How long do you wait for a check to clear

Hello, I'm selling some equipment for several thousand dollars. I told the buyer that I would take a personal check and send the equipment after it clears. My bank said that they couldn't tell me when it cleared, only if it was returned. They said that in most cases it should be ok in 10 business days. I'm not sure when to ship the equipment Does anyone have any experience with this? Help!!
Call the bank that issued the check and ask them if the check cleared
The problem here is the ability of a bank to "rescind" or recall the $ AFTER the check clears. Does anyone know what the time limit on that is?
12-15-10: Slikric3000
There was a law passed some years ago that when a check is presented to a bank it is processed immediately, it should clear the next day, mine does. No more check floating for the floaters.
Yes, the check may 'clear' for your use of the funds the next business day, BUT that doesn't mean that the funds can't be rescinded from your account many days later.

As many have said, this applies to even 'certified' checks. My local bank branch manager (BoA) told me the same thing...they can't tell you when a check 'clears' because they send it into the banking system black hole and don't hear anything (only if there is a problem) and that is a very variable time.

The best advice posted above was the idea of going to the local branch of the buyer's bank (if there is one) and cashing the check right there, and then with money in hand, deposit it in your bank. Other than that, the answer is just wait.

And the certified bank check business..all it means is that the buyer has the money in his account, but it doesn't mean you are going to get the money any more so than if it was a personal check.

Best methods:
Wire transfer
Postal money order
In person cash transfer
...and good A'gon feedback
If the check is a large enough amount they will put a hold on access to the the funds anyway, been there done that. So the argument that the depositor may access to the funds when the check clears can be misleading.
I only accept paypal from verified address and USPS money orders as I was told by my local banks that they were the safest. But about 3 weeks ago, my shipping center that ships UPS/FedEx for me said there have been some counterfeit USPS money orders surfacing. With the hologram and watermark, I thought that would be impossible, but if someone is smart enough to create a "foolproof" way to avoid counterfeiting, there is also someone smart enough to create the fake. Feedback is still the best way to judge someone. I'm lucky...over 600 transactions on Ebay & Audiogon and I was only burned once when seller never sent the cd box set and I paid by money order. From that time I only paid by paypal.