I guess the OP is PUGging for this one. In that case, I am surprised it took 3 hours for people to give up.
Generally, I would say PUGs are a good way to move through the normal mode FPs, but when you get to the HM flashpoints and operations, doing them with anything other than a Guild group is both a pain and a potential risk - as OP points out, the repair bill and time spent with nothing worthwhile to show for it.
Finding a guild is not for everyone, and often if you are in a guild then the guild cannot or does not run the HMs on a timetable that suits you. But they do go much more easily if you have voice comms with a well-coordinated group who know what they are doing.
my run was a pug run :P
guess Niman has some good pugs lol