Dynaflash8

Shipping/Postage costs

Recommended Posts

Pretty soon, nobody is going to be able to buy or sell items for our old cars.  I had a man who wanted a '39 Buick radio and I had one that is supposed to be working.  It was tested and worked back around 2013 or 2014.  Anyway I broke my back boxing it and carrying it to the pack & ship place to price it and then bring it back home and put it on the work bench.  The package weighed just a few ounces short of 30 pounds.  It felt like 100 to me.  But, I'm 80 years old.

 

Anyway, I'm in Florida and he was in Oregon.  Listen to the shipping price:  FEDEX was $136.11 and UPS was $144.xx.  I only assume the U.S. Post Office was even higher (I guess they could fool me).  Maybe if he had a business address it would have been a little less.  Well, anyway, the buyer said "keep it".  I can't say I blame him other than the fact he contacted me; I wasn't advertising any parts for sale.  And, it was a lot of work.

 

What are we going to do?  These kinds of outlandish shipping rates are going to keep all of us for acquire parts we need for our repair or restorations.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What is the size of the parcel?  Did you insure it, if so how much?  I don't think distance makes a difference as long as the parcel stays in the lower 48.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I checked USPS rates on 30 lbs. from Miami to Oregon City. The cost came to $77.16 using your own box. If it fits in a USPS box, the cost is under $20. If your box is over 12" long, the price may be higher, but you can check for yourself at www.usps.com. 

 

Phil

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I found that shipping via United Parcel Service 

(UPS) from a UPS Store was more expensive than 

shipping via UPS from a small business.  After all,

the UPS Store has shopping-center rent and overhead.

 

Sometimes the difference was sizeable.  In our area, a few

local stores (such as a tire store and a hardware store)

offer UPS shipping at presumably the better, small-business

rates.  Alternatively, a person could ship a package from

his place of work and get the better price.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Greyhound has reasonable rates but you need to pickup and drop off at the bus station. They are good for larger size pieces like a fender or bumper too. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You think you have it bad. Try bringing something over the border. I bought a pair of cowl lamps from a fellow in California for ,as I recall,about $75 US. The shipping fee was about $25.

Our Canadian dollar is about 75 cents on the US greenback. The parcel arrived by UPS and I was informed by the driver that I owed UPS $85 in brokerage fees ! The cowl lamps still had to be restored. Katching katching !

USPS is the way to go for smaller items,assuming Canada Post isn't on strike. Larger parcels I have delivered to my nearest border point (Port Huron,MI) and pick them up there personally.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agreed, shipping costs get hard to swallow. I live in Canada and ordering parts from evil bay commits one to their Internationals Global Shipping program which is a total ripoff. In order to avoid that, I have a shipping drop-off company in Port Huron MI that charges a modest handling fee per parcel. In the last couple of months, I have saved over $200.00 in shipping fees at a cost of $30.00 in gas. $40.00 in fees and my time. Crossing the border costs about $7.00 in tolls so I'm still ahead $123.00. There's no duty on antique car parts but I have to pay local taxes no matter how the parts arrive.

Best advice is to research your options for the least expensive way. That obviously can change depending on where you live. Good luck!

P.S. As above, USPS is the way to go if you're dealing person to person. UPS across the border is brutal.

Edited by 36 D2 Coupe (see edit history)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 I've had the same thing happen to me numerous times. Last time was shipping an exhaust manifold for a Buick across country. If someone wants a heavy item now they either pick it up or buy it from someone else.  I've gotten fed up going through all the effort and then either being told the shipping cost is to high (often insinuating I've padded the cost) or the buyer never even bothering to reply. 

 I no longer even contemplate shipping large heavy items, when I'm gone they can go for scrap metal prices. That may sound harsh but I'm not in the business and I get tired of digging items out, taking pictures, finding or fabricating a package, calculating costs and then have the potential buyer not even bother replying to my last email. 

  • Like 3
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I recently shipped a small 2lb package to Arkansas. I called ahead to get a price and was quoted $18. But when I actually went to ship it at U.P.S.,the package was just a bit bigger than the dimensions I gave them so they charged me the next higher rate which $20. Good thing I added in 2 bucks just in case. Looking at the invoice that actual shipping , with insurance, was about$12.00, but they charged an addition cost to ship to a rural area! It hardly pays to ship anything. I hate buying something for $5 and have to pay $20 to get it. Don't ship anything in a round tube as they charge a high handling fee ! Another reason I don't use E-bay anymore, I don't want to pay shipping above the actual costs!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
59 minutes ago, MochetVelo said:

I checked USPS rates on 30 lbs. from Miami to Oregon City. The cost came to $77.16 using your own box. If it fits in a USPS box, the cost is under $20. If your box is over 12" long, the price may be higher, but you can check for yourself at www.usps.com. 

 

Phil

 

I always compare pricing for my shipping needs. The box dimensions, weight and distance shipped all enter into the cost. I have found shipping from a Staples store or other store that offers shipping services is usually cheaper than taking it to a UPS or FedEx store. 

