Don't use USPS to ship firearms

Discussion in 'General Sako Discussions' started by ricksengines, May 20, 2020.

  1. ricksengines

    ricksengines Sako-addicted

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    Hi all

    I wanted to post this alert to let everyone know not to ship firearms using the USPS. If you buy at auction or from GB, GI, PB, GA or any other venue be advised not to use USPS to ship your stuff.

    The USPS tracking system simply does not work properly and transit and delivery is becoming a crap shoot at best. Here are just two examples. I sent USPS Money Orders from Florida to Pa 2-day priority mail. The package disappeared for 10 days until it was finally delivered on the 11th day. This after a ton of phone calls and visits to the local post offices on both ends.

    I recently won an auction and the piece was shipped USPS Insured from Iowa to Florida. It has not been delivered and is still in transit (whatever that means). Tracers have been initiated but so far nothing has turned up. This package has a tracking number and is insured. I have worked with the USPS Office locally and the sender has also worked with the USPS office where it was mailed. So far it has become mystery meat.

    Bottom line, don't use USPS to ship firearms under any circumstances. Ya pays yer money and ya takes yer chances.


    rick
     

  2. Okdokey

    Okdokey Member

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    I refuse to use USPS I had a Winchester SX1 barrel get lost then on top of that the Post office lost the claim paperwork . After 2 items vanished from the USPS system I refuse to use their services for shipping firearms.
    Jim W
     
  3. paulsonconstruction

    paulsonconstruction Sako-addicted

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    All shipping services have issues from time to time & I'm sure Covid-19 has added to their difficulties, but to make a blanket statement that everybody not use USPS because you had some problems is kinda silly. When you consider the millions of packages they handle there is bound to be a slip up here & there, so condemning an entire system for one post office or person messing up is rather harsh. My BEST experiences shipping firearms has been with USPS & is my preferred way. UPS breaks a lot of guns from rough handling & I think it is intentional sometimes & they NEVER pay an insurance claim, so I refuse to use them. FedX does a decent job & I can't complain much about them. From where I'm from & to where I have shipped, USPS has been reliable & damage free, so far. Sooner or later the other shipping service you're using now is going to screw up too. It's life!
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2020
  4. sakojim

    sakojim Well-Known Member

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    For what its worth my past experience buying and shipping firearms. The problems of damage and misplaced items did not start to get serious until the transit companies incorporated computerized sorting equipment.
    If you have ever seen the high speed conveyors, sorting systems and dump chutes employed at these hub facilities you will understand why things get damaged and lost. I gave up collecting Sako rifles because of the damage to high dollar items that seemed to increase as shipping got worse. If I cannot personally inspect and purchase a high quality item that is easily damaged by shipment I don't consider it. End of problem. Buying over the internet through the auction websites is a big risk any way you look at it unless you use due diligence to make certain that the entire deal from seller to buyer is totally free from risk as much as you can make it. I have had to deal with some very bad results but the only problems that cost me were broken stocks on several occasions. Good thing I had some spare stocks to replace them. I also had to educate a couple of con artists about internet fraud penalties. Buyer beware. Sakojim.
     
  5. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    My go-to dealer, Rodger at SakoSource, says he has had the worst experiences with UPS -- they NEVER pay claims and always shrug damage off as "insufficient packaging". I'll have to admit that most packaging is insufficient if you run over it with a forklift.

    Fedex is a little better, but he prefers USPS and instructs incoming shippers to send that way if possible. And he ships a lot of guns both in and out.

    But Paulson is exactly right -- the current pandemic situation has increased the volume of packages going through all services (due to people avoiding shopping in person) while also reducing or handicapping the shipping workforce due to necessary preventative precautions. Shipping is generally slower than in "normal" times, although I got a magazine purchased on eBay on Monday in today's (Wednesday) U.S. Mail.
     
