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Shipping - or Geez that's Expensive !!!

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  • Member since
    June 2014
  • From: New Braunfels , Texas
Shipping - or Geez that's Expensive !!!
Posted by Tanker - Builder on Monday, May 13, 2019 12:32 PM

Hi Ya'll ;

      Hey here's a thought, I do have an obligation to someone here .But, I went to the U.P.S. Store today .This for my Client .Would you believe .Bereft of her 01 and 02 fittings the 1/96 scale U.S.S. Kidd would be $175.00 to ship to Alabama? That's just the hull and main deckhouses in place!

     Trumpeters Arizona ( Completed,1/200 ) would be over $200.00 bucks! Lesson here, Ship kits only,not completed models!I found out this is scary .They didn't have the slightest idea how to pack this thing .

    I believe the trip to Alabama would do me good and probably be cheaper .I could make it in a day and still come in under the costs .Round trip for Gas would be about $210.00. The only thing would be rest stops and coffee! Still under three bills overall!

 Any Thoughts here? Chime in if you want . T.B. P.S. Plus, I would get to see the U.S.S.Alabama on the way back too !I would take my camera too.

  • Member since
    April 2019
  • From: Earth, Milky Way Galaxy
Posted by John 3:16 KJV on Monday, May 13, 2019 2:45 PM

Yikes! Maybe you could ask Fed-Ex or the USPS? 

If the trip is no more expensive than all of the shipping options (and you have the time), might as well do the mini-vacation, right?

     “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

     For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.”  - John 3:16-17



  • Member since
    April 2003
  • From: USA
Posted by keavdog on Monday, May 13, 2019 2:54 PM

I've found FedEx ground to be the cheapest... but still  cost 40 or so to ship 10 unbuilt kits a couple weeks ago.



Ain't no reason to hang my head, I could wake up in the mornin' dead 

  • Member since
    January 2013
Posted by BlackSheepTwoOneFour on Monday, May 13, 2019 3:35 PM

You still have to contend with securing the kit to the point it won’t damage during transit, be it UPS, FedEx or USPS. Maybe a mini vacation is the safer way to go T.B.

  • Member since
    November 2004
Posted by snapdragonxxx on Monday, May 13, 2019 3:51 PM

I think that a personal trip would be of much benefit to both you, your stuff and your client. It is always nice to touch base with people personally and leaves a much better impression.

Also it is a bit of piece of mind too as the item(s can be handed over totally undamaged. You do not want your build kicked around a depot as they will when labeled as fragile etc.

It also gives you the opportunity to visit somewhere, time away from the bench etc is never time wasted as you can plan in a visit etc. Don't rush the trip and enjoy the ride. Plan for an overnight somewhere nice rathre than those horrible motels I have heard about and seen on American movies and TV series.

Take the time for a personal visit and maybe factor some costs into the build costs for your client!

Quite a will ago I ended up building this for a friend of a friend in Hamburg, Germany.

Rather than send it by carrier I decided that I would go on a visit to my friend in Germany (The Hamburg Harbour Celebration was close and lots of fun) and take it with me.

I asked the airline if it would be possible to take this into the cabin with me as it was delicate. I was told to ask at the airport at checking in time and so I did. There was some confusion so I asked if I could see the captain and ask permission, taking the case and ship out of the box I had made for carrying it. Eyes blinked at the build, the pilot came, looked, and said that it would be fine on board and would make room in crew stowage.

I had to change aircraft at Amsterdam and the Pilot spoke with the other pilot of the plane going to Hamburg from Amsterdam, also I got a ride through the airport in one of those little buggies.


The victory ended up in Hamburg without a dent, or broken rigging etc. The client was delighted, I had a great time at the Harbour fest and as a thank you I built these for the Airline which sits in the crew room/office at my local Airport and Amsterdam.


  • Member since
    November 2008
  • From: Central Florida
Posted by plasticjunkie on Monday, May 13, 2019 4:58 PM

TB, try USPS Parcel Ground Select on the PayPal shipping site. I use this service for my comission build shipping and is very affordable. If you don't have a Paypal account then go on the USPS site which will be a couple of bucks more.




Too many models to build, not enough time in a lifetime!!

  • Member since
    June 2012
  • From: Anniston, AL
Posted by GAF on Monday, May 13, 2019 5:06 PM

TB>  A trip sounds like a great idea, and would ensure the model was handled with care. Smile  I will clarify that it does depend on your auto and the state of your expenses.  If the person is willing to help defray the cost of the trip, even better!

Depending on where you're going in Alabama, an overnight stay is probably going to be necessary.  I lived in Longview, TX up until a few years ago (and moved back home to Alabama) and the drive from Longview to Birmingham was about 8 1/2 hours.  Yours is going to probably be even longer!  So I would certainly take that into account.  When I moved, I had to make the trip in one day, and that was rough.

I will advise taking stuff to eat and some drinks, and if you have a cooler put the stuff in that and save money on food.  On my one day trips, I would stop at a Rest Stop (usually at the state lines), find an out of the way parking space and sleep in the car.  Take a pillow and a cover (I used a beach towel).  They have restrooms, and make sure they have a security guard on duty.  They also usually have coffee for visitors!  I've even shaved in my car with a plastic container of water, though that's only if you're desperate. Big Smile

Now if you are heading to the Mobile area, the USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park is the place to visit.  I admit I have not visited the ship, even though I have a free pass.  I've been to the Alamo and San Jacinto, but not to something in my own home state!  Go figure!  If you are in the Birmingham area, I can recommend the Southern Museum of Flight.  It's not nautical, but it is a great place to wander through.  If you are in the Huntsville (Alabama) area, then the Space and Rocket Center is a great attraction, though I think the entrance fee is a bit steep at $25.00.  A better place might be the U.S. Veterans Memorial Museum.  They even have one of these!

There are quite a few places you might consider.  If you're passing through New Orleans, the National WWII Museum might be a nice stop.  It all depends on your time and money.

Hope you have a great time, no matter what you decide.




  • Member since
    April 2009
  • From: Longmont, Colorado
Posted by Cadet Chuck on Monday, May 13, 2019 7:01 PM

Shipping costs have gone astronomical, because recently UPS and FedEx started charging according to the dimensions of the package, rather than weight, as they used to.  So a ship model that doesn't weigh much, unfortunately is in a large box, and they soak the heck out of you.  Somebody apparently this was a good way to increase profits for the companies.  I try to avoid shipping anything, now.

Computer, did we bring batteries?.....Computer?

  • Member since
    May 2013
  • From: Indiana, USA
Posted by Greg on Monday, May 13, 2019 7:25 PM

Lots of good points above. ^^^^

Adding to PJ's comment, UPS stores are francises wholly owned by UPS but I suspect the franchisees are free, to some reasonable extent, to charge whatever they please for the packaging, since they are individual business folk, just like the peeps who own HobbyTown USA's.

If they are not comfortable, and by your comments it sounds like they might not be, they might be over-estimating in hopes of scaring you away to save them from potential liability.

Just a wild theory, but I'd sure check some other places, as already mentioned.



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