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Topic: Book too big to wrap

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Subject: Book too big to wrap
Date Posted: 4/6/2010 1:46 AM ET
Member Since: 3/9/2010
Posts: 1
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All the books I have posted are Chicken soup for the soul books. They are to big to wrap the way the website shows to wrap books before we send them.  When I sent a book last week I ebded up putting it in a shipping envelope and taping the wrapper that I had printed out to the envelope.  Is that what I should have done or is there a way to wrap books that are bigger?  Thanks for your help.

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 2:17 AM ET
Member Since: 2/5/2007
Posts: 30,800
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As long as they are wrapped securely and taped well, it doesn't matter what you use.  Some use bubble envelopes, some the plastic type, some find other ways to wrap.  However you wrap it needs to be tight and secure.  It is greatly appreciated by most if you wrap in plastic first.  Yes - most of us tape the wrapper on whatever we use.

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 2:20 AM ET
Member Since: 12/27/2007
Posts: 702
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If I can't wrap a book in the two printed sheets (or sometimes even if I can), I re-use mailing envelopes that have been sent to me from other swappers.  Ocassionally, if neither of the above two methods don't work, I use the brown mailing paper to wrap in.  I keep a drawer filled with used plastic bags (from different products) and used mailing envelopes.  I like the thought of recycling plus it is cheap.  Just be sure to use plenty of tape (not Scotch).

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 6:42 AM ET
Member Since: 2/21/2009
Posts: 2,925
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I've received books in newspaper this week - please don't do that, lol! It does not hold up in the mail at all!  

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 8:00 AM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2005
Posts: 1,442
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If I have to mail a big hardcover, I always put it in a cereal box with scrunched up paper to pad it.

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 9:41 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2007
Posts: 2,271
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I want to second the thought to NEVER wrap in newspaper! It just does not hold up and always arrives in pieces. Ditto for gift wrapping paper! Most of my RWAP have been due to wrapping in too thin/fragile paper! But whatever you use, lots of shipping tape is the key!

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 10:23 AM ET
Member Since: 1/15/2007
Posts: 1,410
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I want to second the thought to NEVER wrap in newspaper! It just does not hold up and always arrives in pieces. Ditto for gift wrapping paper!

 

It doesn't matter what you use, as long as it is somewhat tear resistant, like printer paper.  I'll join the no newspaper & flimsy gift wrap chorus.  I expect that some, expensive gift wrapping would hold up to the USPS, but please do a tear test first.

 

I've never sent a book in the PBS 2-sheet wrapper. 

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 12:21 PM ET
Member Since: 2/5/2007
Posts: 30,800
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I use gift wrapping paper a lot.  It's the heavier type and works very well actually.  Of course, I'm the queen of tape and that holds almost anything together.  lol

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 12:45 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2009
Posts: 1,083
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If I have to mail a big hardcover, I always put it in a cereal box with scrunched up paper to pad it.

A cereal box is not strong enough to withstand the shipping process.  The most mangled "box" I have received since becoming a member was a cereal box.  The book arrived safe, but I was very surprised when I saw the condition of the "box" it came in.

To the OP:

If you plan on doing much business here, you might want to consider investing in a supply of poly bags to ship books.  I bought a mixed assortment from an E-bay seller costexpress

dp
Date Posted: 4/6/2010 5:11 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2010
Posts: 211
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If you have brown paper grocery bags lying around, using them for wrapping's a great way to recycle.  Or many stores have sturdy paper shopping bags; imo Hollister bags have the best brown paper.  (I keep all shopping bags, paper or plastic - I get my pack-ratness from my mom :) ).  Just remember to go over all corners and edges with packing tape.

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 7:54 PM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2005
Posts: 6,421
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While newspaper paper that has been printed on is no longer sufficient to be used for wrapping, printing paper BEFORE it has gone thru the print & dye process is just like Kraft paper, and all I ever use. Especially if you can get your hands on the end rolls of the heavier paper, but even the regular end rolls are just fine. It's something in the printing process that turns the paper into worthless strength quality, not to mention the ink comes off on the books too often.

