

Posted by pseaton 2 years ago  |  last reply 7 weeks ago


DIY Scuba Tank (breath underwater)

I need some advice. I have a great idea that would be amazing if it worked. I want a small scuba/air tank whatever you want to call it (like a scuba secondary tank or a paintball co2 tank) that i can use to mess around with in a pool. I dont want to be constantly breathing, just enough to take a deep breath, go underwater and hold it for a minute, release air from the tank-take a breath, hold it, take another breath from the tank, hold it, and so on. Just enough to get a few breaths and be under water to last me for 5 or 10 minutes. The only thing is i dont want to have to fill it at a dive shop or from a tank that has to be filled at a dive shop like scuba secondary tanks. i want to rig it to fit a bike pump (which probably will not have enough psi to get the amount of air i want) or my air compressor. So i would like advice and also would i need an air regulator since im not constantly breathing? what could i use as a regulator if i need one at all? 

Posted by wdemarche 4 years ago  |  last reply 7 weeks ago


Washing machine door won't open - possible solutions!

If you have a front loader and found this then most likely you are currently unable to get your washing out of the machine.Welcome to the club!Here is what happened to me, skip this bit if you like:The washing finnished, I try to open the door but nothing.Ok, maybe some electrical bugger somewhere, so knock it a few times but still no go.Mind you that I am in AU now but a long time ago I took my European machine with me - not knowing there won't be any service down here.A quick search on my model and the problem informed me that either the electrical safety lock is faulty or the handle part is broken.The solution to open the door as suggested by the official support:Take the damn thing apart until you get the front off.Unscrew the lock from the inde and then investigate the actual problem.Well, lets just say I was not in the mood to dismantle the entire thing just to open the door, so here is how I did it:Part two: Options to open the door if the handle won't do the trick:Most front loaders are designed to make thing complicated when it comes to the door mechanism.It is considered a safety thing, so tempering from the outside shall be prevented.A faulty electrical lock is rare but I will try this a bit further down.Almost all front loaders use a hook like pin in the door.And once the power was off for a few minutes the safty lock will disengage - if not look further down this text ;)But since the cover is screwed on from the inside of the door you can't get easy access to this locking pin.In some cases you can be lucky and if you look from the side you can see it - if so then try something flat enough (but sturdy) to press it towards the center of the door.For me the problem was the cover really covered it all :(I used some strong, braided fishing line instead to pull on the hook pin.Take a lenght to go all around the door, push the line in where the handle is and guide it around the door.Take both ends together and pull - the door pops open.Be aware though that fishing line can cut into your fingers, so make a loop and a wooden handle or so instead of your fingers ;)Part three: The door is open - what now??Well, if you managed to open the door during part two already then your handle part is clearly broken somewhere.At the hinge should be two (or four) screws with heads that are different to the rest - if in doubt aim for those closest to the hinge.Remove them while supporting the door!Once the screw are out you should be able to get the door off with a bit of wiggling and different opening angles.If not put the screws back in and remove all others first to take the front cover off while you attempt to get the door off.The handle part isusually fixed with screws that hold the cover, so it should come out once all is seperated.With some luck you find a part number on it somewhere on the back, if not check your prefered supplier for a spare.Part four: To repair or to not repair?You might notice that with just the actual locking pin and its frame that screws into the door all would work fine.If really just the handle part is broken while the stronger part for the screws and actual pin is fine:Consider leaving the handle off until you get a spare.The door can be mounted without the actual handle but you need to take the framework apart.Once done you should only have a basic frame to screw into the door with the hook in it but the actual handle is gone.And without the handle you have easy access to the pin - you can even push it with your finger to open the door...But as said, in my case the frame for the door cover blocked this bit too much.For the first wash I used a popstickle stick as it was thin enough...If no spares are available anymore and repairing the broken plasic is not an option either:Part five: For the desperate - modified locking pin.I have seen people placing a bolt into the front of the machine and then literally screwing the door close.The safety was then just bridged of course...This however is not recommended and a bad idea anyway.Much better is to be creative and to use some spare metal or strong plastic like Delrin.Fibreglass re-inforced plastic like from an old sewer box is great too but a pain in terms of protective gear while cutting, drilling and sanding.Either way you should now see the resulting parts of your accident scene.And this of course only works if at least the frame for the pin itself is still intact.The mechnism in the original is a double lever - you pull the handle away from the door and the pin is "rotated" over its pin to move away from the lock.Take the actual locking pin out, trace its shape and on the drawing add a suitable "extension that you can press down (on the outside of the door).In the most basic form a simple straight lever going away from the machine at a 30° angle will do.Cut a cardboard sample to check if you really have enough free movement.If all is good create a copy in the right thickness and put it all back togehter without the broken handle.To open the machine you then just press the lever towards the machine and the door pops open.

