Packing/Shipping 101

Discussion in 'Packing & Shipping' started by Wardsweb, Jul 8, 2004.

  1. Synchro-bias

    Synchro-bias New ClassA

    Messages:
    642
    Location:
    Australia
    My packing method for amps etc. I first have foam sticking out around the knobs then bubble wrap, site amp on foam, inside a box, then place it in another box with foam, fortunately , limit on box side is australia post, so i couldnt pad up my amp as much but i am pretty sure she will be fine :)
     
  2. Duguana

    Duguana New Member

    Messages:
    26
    I recently shipped a Yamaha M-80, 55 lb unit. I custom build box around units. Large cardboard laying flat, 1.5" min. styrofoam on card board and under unit(with holes for feet and 1.5" wider and longer than unit), unit wrapped in thin 1/8" white foam to protect from abrasion then placed on styrofoam, styrofoam for sides rear and front should rise 2" above unit's top with the front and rear having open spaces for the protruding parts, and the back should have enough open space to contain the cord bundled and wrapped in the thin foam, then have a sturdy straight edge handy to make fold dents in cardboard as you go, with razor knife cut cardboard outward from corners so it will fold up to make box around all nice and snug, the corners will have enough to flold around as flaps which is where the hot glue gun comes in, fold around all coners and hot glue tight while making sure packing is all snug, place a few pieces of cardboard on top of unit to protect the breather slots from denting and use styrofoam only around the perimiter of the top of unit on that cardboard, now with knife cut in the corners up from the top of packing to make the box top flaps so 1st set meets in the middle and the second set completely overlap eachother, fold in 1st two then hotglue 3rd flap to completely cover the top, then fold down and hotglue the 4th to completely cover the top also, the top will now effectively have 3 layers of cardboard strength. Unit is snug and protected. Place that packed unit in a box at least 3" larger in all directions and fill the space with peanuts, and all corners should have 3" sturdy foam V blocks(you can custom make blocks by hot glueing styrofoam pieces together to meet your needs). You will need a large supply of glue sticks, they are invaluble and the cheapest will do. The custom cutting of foam can be done easily with an electric meat carving knife commonly found at thrift stores for $2-4. By hotglueing the box flaps closed and taping the outside makes for a very rigid build. You can hot glue corner reinforcements inside box for added strength.

    I shipped the C-80 and T-80 together in a seperate box(lighter weight each), each wrapped in thin foam, then placed together top to top with piece of cardboard between, then packing tape around middle/circumfrence to keep aligned, then tape around sides/back several wraps to hold tight together(no tape around front/back so no pressure on protruding controls or connectors), then custom box and into second box in same steps as done for the above unit(M-80). When I was done and test bounced them, I was satisfied they could've survived a one story drop. But there is always a chance internal parts could fracture(PC boards) or parts break loose. If interior protection is really needed, remove cover from unit, lay in several plastic shopping bags and overfill bags with canned expanding foam isulllation and press down with cardboard so it form fits inside and level with top, alow to cool and become solid/breath out cureing fumes, then reinstall cover and apply note alerting recipient to open and remove before powering up the unit.

    Feed back from the last unit I shipped, a Kenwood KM-993 amp: O boy supper nice. and packed to beat all. me very happy. thank you.

    Packing well gives peace of mind and a great feeling when report is good. Next time I use this technique for packing I'll take pics n post em'.

    Good luck understanding all that, Duguana

    PS: I've received several pieces damaged that I purchased through ebay, some even after I pleaded for good packing and they assured me they would. The handling/shipping company handled them rough but they would've been ok with proper packing. When many layers of bubble wrap are used, the corners of units just pop the bubbles when jostled thus rendering the bubble wrap useless and the unit can shift around more and pop more bubbles etc. One that I recieved actually had smashed in rear corner so bad the metal cover was torn some and guts all broken loose, PC board cracks, it was shipped together with another unit and poorly packed so they beat eachother silly. I repaired the unit (Pioneer CT-M5R multi cassette changer)myself first then once it was up and running for a few days without trouble I contacted seller and requested phone comunication, provided photos of repair process through personal email as proof. Seller refunded all shipping costs and agreed to pack with more care in the future(yeah right). The unit it came with was a Pioneer PD-M430 6CD player which worked fine but ended up with some dings. Pics of CT-M5R. I jumpered the PC board crack. I always prefer to try to repair first than to have to hassel with an insurance claim, so far I've saved all.
     

    Attached Files:

  3. N0D1st0rti0n

    N0D1st0rti0n New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Hiring it Done?

