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Aug 11, 2020 - 12:42:27 AM

Bill Rogers (Moderator)

USA

23895 posts since 6/25/2005

First, I hesitated to post in this forum, because nothing here is for sale or wanted to buy. But this post is of most importance to persons shipping instruments, who are the ones UPS might put at risk. So:

UPS in Modesto/Ceres, CA has piled packages it was supposedly too busy to deliver in a parking lot, where some have sat for weeks in 95-100+ degree weather. Here’s the story from KCRA, Sacramento:

https://www.kcra.com/article/pile-of-ups-packages-left-parking-lot-for-weeks/33566336

Of course, I cannot say how widespread this practice might be, but the fact that such an important shipper would abandon its duty to care properly for customers’ shipping consignments is scary. Insurance cannot really cover the loss of a collectible instrument.

Aug 11, 2020 - 1:38:49 AM

797 posts since 6/25/2006

That's terrible. I would never use UPS following previous bad experiences - they don't seem to take enough care.

Aug 11, 2020 - 1:51:48 AM

308 posts since 3/12/2014

I had Fedex toss a guitar amp on the porch. It landed with a heavy band and my dogs barking.

Package was marked fragile. Thank goodness it was not a tube amp.

No harm done but really????

...Deb

Aug 11, 2020 - 3:50:15 AM

beegee

USA

21837 posts since 7/6/2005
Online Now

Never have a problem with UPS or FedEx. The USPS, on the other hand....

Aug 11, 2020 - 4:15:02 AM

jacot23

USA

144 posts since 12/13/2012

I've never shipped a banjo, but have shipped golf clubs and firearms. Around here USPS is the only reliable option. UPS and FedEx are terrible. Wouldn’t surprise me if they were all doing similar things though; UPS just got caught this time.

Edited by - jacot23 on 08/11/2020 04:15:30

Aug 11, 2020 - 4:36:40 AM

Texasbanjo (Moderator)

USA

24839 posts since 8/3/2003

I've had lots of stuff shipped UPS and "most" of it came through okay.

My daughter had a big package sent to my house and when it arrived, it looked like someone had either sat on it or tried to open it. Luckily, the item was still in it, but the box was a mess.

Yesterday I received a very small box in a huge envelope. Everything was fine, no problems. Guess it just depends on what you ship and who's handling it?

Aug 11, 2020 - 4:40:38 AM

2306 posts since 4/7/2010

I have had damage done by all shippers, so I accept the risks so I can have a business in a rural part of West Virginia. I pack well and document the condition of all high value instruments on the day they are packed. I have not been denied a claim since I started photoing instruments with the daily paper before packing.

My USP driver has confirmed that she has more deliveries than ever and it is like Christmas. But there is nothing like "The Pile" here in Randolph County, WV.

I have had significant delays from FedEx ground in the past. A case of 100 sets of D'Addario banjo strings was disappeared in the local terminal for 2 weeks. The tracking continually said weather delays, though the roads were fine and UPS & USPS were making daily deliveries. I finally called the FedEx customer advocate office and was able to get my banjo strings.

Bob Smakula
smakula.com
 

Aug 11, 2020 - 4:52:35 AM

KCJones

USA

879 posts since 8/30/2012

That whole article reads like an ad for Bowflex.

Aug 11, 2020 - 5:08:16 AM
Players Union Member

DC5

USA

13159 posts since 6/30/2015
Online Now

quote:
Originally posted by debmurphy1

I had Fedex toss a guitar amp on the porch. It landed with a heavy band and my dogs barking.

Package was marked fragile. Thank goodness it was not a tube amp.

No harm done but really????

...Deb


Watched a FedEx driver kick a box of mostly canned cat food off the back of the truck onto the ground.  Virtually every can ended up dented.  I won't serve either people or animals from dented cans.

Aug 11, 2020 - 5:43:32 AM

363 posts since 5/29/2015

Good reason to put a sealed bag over the case before it goes in the box.

Aug 11, 2020 - 5:48:45 AM

5514 posts since 9/21/2007

I see the damage that UPS does to boxes every day at my real job.

I will say this for USPS, I was recently shipped a banjo that is about a rare as they get-- one of about two or so dozen that Fred Van Eps built after he closed his official production. It got trapped in that thing where it bounces around from one post office to another for a few days.

When it finally arrived, the box looked brand new, not a scratch, scuff, or mark on it. Not even a dented corner. We could not believe how well it was treated.

