I had a good run this week. I sold three MP3 players on eBay, including the iPod I bought a couple of weeks ago. I sold a 20GB RCA Lyra 2780 with most of the original accessories for $71. I sold a 30GB Creative Nomad Jukebox Zen Extra for $66 (I paid $5 for it @ a garage sale and had to buy a $10 power pack to charge it - not a bad ROI). The iPod I paid $10.50 for sold for $33.01.
I still wanted an iPod so I kept trying to buy a working 5th gen iPod Video. I kept getting sniped so I started looking at fixer-uppers. Some of them were going for as much as the working ones. Sheesh these things are popular. In the end, I did a $40 Buy It Now for another one with a bad hard drive. This one is thinner, is much better cosmetically, has 10 more gigs of storage and, best of all, it's color.
I'm going to fix this one but I'm not sure what option I want to use. There's a company called King iPod that can repair most hard drive issues for $19.95. The work is warranted for 90 days and they have a 100% refund if they find they can't fix it. Option #2 is to buy a replacment drive off of eBay. I can get an untested, As-Is drive for $18.00 (I've already nixed that idea) or a recertified drive for $28.00.
As I wrote that I think I made my decision. I'm going to send it off. I'm confident in my abilities to change the drive myself but if I break anything (liek the drive cable) or something else goes wrong, it's on me. If something goes wrong for them, it's on them.
Honestly, the only reason I was considering doing it myself was a question of time. I've been so impatient about this whole ordeal. A replacement drive can be here, potentially, by Wednesday. The mail-in repair would take 7-10 days. 2 days transit there, 3 day turnaround (not guaranteed), then 2 days transit back (assuming they can fix it). If they can't fix it, I can start searching for a replacement drive. Not sure if I'll find as good a deal as $28 but I'll take the risk for the potential for a cheaper price.