    Do you trust any of the major commercial shippers to (a) have the specific materials [particularly the antistatic characteristic] and (b) do a proper job of executing the job? If so, which? Thanks for your post!

     
  4. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    29,894
    Location:
    Central Missouri
    I find a lot of free foam and bubble wrap at furniture stores. So much furniture is made overseas now and it comes in big boxes with lots of foam sheets and corners. I've found some bubble wrap at furniture stores that I would describe as 'mil spec' it's made so strong. Also, I would echo the closed cell foam in appliance and computer packaging -- good stuff.
     
  5. audiolover2

    audiolover2 New Member

    Messages:
    9
    Packaging & Shipping

    I was reading some of the different posts on packaging & shipping and thought i would share some of my experience, i hope some of it is at least insightful.

    I have Shipped 100's of Vintage Electronics on eBay and other internet sales and have found that the safest and most effective way of shipping Vintage Electronics is actually a combination of several methods to ensure safe arrival of the items you ship. I also have received enough items to fill a small dumpster because someone did not take the time or have the knowledge of how to pack and ship safely.

    Whether I’m shipping speakers or electronics I always wrap the item in a clear plastic bag to protect the item from any moisture damage (you never know) plus it keeps dust and handling marks from getting all over item you are shipping. I use several layers of 1/2" bubble wrap depending on the weight or how fragile the item is i.e. glass, plastic etc. If the item requires double boxing, I then put that packaging into a 200# box which I made to fit to the dimensions and then use at least 2" of Styrofoam around that box and then make a box out of 275# cardboard to fit securely around that package * and there you have a pkg that will withstand a fall from 4'-5' without damaging the contents *.

    This obviously is not cheap, however I explain to the buyer what type of packaging methods and materials I use and they are usually willing to pay to have their items "professionally" packaged Heavier items should have the boxes closed using only industrial methods of securing the box closed. i.e. industrial 2.0 mil industrial tape and plenty of it, industrial hot melt glue or industrial staples from a heavy duty staple gun. The strength & rigidity of the shipping box comes from securing the flaps so that the box cannot flex, this cannot be done by merely taping the exterior, to demonstrate this take an 8x8x8 box and tape it closed and then with both hands push on the sides of the box and you can get the box to change shapes. This will not properly protect the contents, now take the same box and secure each flap to each other by either hot gluing or industrial stapling and you can change the shape of the box.

    For items that do not require double boxing I still do the first several steps the same and instead of making the box out of 200# to go around the bubble wrap, I then make a layer of 2" Styrofoam around the bubble wrap and I then make a box out of 275# cardboard and use the above method for securing the box closed. This is a very lengthy process I go thru that had taken me years to develop and not everyone will have all of the tools necessary to make the above packaging possible, however I thought I would throw out my 2 cents on how I package so hopefully my years of packaging may help some else ship their next piece of Vintage Electronics safely so the new owner will not be disappointed as we all have been at one time or another.

    One last thought that I practice with all of the money and packaging expenses I go thru to pack and ship safely, I never try to make a profit on packaging I do cover my cost for the packaging i.e.: bubble, boxes, cardboard sheet material however the tape, hot melt glue, industrial stapler, staples and other add up to about $1.00 a pkg and nothing urkes me more that buying an item off of eBay and the guy charges you $15.00 for packaging and you get a used diaper box with newspaper in it for cushioning.

    I hope this information can be of some help for all of the Vintage audio buffs that buy and sell.
     
  6. badbadbad

    badbadbad Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    647
    I have a great E--- Reputation for packing. Ive received a few bad pack jobs and it sucks.

    I always add 10 bucks to the price of a large item and I go to the family dollar store and buy a twin size foam mattress pad (egg crate style) for 10 dollars.
    (I also buy every roll of foam I see at garage sales)

    I layer wadded newspaper in the box and wrap the gear with foam, it usually goes around twice and leaves a bunch on the ends for "rolling" to protect the sides.

    With receivers, etc...I use polyfill (craft stuff, I buy EVERY bag I see at thrift stores and garage sales) to stuff all around the knobs & speaker terminals...then wrap it in a trash bag and roll it into the foam. Then I top the box off with more newspaper.

    I actually prefer used boxes and heres why....they tend to be a bit squishy, esp in the corners, this allows the foam to absorb the impact rather than a hard hit to a stiff edge or corner.

    I havent lost anything yet.
     
  7. kojima

    kojima Active Member

    Messages:
    114
    I used to work at a pack ship store and on occasion shipped out guitars and amps. some useful info I can share.

