Modeling in General: Advice on...
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Mailing completed models ?
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New York, United States
Member Since: September 24, 2002
entire network: 379 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2003 - 02:20 AM UTC
I plan on building a 1/48th Tiger Moth for an uncle who lives in Florida (I live in NY). How can I mail him the completed model and make sure it arrives intact?
I will probably set the model in a glass or lexan case- I'm thinking that if I secure the model firmly to the wooden base (fastened by a screw through the wheels maybe), put the glass/lexan case over it, and ship the whole thing in a big box filled with shipping 'peanuts' it'll be ok..
Anybody have any experiences with shipping completed models?

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Ontario, Canada
Member Since: June 26, 2002
entire network: 851 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2003 - 02:40 AM UTC
I don't know if this helps but the Tamiya Model Magazine issue with the Vichy Dewoitine had a good part about how the guy who made it shipped it to England. I am sure someone with a scanner and a copy of the mag can help.


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North Carolina, United States
Member Since: February 22, 2002
entire network: 11,718 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2003 - 02:46 AM UTC
I'd love to hear some experience here. I get nervous transporting my kits across town. What makes it worse is - my brother worked for UPS and has told me stories that would make you cringe.
Insurance!!!!!!!!!!!!! Get a bunch of it and ship it UPS or Fed Ex. They insure the contents not just the delivery (as is the case of USPS).
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New York, United States
Member Since: February 28, 2002
entire network: 5,957 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2003 - 04:40 AM UTC
OK here's what ive read. Pack the model in a loose fitting plastic bag. Cut some foam to fit around the model (landing gear Etc. in this case) Box up this "package". Find a bigger box & fill w/ foam peanuts od crinkled newspaper & place 1st box inside. fill w/ foam or paper.
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Member Since: March 06, 2002
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Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2003 - 05:55 AM UTC

I've had success with the double-boxing method.
We moved from TX to NY, and I packed up my built kits and dios. Nothing got broken (and stuff was in storage for a month).

I packed the kits/dios in the smallest box that would fit, with styrofoam etc. taped to hold things snug. Then I put the boxes in a bigger box with lots of padding. A couple of figures came loose from one dio, but as I said, there was no breakage.

I have mailed built items too. Double boxing the same way worked.

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Pennsylvania, United States
Member Since: October 05, 2002
entire network: 2,659 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2003 - 07:38 AM UTC
more than likely you'll want to add some support to the model itself so a shock or jar won't tear anything off.. maybe some styrofom in the box with slots cut out to fit the model in. and mabye some cut styrofom blocks between the base and various sections of the model so all the support isn't just on the gear,.
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Rhode Island, United States
Member Since: May 10, 2002
entire network: 3,581 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2003 - 11:24 AM UTC
I sucessfully mailed 2 B-24's (1/48th).One to Texas,1 to Arizona.Each was on a base,1/4 or 3/8 plywood.Around this I built a plexi sides and top,trimmed w/ 1/4 round molding(stained)
The models had cardboard supports under the rear fuselage,and wings.
I filled around the planes with AIR POPPED popcorn.the lid was secured to the base,and cushioning around that in a larger box.almost 25 lbs.
Made it though.
One was for the Navigator on my Father's plane,the other was for one of the twins who was a waist gunner on the same plane.
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Alabama, United States
Member Since: September 26, 2002
entire network: 1,318 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2003 - 11:52 AM UTC
I've sold several built models and dioramas on Ebay and shipped them all over the country via UPS. I placed a thin layer of peanuts in the bottom of the box, then placed the model on this layer. I then filled the box with peanuts and made sure the box lid is tight against them. Use heavy duty packing tape and seal it up really good. I have had no problems with this method. No broken antennaes, figures or trees. Good luck.

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California, United States
Member Since: May 05, 2002
entire network: 774 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2003 - 11:59 AM UTC
"Herberta" has it right. I have sold and shipped over a dozen models now without any problems. The way I do it is exactly as he described; smallest box possible with the finished model inside then filled with packing p-nuts. Tape that box up securely and fit it inside another, larger box with at least 3-4 inches (18-20 cm) clearance on all sides, top and bottom. Fill the bottom with 3 to 4 inches of p-nuts and put your smaller box inside fill the rest with p-nuts, seal it up and ship it away. One other thing, USPS insurance does cover the contents, not just the delivery. If you make a claim you need the original carton it was mailed in, the contents, and something to establish value. I'm not telling you it is a quick process, but it is at least a process that works.


P.S. Most of the time that a base is included I have removed it and packed it in the outer box amidst the p-nuts. I have been fearful of it banging around and breaking something.
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Texas, United States
Member Since: January 08, 2002
entire network: 1,586 Posts
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Posted: Wednesday, January 15, 2003 - 07:27 PM UTC
I ship entire DIORMAS around the world, and while this may cost an extra few bucks, it works GREAT....

1) Wrap the complete piece in a plastic baggie, and seal it with as little air inside as possible

2) spray some liquid foam (air hardening kind sold in a can at most Home Depot stores"

3) while the foam is "semi wet", place the unit into the box.

4) Pack plastic peanuts around the rest of the base, but DON'T fill it up.

5) Spray MORE liquid foam over and around all the side and top peanuts

6) Shut and tape the box... wait 48 hours for the foam to harden inside the box.

7) Ship it off to Zanzibar!

The person receiving the box can "break off chunks of the top layer of hardened foam, them can easily move the peanuts out of the way to get to the interior bag. This may be overkill for a cheap or simple kit, but if you have put a lot of love, sweat, and tears into something that you want someone to see the way it looked when you finished it, THIS does the trick!