Packing and mailing a Glass dome with 400 Day clock.

Discussion in '400-Day & Atmos' started by Peter W, Jun 23, 2019.

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  1. Peter W

    Peter W Registered User

    Nov 23, 2017
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    Packing and mailing a Glass dome together with a 400 Day clock.
    Does anyone have highly successful experiences in packing? Would appreciate tips.
     
  2. Carl in France

    Carl in France Registered User

    Mar 14, 2019
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    Oh the joy. Assume that the driver will stand at the rear of the van and throw it straight in to the front of the van regardless of any 'fragile/glass' markings you have plastered all over it. So pack accordingly.
    I speak from experience having dropped a clock off at a relay point for despatch. I was getting in my car when the driver turned up so statrted to film what happened.....the above was exactly what happened.

    Luckily it arrived in good condition.

    I pack wrapped all round in bubblewrap. I then place in a foam and polystyrene packed box. This box i then wrap in more bubblewrap and place in a second foam and polystyrene packed box. I ensure that the item can not move about in the box and the wrapping is all around the item so it is central in the nest of protection.
    I pack expecting the muppets to throw the package out of the van on to a concrete floor. So far i have had no damages. I would mail the glass dome as a separate item and also stuff it full of bubblewrap!

    What always suprises me is when i get an item placed in the bottom of a box with loads of packing on top of it but nothing but a thin layer of cardboard under it....plonkers.
     
    Dave T likes this.
  3. mauleg

    mauleg Registered User
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    Dec 26, 2012
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    I've had many 400-day clocks shipped here from the US. The best packing job was done by our own John Hubby for a clock that I bought at the 2018 national convention. The worst packing job was one where the sender put the clock in a largish box with no packing material whatsoever. The pendulum acted like a bullet, ricocheting off the sides, utterly destroying everything in the box. The dome was literally reduced to powder. After this, I wrote the following packing instructions that I now provide for each clock purchased; I've not had any issues since:

    Instructions:
    1. Please remove the pendulum and wrap it securely in bubble wrap, then place it in a smaller box, ensuring that no movement can occur. Tape the smaller box securely to the bottom of the main shipping box.
    2. Please remove the dome, wrap it securely in at least 2 layers of bubble wrap and place it in a smaller box, ensuring that no movement can occur. Place the smaller box within the main shipping container.
    3. Please wrap the main clock in at least 3 layers of bubble wrap, and either a) place it within a smaller box, ensuring that no movement can occur, or b) tape it securely to sufficient solid packing foam at least 3" in width (not peanuts, which do little to protect loose items) on all sides to ensure that no movement can occur.
     
  4. Peter W

    Peter W Registered User

    Nov 23, 2017
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    Thank you Carl and Mauleg for your replies.
     
  5. novicetimekeeper

    novicetimekeeper Registered User

    Jul 26, 2015
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    The biggest problem you face is the much heavier items moving in the packing due to an impact and smashing the dome. Taping them to the inside of the carton is one way, but I'd favour packing them in separate cartons. I usually pay for two parcels when purchasing a clock with weights so that the weights travel on their own.
     
  6. KurtinSA

    KurtinSA Registered User
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    Nov 24, 2014
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    I also received a clock in the mail from John...he certainly knows how to do it! Some key steps I noticed:

    - he taped the lower block of the suspension spring up and out of the way to the back plate
    - wrapped the pendulum in a layer of thin Styrofoam sheet, then used blue painter's tape to secure the pendulum to the lower part of the columns
    - covered the clock in a layer of bubble wrap
    - slid the dome over the clock
    - used quite a bit of shrink wrap to secure the dome to the base
    - wrapped clock placed into a box of Styrofoam peanuts
    - placed that box into another larger box with peanuts

    Here's a few pictures.

    Kurt

    BandBPacking3LR.jpg BandBPacking2LR.jpg BandBPacking1LR.jpg
     
  7. tracerjack

    tracerjack Registered User
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    Jun 6, 2016
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    I have received many clocks packed for shipping by people who obviously had no knowledge of clocks. Many were shipped with the dome placed over the clock. Damage only occurred when the pendulum was left loose inside and/or there was no padding between the dome and metal base. Tight wrapping of the clock face always resulted in bent hands, but fortunately they reform well. I think as others mentioned, generous space between the clock and box sides, filled with shock absorbing material, and lack of movement inside the shipping box gives the best chance for successful shipping.
     
  8. etmb61

    etmb61 Registered User
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    Oct 25, 2010
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    The industry standard for packing anything is to survive a four foot drop onto a hard surface.

    I like the glass packed separately if it is an odd size that is difficult to find or expensive on its own. Otherwise having the glass over the clock is ok if enough packing is used so that nothing can move against each other in the box. All the space under the dome is filled. Having the glass loosely packed over the clock can damage the clock without breaking the glass.