    -postal service is cheaper ussually only with small packages. UPS is cheaper online than in the store and Fedex ground has goten even cheaper than UPS. and in 2 years of working with all 4 carriers I have problems with each of them, but all were isolated incidents.

    -if there ever is a problem. official proceedure is. keep the packaging, take pictures of how it arrived. hopefully the shipper takes pics of how it was packed. the reciever should contact the shipper and the shipper is the only person a carrier will deal with(sometimes if it is mailed through a ups store or other pack and ship store technically they are the shipper if their account number was used). also you will need to provide a reciept to show the selling price. and if you did not get it insured or declare a value the max payout is 100$ no matter what its worth.

    -if a package will be left at the door when no one awnsers is up to the disgretion of the driver. if you write leave at door on the label they know its ok but can still choose to take it back with them and reattempt the next day.

    -if you ever have a question about how to pack fedex has a packing lab that is free to call and they will walk you through step by step on how to package correctly. 1-800-633-7019

    if you guys have any questions ill try to chime in if i can help.
     
  8. toxcrusadr

    toxcrusadr AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    29,894
    Location:
    Central Missouri
    It would be interesting to call the Fedex packing lab and ask them how to package a 60 lb vintage receiver.
     
  9. wingzam

    wingzam VIntage audio??

    Messages:
    1,424
    I raid the local appliance/furniture stores for boxes and packing and save alot of money!Plus they have these great corner protectors that really can't be beat.Often make my boxes from scratch and on heavy items I do everything I can to help the shipper..thats right - help the shipper do his job!The UPS drivers are overworked.These guys hit the ground running and don't stop.I give them a break and don't use them.I use USPS and the best trick I know is to cut hand holds in the heavier boxes so they don't have to work toooo,tooo awfully terribly hard picking the box up.Actually have been pretty happy with USPS services,but it probably doesn't hurt putting a big smiley face on the box that says "My mailman is God Almighty".They like that!
     
  10. rollei35guy

    rollei35guy Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    884
    I have had some interesting shipping experiences.

    I bought 2 tube testers at different times from different sellers (on different sites for that matter).

    On one the meter was loose so it banged around a bunch. I went ahead and accepted it because i was able to fix it easily enough and the price was right. however some bubble wrap between the lid and tester would have prevented that.

    Another the meter lens popped off during shipment. The dial face also came loose so those item along with an unsecured power cord beat the hell out of the unprotected meter movement. Again, some bubblewrap under the lid would help.

    i just purchased a PA amp (a big old Stromberg-Carlson PA) and had the seller open the cage and stuff extra bubble wrap. He complied even though he already had the amp packed up and ready to ship. It was a good thing because a transformer was loose and would have wreaked havoc. Instead it arrived safe and sound. I thanked the seller profusely for his extra effort.

    The most extreme case was a multi-meter that was shipped in a used box that looked like it came from the Crimean War and had just a single sheet of paper around it. no foam, crumpled paper, peanuts etc. Needless to say it was a paperweight.

    Even the during the best shipments packages are subjected to a lot of forces. Anything you do to cushion, secure and protect is well worth it.

    I hate seeing equipment damaged during shipment if it can be avoided.
     
  11. rollei35guy

    rollei35guy Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    884
    I have had some interesting shipping experiences.

    I bought 2 tube testers at different times from different sellers (on different sites for that matter).

    On one the meter was loose so it banged around a bunch. I went ahead and accepted it because i was able to fix it easily enough and the price was right. however some bubble wrap between the lid and tester would have prevented that.

    Another the meter cover popped off during shipment. The dial face also came loose so those item along with an unsecured power cord beat the hell out of the unprotected meter movement. Again, some bubblewrap under the lid would help.

    i just purchased a PA amp (a big old Stromberg-Carlson PA) and had the seller open the cage and stuff extra bubble wrap. He complied even though he already had the amp packed up and ready to ship. It was a good thing because a transformer was loose and would have wreaked havoc. Instead it arrived safe and sound. I thanked the seller profusely for his extra effort.

    The most extreme case was a multi-meter that was shipped in a used box that looked like it came from the Crimean War and had just a single sheet of paper around it. no foam, crumpled paper, peanuts etc. Needless to say it was a paperweight.

    Even the during the best shipments packages are subjected to a lot of forces. Anything you do to cushion, secure and protect is well worth it.

    I hate seeing equipment damaged during shipment if it can be avoided.
     
  12. sonofagun231

    sonofagun231 Member

    Messages:
    53
    Location:
    Michigan
    If you buy something online and are worried about the packaging, prearrange with the seller to send him a box with packing and instructions on how to pack the item. If he isn't 100% agreeable to this, walk away!
     