  6. ricksengines

    ricksengines Sako-addicted

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    I take some issue with Paul's comments about being silly. I cited two issues back to back. I didn't mention that two packages were shipped simultaneously from the same auction house. Both weighted about the same. One went USPS as I have described. The other UPS. The UPS package arrived in five days and in good order. I'm not buying the Covid excuse. UPS and FedEx seem to be only slightly impacted while USPS seems to be paralyzed.

    rick
     
  7. marlin92

    marlin92 Well-Known Member

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    I also have had issues with UPS with 2 broken Finnwolf stocks. True to form UPS said the packaging was not proper and refused payment. One of the gun boxes had a clear imprint of a shoe right where the stock was in the box and where the break occured. There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that it was done intentionally. I also had a Finnwolf magazine go missing when shipped via the post office, never to be seen again, but at least
    the Post office did pay the claim. But I do agree that the status of package shipment via the post office needs improvement, and their Priority mail is a joke, in most cases their delivery date is not met and arrival time between it and first class is no different. And of course their out is the date is only an estimate.
    All that being said I can honestly say I have never had a gun damaged that I had sold, packaged, and shipped. (Just rapped myself on the head - knock on wood as they say - hope I didn't jinx myself) using any of the shippers FEDEX UPS or Postal Servive. So I do believe there is validity to proper packaging, but no amount of packaging will prevent intentional damage.
     
  8. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    So what? I cited a more recent issue (today) of a shipment of a gun part from Pennsylvania to Texas, posted on the 18th and received the morning of the 20th. Neither your two examples or my one example provide sufficient data to make a blanket statement, which is what Paulson was merely observing.

    None of the services, especially right now, are foolproof. But anecdotally, more people have experienced damaged guns with UPS than with the Postal Service.
     
    L61R likes this.
  9. ricksengines

    ricksengines Sako-addicted

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    Well Stone I was trying to alert the members to several shipping problems I was and am experiencing with USPS. In addition there were at least two other USPS firearms shipments that experienced serious shipping delays other than mine. Those two folks were lucky enough to get their rifles delivered. I was not trying to pick a fight!

    rick
     
  10. arthur36

    arthur36 Well-Known Member

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    Because of Covid, the USPS has quietly closed some facilities and is redirecting shipping to other sorting centers. Example; I just won a bid on e-bay for a non- firearms item. I have bought from the seller numerous times before, and would give him an AAA+++ rating. I won the item on a Sunday. On Monday, seller sent tracking number with notification it had entered the USPS system. Seller is in Massachusetts, 130 miles away. the following Sunday, the item was in N. Carolina. Three days later, it passed through an an unspecified facility and dropped off the radar for ten days, before reappearing in Massachusetts. It finally arrived here in NH 15 days after it entered the system. I could have ridden my bicycle out and back to the seller in less time.
     
  11. ricksengines

    ricksengines Sako-addicted

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    Just got a call from my local USPS office here in Florida. The package fell out of the sky and landed on their doorstep this morning. Tracking still showed it in transit at 4:30am. Unbelievable!
     
  12. kirkbridgershooters

    kirkbridgershooters Well-Known Member

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    I doubt anyone has had a worse thing happen to them than this..

    I had a rare L-46 Mannlicher in 218 Bee sent to me and it was destroyed in the mail. It was definitely broken maliciously. The shipper sent it in a Remington cardboard box that was obviously a firearm. He was stupid to do it that way, but there are anti-gun people in every shipping companies employ.

    I have sent scores of firearms through USPS and will continue to do so, but I do everything I can to disguise the box as to it's contents. I won't ship UPS or Fedex as they have both fallen totally into the anti-gun crowd with their internal policies that require you to ship handguns 2nd day air because they have such worthless employees that were stealing them in shipment.

    I have had great luck with USPS, they settled on the Sako 218 Bee, even though the shipper sent it in less than adequate box and protection.

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  13. stonecreek

    stonecreek SCC Secretary Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    Whoa! I've seen plenty of stocks broken at the wrist, but a crushed steel ring? That took some doing. Unfortunately, a single cardboard box is inadequate for shipping any rifle and the shipper should have known better.

    I once bought a rare Marlin-Sako 422 Varmint King with a vintage B&L 24X spring-mounted target scope on it. When it came (via USPS) I assumed from the size of the box that the seller must have removed the scope and sent it separately. But when I opened the rather flimsy single box I found the assembled gun and scope wrapped in a couple of layers of bubble wrap with the gun and mounted scope sitting corner-to-corner inside the too-small box. Amazingly, everything was undamaged. (By the way, that old Rochester-made B & L scope was about the finest optical instrument I've ever owned. I could see .22 cal bullet holes in targets at 400 yards.)
     