 

The original poster should not assume that the USPS will be as or more expensive than UPS/FedEx. I have shipped all sorts of car parts over the years and the USPS has usually been the low cost alternative. One item that really sticks out in my mind was a one piece carpet (front & rear) for a car. I was able to fold the carpet and fit it in a box that was 30 inches square. I can't remember what it weighed but it was heavy. I do remember that I shipped 3 of these to different parts of the USA and in each case the UPS/FedEx cost was 2-3 times the cost of using the USPS cheapest shipping method. It might have taken longer this way but the buyer did not care since they were paying the shipping.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The cost of shipping definitely adds considerable anxiety to my enjoyment of improving my old cars.  I’m sure the majority of us here have several old cars, and if they get used regularly then each one is going to require a replacement part or two at some point.  I’m also in Canada and have been stung by UPS and their highway robbery.  I will not purchase anything from any vendor who won’t deviate from using UPS.  Several years ago I bought a radiator out of California never specified with the vendor not to ship by UPS and when it arrived to my house in a brown UPS truck I knew I was in for it.  I had to pay $94 on the spot for him to release the parcel to me.  A month later I get an invoice from UPS saying that I owed them $89 for the radiator they delivered a month earlier and charged me $94 for.  So I called up their phone number and voiced my concerns to someone they said they were going to talk to their manager about it and call me back.  I never heard back from them and never sent in the $89 and haven’t heard a peep from them now going on 5 years and never used them since.  

Now I’m just a backyarder and don’t order a lot of stuff so it’s easy to keep track of my orders,  but what about a small business that makes many orders a month and they get another bill from these bandits on something they’ve already paid for?  I’m sure lots of times, the administrators just pay the bill again and these UPS crooks get a double payment.

They clearly just fabricate the brokerage charges because in my example they came up with two different prices and you would have thought the second one would be more due to tacked on “interest”.   The Canadian government lets UPS operate like this and blatantly rip off countless consumers each year on unsubstantiated brokerage costs.  It’s absolutely criminal.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I always wonder how eBay shoppers view pricing. Would you buy an item for $32.00 with FREE postage in the Lower 48 States or the exact same one for $20.00 with $12.00 in postage & handling?  Fastenal Hardware third party shipping has worked very well for me with large bulky items. Got two 1938 Ford front fenders & hood delivered from Minnesota to the New York Connecticut border for $225.00, seller built the crate.  USPS works best in most cases, even if FedEx is cheaper the cost of time & gas has to be thought of, so it has to be a $25.00 savings or I'm not taking the drive to the depot. Have I lost money on "Free Postage" items, you bet, California, Oregon, and Washington are were most of those buyers live.  Bob 

Edited by 1937hd45 (see edit history)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just ordered ten metric nuts from China. Total cost was $1.09 including air shipping with tracking. I then priced 4 brake shoe springs from France for $35 plus $25 postage. Labor & production costs aside, how do they manage those low shipping costs?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Back in 1998 most old car collectors were reading ads in Hemmings and licking stamps for letters. Maybe they looked forward to a trip to Hershey to dig through stuff for four days, taking a crap shoot it would be there. I remember flying from New York State to Pomona, California, mainly to attend the swap meet about that time.

 

Today anyone who follows their tracking numbers knows their package takes a round about route, sometimes crossing the country horizontally AND vertically. If I was in the shipping business I would be ashamed to show my Father the route I used to move people's stuff!

 

"39 Buick, huh. I heard a rumor those cars sell for 50 grand sometimes. A few hundred bucks for a radio don't sound bad for a car like that. Probably add another couple hundred to replace all the paper capacitors before you put it in anyway.

 

Some people don't want to agree, but I say having old cars for toys is a hobby for rich guys.

Bernie

Edited by 60FlatTop (see edit history)
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My favorite was the guy from Australia moaning about the cost of shipping a car part from Quebec. I pointed out that it was about as far away as it was possible to be, in fact if you went any farther you would be on your way back. I don't know if it made him feel any better but he had to laugh.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
33 minutes ago, MochetVelo said:

I just ordered ten metric nuts from China. Total cost was $1.09 including air shipping with tracking. I then priced 4 brake shoe springs from France for $35 plus $25 postage. Labor & production costs aside, how do they manage those low shipping costs?

Think Amazon has the same deal, along with tax brakes. Bob 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1937hd45 and others.  Yes, the man backed out on his purchase because of the shipping.  I just asked him if he'd still take the radio if USPS parcel post was considerably less.  I mentioned $60, but based on the comment from the man from Miami (above) it may be more like $77.  I found the box to be almost more than I could carry at 30 pounds, and chances are he'll still not take it even though he committed to buying it before I packed it.  I'm going to do just as 1937hd45 has suggested he is doing with heavy parts in the future, but maybe this deal can be saved yet.  What gets me is that I didn't have anything for sale.  It came from somebody on the site here who saw I'd been collecting '39 Buicks for the last  63 years and asked me if I had various parts he was looking for.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The radio guy sounds like a problem, but lets, look at this learning experience. I have no idea how large this radio is with all the related bits. First thing is USPS Flat Rate boxes. Will the heaviest part of this setup fit in the largest one? I ship starters & generators all over the country for $13.65 and that is in a medium size box. Sometimes it takes two boxes to ship affordably. Bob 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Shipping and freight have gone crazy not because of costs but because of demand. You can thank online business like amazon , target, Walmart, eBay, etc.. Nobody goes to a retailer anymore for convenience and we are paying for the convenience. It is we the PEOPLE driving the costs up. It just took some time for the table to turn from online shopping being a value to it being a luxury, which it is now. Once they know the habit has changed, they switch into high profit mode but that is how successful businesses work. Today’s generation will never shop a different way as many know no other.

