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The Automotive Chronicles

Monthly newsletter published by McLellan's Automotive History. Dedicated to literature collectors, restorers, museums, publishers, manufacturers and investors who collect and preserve automotive literature
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November 2003 Issue
 
ARTICLE
 
Packing for Shipping
By Robert McLellan
 

All collectors know the condition of literature is important and, if it lasted this long in good condition, keeping it in good condition is important. Although we cannot control the handling and storage of literature in your possession, we do try to provide helpful information (See "Robert's Tips"). When it comes to purchasing literature, we try to involve ourselves by suggesting packing procedures. We have received boxes where all four corners were smashed in or seams split open with contents oozing out — beautiful literature reduced to trash. Please discuss packing and shipping with us before sending your "valuables".

If you have bought from us in the past you know we emphasize that we set ourselves apart from other dealers and swapmeet vendors by selling literature that is in excellent condition. There are exceptions for rare or desirable literature when we feel it needs to be offered. In such cases we describe the problems it has. All literature is guaranteed and we depend on our reputation for maintaining repeat buyers. Our climate-controlled, dirt-free warehouse doesn't even have windows (prevents fading).

This pristine literature needs to arrive in your hands in the same condition it is sent. So how do we accomplish this when there are obstacles like the U. S. Post Office, U. P. S., FedEX and overseas carriers who couldn't care less about what is inside the box?

We start with a new box. No envelopes — not even padded envelopes. A postcard is not mailed in an envelope, not even with cardboard reinforcement. It is mailed in a small box — not a used box, but a small new box. The most popular way to ship is by U. S. Postal Service (USPS) Priority Mail and boxes are available in several sizes to keep the weight and cost to a minimum. Flat Rate Priority Mail boxes are frequently used when books are shipped. The big advantages are speed and a reliable Tracking Number system so that both shipper and customer can use the USPS website to monitor the movement of the package (even International packages!). Boxes under thirteen (13) ounces can be shipped by First Class Mail by request, which is less expensive, but takes longer to arrive at the destination and cannot be insured. USPS Express Mail and Federal Express shipping are also available. Our goal is always to get your order to you fast, cheaply and undamaged.

Most orders are shipped the same day as the order is received, or the next day if received after postal pickup. Confirmation e-mails are sent out at the same time.

The following photographs illustrate the steps we take in packing an order:

Click for larger view
1
Contents of a box shipped within the
U. S. include:

a) literature, books and/or memorabilia ordered
b) invoice
c) credit card receipt (if applicable)

(NOTE: Invoices and receipts are not packed with International shipments, but can be requested by e-mail or mail.)
 
2
Packing materials consist of cardboard backing, newspaper and one or more plastic envelopes.
     
3
Literature and cardboard reinforcement are placed inside the plastic envelope.
 
4
Plastic envelope(s) is tightly taped to protect the literature from damage by water, insects, dirt, etc.
     
5
Crumpled newspaper is used for padding and put on all six sides of literature.
 
6
Priority Mail shipping labels provide Tracking Numbers and are easy to trace if your package is slow in reaching its' destination.
 
 
 
The Automotive Chronicles, November 2003
 
 
 
 
 
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