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 Post subject: best way to ship valuable records
PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2018 6:50 pm 
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Victor O
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2016 3:57 pm
Posts: 89
I typically use media mail, well packed, and take out insurance if the record is worth more than approx 50 USD. But what is your preferred carrier, type, options etc for very expensive records - lets say 250-500 or so?


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 Post subject: Re: best way to ship valuable records
PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2018 1:31 am 
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Victor V
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Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 7:52 pm
Posts: 2270
The giant Snow Hawk. IF it has had it's talons filed to just the right point, so that it grips the record securely, without scratching.


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 Post subject: Re: best way to ship valuable records
PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2018 11:17 am 
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Victor V
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2011 7:54 pm
Posts: 2500
78recordpicker wrote:
I typically use media mail, well packed, and take out insurance if the record is worth more than approx 50 USD. But what is your preferred carrier, type, options etc for very expensive records - lets say 250-500 or so?


I have stopped sending fragile items through FedEx due to repeated breakage. USPS is best for valuable, fragile items, IMHO. Tight cardboard "sandwiches" surrounded by quality packing materials (i.e., not newspaper!) and strong boxes. Double boxing is recommended for wax cylinders and valuable items. I also use Rich Gordon's trick of a short length of PVC pipe for valuable cylinder records.


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 Post subject: Re: best way to ship valuable records
PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2018 1:09 pm 
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Victor O
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2016 3:57 pm
Posts: 89
Hi - do you ship via USPS media mail, priority, or?


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 Post subject: Re: best way to ship valuable records
PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2018 1:37 pm 
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Victor V
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2011 7:54 pm
Posts: 2500
78recordpicker wrote:
Hi - do you ship via USPS media mail, priority, or?


Well packed items are usually fine via Media, especially if they're not going too far. I will usually decline to send really delicate items like wax cylinders by Media. I personally think Priority is overpriced, but I'll use it when necessary.

Generally speaking, USPS moves packages by hand, but FedEx and UPS use automated conveyors. These conveyors can allow packages to drop a few feet while being sorted. That's why I don't use FedEx or UPS anymore for breakable items. A pity, since FedEx is usually a bit cheaper and slightly faster than USPS.


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 Post subject: Re: best way to ship valuable records
PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2018 4:30 pm 
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Victor IV
Joined: Wed Jan 07, 2009 8:44 pm
Posts: 1484
I have found that media mail is fine so long as you pack so that the records will not receive any blows from the outside of the box. Personally in my experience many professional sellers use newspaper in some form for packing. Most make a bed of either rolled or pancake shaped newsprint that is an inch or two thick. I have never received a broken record sent media if it was packed well. One place many amateur sellers go wrong is to just lay the album in a box without securing the records inside well. Often then the open end of the sleeves allow for the record in shipping to be worked out the end which results in cracked and broken edges. I lay a large sheet of paper under the last record sleeve with the album open on the table and then fold it up over the sleeves all at one time like a christmas package. Tape that and then run a heavy tape around top to bottom so the records can't be pushed out of the sleeves. Sometimes people decide to put bubble wrap between the record sleeves and I have had several where that extra strain on the record cracked the record near the spine. Leave nothing between them is the best advice I have for that. After either an album or loose records are stacked, and the loose ones have a 10 or 12" cardboard top an bottom, I put several layers of paper wrapped around them and then tape both directions to hold them snug. Lay that on the twisted news print or other packing Once laying on the bed of paper I fill in the corners first twisting the newsprint and then pushing it half each way from the corner. That keeps it centered. Fill the open spaces of the sides the same if there are any, an then the top like the bottom. The cover or the corrugated cardboard will hold them away from the edges so they won't be broken.

My postmaster told me that the Sorting Centers use ramps six feet tall or more and the boxes are simply dropped of the end into waiting carts. If your sending a really valuable record then you might want to consider using a very small flat box that can act as a cushion, besides the paper, and another on top to help prevent a heavy carton from falling on them. You could use peanuts but I hate to have try and get it off the inside peices once opened. And peanuts can shift as well. The bottom of the carton is the most vulnerable spot, some people tend to put all the protection around everything but that side which can easily result in the lower records cracked. I had a friend sending me the remains of a college library for nearly a year every few weeks. Often they weighted up to 30 pounds with 8 or more albums. He used box just barely larger than the albums them selves and padded well the bottom and top, most of them survived the trip although some of the boxes were split open on the corners from taking a drop somewhere. After that he started to tape around the whole carton sides several places to try an keep the box from dumping the contents out of spit corners. I wouldn't recommend sending that many or heavy a carton but even that can work, but more possible of being damaged.

As to the insurance factor. I used to buy insurance but when the cost got pretty high I decided that since my shipments pretty well all made it I would just self insure. Not paying several dollars a carton soon adds up to cover the rare breakage. If the customer insist on Priority and wants it shipped that way then I do, but its rare due to cost.


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 Post subject: Re: best way to ship valuable records
PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2018 6:01 pm 
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Victor O
Joined: Sun Apr 17, 2016 3:57 pm
Posts: 89
Larry et al - thanks, very helpful. I have done all of the above, except the box in a bigger box, but that seems worth the effort.
It also explains why I gave up shipping bulk 78s - the records, no matter how well packed with a heavy corrugated outer box, would arrive broken about ⅓ the time per buyers. If indeed a 40 lb box of bulk 78s fell six feet, even if packed like the crown jewels, well thats what can happen. I also think the temp of the facility where it is sorted matters, I've had many reports of cracked 78s in the winter months vs the summer - I live in the cold NE.


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 Post subject: Re: best way to ship valuable records
PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2018 10:16 pm 
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Victor VI
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Needle Tins are Addictive
Joined: Fri Jul 09, 2010 8:32 pm
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Location: Belmont, North Carolina
Something that I have done to ship a valuable 78 is to use two worn or not valuable Edison DDs as the sandwich, top and bottom with two sheets of paper separating the DDs from the 78. Then wrap the 3 records tightly with Saran Wrap and tape them with packing tape. Place them in the middle of an oversized box with packing material on the bottom, sides and top. If it is packed tight (the 3 record sandwich) the record can't slide or flex which inevitably causes damage... This has worked fine for me.
"The phonograph† is not of any commercial value."
Thomas Alva Edison - Comment to his assistant, Samuel Insull.

"No one needs a Victrola XX, a Perfected Graphophone Type G, or whatever you call those noisy things."
My Wife


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 Post subject: Re: best way to ship valuable records
PostPosted: Sun Dec 30, 2018 4:30 pm 
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Victor O
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Going through life at 160 RPM
Joined: Sat Nov 17, 2018 3:42 pm
Posts: 86
Location: Illinois
Wolfe wrote:
The giant Snow Hawk. IF it has had it's talons filed to just the right point, so that it grips the record securely, without scratching.


The giant Snow Hawk ! ? ! ?
Yikes !


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