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[Solved] Damaged right angle plates, what should I do with them? Can they be "fixed"?

There is some art to sending heavy stuff in USPS flat rate boxes. The first trick I use is I put the ship-to address on a piece of paper INSIDE the box as well as the label on the outside. Once the outside label gets damaged, they look inside to see if they can deduce where it's supposed to go. This is a major winner.

The second trick is strapping tape. The kind with visible "strings" running along the axis of the tape. If I need to, I will wrap the entire box with strapping tape. They might get something shaped like a basketball, but it will get there unopened.

The third trick is light sheet metal. If there is something like a long spud wrench going corner to corner in one of those boxes, its sharp end WILL poke through the corner. But if I make a little corner out of really thin sheet metal, that will hold the poky thing and keep it from breaking through the box.

The last thing is packing material. You know those plastic bags in the produce section? Those seem to pile up in our house, where 2 out of the 4 of us are vegetarian or vegan. I find them very useful for stuffing into empty spaces in a box. I cram every bit I can in there until I can just barely close the box. If the part cannot move inside the box, it is much less likely to break through the cardboard.

I have successfully put 20 cast iron Hossfeld bender dies into a medium flat rate box and shipped it across the country. The box weighed about 90 pounds and yes, I did buy one of their "extra heavy" stickers for it. I figured it would make it and it did, but I sweated that one pretty good.

The question I have is if I'm at the other end, the buyer, who will open the box, how can I diplomatically suggest to the seller how to pack something heavy in a flat rate box safely? Some guys get offended.

metalmagpie
 
The first trick is an old one my parents taught me, though I don't see it used often. The second (though with regular tape), is obvious to most shippers. The third trick few US people even consider -- even if it's rubbery foam vs. sheet metal. The last trick, I thought, was standard practice, but seems to be an arcane art to most shippers.

The question I have is if I'm at the other end, the buyer, who will open the box, how can I diplomatically suggest to the seller how to pack something heavy in a flat rate box safely? Some guys get offended.

metalmagpie
I have trouble suggesting the same thing without offending the shipper!

And USPS is infamous for tossing their packages. I even spoke to a retired USPS worker who said that they literally throw the packages to get them from the conveyor into the appropriate chute when the packages are sorted.
 
There is some art to sending heavy stuff in USPS flat rate boxes. The first trick I use is I put the ship-to address on a piece of paper INSIDE the box as well as the label on the outside. Once the outside label gets damaged, they look inside to see if they can deduce where it's supposed to go. This is a major winner.

The second trick is strapping tape. The kind with visible "strings" running along the axis of the tape. If I need to, I will wrap the entire box with strapping tape. They might get something shaped like a basketball, but it will get there unopened.

The third trick is light sheet metal. If there is something like a long spud wrench going corner to corner in one of those boxes, its sharp end WILL poke through the corner. But if I make a little corner out of really thin sheet metal, that will hold the poky thing and keep it from breaking through the box.

The last thing is packing material. You know those plastic bags in the produce section? Those seem to pile up in our house, where 2 out of the 4 of us are vegetarian or vegan. I find them very useful for stuffing into empty spaces in a box. I cram every bit I can in there until I can just barely close the box. If the part cannot move inside the box, it is much less likely to break through the cardboard.

I have successfully put 20 cast iron Hossfeld bender dies into a medium flat rate box and shipped it across the country. The box weighed about 90 pounds and yes, I did buy one of their "extra heavy" stickers for it. I figured it would make it and it did, but I sweated that one pretty good.
It's the 90 pounds that saved it - they won't be tossing that one around.

The question I have is if I'm at the other end, the buyer, who will open the box, how can I diplomatically suggest to the seller how to pack something heavy in a flat rate box safely? Some guys get offended.

For something like that, it's the obvious question. If they are offended when you ask, look elsewhere.
 
And USPS is infamous for tossing their packages. I even spoke to a retired USPS worker who said that they literally throw the packages to get them from the conveyor into the appropriate chute when the packages are sorted.
I would expect them to throw the packages. They are doing a job and need to get it done efficiently. The shipper needs to expect that and design packaging accordingly. If your package will not survive several tosses onto a table or into a chute, expect disappointment. See Magpie's notes above. He has it right. Do that and your package will do just fine.

