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Posted: 6/28/2003 4:27:24 AM EDT
Well, I was coming back from vacation last Sunday, and not wanting to deal with security, I put my laptop in its case, and put that in my checked suitcase, padded by clothes. I've done this at least ten times before, and things always turn out fine. When I arrived home in Denver, I noticed my bag had the blue TSA inspection tag, and a notice inside that my bag had been inspected. So, not trusting govenment employees, I looked inside, and made sure nothing was missing. Nothing was; my laptop was in its case, and my clothes were still there. TSA people can't pack, and put my laptop case on top of the clothes, but nothing's missing. Fast forward a couple days, to Wednesday or so. I finally decide I need to get at some summer school papers on my system, get the laptop out of the bag, and the screen looks a little funny. Weird, why are there these lines on my screen? No matter, I turn on the machine aaaand... Grodyness. The LCD's been smashed to hell, and the screen is unreadable, except for a tiny patch in the upper-left. The combination of laptop bag and clothes packed luggage has always been completely reliable. My feeling is that TSA opened it up, messed with it (there's concrete dust on the cover), then put it back it my suitcase, conveniently protecting all my clothes from impact damage. So, I called United to file a claim, so that I can at least get them on my side and point fingers at the TSA. Nuh-uh, they're not liable for damaged computer equipment. They won't touch the problem. I go read around and apparently TSA takes 3-6 months to process claims, and denies them the far majority of the time. So now, I'm stuck with a 300 MHz laptop that needs a $600 replacement screen, and I got class on Monday. It's not really like I can live without it, either, since I'm a Computer Engineering student. I also don't have $600, and if I did, I'd buy a new system. So then, why am I posting my troubles here? I'm hoping someone who's had something similar happen to them knows any tips or tricks to getting TSA to pay attention quickly. I also need to figure out what basis I will make my claim upon. Many thanks in advance...
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 4:33:40 AM EDT
Basically you're shit out of luck. The feds are never going to reimburse you for a new screen as they will blame the airlines. The airlines MAY relent and make a token payment but nowhere near $600 bucks. I fly a good bit for business. Here's my top three suggestions to make it manageable... 1. Carry on only 2. Carry on only 3. Carry on only
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 4:47:10 AM EDT
That really sucks, Not_A_Llama. I'm paranoid about anything fragile in checked baggage. I'll cart all electronics on the plane with me. The only reason I check baggage at all is so I can have a knife & a multitool with me at my destination. PS...if you can live with a 300MHz notebook, they sell on Ebay for $100-300.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 4:53:30 AM EDT
Never put a laptop in checked luggage. Several folks at work have tried this, and they all have stories like yours or worse.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 5:09:13 AM EDT
We often have to travel with lots of expensive equipment, RF spectrum analyzer = $10k, Time-Domain Reflectometer = $5k, laptop cpu = $4k, misc voltmeters, buttsets, tool kits = $1k. ALWAYS use PELICAN cases and NEVER ship by AIRLINES!!! Ship your equip by UPS or FEDEX INSURED to your hotel, your next destination(s) and then back to your office. If they fvck it up, you get NEW STUFF![beer]and in over 10 years of doing this, they have never messed up with us yet.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 5:13:52 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Not_A_Llama: So then, why am I posting my troubles here? I'm hoping someone who's had something similar happen to them knows any tips or tricks to getting TSA to pay attention quickly. I also need to figure out what basis I will make my claim upon. Many thanks in advance...
