prefered shipping methods, experiances?

dbwalker

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Hi all, I'm looking in to selling a few of my guitars and am trying to figure out what is the best service to use for shipping if I use EBAY/ Reverb or if a member here buys one, what seems to be cost effective and safest? UPS/ USPS/ Fedex, what are you guys using?
I notice on ebay many charge a flat rate of around $65, not sure how that could cover shipping cost on a Les Paul from say California to New York including insurance
thanks all
 

ESchmidt

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UPS Is best in my experience. I would stay away from Fedex. I had purchased a vintage 1959 es-330 ($5k guitar) and they delivered it to the wrong address and the person there signed for it!! Imagine my displeasure. Anything could have happened to that guitar. Luckily it got sorted and everything ended up being okay. Another time I had received a guitar via FedEx and there were a few silver dollar-sized holes in the box. Also fedex will only insure guitars up to a certain dollar amount ($1500 or so). I have never had an issue with UPS. I think they are just a sharper company. Good luck with whatever you decide.
 

NotScott

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It really depends upon your area. Where I live, USPS is useless, UPS is a little better and FedEx is best. I have a FedEx office that is open 24/7 right down the street from me. I ship and receive everything from there and have never had an issue. Having worked for UPS in college, I could tell you some horror stories!
 

fry

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I never use USPS for some reason, I just don’t trust them with a guitar. I have received guitars through them without issue, though. I don’t care for UPS personally, they always cost more and take longer. I’ve had the best experience overall with Fedex. With eBay, you have to use the shipping calculator they provide. Punch in the weight and dimensions, and pad the numbers a little bit. There is no such calculator on reverb, you have to put a flat fee. You can lose your ass if the seller lives on the other end of the country, on a mountaintop.
 

RAG7890

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I only use DHL Courier.

Pretty much zero issues & never anything missing or damaged.

:cheers2:
 

toymaker

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FedEx/UPS - really personal choice. Neither stands above the other.

FedEx I am thinking caps the insurance at 3k for "collectibles" I am thinking - UPS 5k. Really if you own multiple instruments worth more than that - your better buying your own policy, which covers common carrier shipping than shelling out 50 bucks for 1 time time use policy anyway.

Either way you go - set up an account with them. It gets you 10-20% off "counter rate" - when your talking even a few $100 shipments a year, it adds up quickly for the time of entering your credit card online.

And most importantly NEVER ship a guitar or amp has a chance to sit over the weekend in a warehouse/truck. In example, ship on Monday if your sending cross country to avoid something sitting over the weekend in a midwest hub. Most shipping over 3 time zones takes 4 days. Ship early Monday morning to ensure its at its destination by Friday.

Guitars theres dispute if you should de-tune or not...personally I see no harm in doing it. Protect headstocks. Foam is cheap - repairs are not. Amps, wrap tubes/cords and pack inside the amp when possible - then triple wrap in bubble wrap, and use extra cardboard for the corners of the box to brace it. Guitars in a case and a guitar shipping box (ask local shops or check local Uhaul) - U-Line makes 3 or 4 sizes. My fave for high dollar electrics is the large acoustic box over the skinnier electric box - but never had issues single boxing.
 

LocoTex

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I've used USPS with no problems. Just pack it like you would like yours to come packed.
 

Freddy G

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I've had bad luck with all of them except USPS. Fed-ex actually shipped a custom guitar I built to the wrong address and someone signed for it. Took months to find.

But regarding packing, slack the strings right off. For a Gibson headstock the worst thing you can do is pack anything (even foam or bubble wrap) under the headstock. Make sure that headstock or tuners are not touching the bottom of the case too. If there is an impact the kinetic energy will transfer right through anything connected to the headstock. If anything, add some packing to the TOP of the headstock....they virtually never break backwards.
 

Freddy G

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And ask many pointed questions about insurance. They are real slimy bastards with their "fine print" when it comes to paying out.
 

Crotch

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I've found paying the extra 20 to 25 dollars to have them pack and ship really takes the questions out of who is responsible for damages. The first question they ask is how good it was packed. Well if FedEx or ups does it for you that's just one less thing to worry about.

I've shipped about 10 guitars the last month. I'd say I was 75-25 FedEx /ups. All have arrived with no issues. All packed by them. My FedEx tells me there is a 1000 dollar limit on guitars. Ups has not mentioned a max value and I've shipped items over 5k with them.
 

Ghostman

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My experience:

Have the shipping company pack the item and insure it. When it shows up damaged, the claim gets approved very quickly since the shipping company packed the item.

Regardless of who ships it, they are all a roll of the dice.
 

bossaddict

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My FedEx tells me there is a 1000 dollar limit on guitars.
That's supposed to only apply if they're 20+ years old. In those cases, I always go UPS unless they're still on my Clarion policy.
 

Crotch

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That's supposed to only apply if they're 20+ years old. In those cases, I always go UPS unless they're still on my Clarion policy.
Yup I always keep them insured myself until they've arrived. Just for added coverage
 

Walt_T

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I shipped a pedal steel from PA to CA a few years ago. Took it to the UPS store to be packed and shipped 75# package delivered perfectly. Let them pack it, any issues are on them.
 




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