If you have a locally printed paper, call the circulation dept, or printing office and ask if they sell or give away their end rolls from their paper. The town next to ours sells the end rolls for either $2 or $3, depending on how much is left on the roll, The one here in town, puts them in a bin inside the back door, and leaves them for a 'first come first receive' process. You only need one to last a couple years, depending of course on how many books your mail.

But, whatever you use for wrapping, there are two keys to making sure the book arrives safe. First, I highly recommend an inner wrapping of plastic, you wouldn't believe how many books have been saved by the plastic, where you could see that the machinery had almost melted the plastic when the book got stuck somehow, and you just know it would have been the pages torn all up if not for the plastic.

The second is using enough (not necessarily mummification) wrapping tape. Go across all bends of the book, down the side corners, across the bottom and top edges, etc. Wherever the paper has a bend in it, so goes the tape, wherever the paper has an end, so goes extra tape.

Hubby has gotten lots and lots of compliments on his book wrapping (which his style of wrapping is basically like a present. You want no loose sloppiness to the paper at all) and using enough tape, but he never mummifies them which I've heard a lot of people say they do. He just always makes sure there's tape on every bend, and if there's more than one or two books, there's always a run of tape the length of the bundle, and one around the width of the bundle. I can't remember if we've ever had anyone tell us a book arrived damaged by the PO, and he always wraps the same way.

Good luck! Oh, and if you don't have any newpaper offices close enough, try going to an office supply store, like Office Max, Staples, Office Depot, or your local one, if you have one, and buy a roll of Kraft paper (brown or white) and use that for probably a year or more. It's really cheap compartively to how many books you can get wrapped out of it.

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 9:05 PM ET
Member Since: 12/11/2009
Posts: 219
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I just use enough extra sheets of paper to completely wrap the book -- my work prints hundreds of pages of stuff a week and most of it doesn't get saved, so I just grab a handful of it every once in a while and bring it home.

Date Posted: 4/6/2010 10:29 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,445
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I use old maps.  Road maps and outdated road atlases.  The paper is thin but sturdy, made to stand up to folding.  Plus it looks beautiful.

I once got a book wrapped in holiday paper.  The red ink had run, destroying the book.  Do not recommend that.

As I have an ink jet printer, I always put tape over the address.  Water causes my printer's ink to disappear.

dp
Date Posted: 4/6/2010 10:49 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2010
Posts: 211
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Sherry, now I kinda want to order a book from you just to see what the wrapping looks like :)

Date Posted: 4/7/2010 1:55 PM ET
Member Since: 7/1/2008
Posts: 6,706
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I second/third etc about wrapping in plastic 1st; it can really save a book! I just about mummify my books, with packing tape, but I leave an opening or 2, for scissors to slip in (and have directional arrows ? ;)). Someone at PBS, suggested a seam ripper for opening packages, and what a nifty little tool that is (about $2). I've received books wrapped in calendar pgs. (very pretty)

Date Posted: 4/7/2010 2:18 PM ET
Member Since: 7/28/2006
Posts: 4,981
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I have a roll of Tyvek left over from when we redid our bathroom that I wrap my books in if I've run out of bubble envelopes to recycle.  It's waterproof (no plastic needed) and tear resistant, and much sturdier than printer paper.  I've only had a problem one time, and that's because a sorting machine got ahold of it and tore the book literally in half, right down the spine.  I don't think any type of packing would have saved it from that, short maybe a cardboard box (it was one of the few times I wrapped a book in plastic in addition to the Tyvek).  Sometimes you just have bad luck with those machines...

 I sometimes hand copy my addresses since my printer seems to be almost perpetually out of ink.  Like Sherry's husband, I just wrap like a present (packing tape down the seam at the back of the book, and securly over both folded ends of the package).  Holds up in shipping and not too hard to open when it arrives.  :)

Date Posted: 4/7/2010 3:41 PM ET
Member Since: 2/5/2007
Posts: 30,800
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Just be very aware before you pay money for the poly bags that the mail machines love to punch holes and tear these supposably indestructible bags.  Almost everyone I receive has at least one hole in it and often several.  The ones that get through without holes normally have been taped to fit tightly around the book.