   I’ve seen freight in my own line of work go up at least a third in less than 6 months. Machines that delivered for $850 to an area are now costing $1,400 on average  Fuel is down and wages have only gone up slightly. Money is being made when money can be made. That’s what they’re doing. I sent an 11 pound box 70 miles via UPS. It cost me $22+! My car gets 36 mpg so I could have delivered it for less and made a nice visit of it if I had the time. So I paid for the convenience of having it delivered.

Edited by chistech (see edit history)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The ONE time I smiled at a great value was a couple of years ago when I stuffed 56 lbs of cast iron Pierce parts (including half a pound of filament strapping tape) into a USPS large flat rate box.  The USPS clerk didn't bat an eye.....

  • Like 4
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think a lot of people are clueless about reality here.  First, Chinese companies fill iso containers with various products and ship them by boat when the containers are full. By guaranteeing a fixed number of identical items (the filled iso containers) shipped every month, freight companies can operate more efficiently and thus offer lower prices. The iso containers get there when they get there. For example, I recently bought an AlphaTIG welder. The manufacturer takes payment in advance, does a production run after receiving a minimum number of pre-paid orders, and ships the units when the iso container is full.  I knew this and fully accepted it when I paid in advance. The unit was delivered about two months later, and I am extremely happy with it, especially for the incredibly low price.

 

Shipping a single non-standard item costs a lot more. Shipping a single item quickly costs yet more.  You can take Greyhound coast-to-coast.  You can take commercial airlines. You can take a charter jet.  Do you expect them all to be the same price?

 

Shipping companies price based on weight, volume, and distance. A lightweight but large item that takes up a disproportionate amount of space in the truck (like a fender or a hood) will cost a lot more than shipping a cylinder head of the same weight. This shipping cost problem is not unique to the old car hobby, by the way. 

 

One alternative is to use the "bucket brigade" approach.  Find friends or associates who are on the road and can carry the item part or all of the way to you.  I've been fortunate in this respect.  I bought a rust free rolling shell in Arizona. A friend of mine was delivering a trailer to the west coast and driving his truck back empty.  For the cost of renting a tow dolly, I got my car delivered. Similarly, I bought a hood on ebay.  I managed to get one person to carry it from Ohio to Indianapolis where another friend carried it to a car show in Tenn. that I was attending. I got it from him there.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, mercer09 said:

and the USPS is losing more and more $ at an ever increasing rate...................

People never think of the most sensible service. The post delivers everywhere. Couriers deliver on demand. We are rural; NZ Post adds $3.80 per parcel for rural delivery but courier companies add from $5 to $15 for rural delivery and give it to NZ Post to deliver.

 

Try shipping from US to NZ! Luckily, NZ Post offer YouShop where they have a bureau in Portland OR. I can get stuff shipped to there (often free) and NZ Post will deliver it from there at a reasonable rate (about 1/3 of US prices) when the container is full.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Where do you get a USPS flat rate box big enough to ship a generator or starter?......not here at my post office.  And a bunch of Pierce Arrow pieces of iron?  A Flat Rate box?  Even the large box for $18something can only hold so much, even bulging.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
51 minutes ago, joe_padavano said:

I think a lot of people are clueless about reality here.

 

I'm still laughing at that. It will probably carry over into tomorrow. To paraphrase a department director I once had "Define "here".

 

The whole evolution of online purchases has happened in my lifetime and I started my purchasing with 1/24th scale AMT models in 1959. The market has undermined old institutions and built new ones. A great example is Rock Auto. Two years ago I went through the complete fuel system of my '86 Park Avenue. There's a real 'tweener car. I was able to buy new Delco fuel lines, both formed steel and correct high pressure hoses. 20 years ago that stuff would have been obsoleted and written off as scrap. Large markets and companies willing to work on small margins.

A generation is about 20 years from birth to spawning the next generation. I have three and a half under my belt. The generation behind me is 50 years old already. Luckily, I have close friends that span the generation ahead of me and the two coming up. It helps the insight. Changes are coming. In 1918 they started landing airplanes on ships, 2018 they are kicking off the Space Corps branch of the service in one form or another. I like it all.

 

That China manufacturing is a tricky one. China would rather use government funds to subsidize their manufacturers than build tanks to fight old style wars. Be a little careful about those import products. Learning a little Cantonese may come in handy for more than just the instructions, ming baak?

 

Bernie

Edited by 60FlatTop (see edit history)
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...