Shipping heavy amplifiers

Boomzilla -- Thu, 05/06/2010 - 15:44

 I've got a LARGE and HEAVY amplifier to ship (150# plus).  The factory double-box container has a very heavy-duty outer box, inner box, and custom-cut styrofoam shock absorbers between the two boxes.  Is the factory two-box setup safe to ship in?  Will UPS / FedEx pay for damages if (when) they drop the item?  I'd like to have a national / international market for the amp, but do NOT want to have to eat shipping damage costs.  Advice appreciated...

David Matz -- Thu, 05/06/2010 - 15:50

I was outside a Crate and Barrel store the other day.  There was a UPS truck picking up packages.  All the packages said FRAGILE.  That did not keep the driver from tossing them around. 
To be safe, put the box on a pallet.  It will then be moved by a machine.  Ship it freight.  Also, purchase enough insurance.

Steven Stone -- Fri, 05/07/2010 - 15:34

 I agree with Curious mind. For something that heavy a pallet is the way to go.
UPS, Fed-Ex home, and USPS have no idea how to handle a heavy package. 
They sure know how to drop them, however. :)

Steven Stone
Contributor to The Absolute Sound,, Vintage Guitar Magazine, and other fine publications

Steven Stone -- Fri, 05/07/2010 - 17:07

Be aware that trucking services vary on what kind of service they will provide.

Some are only terminal to terminal and they expect you to deliver the palette to a shipping terminal and for your customer on the other end to go tot a local terminal and pick up the entire pallet.

Others will do residential pickups and drop offs. They usually charge more, but the extra level of service may be well worth it.

Steven Stone
Contributor to The Absolute Sound,, Vintage Guitar Magazine, and other fine publications

Ded Frag -- Wed, 12/08/2010 - 20:29

 Even if your amp is attached to a heavy pallet, trust no one to handle your package carefully. With amplifiers that have heavy transformers attached to a printed circuit board there's always a danger the transformer will come apart from whatever it's attached to. One way of minimizing this risk is to jam something, such as dense sponge rubber, tightly between the transformer top and the case itself. If you can gain access to the underside and find a gap between a transformer and case do the same there. There is however the risk that some idiot you've sold an amp to will plug the thing in without removing the extra packaging and wonder why there's smoke coming out of their new toy.
And if sending a valve/tube amplifier always remove them from their sockets and pack carefully after having marked each with their original location.

Elliot Goldman -- Thu, 12/09/2010 - 10:34

UPS does not take packages over 150 pounds and  you really need to ship a package that size via Air freight and to be safe you should skid it.
We use Pilot Air and they have been really good. When you skid it they can't drop it as easily since it is handled only by a machine,
Good Luck :)

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