Another vote for the USPS. We might as well patronize the shipping company we own and at least at the small post office a mile or so away from me, the service is great. The same can't be said for the larger post office four miles the other way but so far, everything I've sent has arrived okay.
I can't say the same for UPS. I paid them to pack and ship an RCBS Grand and it arrived quite damaged. While UPS was deciding what they were going to do, RCBS replaced all the dmaaged parts at no charge for the gentleman who bought it from me.
USPS, they pay off on an claim if it ever happens.
Try to get "Big Brown" aka UPS to pay off on a claim. UPS will fight you the whole way plus they only will only deal with the guy that shipped it, not the guy that got something damaged delivered to them broken.
I've had reasonably good luck with Fedex. Had a couple claims which were initially resisted, but eventually paid.
Cheaper than USPS or UPS on large/heavy/distant/high value shipments.
Unless the value is under 50 bucks, I almost always ship with full insurance (although sometimes I'll roll the dice if the item I'm shipping can't be damaged). And lately if the value is over a couple hundred bucks I've been springing for the signature confirmation as well.
Only time I ship a package USPS is if its light and/or low value, or I can jam it into a flat rate box.
USPS has also been EXTREMELY slow for me the last few months. Letters that would typically take 2 days in late 2013 are now taking a week, and priority shipments are taking 2-3x their estimated delivery time.
I never ship UPS, there is no advantage for me to do so.
Never ship UPS for anything, period, unless you have no choice. I have a FedEx account so I package, print labels and apply, then drop of at Kincos. Have never had a problem with FedEx, either way. I've shipped barrels, guns, bullets, Canterbury Release sets, you name it. Nothing lost, nothing damaged, and Ground usually arrives a day before they say.
I ship small packages USPS flat rate, insured. Only once had a problem with them, a long time ago. I sent a package of wads to Bob Dodd in Oregon via Priority Mail. He got them a month later. Other than that one instance. great service.
I type with two fingers so I'll not waste time telling of all the UPS misadventures. I'll just reiterate. Do not ship via UPS for any reason unless you have absolutely no choice.
I ship reloaders all over the globe and I use USPS, UPS, and FedEx. I very, very rarely have a problem. However, I get reloaders shipped to me for repairs and about 30% are damaged because they are packaged improperly.
You cannot simply bolt a reloader to a plywood base and use peanuts and expect it to arrive in good condition.
When I return a reloader to my customers they are ONLY shipped in genuine P/W shipping cartons. Reason is that these designed cartons use a plywood base, a full-height inner liner, a plywood top plate to secure the top of the reloader so it dose NOT move inside the carton, topped off with large Styrofoam spacers and a top cardboard plate.
I have had reloaders shipped to me that were simply thrown into a diaper box. When these arrive all sorts of parts are sticking out of these kinds of boxes. It makes me wonder what the person was thinking.
I use USPS for Canada and Mexico and either UPS or FedEx to some intra-US locations and international. I NEVER use UPS for Canada because UPS uses a brokerage house, and that ends up costing time and some good money to get it into Canada. The USPS is a bit more expensive, but very reliable. I would use USPS exclusively, but their insurance charges are much higher that either USP or FedEx.
USPS will always deliver a reloader to me upright as indicated on the shipping carton, others lay them down.
Always had great shipping with USPS. They don't ask you to specify the contents, which probably leads to less theft and fewer firearms falling into the wrong hands.
From the USPS site:
•Firearms – Only licensed manufacturers and dealers can mail or receive handguns. And even though unloaded rifles and shotguns are mailable, mailers must comply with all applicable regulations.
Several times I have shipped guns in for repair with the USPS. Roughly weighed 28 pounds. Mailed them priority mail insured of course. Always from local post office in small town 45 miles SE of Settle. First gun to Kreighoff in Ottsville Pa. Arrived in two days as promised when they had on heck of a snow storm back east. Second and third time to Blaser USA in Texas. first time delivered on time Two days from the day that I shipped. The second time it took four days and they refunded me all of my shipping fees except the insurance. I have been very happy using the Postal Service. Tried UPS once, Never again will I walk through their doors.
Haven't had to ship a gun as of yet, but if needed A) insure for brand new replacement value ?..........or for used "as is" value ? B) Say for example we're shipping a K80 worth $10,000, wouldn't you be asked at USPS "What are the contents" ? I see above some just ship without declaration. C) Who's responsible for return trip insurance , you or vendor ? Thx !
You have to ask yourself if you've got a set of b----. Chances of them totally losing your gun are slim but a broken stock is always a possibility. I insure for wood issues unless a customer is willing to pay many $$$$$$$ for additional insurance. Trying to get paid for damages usually turns into a runaround anyway!!
Shipped a MX2000/10 Wed. by USPS, Registered to Sparks NV from central Ky. Insured for 10,000. The total cost was 107.45.Two day delivery time. The only requirement was all closings in the packaging had to be sealed with paper tape. They stamp all over the closing so it will show tampering.They do not allow plastic tape, as it can be rubber off.I had to write a little note saying it was a shotgun with no ammo enclosed .
95% USPS Priority and Priority Mail Inmternational.
4% Fed Ex on larger domestic packages.
UPS 1% for the real big, heavy, or unboxed stuff.
Those of you with USPS slow delivery nightmares, undestand that the new Parcel Select is "non-presorted", meaning that it may go across the country to a sorting facility, then back the other way, apparently on a slow mule pack train, to its actual destination.
I ship most of the stuff thry E-bay, and right now they are giving quite a discount on USPS and Fed Ex.
About all the small stuff ends up in a USPS Flat Rate Envelope and ships for $4.95. Even if I have to box it and then put the box in the envelope.