Posted by Downunder35m 8 weeks ago


Oops! We couldn't understand your request

I finished editing my instruct-able and when i try to publish after changing the thumbnail it gives the error that is showed in the pic attached.  I have tried multiple times but its giving the same error. OS : Windows 10 Enterprise x64 Browser : Chrome Version 54.0.2840.99 m (64-bit) Have tried attaching the image here using the new and old uploader but it isnt attaching too :/ Here what the error message states Oops! We couldn't understand your request. Please contact us to tell us as much detail as possible about what you were trying to do when this happened

Posted by Diy Tech 1 year ago  |  last reply 8 weeks ago


How do you make Sanding Sealer / Grain Filler?

Hello there :) This is my first forum post so please be gentle ;) Okay, here's the skinny. I am doing a zakk wylde paint job on my stagg strat. I've removed all the paint and sanded it down. But I have some scratches on it (from the sanding) and a few places where I went in too deep with the sandpaper and removed some of the old sanding sealer. So, I need some sanding sealer / grain filler in order to make it a nice smooth surface so I can apply primer to it. Here's the problem. I live in a country where there is ABSOLUTELY NO DEMAND for sanding sealer / grain filler. So there is nothing like that in Bulgaria. And I need to know how I can make my own. (all of the carpenters here sand it and put on some lacquer and it's an awful finish but that's how it is here) Sooo, can any1 please help mee.... :) I really need something that is a good substitute of grain filler / sanding sealer.

Posted by tednet 10 years ago  |  last reply 8 weeks ago


signals for Model railways

I made the signal. I will show it soon.

Posted by paul Fast post 3 years ago  |  last reply 8 weeks ago


Publisher won't recognize keywords, so won't publish

No matter what I put in the "keywords" field, I get the "Please add keywords" error. Same using XP with Chrome, or Win10 and Edge. See attached screen capture.

Posted by DconBlueZ 2 years ago  |  last reply 8 weeks ago


Iron Man's Repulsors

How would you build iron mans repulsors? I have some already...     You could use a transducer for particle displacement, you might be able to send an ion beam through a "tunnel" of a heavier particle, since it can't travel fast in air. I need ideas! Thanks, Laserbeamtoast.

Posted by Laserbeamtoast 5 years ago  |  last reply 8 weeks ago


Specific replacement wire to use for battery-pack?

Hi all,after finding an old etchingpen and opening it up to (see picture)needless to say i need to replace the coil-wire. is there a specific or special material to use here? i assume i can't just use any wire...i'm an electric-noob, so please be clear and don't use to much specific termonology - i probably won't understand! :PThnxz in adance

Posted by Brian M V 2 months ago  |  last reply 8 weeks ago


HHO generator with iron electrodes

Hello Everyone, I recently found out about Sodium Hydroxide as an electrolyte. I have read that it does not affect the electrodes like salt or baking soda and it does not create any weird gasses like chlorine. The main reason for using stainless steel electrodes is to prevent this corrosion, but since sodium hydroxide does not create this corrosion, can I just use the much cheaper iron or regular steel as the electrode plates? Thanks in advance  

Posted by JStuyfzand 3 years ago  |  last reply 2 months ago


How do I share a Preview of a Draft?