Denis
 
It is amazing how poorly some idjuts pack stuff for shipping. I received an 8" accudex via UPS packed in a box full of styrofoam peanuts. Well, what used to be a box. A few minor damages and the seller refunded a bit so I could affect repairs. Again the weight may have saved it a bit. Just too heavy to sling too far.
 
I received a coffee grinder via USPS today and thought of this thread. The grinder was not particularly expensive as grinders go costing about $150. But I photographed the packaging just to show what a common manufacturer does to ensure that their product arrives intact. The grinder had its own shipping box inside a display box, which was then inside another shipping box, which was placed inside the outside box with the labels, etc. Is it any surprise that it arrived without a single mark, or blemish, despite common industrial handling that it must have encountered on its 700 mile journey? Some might complain that this is overpackaging and maybe they are,IMG_0429.jpeg to some extent, correct. However, short of being driven over by delivery truck, this package was bound to survive.

Denis
 
a shipping suggestion which has provided beneficial in my sales--fashion a lifting strap out of 1 or 2 inch webbing and incorporate it into hardened shipping container--any weight 50 lbs or greater will be resented by package handlers--a lifting strap usually indicates shipper respects handlers/drivers
I file a steady stream of occupational injury claims against parcel services--drivers have up to 160 stops daily--anything a shipper does to minimize back loading will be appreciated--poor packaging assures abuse and missing/injured components
 
a shipping suggestion which has provided beneficial in my sales--fashion a lifting strap out of 1 or 2 inch webbing and incorporate it into hardened shipping container--any weight 50 lbs or greater will be resented by package handlers--a lifting strap usually indicates shipper respects handlers/drivers
I file a steady stream of occupational injury claims against parcel services--drivers have up to 160 stops daily--anything a shipper does to minimize back loading will be appreciated--poor packaging assures abuse and missing/injured components
Jack,

Do you have any pics? I figured UPS would ding me for any shape other than a simple box. I just shipped yesterday a 56- pound crated and boxed straight edge. That box is a royal pain to handle. If I could put a handle on it, I surely would do so.

Denis
 
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Some people suck at packing, no question. The last item I shipped was a 100 pound lathe chuck. I built a custom crate with 2x6 sides and 3/4" plywood top and bottom. I removed the D1-8 pins and added a layer of foam to the top as well as put wood spacers in the crate attached to the lid so that the chuck couldn't bounce around inside the crate. Nailed the crap out of everything at criss-cross angles - except the lid - which I put on with 12 screws. It arrived with nary a scratch.
 
Jack,

Do you have any pics? I figured UPS would ding me for any shape other than a simple box. I just shipped yesterday a 56- pound crated and boxed straight edge. That box is a royal pain to handle. If I could put a handle on it, I surely would do so.

Denis
Denis

for parcels 100 lb or less I use 2 in polyesther webbing which I sew in loops and attach to box or crate. Cardboard
box requires clear 2 in tape securing webbing to outside --position handle loops to allow weight supporting surface to
take load when released
for really heavy weight items I sew 4 inch truck strapping using singer #7 machine--hoisting up to 10,000 lb has been
accomplished without incident

plywood crates are wrapped with 2 in mil spec webbing and stapled to crate using bostich air gun--fast and
more simple than screws--steel strapping often supplements on plywood crates but is not used to lift

UPS, USPS, FEDEX thus far has not imposed penalties for webbing handles
 

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Denis

for parcels 100 lb or less I use 2 in polyesther webbing which I sew in loops and attach to box or crate. Cardboard
box requires clear 2 in tape securing webbing to outside --position handle loops to allow weight supporting surface to
take load when released
for really heavy weight items I sew 4 inch truck strapping using singer #7 machine--hoisting up to 10,000 lb has been
accomplished without incident

plywood crates are wrapped with 2 in mil spec webbing and stapled to crate using bostich air gun--fast and
more simple than screws--steel strapping often supplements on plywood crates but is not used to lift

UPS, USPS, FEDEX thus far has not imposed penalties for webbing handles
I guess I was looking for pics of the straps in place and not so much strapping. Also are you shipping via UPS or LTL or what?

I ship UPS and FedEx. I’ll need to inquire with them about whether straps are allowed penalty-free.