Last Edited on: 4/7/10 6:55 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/7/2010 10:07 PM ET
Member Since: 7/23/2006
Posts: 15,930
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I'm not a big fan of the poly envelopes, especially for hardback books. 

I've never seen a problem with cereal boxes, but I know anything can potentially be damaged by the post office machines.

Today, I wrapped a hardback using a manilla file folder!  It worked great!

Subject: wrapping books
Date Posted: 4/7/2010 11:02 PM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2005
Posts: 5,426
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I have sent books in wallpaper  that i had laying around. I have also used gift wrap, but used a triple thickness, AND plastic.I bring plastic bags home from work. I end up cutting down the bags.  I also save the plastic bags the morning paper comes in-perfect for one paperback!

Date Posted: 4/7/2010 11:26 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,445
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The plastic bubbles that Amazon uses for shipping work great as well.  Cut off one end, just fits a paperback.

Date Posted: 4/8/2010 3:49 PM ET
Member Since: 1/31/2006
Posts: 1,402
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If you are sending an oversize or overweight book please, please, please, tape all edges.  The last three books I've rcd have all had varying degrees of damage due to poor wrapping. 

Date Posted: 4/10/2010 3:02 AM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2010
Posts: 74
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Ive been using bubble mailers, they work great but they are pricey, when I run out of those I'll have to use some of these ideas.

Date Posted: 4/10/2010 3:42 AM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2007
Posts: 13,193
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I have both used and received books in cereal boxes. They work great. Just use a lot of tape and make sure you criss cross the tape like they used to do with string way back when (that would be when I was a kid).  Oh, and like the other poster said stuff the air pocket with newspaper so the book doesn't rattle around inside. 

I reuse bubble mailers. I use brown paper, brown paper bags and manilla envelopes. But let me warn you on the manilla envelopes ... they must be wrapped secure and and very tight. Tape the seams first, then put the book and make sure the book is secure inside by folding and taping. For multiple orders I got lucky. Our entire office got new phones so I got all the boxes. :) They fit 3-6 books perfectly depending on binding type they are so I have that problem solved for a very long time to come!!

I do not like poly envelopes either. The do catch and rip in the machines. 

One thing that I don't think anyone has mentioned, print out the one page format. Cut it in half, stick the postage/DC half on the front as usual and the other half in the package with the book as an invoice.  Don't use the format that prints out two pages because that's meant to be used if you're wrapping the book with the printed paper. You can change the settings after you click the button to print the book your account page. It'll give three options. 

Forgot to mention, use plastic. Wrap the book in plastic first to save it from getting wet! 

ETA: because I can't spell tonight!



Last Edited on: 4/10/10 3:46 AM ET - Total times edited: 2
Subject: Wrapping books
Date Posted: 4/11/2010 7:31 PM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2005
Posts: 5,426
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I just ordered some things in the mail and they came with the krafte wrapping paper as stuffing-enough for several books. I also got a whole box of manilla envelopes at a rummage sale-7.5x10x5-good for one paperback and maybe two smaller ones.  For a $1 I couldn't go too far wrong. I also have the plaastic that amazon send books in-cut them open and can get one book inor put one on the bottom and one on the top-would fit a bigger book.

Date Posted: 4/11/2010 7:49 PM ET
Member Since: 9/24/2007
Posts: 453
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If you use mailing envelopes, just be sure that your book cannot move around within the envelope.  They have a disconcerting tendency to "shoot" from one end to the other during the mailing process and many of us who have been members for awhile have received at least one empty mailing envelope where the book punched it's way out.  That translates to a lost book for the sender and goodbye credit!  Get rid of the wiggle room and as others have said, tape all seams, corners, etc.

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