I would like to share a preview of a Draft that I am working on, but can't find a way to do that anymore.

Posted by KurtRoesener 1 year ago  |  last reply 2 months ago


5v to 12v convert

Hello, I want to connect a portable solar powered rechargeable to 2 DC fans of 12v to cool my car. 1. I have 2 options of portable solar powered: (A) 1500mAh, outputs: 5.5V / 800mA (B) 2000mAh, outputs: 5V 500mA     which one is preffered to connect to those PC fans? 2. most of the PC fans are working at 12v. I don't quite sure if I'll build simple 5v to 12v regulator it will works and produce enough airflow. Thanks.

Posted by ashakif 7 years ago  |  last reply 2 months ago


Staying motivated to complete a projects . . thoughts?

We've all been there, and I'm right there currently with a specific project:I was excited at first and started making this thing, and about midway through I've lost complete interest in the project and am struggling with motivation to finish it!For me, the contests here on Instructables were a great motivator with specific deadlines that always kept me motivated . . . but I work here now and cannot participate in them ; )When I lose interest in a project, it's often because the intriguing creative challenges have all been solved, but the project isn't yet completed. However I'm ready to move on to the next thing . . so the half-finished projects keep piling up. I've found that I'm far more interested in the active problem-solving process that "making" provides, than in actually producing completed things. It's an odd dilemma, and maybe I'm not alone in this. Do you experience this same mid-project disinterest? Aside from deadlines, what do you do to stay motivated to complete projects once the interest begins to dissipate?I'd love to hear my fellow Instructables authors' thoughts. Let's have a conversation!

Posted by seamster 2 months ago  |  last reply 2 months ago


Need help selecting a small motor for moving a small rig back and forth left-to-right only about 1 inch.

I have never worked with motors before, and I am starting to realize that there are dozens if not hundreds of different types of motors. Imagine two 6" long, 1/2" dia. aluminum rods suspended between two pieces or trapezoidal shaped plywood that are secured to a base and braced to make this whole structure rigid. on these two aluminum rods "rides" a small carriage that is literally just a small 2" x 2" platform made from... whatever... 1/4" plywood. This carriage can slide left and right on these two aluminum rods. I need a motor that can somehow move this little platform left and right, back and forth, only between 1/8" to 1". I need to be able to control the speed (rate) at which is travels this small distance.I also need to be able to control the starting point and the end (return) point. Basically, I and transferring string from one spool to another. So the platform will have a spool of thread on it, and it will be going left-to-right while another spool is turning. The left-to-right movement will be coordinated with the speed that the second spool is wrapping (turning) so that the thread windes as close to "perfectly" in layers. And each spool will be between 1/8 - 1/4 - up to 1" wide. This is why I need to be able to set the starting point, and the end point where it will stop and reverse direction. I will be controlling this with a project board like an Arduino. I just need to know what kind of motor to look for, and any other suggestionsThanks guys!

Posted by Dolmetscher007 2 months ago  |  last reply 2 months ago


Does anyone know a way to sense the temperature of perspex sheet?

I have a project in which I need to know the temperature of the perspex in a perspex sheet (so I can control aforesaid temperature). The Temperature sensors I know (TMP35-TO92) are okay for getting atmospheric temperature but no good for this.Has anyone a solution to the problem?Thanks

