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The Thread
Act XI - Scene One

JesseJames has been lurking in the dark corners of "The Thread" ... he now emerges to battle his story and back up the post he made on Damselblue's other thread.



Originally posted by Birdfish

"First, no one ever heard "too bad" from our company. Second, no one ever got a box of Vava'u with 50 lbs."

I ordered 75 lbs,
and got right at 50.

I got a refund of appox. $20.
Pretty close.

I don't have the exact number.

I can look it up if you dispute this.

Wise Owl Recalling What Happened -

Upon receiving his live rock, JesseJames sent this e-mail to Birdfish ...

"I weighed the box myself when I got home. It's right at 55 pounds."

Jesse's shipment from Tonga was 68 pounds. The original order estimate was for 75 pounds. He immediately received a refund for the difference.

I e-mailed you within an hour of returning from the airport, stating what the box weighed.

You then tried to convince me that the weight difference was water evaporation.

I said ridiculous.

You then explained that boxes are routinely weighed with other boxes on a pallet, with the pallet weight being deducted. I asked the gentleman at the airline when I was there to weigh my box BY ITSELF on their daily calibrated (per the airline) digital scale.

Again, the box weighed right at 50 pounds.

(I told you this).

~ Wise Owl Reading E-mails ~

Upon receiving his live rock shipment, JesseJames wrote ...

The rock is very nice. One piece especially.

This rock looks very much like some pieces of limestone I am seeding in the display as well. It is going to work very nicely. There is actually a small piece of what looks like montipora that appears to be extending some of its polyps already.

I'll get some decent pics of the rock for my reef club. Thanks for a pleasant online experience.

Let me know what you think about the weight issue.

He was sent the following reply ...

We're glad that will work out nicely for you!

Regarding the weight ... the kilo weight is written on the top of the box ... that would be 30.8 ... this works out to be 68 pounds. (Multiply 30.8 x 2.2)

A credit will be processed for you today for the difference. In terms of the airline weight ... it's not an official weight. It's an estimated weight the airlines use. It has to do with the pallet weight and a deduction they make for it. If you look on the box itself, the shipment weight will be there.

We appreciate your comments and feedback ... thank you! Thanks again and you'll be receiving a credit for seven pounds later today.

The airline found this very amusing Birdfish, and I told you this.

Here is what Jesse stated ...

"...the airline finds this not only unlikely, but humorous that they could be off by 20 pounds."

"Those pieces of rock drained 20 pounds of water from Tonga to me? .... Ridiculous."

Birdfish replied ...

"From the first moment, we said the rock weighed 68 pounds ... so the difference we are talking about is 13 pounds ... not 20."

"How could or would I suggest 20 evaporated? 13 pounds is at issue."

I provided you with a number to call the airline yourself to validate the weight and speak with the exact employee that weighed the box originally, by itself, within two hours of receiving the box.

The manager on duty at the airline wanted to talk to you regarding the weight. You declined to call.

Jesse felt that his airline "validates" the weights on international shipments. An imported shipment already has a documented declared weight. The "exact employee that weighed the box" is not the person who validates the weight. For what purpose would Birdfish call?

I would also like to say that I was not unhappy with the shape of my rock. It was decent rock, but I DID NOT receive the amount I paid for, and was not refunded the full amount of missing rock, even after I provided a number to the exact person that weighed the rock at the airport.

Why you would not call the airline and verify the weight and resolve the issue is beyond me.


I am very sorry this happened to you.

It's completely unfair.


Hi All,

Sorry of the "off-topic," but since it has been brought up here....

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

JesseJames ... Did you not receive the below e-mail last year?   This was my last correspondence, I never received a reply. Did you ever get by to read our "Rock Weights" article?

Original E-mail starts now:

Hi Jesse,

I guess I wasn't clear. I did not say the rock evaported 20 pounds, ever. From the first moment, we said the rock weighed 68 pounds when it was in Tonga.

