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  1. #1

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    Does anyone have experience shipping an expensive archtop through FEDEX? I'm wondering how their claims work with declared value of approx $4000. I would rather hear from someone who has experience with this rather than FED EX. Ideally no claim to make, if this goes through. Thank you.

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    I've shipped arch tops FEDEX, but luckily never needed to make a claim. The main thing I try to do, whenever possible is have it packed, boxed by and shipped from a luthier/repair shop/mom and pop music store, then shipped to and unboxed by luthier/repair/mom and pop on the other end. Best wishes for your guitar!

    PK

  4. #3

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    I have third party insurance in my guitars through Heritage Musical Instrument Insurance. If you have that you can get coverage for guitars in shipment. Otherwise, although it costs more, you might also want to consider letting FedEx pack it for you as well. Then there won’t be a dispute over the quality of packing. FedEx usually seems to fine in general, but UPS is especially bad about claiming that your box wasn’t of adequate quality or just that you did something inadequate in general at least in my experience.

  5. #4

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    If you use Fedex by all means sign up for your own fedex account. You’ll save tons of money, and on the insurance too. The account is free and only takes 15 minutes.

  6. #5

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    I usually take a thick marker pen and write guitar on all sides of the box in addition to fragile and handke with care.i am hopeful that whoever handles would handle better if they knew the contents

  7. #6

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    Just hope you never have to file a claim on that insurance. It's NEVER fun.

  8. #7

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    I ship guitars all the time and will only use Fed X - usually “priority overnight”. They just handle packages much better than UPS.

    In fact, I just cancelled a significant purchase through Reverb because the seller could not use my Fed X account to ship me the guitar.

    Reverb was forcing him to use UPS , which I would never use for shipping a guitar - but possibly for shipping rubber tires or something that could withstand being thrown around.

    I also have a Heritage Insurance policy for my guitars. Don’t rely on carrier insurance. You can purchase insurance from Heritage to cover your one shipment as well.

    Here are a few pics of my packaging process.

    The guitar in these pics went to Europe and arrived safely without any damage.




  9. #8

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    That was a Heritage Golden Eagle. Beautiful packaging!

  10. #9

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    Yes- it went to a long standing forum member and he's really enjoying the guitar.

    Sent from my GT-N5110 using Tapatalk

  11. #10

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    From our FedEx shipment from Mexico. They broke things that were double boxed inside of this box.

    FEDEX Shipping Insurance on 00+ Archtop-outerboxdamage2-jpg
    Attached Images Attached Images FEDEX Shipping Insurance on 00+ Archtop-outerboxdamage1-jpg 

  12. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by mhz88
    I usually take a thick marker pen and write guitar on all sides of the box in addition to fragile and handke with care.i am hopeful that whoever handles would handle better if they knew the contents
    that matters very little. I received a '60s fender bandmaster reverb head a while back. Not only was it marked FRAGILE on all 6 sides but there were big, red FRAGILE stickers on all sides. When the delivery guy brought it to my door, he LITERALLY tossed it onto the cement porch. It traveled a good 2 feet in the air and fell another 2 feet to the porch. Fortunately it was packed with syrofoam corners which insulated it from damage. But they literally DO NOT CARE and this wasn't the first time I've seen this.

  13. #12

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    +1
    I have heard from multiple individuals who worked at UPS on the horrors of package handling at UPS distribution centers.

    No guarantees with UPS and FedEx.

    Quote Originally Posted by QAman
    UPS , which I would never use for shipping a guitar - but possibly for shipping rubber tires

  14. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Soloway
    From our FedEx shipment from Mexico. They broke things that were double boxed inside of this box.

    FEDEX Shipping Insurance on 00+ Archtop-outerboxdamage2-jpg
    Looks like it was a long Fed X ground journey. I have never seen that damage on a box I’ve sent / or received with a “FedX priority overnight shipment” - but who knows what the future brings.
    Last edited by QAman; 09-10-2020 at 04:41 PM.

  15. #14

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    I knew a guy that worked @ UPS and he said packages would go down a conveyor belt and crash to the concrete floor @ the end.
    And yeah marking them fragile makes some disgruntled employees derive pleasure in trashing them.

  16. #15

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    But on Jim’s guitar we don’t know where the damage occurred. Fedex doesn’t have the same level of drivers everywhere. I know if a guitar was delivered to Russia there are no guarantees it would even be delivered because of theft. The question is where did that level of damage occur and whose possession the guitar was in at the time it occurred?

  17. #16

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    I’d just like to say I’ve had shipments trashed by both UPS and FedEx. I will never ship another amp... ever.

  18. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by 2bornot2bop
    But on Jim’s guitar we don’t know where the damage occurred. Fedex doesn’t have the same level of drivers everywhere. I know if a guitar was delivered to Russia there are no guarantees it would even be delivered because of theft. The question is where did that level of damage occur and whose possession the guitar was in at the time it occurred?
    Not a guitar. It was our household goods going back to Canada from Mexico. We shipped 10 boxes. 9 looked ok. This one was destroyed. The shipping charge was almost $2,000. It's been over three weeks weeks since we filed the claim. They haven't even issued a case number yet. This is my fourth Fedex claim (albeit over 20 years). They're never easy.