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Not to make light of your query, but [rofl2] You've got a better chance of squeezing coal between your ass cheeks and making a diamond then you do at getting the TSA to pay for your laptop. I'm sure they have a written policy that states they are not responsible for electronic/computer equipment in checked luggage, and thus, you're fight shall end. You could pursue it, but you'll just get blue in the face. See if you can find an "El Cheepo" laptop and swap hard drives for the time being. Sorry about your luck. I too hate the TSA, but for other reasons that I won't Hijack your thread for.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 5:41:55 AM EDT
What brand/model laptop is it, I may have a screen for it..... dave daverichards64@"removeme"hotmail.com
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 12:25:14 PM EDT
Agree'd with TheDave what model is it? I've got an IBM, a Winbook and a couple of NECs (all in the 300Mhz range) that have to many issues to use other than for spare parts.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 3:27:15 PM EDT
Good luck. I recently broke the LCD screen on my Gateway. $1000 fix. Whats a guy to do, gotta have it and can't replace it for that price.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 3:55:20 PM EDT
Hook up an external monitor to use it. Find a way (network?) to get your files off. Get a new one and hope they send you some coin in the future. Bob
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 4:00:57 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/28/2003 4:07:06 PM EDT by Not_A_Llama]
Thanks for the replies, thedave, it's a Compaq 1244. Kinda old, but HP/Compaq apparently likes sapping people for all they're worth. KY-bob, I'm running it as a headless (haha) machine right now, and with the help of 802.11b, I managed to get my important stuff off. The VGA-out function's been toast for some time now. Unfortunately, there are some registry entries that're somewhat important, and I can't get those off very easily.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 4:03:32 PM EDT
what size LCD? I have a 14" in a toshiba tecra 8000
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 4:16:31 PM EDT
[url]http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=3420744439&category=3712[/url] I wonder if this is compatible...
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 4:47:16 PM EDT
I don't have any great solutions for being reimbursed for your loss. I actually doubt you'll get anything but hope you do! I use a leather backpack made with a padded slot for a laptop to carry mine. It's really wonderful and beats all the laptop bags I've seen. I've had it for several years and when I replace it I will do so with the same thing. I have travelled with laptops alot and never had a problem with damage when in my backpack, but I never check it either. Good luck! TT [wave]
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 4:53:29 PM EDT
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 4:59:33 PM EDT
Originally Posted By dmuldrew: Good luck. I recently broke the LCD screen on my Gateway. $1000 fix. Whats a guy to do, gotta have it and can't replace it for that price.
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There are plenty of replacement LCD's for GTW solos on eBay - I have rebuilt a Solo 5150 with the works from parts on Ebay... It now has an LS120 drive, an 8x8x20 CDRW and a 2nd HDD that goes in the front bay. The fact that I got the GTW laptop training did help - but thats more about reading part numbers.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 5:15:35 PM EDT
Best way I know to avoid TSA while using public transportation is to buy your ticket from either Amtrak or Greyhound.
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 5:20:50 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 6/28/2003 5:24:55 PM EDT by Not_A_Llama]
Unfortunately it's a 12.1" HPA display.. that ebay item just might work, though. The auction says the screen is bad, but I'm not sure how it could be worse than this: [img]http://top-quark.com/forums/laptop.jpg[/img]
Link Posted: 6/28/2003 5:41:39 PM EDT
cool, you could put that on Ebay as art and sell it....
Link Posted: 6/29/2003 12:45:30 AM EDT
You should be honored that your computer was destroyed by the heroic tsa which guards our country from those who hate our freedoms. You should be putting together a hero rifle fund for those brave defenders of liberty.
Link Posted: 6/29/2003 1:36:19 AM EDT
I'm in for 10 bucks.
Link Posted: 6/29/2003 2:18:27 AM EDT
My father in law just gave me 3 laptops about a month ago. He says "they are all broken" do what you want with em. I did, I fixed all three with parts from ebay (about 30 bucks) and I made 890.00 of all three when I sold them back on ebay. Have patience, poke around ebay for a while, look for the parts. Do a search in yahoo or google for your part. If you need these papers really bad, you can send me the hard drive and I can extract the files for you. They sell an adapter on ebay for laptop hard drives so you can pu em in your desktop and get your files. Rob
Link Posted: 6/29/2003 2:36:17 AM EDT
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