That difference of 7 lbs. was refunded to you last Friday - a week ago - within 48 hrs. It was refunded to the name you originally payed with. I asked yesterday if you received this and still haven't seen an answer.  So the difference we are talking about is 13 pounds in my mind, since day one, not 20. We've already refunded the 7 pounds.

How could or would I suggest 20 evaporated?

13 pounds is at issue.

JesseJames wrote ...

Those three pieces of rock drained 20 pounds of water from Tonga to me?

That's say ... conservatively over 10 gallons of saltwater?? Ridiculous.

I know full well after ten years in the hobby what a gallon of saltwater weighs.

I fully expected some fluctuation in weight. The rock was weighed in Tonga, and over 10 gallons of water evaporated out (?)

Jesse ... In the above you suggest 20 pounds of water is 10 gallons and that you know what a gallon weighs.

Your figures equal 2 pounds per gallon.

A U.S. Gallon of water weighs 8.6 pounds.
Imperial gallon more.

ONE GALLON = 8.6 pounds ... so I respectfully submit that it appears as though you have a problem with weights and measures.

I would suggest ONE gallon may have evaporated out of the rock between Tonga and here in 48 hours.

That is 8.6 lbs.

So if we add 8.6 lbs. to the 55 you say it weighed there - that equals 63.6 pounds.

Your first e-mail said you weighed it on a bathroom scale, now it is digital. Interesting evolution. Let's say any (bathroom) scale is off a couple percent.

Now the 63.6 lbs. plus another pound or two from the scale being off a percent or two equals 65 or 66 pounds.   We have refunded from the 7 lbs. difference (a week ago) from 75 down to 68 pounds. So now what we're really talking about is a couple of pounds difference !!

Today's additional thoughts.....

The legal weight, and always correct, is the invoice on the exporter's and importer's documents, which we have and can provide, not the airbill, where you got the 50 pounds from in the first place. As written on top of your box the invoice for your box was 30.8 kilos (68 lbs.), just 12 pounds from the "bathroom scale" weight first claimed (original e-mails retained).

We darn sure didn't say "too bad!"   (smile)



I see.

The airline is in the business of shipping to make money. When I see the man put the box on the scales at the airport, and it weighs 50+ (55 I believe was the number) on his scales, you can bet that's what the box weighed that I received, because it's cash on delivery for services rendered.

What the importer's and exporter's documents say I'm assuming doesn't mean a whole lot to the airline when they are charging me for shipping an item that has not been paid for until delivery.

(The minimum freight charges by the airline often determine the cost of lower-weight shipments. In this case, the airline would collect the same amount of money for 50 pounds as they would for 68 pounds.)

Received in an e-mail message from Jesse ...

"I asked the airline about it
possibly being that much off ...
it doesn't make sense to me after
I weighed it myself, and the airline
assures me that it weighs what
they say it did."

Why, after weighing his live rock again at home, did JesseJames call the airline to ask them if their weight could be off if he had just watched them weigh it while he was there?

As far as my bathroom scales and digital scales, you forgot to include my e-mail that the digital scales referred to were the airline's scales, not my own. Perhaps you can post that one.

Here is that message ...

"I never said I weighed it on a digital scale. I said the airport did. I did weigh it on a bathroom scale here at home."

Why did JesseJames weigh his box at home on his bathroom scale?

Didn't he just witness it being weighed on a digital scale at the airline?

Most bathroom scales state "Not legal for trade."

I suppose the reason why you would completely disregard what my box weighed at the airport, after I asked you to call the airline rep who wanted to speak with you, and stick to what was written on the box in Tonga, is very simply money.

I paid for 75 lbs. of rock.

55 was delivered.

7 lbs. was refunded.

That leaves 13 pounds that in my opinion I got stuck for. Not alot of money, but I'd prefer to receive what I pay for.

Let's compare notes!
This is what JesseJames posted to Damselblue ...

"... They sent me 50 pounds and then tried to convince me that 25 pounds of water had either drained or evaporated."

...Continue to Act XI - Scene Two