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Best way to ship a bass?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by The Navigator, Jun 4, 2001.

  1. The Navigator

    The Navigator

    May 17, 2001
    Tucson, AZ
    I guess this is the best place to put this.

    How do you guys ship your basses once you sell them? What do you use? UPS or USPS or Fedex, etc?

    how much does it usually cost you guys?
  2. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000
    I use UPS, Regular ground. It costs about $40 within the U.S. I have never shipped a bass overseas. Insurance is 85 cents per 100 dollars of the value of the item (a $200 dollar item would be insured for $1.70)

    If you do ship UPS, make sure you package your instrument well - Hardshell cases are ideal. If you're shipping with a gig bag, beef up on the protection inside the packing box.

    I'll move this to Miscellaneous, where it'll fit just fine.

  3. When you say Hardshell Cases, do you mean the hard cases that comes when you buy some intsruments? For instance, i have a Musicman hardcase that I got with my instrument. And when you ship the instrument in the hardcase, would you use some padding inside the case or any additional casing or padding around the case? Do UPS handle fragile items with care?
  4. Blackbird

    Blackbird Moderator Supporting Member

    Mar 18, 2000

    If it's a generic case in which the bass is not snug, make sure you put something in the case to keep the bass from shifting. If the hardshell case was built to fit the instrument, you don't need to put anything in the case with the bass. You will need to loosen the strings somewhat and add padding of some kind (styrofoam or newspaper) to prevent the case from shifting back and forth inside the shipping box.

    Well, I have never had a problem, either shipping or receiving merchandise, and I've done plenty of both. Maybe I'm lucky or things are well packaged. Can't help you with that one.

  5. I heard some horror stories about UPS last year, but I've never experienced any myself. I've shipped and/or received probably a dozen basses with no problems.
    Here's some more tips on packing and shipping, to add to what Big Wheel said. It's a good idea to wrap some bubble wrap around the headstock, to protect it. Use as much packing material as you can fit in the box. I like to put an old folded-up towel at the bottom and top of the box, and just fill the rest with styrofoam "peanuts." And, if you can afford to ship by air, do it. I never considered it until I was dealing with Carl Thompson last year, and he said he never ships ground because he doesn't like to have an instrument bouncing around on a truck for 4 or 5 days. I think he has a point. He shipped my bass to me by FedEx next day air for about $50, which isn't much more than UPS ground in a lot of cases. I figured after an airplane flight, the bass would be pretty out of whack, but it wasn't.. just required a slight tweak.
  6. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    Oversized box, lots of newspaper. Gig bag or hardcase: doesn't matter if you use enough paper. Styrofoam peanuts settle in the bottom of the box and don't offer much protection. Use UPS. But never COD, or you're asking trouble. The most I've paid to ship is $25.
  7. 31 hz

    31 hz

    Dec 29, 2000
  8. The Navigator

    The Navigator

    May 17, 2001
    Tucson, AZ
    well I just shipped with UPS and it was a nightmare. I went to one of their customer centers instead of a mailboxes etc. 'cause it's supposedly cheaper.

    First off, they insisted on opening the box and "inspecting" the contents. I must look like a terrorist or something. They thought it was gun, even though I told them over and over it was a guitar. I had it boxed and ready to go perfectly. (it took me over an hour of careful packing) It was gonna be 40 bucks ground. They reboxed it for me on their own, and this time it was almost twice the size and the cost suddenly jumped to 65 bucks with insurance.

    I was like "No way!" They started giving me this line about having to charge me for the 2 boxes and packaging they used.

    I bitched up a storm, but I was late back to work, I promised the guy I would send it today, and I just wanted it all to be over. So I paid up. With my gold card too. But I also got their names and an itemized reciept. As soon as the tracking shows it's out of that blasted warehouse, I'm going to complain as high as I can go. Maybe I'll be able to weasal some sort of refund. Bastards.
  9. Well, styrofoam peanuts don't settle in the bottom of the box if you completely fill up the box with them!
    Christopher, I'm curious.. why do you say using COD is "asking for trouble"? IME, it's the only really safe way to conduct a transaction with someone you've never met. My last few buys and sells have been done COD, there were no problems and everyone on both ends felt better about it.
  10. Gard

    Gard Commercial User

    Mar 31, 2000
    Greensboro, NC, USA
    General Manager, Roscoe Guitars
    U People Suck....

    ....I got a '95 Zon Sonus Special 5 Fretless recently, with a brand new neck, because UPS managed to break the headstock off it, WHILE IT WAS IN A BOX WITH PEANUTS AND INSIDE A HARDSHELL CASE. :eek: (if that doesn't impress you, do a little research on the strength of a graphite neck....)

    Stick with FedEx and always ship air, that way it's not sitting in a hot warehouse or truck for days at a time.

    By the way Dave, nice quote! ;)
  11. Christopher


    Apr 28, 2000
    New York, NY
    Dave: A buyer has screwed up my name and/or address on more than one occasion when paying COD. I didn't see payment for three months. When I did, it was UPS's payment, not the buyer's, and UPS's check was made using screwed-up name. Then UPS hired a collection agency to harrass both myself and the buyer for a few months *after* that, until I threatened to sue them.

    IMO, if you're dealing with an illiterate buyer, it's much better to keep payment issues and shipping issues completely separate.
  12. Fair enough. Man, sorry about that.
  13. benjamintowle

    benjamintowle Guest

    Apr 3, 2001
    usa tewksbury mass
    at my work like at jack young co they ship stuff ups they dont handle with**** care and damge stuff.like try not to send ups unless it wount get boke if it gets drope
  14. Ryan L.

    Ryan L. Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2000
    West Fargo, ND
    I hate it when things get boke when they gets drope.

    Actually, I have had pretty good luck with UPS. Never had any damage done to anything that I have bought or sold. Maybe I have just been lucky, though.

    The way things have been going lately, about the time I find the Roscoe or Modulus Q5 that I have been looking for, my lucky streak will run out and I will recieve a broken bass, compliments of some careless UPS guy.

  15. 31 hz

    31 hz

    Dec 29, 2000
    finally, my insurance check is in the mail. wish I woulda insured double to compensate for the pain the ass.....

    Just purchased a MTD beast 5 for back up -- when the seller asked me how i wanted it shipped, I just drew a blank..... (heh).

    31 hz

    Yup, I hope it doesn't get boke when it gets drope either. tha piz me'un offf. I wunt it knot get drov ovur ether.