Denis
 
(See above posts regarding strap handles for heavy packages)

I was shipping another straight edge yesterday at UPS and asked if strap handles were allowed on heavy packages. The clerk sort of chuckled and said that they would be OK, but they would never be used. She explained that the delivery folks all just use hand trucks for large items and the straps would be inconvenient for them. Maybe other clerks/delivery people would have a different perspective. UPS website does not recommend them for heavy objects.

FWIW

Denis
 
(See above posts regarding strap handles for heavy packages)

I was shipping another straight edge yesterday at UPS and asked if strap handles were allowed on heavy packages. The clerk sort of chuckled and said that they would be OK, but they would never be used. She explained that the delivery folks all just use hand trucks for large items and the straps would be inconvenient for them. Maybe other clerks/delivery people would have a different perspective. UPS website does not recommend them for heavy objects.
Isn't the issue getting the heavy thing on and off the hand truck?
 
Isn't the issue getting the heavy thing on and off the hand truck?
Sure, but she said they just grab the package and move it and do not/would not use an added strap. Who better to ask than at the source I guess? But the next time I see our UPS delivery guy who has worked our route for 20 years, I'll ask Pat too.

Denis
 
Do you have any pics? I figured UPS would ding me for any shape other than a simple box. I just shipped yesterday a 56- pound crated and boxed straight edge. That box is a royal pain to handle. If I could put a handle on it, I surely would do so.

Here's a plywood crate I recently constructed to ship a heavy piece of equipment along with some accessories. The box is about 13" high x 12" wide x 29" long, and once loaded weighed about 74 pounds. I added a webbing handle on each end (You can see them coming through to the inside of the crate in the open top view -- they are stapled and then thru-bolted to the end panels. You can also see some some structures built into the crate to help secure the items being shipped).

In addition to being glued (except the top) and screwed together, I also wrapped the crate with filament tape... I'll find out on Wednesday how the shipment faired when I show up to do the installation.
Crate1.jpgCrate2.jpgCrate3.jpg
There was an extra charge from UPS for this parcel, but I don't know if it was due to the weight or being a plywood crate instead of a cardboard box, or what.
 
On occasion, I have made small wood crates for UPS or FedEx shipments with something grippable on the outside edges. The crate walls are thin plywood (1/4" or even 3/16") stapled to a frame made with 1x3 or 1x2 firring strips (actually 3/4"x2-1/2" or x1-1/2"). The frames are placed on the outside, and are screwed or stapled to each other along the crate edges.
This is not a super secure hand hold, but it is plenty for lifting the crate onto a handtruck or rotating it.
The major downside is that the frame, being on the outside, counts against the dimensions of the crate. UPS just loves charging for 1.5" additional in each of the three dimensions.
 
On occasion, I have made small wood crates for UPS or FedEx shipments with something grippable on the outside edges. The crate walls are thin plywood (1/4" or even 3/16") stapled to a frame made with 1x3 or 1x2 firring strips (actually 3/4"x2-1/2" or x1-1/2"). The frames are placed on the outside, and are screwed or stapled to each other along the crate edges.
This is not a super secure hand hold, but it is plenty for lifting the crate onto a handtruck or rotating it.
The major downside is that the frame, being on the outside, counts against the dimensions of the crate. UPS just loves charging for 1.5" additional in each of the three dimensions.
Yes, I have made probably 200 small to medium-sized wood crates to ship castings in over the last few years. But, I learned with my first shipment that UPS charges a significant surcharge if the crate is not wrapped in cardboard. This surcharge makes sense as handling wood is often a painful splintery experience. That is why I was leery of any handles as UPS does not recommend them but also does not specifically state they will result in a surcharge. I can see where the handles could also be a problem for UPS and the like as the handles might snag in handling equipment.

Thanks to you both, SF and Hawk, for your pics.

Denis
 
FWIW, I've seen cardboard boxes with web strap handles on the ends similiar to what I showed above (although I don't know how they are fastened -- suspect they are continuous through the bottom of the box). It's where I got the idea for mine!

Regardless of whether the package handlers and delivery person make use of the straps, *I* used them (for getting the shipment to it's drop-off point, and will likely use them when I'm unpacking the crate at the shipment's final destination).
 








 
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