Posted by vagulus 2 months ago  |  last reply 2 months ago


The little guide to buying on Ebay

Like or not Ebay is now the number one online market place.Since they do their best to keep it that way a few tips might be of use to someone.Unlike some other guides this one is not about how to find the best bargain.It is about showing some things you should be aware of, especially if you are new Ebay.1. New, unused, refurbished....These three can literally mean anything if you find them in a listing title.Unless you read the full description you simply don't know.Assuming the listing goes along with the title.New should mean exacty that: Same condition as you would find in any retail store.Unused can be the same but could also mean it was opened, like to check it or take the pictures.Refurbished is something to take with caution.Unless it clearly states Manufacturer refurbished you just don't know if the refurbishing is done to specs.For a phone it could mean a badly glued screen, a no name battery, non matching serial numbers...Unless an item is factory sealed you should expect detailed pictures.In a lot of categories you will only find generic pictures though - buyer beware!2. Warranties....Ebay does have a buyer protection but Ebay does not deal with Manufacturer warranties in any way!In some countries a seller is legally required to provide a warranty and return statement.Sadly that is not the case in all countries Ebay serves.When it comes to brand new devices you might experience problems with your warranty.As more and more companies go against online selling platforms they do not support they simply exclude them from a warranty.Let me give you an example for this one:You see your favourite smartphone at your local retailer for the bargain of just under $1600, while on Ebay you find the exact same model for $1200.Easy choice? Depends...If the manufacturer does not support this then only the seller can provide you with some sort or warranty.The good one claim to do so but don't expcet this from someone only selling a handful of items per year.In the worst case it could mean your new gadget develops a fault over time that would be fully covered by a manufacturer warranty but you would totally miss out.The money is gone and you have to fix it at your own cost.If the item in question is also of value then please check the warraty and return conditions the manufacturer allows before buying.4. Pricing....Especially when it comes to things that somehow could be bundled or used with something else you can get screwed.The culprit i question is the multi-item-listing.You might look for a battery pack to keep your phone charged when on long hiking trips.But the first 50 or so listings are all in the lowest imaginable price range.The listing title shows what you are looking for, the image does too....Then you dare to check and it is a listing where you can select multipl items.The price shown in the search result is only for the lowest crap listed there, like a "waterproof usb plug"....The actual thing you need is usually overpriced.You are forced to either ignore suspiciously low priced listings or check them all to compare prices.5. Postage costs....A lot of things these days come with free shipping, all good.If they don't then again: Buyer beware!Sometimes there are exclusions, like certain post code areas.Or the free shipping is not for international customers.If it is clear you have to pay shipping and you buy only a single item then again the case is quite obvious.Combined shipping however does not always mean single costs!Check the psotage options for multi items carefully!Often additionalitems are free if they are small.But if a seller already charges you a high postage fee than chance are you pay the exact same price again for the second - even if the arrive in a single $2 prepaid envelope.6. Faked locations....It seems to be common with Chinese sellers to avoid import taxes by faking a local item a selling address.In some cases (often after Ebay got too many buyer complaints) they list the real shipping time of 2-3 weeks.More often however they don't.Once you have the problem the best option is to open a "item not received" claim 3 days after it was due.On the due date contact the seller and ask when to expect it.There is a way to spot these fakes and tax frauds:If a local seller, with a locally listed item gives you a Chinese Paypal account with an address in China than you got a fraudster.Problem is that once you committed to buying and can see the sellers account details it is already too late.To cancel such a transaction you need to do it the official way and if the seller won't agree then don't expect Ebay to accept that you don't want to suppport tax evasion and fraud.Either way, I report each and every single one seller showing a local item with a local selling addrees but using a Chinese Paypal account.7. Fraudulent listings and sellers....Let me give you a slightly overstated example on what I mean:Seller has only sold a very few items, usually of low value.Suddenly you spot y nice and this years model laptop at a bargain price.You check the listing closer and find just 2 or 3 pics.Further down you read something along the lines "Unwanted gift, comes with car charger only."If it is this years model then it is still under warranty and no one would lose all the additional hardware like the wall charger. ;)Again it is up to the buyer to decide....Ebay does not check where an item comes from or if the seller is the legitimate owner of it.8. Exclusions to make...Be it