  19. #18

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    A friend worked his way through grad school working at the New Stanton Pennsylvania distribution center. Same story.

    Quote Originally Posted by wintermoon
    I knew a guy that worked @ UPS and he said packages would go down a conveyor belt and crash to the concrete floor @ the end.
    And yeah marking them fragile makes some disgruntled employees derive pleasure in trashing them.

  20. #19

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    Buy all guitars from QAman.

  21. #20

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    I have shipped (and received) guitars and amps through Fedex, UPS and USPS. For the most part, I have been pretty lucky. Most of my dealings with EBay, Paypal and Reverb.com have turned out well. I use Fedex as my first choice of shippers, but am always nervous (as we all should be, shipping valuable instruments has risk) until my shipment has arrived safely.

    In terms of claims, I have never made a claim against Fedex. I once made a claim against UPS and they resolved it quickly and fairly. I once made a claim against Paypal and they left me in a money losing situation (the amount was about $40, not worth the trouble of suing them. I now only use my AMEX card on Paypal transactions).

    I also carry Heritage Insurance on my instruments. That is another layer of protection from risk. But the only surefire way to avoid risk when buying and selling instruments is to do so locally, and for many, that is not a great option.

    But to the OP's question, I have shipped guitars worth over 4K through Fedex and all went well. I would do it again.

  22. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by Stringswinger
    I have shipped (and received) guitars and amps through Fedex, UPS and USPS. For the most part, I have been pretty lucky. Most of my dealings with EBay, Paypal and Reverb.com have turned out well. I use Fedex as my first choice of shippers, but am always nervous (as we all should be, shipping valuable instruments has risk) until my shipment has arrived safely.

    In terms of claims, I have never made a claim against Fedex. I once made a claim against UPS and they resolved it quickly and fairly. I once made a claim against Paypal and they left me in a money losing situation (the amount was about $40, not worth the trouble of suing them. I now only use my AMEX card on Paypal transactions).

    I also carry Heritage Insurance on my instruments. That is another layer of protection from risk. But the only surefire way to avoid risk when buying and selling instruments is to do so locally, and for many, that is not a great option.

    But to the OP's question, I have shipped guitars worth over 4K through Fedex and all went well. I would do it again.
    So you learned when dealing with PayPal the key is not to file a claim with them, but instead file a claim with Amex? That’s what I do. PayPal will later send you an email saying you can file your claims with PayPal. Screw them, for they aren’t always buyer friendly. But Amex is always buyer friendly so Amex it is.

  23. #22

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    Prior to all the current madness, business travel typically required me to spend one or two weeks a month in Houston. As I always stayed at the same hotel I checked my suitcase so as to not have to carry it back and forth every time I flew. I found a Fender MIM Jazzmaster at the local GC. Someone dropped it in the store and chipped the finish on the back. Got it for a great price and left that checked at the hotel, too. It was in a Fender gig bag, but I figured it was a travel guitar and I was not going to worry about dings and scratches.

    As I have no idea when I will again be required to travel, I had a friend pick up the guitar and bag from the hotel and ship them back to me (in Arizona). He dropped them off at UPS. The next week I received them and neither the suitcase or the guitar was packed in a box; they simply slapped address labels on them and out the door they went. Amazingly, nothing was damaged. I had removed the trem arm prior to the last time I checked it at the hotel and put it in the gig bag pocket. It was still in the pocket.

    Probably not a ‘typical’ result . . .

  24. #23

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    Is there a somewhat simple answer to: How much does it cost to have instrument insurance through a company like Heritage? Is it a monthly cost based on total dollars of instruments insured? Do they cover shipping damage for guitars that are both sent out and received?

    I was interested in some kind of third party insurance for instruments because I had recently heard / learned (and still not 100% sure if true) that "insurance" through entities like UPS and FedEx should more accurately be called "declared value" and that carrier indemnity is capped at $1000. They stopped doing this eventually, but after a management change at my local FedEx, there was a period of time that they would only allow me to declare up to $1000 for the value, explaining that FedEx ultimately would not even consider paying any damages over $1000.

    With that said /asked I would also add that with adequate packing both inside and outside the case, I have also successfully shipped a handful of expensive guitars via FedEx.

  25. #24

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    I shipped an amp head to Canada via FedEx and it was dropped so hard the head shell was cracked and the output transformer was ripped from the chassis! The claim was excruciating as FedEx initially claimed "insufficient packing" until I provided extensive photos with measurements of the head and box, including marking "top", "front", "left"... on the box. Then FedEx claimed I had "packed the amp so well it was impossible for the damage to happen during shipping".

    I had the buyer photograph the box and amp and was able to show the damage to the amp matched up to damage on the box (based on my top/front/side/bottom markings). Fedex finally paid the claim.

    During the process FedEx picked up the amp from buyer for inspection. When returning to me FedEx put the amp in a large box with no padding which resulted in substantially more damage to the cabinet and chassis. FedEx paid for a new cabinet, chassis, OT, tubes, etc.

  26. #25

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    It’s a shame some of you have had bad experiences with Fed X. I just had an instrument sent to me today “Fed X priority overnight”. The box had a few light scuffs, but everything inside fine. This particular Instrument was sent double boxed as a precaution and fully insured through Heritage.