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Shipping Radios - what to do and what NOT to do
Old 02-04-2012, 03:15 PM   #1
Yuri D.
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Default Shipping Radios - what to do and what NOT to do

So you've all had this experience. An expensive radio arrives damaged, because it was packed badly by the person who cannot be adequately described by expletives when you open the box. This shows disrespect both for the purchaser of the item and the history of the item itself. I feel very strongly about this. The instructions below reflect my direct experiences:

How to pack radios:

1. Use hard styrofoam on all sides.
2. Use Hard Styrofoam On All Sides.
3. USE HARD STYROFOAM ON ALL SIDES!!!!!
4. Pack large tubes such as the RL12P35 separately. If they break inside the radio - you will never get all the pieces out.
5. Protect the face with a sparate piece of hard cardboard.
6. Place the whole set inside a plastic bag to help protect the pain.
7. Oh, did I mention....that you should use hard styrofoam on all sides?

How NOT to pack radios:

1. Do not use bubble wrap (equivalent to no padding at all)
2. Do NOT use packing peanuts (equivalent to no padding at all)
3. DO NOT USE BUBBLE WRAP!!!!!!
4. Do not put adhesive tape on any of the painted surfaces (yes someone did this).
5. Do not take the radio out of its case and ship them separately (yes someone did this).

Please let me know if I forgot something. I'm always surprised by the stupidity of people shipping expensive items.

Yuri

Last edited by Yuri D.; 04-27-2013 at 10:16 PM.
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Old 02-04-2012, 05:56 PM   #2
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Hi Yuri

i feel your pain...
You're talking about military radios that already have a hard shell. I have also had a similar experience with a bakelite radio. I will also say up front in this particular case I do NOT hold the shipper responsible as 1. He was simply on shipping an item to me, & 2, he was helping me out on a purchase I couldn't do direct.

The original shipper however, should have known better.

Anyway, The same rules apply:

1. Use hard styrofoam on all sides.
2. Use Hard Styrofoam On All Sides.
3. USE HARD STYROFOAM ON ALL SIDES!!!!!

Also, carefully take out all the tubes & carefully wrap them in body armour. Then re wrap everything in styrofoam on all sides.

In my case, 1 tube came out of its socket & destroyed every other tube before self destruction. Don't even start me on what happened to the outside bakelite case. Amazing what the tube wreckage can do to coils too....

Best,>>Rob
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Old 02-04-2012, 07:41 PM   #3
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A little memo:
-newspapers DO NOT replace the styrofoam!
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Old 02-04-2012, 10:14 PM   #4
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Oh, thanks! I almost forgot about newspapers......DON'T USE NEWSPAPERS

They are the same as packing peanuts or bubble wrap.
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Old 02-04-2012, 10:17 PM   #5
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This should be an angry thread. Since folks in many cases do not follow explicit instructions. Hard styrofoam packing should be a pre-condition to EVERY radio sale that requires shipping. Not coming through on that condition, should warrant a full refund if there's any damage.

Yuri
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Old 02-06-2012, 10:42 AM   #6
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Ask the shipper for complete pictures of both the INSIDE and OUTSIDE of the radio before shipping.

It won't preserve the historic value of the item but it will help with insurance claims.

It will also tip you off to a seller who fails to mention things like missing tubes in the original listing.
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Old 02-17-2012, 01:30 PM   #7
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In case of the high value radio (Köln, etc), travel to the seller and pack the radio by yourself.
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Old 03-03-2012, 04:34 PM   #8
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Hi there,

Hmm, ya.....I must sat that I have good experience with bubble wrap.
=> But only when enough of it is used !

For instance: I have sent several Feldfunks (remark: bakelite) and a HLS to countries as Spain and the US.
Never had any complaints.
Recently sent a 5WS to germany: no complaints.

What I often do is to take a sturdy, thick, carboard box, treat the walls with another layer of carboard and then wrap the item in bubble plastic.
But this only works when the plastic becomes a layer of several centimeters thick.
So thick that I can confidently drop the package on my stone floor without damage.
Then it works.

Yuri bought something from me some time ago, which was quite rare.
So that was put into a wooden crate with lots of space between the item and the walls to put in impact-dampening material. And as far as I can remember there was also Bubbles used.
He sent me a compliment on the packaging. (Remember Yuri ?)

So, to conclude I would like to say that bubbles are fine, but ONLY when used really THICK and with a sturdy outside packing like spaced cardboard or wood.

Regards,

Ton
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Old 03-03-2012, 07:43 PM   #9
Yuri D.
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Hi Ton. Welcome to the forum!. You did pack the items very well. And there was bubble wrap. But if you have a wood crate with styrofoam on all sides, then it is OK to use bubble wrap : - )
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Old 03-15-2016, 05:03 PM   #10
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I've an Hallicrafters SX28A on the way from Vermont to Indiana, to be here tomorrow according to Fedex. I asked the shipper how he was boxing it up and he said styrofoam sheet all around with the knobs removed and tucked inside, will see how it fares. I've shipped test gear all over the world, and we used the chemical foam packs that expand to fit the gear and box, or a thick cocoon of bubble wrap for everything and never had an issue.
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Old 03-17-2016, 01:03 PM   #11
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Here's what fedex did to my SX28;
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The SX28 had about 3 inches of styrofoam on the face side, two everywhere else with no gap in the box. They must have dropped it on the end, the 28 ripped out a bolt holding it to the cabinet, wich tore the cabinet and bent the chassis behind the face plate of the radio, and imprinted two bolt heads into the side of the cabinet. Nothing that can't be overcome, but they didn't get paid to drop it. Could always be worse I suppose.
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Old 03-17-2016, 05:47 PM   #12
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I wonder what got jarred loose inside. It must have taken some force to cause that deformation with all the wrapping. Sorry to hear about it. I have one that should be here any day now. Left Lubbock this morning.
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Old 03-18-2016, 11:21 AM   #13
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The total package was about 76 pounds and was actually pretty well packed. I suspect that some of the cabinet screws may have been loose. Some say a package isn't good to go unless you can drop the box from 6 feet up onto concrete - and if it gets damaged in shipping it's always the packers fault, but who is paying these people to drop the package? A friend I worked with told me something her boyfriend told her about his workplace, a well known international shipper. She said that a string of crt monitors from a well known pc seller fell from a 2nd floor roller track conveyor thingy onto the concrete first floor, obviously destroying the crts. The workers picked up the crts and sent them right back through the system.
I imagine this is what most shippers do in any similar circumstance. "Sorry, we don't know what happened to your package..."

What happened in my case is the shippers dropped it on one end, and the chassis slid in the cabinet, prying open the cabinet and imprinting two screw heads that are on the side of the chassis. Just some sheet metal work is all. Anyway, I got it because it came with the cabinet and they go and tear it up! Lol, go figure. Anyway, it has reproduction dials, wich usualy have been darkened considerably over the years, apparently 1940s translucent phenolic does not age gracefully. The dials in my 1942 Sx28 are almost too dark to see the lettering and pass very little light. The cabinet, dials, and some odds and ends will help get my mid 1942 vintage Sx28 going despite the damage.
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