Aug 11, 2020 - 8:23:22 AM

191 posts since 8/11/2015

I think there is an extra risk involved when using any carrier that brings something to your house. You are at the mercy of a person who has to handle your package. We have all seen videos of delivery guys who throw flat screen TVs over hedges or whatever. Doesn’t matter which carrier. You never know who will arrive with your package. It is an extra link in the chain compared to picking it up yourself.

Aug 11, 2020 - 9:02:33 AM

1579 posts since 10/12/2011

Last year I was working my side job as a Game Warden and the Warden I work with wanted a coffee. We stopped at a gas station and I noticed two UPS trucks back up to each other. I watched packages being chuck out of one of the trucks and them landing on the pavement. And when I say chucked I mean not carefully.  I took a photo as I couldn’t beleave what I was watching. A UPS employee can out of the store and I asked what this was and she said and I quote “Raddle OK!” and she kept walking.

 

Edited by - buckholler on 08/11/2020 09:03:52

Aug 11, 2020 - 11:38:56 AM

bigleaf

USA

48 posts since 5/5/2019

The United Stated Postal Service does a great job.

FedEx broke my Enoch Tradesman in half.

UPS has thrown stuff it was delivering to the house onto the porch very roughly.

Aug 11, 2020 - 1:05:22 PM
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Bill Rogers (Moderator)

USA

23895 posts since 6/25/2005

I posted precisely because this was not a case of a careless or renegade delivery person.  All of us have seen problems there. But this one seems institutional.  A UPS depot storing undelivered packages outside, in this case in day after day of broiling sun.  That sort of heat will damage even well-packed merchandise.  Does higher management actually condone this?

Aug 11, 2020 - 6:33:47 PM

269 posts since 4/14/2017

I've had the same experience as bigleaf, USPS has been the most reliable and personable. I can even go in Saturday morning if i missed something that needs an autograph, and they take the time to get to know me and my preferences. UPS has been OK, I can go to their center at 8 pm If I've missed 'em. Fed Ex is at the bottom, they don't even bring packages to my door, they drop 'em off in the driveway close to the garage and I find 'em later.

Aug 11, 2020 - 6:37:26 PM

888 posts since 3/14/2003

Bill,
I wish that you would have hesitated on this post somewhat longer in order to think through where we are in our current shipping/delivery environment in the Covid world. I'm sure that there are many examples of delivery delays, delivery receipts, and extended transist times.
I'm not disputing this situation, but in these strange and unusual times, we all have examples of "they could have/should have done better". And I hope this forum, and the mods, will continue to take the higher road and apply a little grace for these extraorinary times. Many of us are doing the best that we can do right now. I'm only asking that we keep things in perspective.
thanks, clay

Aug 11, 2020 - 6:40:43 PM

269 posts since 4/14/2017

I watched the article now and I do appreciate what you're saying, Bill. Hopefully this is out of the norm for any company.

Aug 11, 2020 - 10:44:03 PM
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Bill Rogers (Moderator)

USA

23895 posts since 6/25/2005

quote:
Originally posted by hicotton

Bill,
I wish that you would have hesitated on this post somewhat longer in order to think through where we are in our current shipping/delivery environment in the Covid world. I'm sure that there are many examples of delivery delays, delivery receipts, and extended transist times.
I'm not disputing this situation, but in these strange and unusual times, we all have examples of "they could have/should have done better". And I hope this forum, and the mods, will continue to take the higher road and apply a little grace for these extraorinary times. Many of us are doing the best that we can do right now. I'm only asking that we keep things in perspective.
thanks, clay


I understand delays; I do not understand storing shipments entrusted to your servce in conditions that not only can, but are likely to, damage them. UPS, even with Covid, should be able to do better.

Aug 12, 2020 - 5:20:18 AM
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1062 posts since 5/19/2018

Very timely post.

Came home yesterday to find a huge box delivered by FedEx.

Box was flagged as priority and from the packaging it contained some pretty high end auto parts.

Only problem was it was for a person who lived on the other end of town. Nothing on the name or address even came close to anything for my house. Tried to call FedEx to let them know the error. No luck. Decided it was easier and quicker for me to lug this huge box and deliver it myself, which I did.

Kind of killed any confidence I may have had with FedEx.

Aug 12, 2020 - 8:17:46 AM
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rcc56

USA

3103 posts since 2/20/2016

Well, I had a recent problem with the Post Office.


