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Shipping Gear (UPS vs. FedEx vs. USPS vs. DHL) Electric Guitar Amplification
Old 4th September 2012
Gear Nut

Shipping Gear (UPS vs. FedEx vs. USPS vs. DHL)

What is your preferred method for shipping synthesizers & gear in general?

The only reason I ask is because I am having a TR-909 shipped to me from California tomorrow & the person I bought it from wants to ship via UPS Ground because they apparently have the best insurance?

Do you prefer shipping via UPS, FedEx, USPS or DHL? If so, what method? Opinions, please?

Old 4th September 2012
Lives for gear

I;ve only had 1 bad experience so far, just a few months ago. Shipped a matrix 1000 to someone in LA, only 40 miles from me and he coulda just picked it up. I packed it very well, with 4-5 layers of cardboard on the edge and corners as well as bubblewrap and peanuts. I was actually proud of that packing job, as it was my best I thought. In the end, he received it with a bent face and ears, a big hole in the box as if someone dropped it on a metal corner 20+ft high, or it fell off a moving truck. Being only 40 miles away, it must've only been handled 2-3 times or 5mins total. I can't even imagine dropping a 1u rack shoulder height on concrete would result in the same damage, which is why I was so looked like it fell off a 5 story building or something. It was USPS. I heard they handle the worst for heavy items, which makes sense as they have small vehicles and are more accustomed to shipping only letters and I would guess they would be irritated handling bigger packages. Now, I judge carriers by the size of their trucks- UPS and FedEx have big trucks, so theyre more accustomed with heavy items. USPS, are spoiled in mostly handling letters and get pissed off, cry like babies, when they get big packages and treat them like crap.
Old 4th September 2012
Lives for gear
mike vee's Avatar
I had UPS destroy a 100% minty fresh and somewhat rare Akai AX-80 - it took like 4 months to get paid from the insurance. Just the fact that it got ruined wasn't worth the money. I should have just kept it :(
Old 4th September 2012
I'll add that DHL no longer ships domestic, only international. I know this because my mother works for them. Also, hope that the person shipping it packs it nicely for shock absortion. My method is that I wrap the item in bubble wrap, lay down a bed of popcorn, put the item on the popcorn and fill the rest of the box with popcorn. Finally, I tape up the box real good, including tape around the edges, which is the weakest point.
Old 4th September 2012
i dont ship that much but when i do its usps...the only problem I have with UPS is theyll leave it at an apartment door if they get no answer..they say the policy is to leave it with the building management but Ive had it happen several times...otherwise no probs

Ive had a lot of guitars shipped UPS and FedEx theyve never been damaged
Old 30th December 2013
Gear interested

Hey guys, new to the site and couldnt figure out how to make my own thread/topic to pose the question but it's most relevant to this thread: I have a Fender twin reverb that needs to be shipped from Virginia to Los Angeles. I guess my options are obvious, but I want to get some tips on how I should package everything. I assume I should remove the tubes? What about removing the speakers? How would I even do that? Not really a tech guy and never shipped big stuff before... any help or advice would be appreciated.
Old 30th December 2013
Lives for gear
count on abuse. that's the simplest way to look at it. when i sold my gear i found a place that would make the box to ship, out of 1.5 inch, thick heavy cardboard. leave 2-3 inches space in the box between the synth and edges. wrap the synth in bubble wrap and fill with peanuts. insure for the full value.

this adds significant cost to the shipping, but but everything i have sold via ebay has received accolades for the "bomb proof" packaging. i found most buyers were willing to pay the extra $$$ for peace of mind and i would be as well.

the key is to have the box built.

someone making $10 an hour will treat your package roughly at best, with contempt and malice at worst. i'm not really talking about the delivery personnel as much as the folks in the distro centers. they just don't care, and your only option is to pack like you are expecting abuse and insure like you are expecting it to be destroyed.
Old 30th December 2013
Lives for gear

FedEx Express Terms and Conditions and FedEx Ground Tariff

Declared Value and Limits of Liability (Not Insurance Coverage)
A.The declared value of any package represents our maximum liability in connection with a shipment of that package, including, but not limited to, any loss, damage, delay, misdelivery, nondelivery, misinformation, any failure to provide information, or misdelivery of information relating to the shipment. It is the shipper's responsibility to prove actual damages. Exposure to and risk of any loss in excess of the declared value is assumed by the shipper. You may transfer this risk to an insurance carrier of your choice through the purchase of an insurance policy. Contact an insurance agent or broker if you desire insurance coverage. WE DO NOT PROVIDE INSURANCE COVERAGE OF ANY KIND.
B.With respect to U.S. express package services, unless a higher value is declared and paid for, our liability for each package is limited to US$100. For each package exceeding US$100 in declared value, an additional amount will be charged. See Rates in the FedEx Service Guide for details.
C.With respect to FedEx Express Freight services, unless a higher value is declared and paid for, our liability for each piece (single handling unit) is limited to US$100 or US$1 per pound, whichever is greater. When the declared value exceeds the greater of US$100 or US$1 per pound per shipment, an additional amount will be charged for each US$100 (or fraction thereof) of additional declared value. See Rates in the FedEx Service Guide for details.
D.Except as limited below, the maximum declared value per package in any FedEx First Overnight, FedEx Priority Overnight, FedEx Standard Overnight, FedEx 2Day A.M., FedEx 2Day or FedEx Express Saver shipment is US$50,000. The maximum declared value per shipment for FedEx SameDay is US$2,000.
E.Except as limited below, the maximum declared value per piece (single handling unit) in any FedEx First Overnight Freight, FedEx 1Day Freight, FedEx 2Day Freight or FedEx 3Day Freight shipment is US$50,000.
F.Shipments (packages or freight) containing all or part of the following items are limited to a maximum declared value of US$1,000:
12.Guitars and other musical instruments that are more than 20 years old, and customized or personalized musical instruments.
Old 30th December 2013
Lives for gear
rjx's Avatar
Receiving = Whichever service will get it to me earlier in the day.
USPS and maybe fedex seems to deliver my goods in the AM. UPS seems to be late in the afternoon. I prefer early.

Shipping = I prefer USPS cause it's close by and they're easier (for me) to ship items from.

I pack stuff as good as I can. I actually overstuff the boxes with foam, popcorn, crumpled newspaper, etc, and use lots of SHIPPING TAPE to really seal the boxes. I'm obsessive about making the items fit centered, nice and tight so that when the box is sealed I can shake it and NOT hear anything moving around.

After that, I get the packages insured (with the buyers money) and then it's out of my hands.
Old 31st December 2013
Lives for gear

Dhl is the bomb, usps 2nd, fed ex and ups stick you with high prices and high customs fees
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