price, auction only, distance and so on.You can make certain limitation and selections to narrow your search results.Some make sense and work, like just showing items to auction.Distance no longer really works as sellers are no longer required to state a town or post(zip) code anymore.Price is relative too.If you know the ting you need definately costs between $100 and $130 then the search still won't filer anything out that is a multi item listing and within the price range.And in some cases it just totally fails.A very vital exclusion was removed around 2014: by country.Now all that is left is to limit to all within your home country.You can't select for example Japan only if you are located in Europe and would like to avoid the rediculous postage costs from the US.And you could not exclude China either...All or local is what you can play with.For the rest that is available: use it whenever it make sense and is possible.9. You buy it - your problem!No I don't mean faulty items or wrong ones.I mean simple things that can happen to anyone distracted, unconcentrated or too full of exitement.You buy something and think you are the happiest guy in the world until you double check the listing to confirm your luck.Missed the over $300 in postage ocsts?Did not see further down that it states "replica" or "scale model"?Or hints that the massive sized Opal in fact is just a resin with a thin and cheap layer of Opal flakes on a black background?As said, your problem alone.I know a lot of people who started having fun on Ebay until they got their gib bargain surprice - one way or the other.Don't become one of them and read and check listing you might want to buy with great care!10. Feedback...You might have noticed that it is next to impossible to find a seller with a feedback rating below 90%.The reason is quite simple: The lower your ratings as a seller the further down the search results you appear.And of course you don't make any business anymore once so low...But feedback you leave is as important as feedback you get!So if you spot a deal where the seller has a rating below the magic 99.5% positive rating you should check his feedback.Quite often it is clear that some angry customer left it.Most obvious if the seller left a reply stating otherwise.But in some case you more than one buyer left a negative feedback for the same reason as other buyers - this is where you should be careful.The reason to actually check the feedback is quite simple: It is heavily manipulated by Ebay.A seller won't get and negative feedback if he agreed to replace the item in question or if he offers a refund.Same for simply stating that a negative feedback was not justified.The later can be anything from the words used to just wanting a clean sleeve.And if a seller is highly active than business rules and the feedback is corrected by Ebay.You might have noticed that for some sellers now now new negative feedback show up that would be of any real concern for a potential buyer...11. Retractions :(Be it a seller not wanting to sell something that auctioned off below his expectations or a buyer who simply failed to pay attention to the price and all details : A retraction is possible.If you try a lot of auctions you might have had the "second chance offer".After you lost an auction you might get notified that the winning bid was retracted and that you are next in line.In almost all cases your last bid will be accepted but some sellers offer you the item for what the rectracted bid was - so pay attention to details!Now you might think that if happens so often you could make good use of it.Like for example participating in several autions to try to win the device one way or the other.Set some sutomatic bids and go to bed.If lucky you got one, if too lucky you won all auctions.Retracting your bid on those you now no longer need is possible but I strongly advise against it!Firstly you can negative feedback from the seller for it and secondly Ebay will keep you under watch if it happens too often.An honest mistake and all is fine but ask for a retraction a few times a month and you will have a hard time on Ebay.In the worst case Ebay can even suspend your account or exclude you from auctions.So, is it still worth signing up and trying to find a bargain?IMHO it all depends on WHAT you are looking for.Someone in a remote area of Brazil will certainly value it differently than someone living downtown L.A. with access to all sorts of shops, retailers and outlets onevery corner.Same for spare parts, electronic parts or stuff that is made in China anyways.But times have changed for sure.What started free for everyone became a paid platform for those who sell.Later those buying also had to pay extra as still all transactions come with fees on the side of Paypal.Not much to be fair but still...And from a platform with a few scammers and frudsters that always got and kept your money we came to something flooded by sellers that should not even be allowed to have a Paypal account.The buyer protection helps in some way but it can take weeks to get your money back and if it something expensive than this money makes interest for someone else while you don't have to buy what you wanted to buy.While, in a real shop you just go back and return your item to get your money back - plus you get a real warranty.Do your homework and be aware of what could go wrong.If it looks like it could go wrong somewhere than you might want to consider a deffierent option for this item.

Posted by Downunder35m 2 months ago  |  last reply 2 months ago