An out of state customer shipped a mandolin to me for repair, USPS, no problem there except they were supposed to get my signature to accept delivery.  The package was in good shape, so, in this case that was a fairly minor transgression.

--But--

After I looked the instrument over and contacted the customer with the price of the repair, he sent me a check by Priority Mail.  I waited and waited.  It didn't come.  A week later, I called the customer and he sent me another check.  I got that one and finished the repair.  His first check did finally show up, more than 2 weeks after he mailed it.  It had been correctly addressed, and mailed in an official USPS Priority Mail envelope with a USPS machine printed label.

When I looked up the shipping history, I found that it had left the state of origin 2 days after mailing, and then bounced back and forth several times between two Atlanta sorting facilities.  After 12 days in Atlanta, the envelope was finally sent to my town and delivered a day or two later.

I'd like to hear USPS's explanation [or excuse] on that one, but I'm not going to waste the effort.  15 - 16 days for a Priority Mail envelope, correctly packaged and addressed.  I could have driven the 2000 mile round trip 3 or 4 times in the time it took for that envelope to get here.

It seems like all the shippers are getting sloppy.  At least they didn't tear the mandolin up.

Edited by - rcc56 on 08/12/2020 08:21:43

Aug 12, 2020 - 6:31:07 PM

kww

USA

388 posts since 6/21/2008
Online Now

My shipping nightmare was DHL, but it was a localised problem. I used to live on Bonaire, an island in the Netherlands Antilles. At the time (up until 10/10/10, when the country dissolved), the Netherlands Antilles had five islands: Bonaire, Curacao, Saba, Sint Maarten, and Sint Eustatius. Unfortunately, DHL provided two shipping locations: the Netherlands Antilles (which included Saba, Sint Maarten, and Sint Eustatius) and Curacao (which included Curacao and Bonaire).

Amazon used DHL as their priority shipper, and Amazon understood that Bonaire was part of the Netherlands Antilles, stamp the box BON, NETHERLANDS ANTILLES, and give it to DHL, who would send it to a different island, 500 miles away, and then apply their "address correction" magic to the problem. I had one package make it clear to Bombay (BOM). It wasn't unusual for a DVD for my video store to have stopped in three countries before I finally had it in hand.

Aug 13, 2020 - 8:58:54 AM

KCJones

USA

879 posts since 8/30/2012

USPS once left a small package worth ~$6000 on my doorstep with nobody home. It was supposed to be Registered Mail, legally requiring Signature and ID for delivery.

UPS once left a package at the end of my 1/2 mile long driveway, in the ditch, in the winter. They did not notify me and I found it 2 days later, half buried by a snowplow windrow. Luckily no damage. They claimed my driveway was impassable, which was untrue, but even if it was why would they leave a package in the ditch of a rural road?

FedEx delivers my packages to my neighbors, and my neighbors packages to my house, about 50% of the time.

Point is, all shipping is risky. 99.99999% of packages are delivered without issue, by all carriers. That's what insurance is for. And if it's a priceless item, don't ship it.

Aug 14, 2020 - 10:20:19 AM

WesB

USA

260 posts since 12/17/2014

No carrier is without a problem or two and all carriers provide good service most of the time. Bashing carriers seems to be a recurring theme on BHO.

Aug 14, 2020 - 12:04:32 PM
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rcc56

USA

3103 posts since 2/20/2016

Well, when one of them bashes a pre-war Martin that was very well packed, they deserve the bashing.

Also, be advised that the US Postal Service is developing severe problems right now, and they may very well get worse before they get better. I'll comment no further.

Aug 16, 2020 - 9:30:05 AM

78 posts since 6/30/2020

It is interesting to note the number of posters on this forum, and many other forums, who complain about Beat up, ripped, crushed, dented, and otherwise disfigured shipping boxes, cartons, and envelopes, that they have received from the various shipping carriers as well as USPS.

If the shipping container is disfigured or otherwise damaged while the contents are intact and unscathed, that means the container has done its job. If every package arrived at its final destination with its shipping container in flawless as new condition, then there would really be no need to package items in order to ship them.

Most all carriers use conveyors, rollers, carts, etc. (as well as any number and type of trucks bouncing down rough roads) to move packages. These packages are surrounded by other packages moving along with it. All of these packages are different sizes and shapes as well as different weights, and they push and bump each other causing crushed corners and dents, as well as punctures and any number of disfigurations.

In the end; it’s the condition of the item that is shipped that matters and the condition of the shipping container is irrelevant.

P-A-L

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