  13. cableguy2

    cableguy2 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    728
    Location:
    Syracuse
    Besides using all the great tips on here, styrofoam, garbage bags, etc, I do one last test before I ship anything out.

    I roll the box on the floor, and if I feel anything move at all, I tear it down and repack it. It doesn't happen often anymore, but it assures me that my packing is going to work.

    As a computer guy, I often save the styrofoam that the CPU's come in, they are nice and square and can be easily modified to fit a receiver or amp. I once sent a Fisher 801 to Canada, and it survived.
     
  14. Satcom123

    Satcom123 Super Member

    Messages:
    3,000
    Location:
    Central Oklahoma USA
    You know what? I would buy and have you guys ship anything to me. I have had my fill of horror shipments to me. Like reel to reel decks with the spindles poking out from the box and bent over. This was a parts deck that I wanted the spindles off of too. Seller wouldn't even pay me the difference or anything. That's all I wanted. It was soon lost and faded over time with no resolution.

    Turntables are another sore subject. Harmon Kardon ST-7. You know how hard they are to come by. Well first one had a bent spindle that made it inoperable. Even took it to a machine shop in hopes of them truing it up. But no can do. The second ST-7 came in but the plastic dusk cover was crushed beyond repair. I did get $40.00 back on one of them.

    When I buy off of ebay I contact the seller and talk to them about packing them good, (trying to build up a rapore), and that they don't have to be in a super rush to ship them, even offering to pay them extra for better packing.

    I too, this year will be selling some of my vintage items on ebay and will come back to this sticky for more helpful ways of packing. Thank you.
     
  15. guitar1580

    guitar1580 Active Member

    Messages:
    165
    Location:
    Wheeling, West Virginia
    I was impressed with the packing job done on a Yamaha CR620 I purchased earlier this year on ebay.

    The fellow used one huge piece of approx 4" thick high quality foam rubber, almost the size of a door. It was large enough to wrap completely around the receiver, and overlap, as well as having around lots of extra width on the sides to roll down.

    A few pieces of tape were wrapped around the foam in front to back direction, as well as side to side, tight enough to squeeze into the foam somewhat. It was like a big foam pillow, and then packed into a tight fitting box, which seemed to have slightly used, or softened corners & edges, as mentioned above.

    Quick and simple, yet very effective..... if one has access to the large peices of foam. The unit arrived with no issues. It appeared to be able to survive rolling down a flight of steps with all of the thick foam, and no way of moving around in the box either.

    Wish I would have taken a pic.

    Josh P
     
  16. chrisca1

    chrisca1 New Member

    Messages:
    33
    How do you make it economical to send something such as speakers. size + weight seems to skyrocket the prices.
     
  17. wingzam

    wingzam VIntage audio??

    Messages:
    1,424
    There's just no way to ship larger speakers cheaply.The best you're going to do is ship USPS Parcel Post,or UPS Ground.Both these companies have shipping calculators you can access via the web to find out which has the best rate.

    Of course reducing the size of the box will help to a small degree,but you gotta make sure those things aren't going to be damaged.Most vulnerable areas are the corners of the speakers and the grill/front,so pack these areas most carefully.
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2011
  18. tensleep

    tensleep Addicted Member

    Messages:
    6,984
    Location:
    Dallas Metroplex
    Fisher 800B to ship from Dallas to Baltimore

    I shipped this receiver out today. The freight cost was $58 UPS ground. I repurposed a Dell computer box from work for the inner box. I repurposed a box that my new office desk came in for the outer box. Here are some pictures:

    The Fisher

    DSC01027.jpg

    DSC01035.jpg

    DSC01036.jpg

    DSC01041.jpg

    DSC01042.jpg
     
  19. tensleep

    tensleep Addicted Member

    Messages:
    6,984
    Location:
    Dallas Metroplex
    Inner Box

    Fisher 500b Inner Box 062911 (1).jpg

    Fisher 500b Inner Box 062911 (2).jpg

    Fisher 500b Inner Box 062911 (3).jpg

    Fisher 500b Inner Box 062911 (4).jpg

    Fisher 500b Inner Box 062911 (5).jpg

    Fisher 500b Inner Box 062911 (6).jpg
     
  20. tensleep

    tensleep Addicted Member

    Messages:
    6,984
    Location:
    Dallas Metroplex
    Outer Box

    Fisher Outer Box 070111 (1).jpg

    Fisher Outer Box 070111 (2).jpg

    Fisher Outer Box 070111 (4).jpg

    Fisher Outer Box 070111.jpg

    Fisher Outer Box 070111 (5).jpg
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2011

Share This Page