    The industry recommends packing your item in a sturdy box surrounded by more padding and a sturdy outer box. If you do everything else wrong this step can prevent most damage. Use a plain outer box and mark it fragile.

    Eric
     
  9. Peter W

    Peter W Registered User

    Nov 23, 2017
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    Thank you Kurtis, TJ and Eric for your valuable input, especially the photos, Kurtis. Might be good to have a permanent photo step by step reference on Google and NAWCC. Could save a lot of clocks.
     
  10. etmb61

    etmb61 Registered User
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    There are references online. FedEx, for example, has a good .pdf call "How to pack" free to download. People don't follow packing directions.
     
  11. MartinM

    MartinM Registered User

    Jun 24, 2011
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    I wrap the pendulum in bubble wrap or thin foam and secure it UNDER the base at the same time I'm securing the dome to the clock with stretch wrap (NOT BUBBLE WRAP OR TAPE) It's best to put a layer or two of masking tape around the bottom of the dome where it contacts the base. Double boxing is the best way to keep the clock from getting too close to an outer box edge, but using crumpled kraft paper works very well, also. Try to do whatever you can to keep the dome top from wiggling its way to find a box edge.Always leave several inches between the clock and the box edges and use a sturdy box that won't get crushed.
    NEVER EVER use packing peanuts!.
     
  12. KurtinSA

    KurtinSA Registered User
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    I don't see anything wrong in using peanuts if you use a large flat surfaces as in the box and fill it full of peanuts. Peanuts would not be good when shipping something that is pointed or heavy as it will move around the peanuts.

    Kurt
     
  13. MartinM

    MartinM Registered User

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    I received a clock once that was packed by UPS at one of their stores and somebody must've spent at least an hour cutting and installing protective shields/covers/etc. Lots of attention to detail and lots of room in the box, filled tightly with peanuts. By all rights, it seemed like a great job. Until the box was turned upside down during shipping, letting the clock settle onto the dome with 2 layers of bubble wrap as the only protection besides the cardboard 'top' of the box. The dome didn't make it.

    I have also received from the other US coast, a loose clock in a box with no padding, an unsecured dome and a loose pendulum that survived with only some scratches in the clock's base. It's mostly dependent on how big a fan of soccer the driver is.
     
  14. KurtinSA

    KurtinSA Registered User
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    John sent me a clock from Houston thru the USPS packed as I said...the pictures I posted showed how the actual clock was wrapped and protected. John indicated that he's shipped multiple hundreds of clocks with only one "fatality" during that time.

    I fully understand the idea that peanuts can shift...and you're correct, heavy paper, etc., can't shift and is likely the better choice. But in my very, very limited experience, peanuts seemed to have worked.:?|

    Kurt
     
  15. mauleg

    mauleg Registered User
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    Peanuts do a better job when packed in tight.
     
  16. MartinM

    MartinM Registered User

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    For all you peanuts fans... I have a few dozen yard waste bags full of them that I haven't figured out how to get rid of.
    All you have to do is come get them. None of the shippers want them because of the chance that there might be some other contamination in with them. I've composted the rice ones that I receive, but the Styrofoam I can't see just sending to the landfill. My only other thought is to melt them into so much napalm in a tub of gasoline.
     
  17. shutterbug

    shutterbug Moderator
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    The packing peanuts work fine for the outside box. Don't use them for the inside box. Pack them in tight!
     
  18. etmb61

    etmb61 Registered User
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    The important thing to remember here is that whatever packing material you choose, you must create a structure that supports and protects the clock you intend to ship. To do that you need to be somewhat familiar with how that clock is made and the forces that it's likely to encounter, and try to alleviate them. The best examples of how to do that are the packing systems used by 400 day clock makers in the 1950s and later. Schatz, for example, packed their clocks in cardboard and tissue paper, but they created a structure that prevented the clock from moving around and damaging itself. The clock was held in place in the box by it's base, and the movement was supported by a spacer block, a cardboard tube, and a steel strap. The dome sat over the top of this. The pendulum was wrapped in tissue and tucked into the cardboard along side. The outer box was usually a wooden crate.

    schatz_pack_1.jpg

    There's a good article in the Torsion Times by Mun CW about the Schatz Jubilee where he shows an example of the complete original packing. Again the packing creates a structure to protect the clock.

    Other makers used different methods to achieve the same results.

    Eric
     
  19. RL

    RL Registered User
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    Peanuts are ok if you use them correctly. When using peanuts all sides of the object to be shipped must be covered with a depth of peanuts in including the upper side in the box. In other words--before you close the box lid---you will have room to add more peanuts so that the item will be covered with a layer or two of peanuts on all sides.
     
  20. Peter W

    Peter W Registered User

    Nov 23, 2017
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    Thanks to all you fellows for replies. Have a kienzle on eBay and many more that I hope to sell under De.Querton so knowing best packing system essential.
     

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