  14. ricksengines

    ricksengines Sako-addicted

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    Well, nuff said. I guess we really can't depend on any shipper to deliver reliably. So its a crap shoot at best.

    rick
     
  15. cl_leg

    cl_leg Well-Known Member

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    At this time in Canada, Canada Post is 3-4 weeks to deliver when it is usually 1-2.
    I have never had any major damage. Worst was once shipped in a hard case that had an aluminum perimiter around the opening. It was pushed out as it obviously fell from a great height, the rifle slide inside and the barrel bent the edging out. No damage to the rifle just the case. A few other minor things but all were due to poor packaging. Even had one show up in a box with no packing. Just bounced around in there till it showed up. What some people are thinking is beyond me.
     
  16. L61R

    L61R SCC President Forum Owner SCC Board Member

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    Seems like we all have experienced various forms of disasters when shipping whatever.

    So far, I haven’t had any issues with firearms and I always make sure to tell the seller that I’d rather pay extra for proper packaging than not.

    In Sweden, the proper way to ship firearms is to ship them in two packages, with the bolt, or forearms of a shotgun, or the slide of a pistol in one and the rest in another. Then ship them on separate days, as insured and trackable valuable goods with PostNord, which is the now privatized Swedish Post.

    Then it will be sent in sealed containers, which are scanned on each arrival and departure along the route.

    Have had many issues with letters going missing or being damaged when shipping with regular mail though.

    Also have had parts go missing on the way to the U.S. but since I sent it with insurance I or the buyer in the end, got the money back.

    I can’t say how it is elsewhere, but PostNord has had a lot of problems and they have made several investigating TV shows about them, showing drivers throwing packages, walking on packages etc etc etc. But they have improved some at least, maybe due to the bad cred they got.

    Too bad it seems like the U.S. shipping companies doesn’t step up and pay what thay ought to pay though.

    But with all the gazillion packages being sent, there will be accidents every now and then.

    Too bad when it’s intentional. Very bad! Haven’t heard about that over here yet.

    Jim
     
  17. deergoose

    deergoose Sako-addicted

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    Not as bad as Kirk's.....but how's this for a destroyed L57 deluxe with FishGods plate? The claim WAS PAID !.....USPS.

    DeerGoose
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  18. Okdokey

    Okdokey Member

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    I've never had issues with breakage as of yet . I purchase plastic hard cases to ship the firearms in . I spend a great deal of time wrapping the firearms up . I double box . One thing you do not do is draw attention to the package . A firearm box is looking for trouble . My problem is lost items and this started way before the 19 came around. I've heard horror stories as of above but either I m doing something right or been lucky I don't know . I have shipped many expensive long guns and pistols without a glitch . But I do invest in some form of hard case and double box. Now if we can solve items from disappearing .
    Jim W.
     
  19. ricksengines

    ricksengines Sako-addicted

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    Yep. The best luck I have had is with using a Plano Case to pack the rifle in. Putting that case in a double box with extra padding keeps damage to a bare minimum unless something intentionally happens to damage the rifle within.

    The worse experience I had was a Rem. 700 Friends of NRA in 204. The nitwit that sent it to me put the thing in a original Rem box with the styro insert. Sounds ok so far except that the styro insert wasn't complete and he removed the bolt and put it into the styro recess but the styro there was also damaged and incomplete. He put the rem box inside a shipping box that was 8x8. He added a few handfuls of peanuts, sealed the box and shipped it. During transit. everything broke loose. When it arrived the stock was so beat up by the bolt (seems it rattled around inside the box during transit) nothing could be salvaged. I did get a refund from the seller including shipping and transfer fees. This was all on the seller and not UPS but it just shows that sellers that properly pack for shipment can prevent damage during transit including in some cases malicious intent.

    rick
     
    Okdokey likes this.
  20. CVCOBRA1

    CVCOBRA1 Well-Known Member

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    Same here on poorly packed rifle. Opened it up at my FFL dealer and about came to tears. It was a rifle I had looked for a long time to purchase. I think the dealer gave it to a kindergarten class to pack. No bubble wrap, no styrofoam, no peanuts. All they did was wrap it up in brown butchers paper. Had a big chip of the toe of the stock and butt plate knocked off of it. Took pics and left it with my dealer. I'm sure someone on the sellers end lost their job over that and they deserved to. Got 100% of all my costs back but really wanted the rifle more. Seller glued it back together and put it back on GB. Looked bad and still brought a good price when it resold.
     

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