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Topic: Inexperienced mailer

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Subject: Inexperienced mailer
Date Posted: 2/17/2009 9:40 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2009
Posts: 227
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Last Edited on: 2/7/10 10:00 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/17/2009 9:54 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2009
Posts: 39
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See post "packaging advice" for some very good ideas offered to me by other members. Yes you read correctly that the printer paper is "sufficient" or at least that was MY interpretation of it when I read it. If you mailed your books to someone within your region of the country, they'll likely be okay. Further away the chances would be higher of them arriving "Medial Maul" (another mailing post....hilarious too!) Truly I think just about anything will do when it comes to shipping a book, what's important is TECHNIQUE. Wrap it like a gift and tape well with a quality tape all the way around the edges AND make sure its done neatly. I've mailed plenty of thinges besides books and it seems that mail is mail and no matter how careful you are, sometimes the item just doesnt make it and the only blame is the postal service. Alas, I would just check in with the recipients after they have marked it received and ask what condition it arrived in.

wishing you luck & a good day!

Lisa N. (LDN) - ,
Date Posted: 2/17/2009 9:56 AM ET
Member Since: 6/19/2007
Posts: 12,014
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I'd say the chances are good that your books will arrive okay.  I think the plastic is especially important if you are only using the printer paper to wrap.  It almost always tears open and then would leave the book exposed.  The only time it doesn't seem to get torn is when the mailer has completely covered it with tape, which then makes it very hard to open.  Can you tell I'm not a fan of using just the wrapper to mail the book.  :)

Anyway, an easy wrap is to use your plastic grocery sacks.  If you are like me you have way more than you could ever use.  I personally buy polymailers in bulk from a website where you get 100 for about $22.  It's so much easier to mail books in them and I've never had a problem with one.

Welcome to PBS.  I know you'll be as addicted as the rest of us soon.  You'll learn the mailing tips and tricks in time, but I think your first shipments will be fine.

Date Posted: 2/17/2009 9:57 AM ET
Member Since: 3/25/2008
Posts: 2,530
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I'm sure they'll arrive just fine. Some people never use the plastic wrapper & others always do. There are also the options of poly-mailers, bubble mailers, & like you said the brown bag. There's really no right or wrong way to wrap. As long as you're comfortable with sending the book that way. I myself always reuse as many wrapping materials as possible. Like I try my best to reuse the plastic & bubble mailers that books are sent to me in. I've also received books that are just in the printed wrapper & then encased in shipping tape to prevent water damage. This isn't my favorite way to receive them, but to each their own. I've received books in shoe boxes, cereal boxes, & even a pop corn box.

No matter what you do there is always the very small chance of your book being damaged while enroute to it's destination. Rather it's left out in the rain, or eaten by a postal machine. I'm sure the books you've already sent will be just fine. I'd say about less then half of the books I've received so far were wrapped in plastic & the printed shipping label.  The rest were wrapped in other materials. My one suggestion as mentioned on PBS wrappers as well is NEVER tape the wrapper directly to the book. I've actually received a couple that were and was lucky enough to prevent any damage while opening them.

Welcome to PBS! I hope your enjoying it so far! :)

Date Posted: 2/17/2009 10:02 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2009
Posts: 227
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Last Edited on: 2/7/10 10:01 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/17/2009 11:40 AM ET
Member Since: 12/7/2007
Posts: 6,435
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I've gotten books wrapped only in the printer paper and they've been fine.  Bigger than getting wet, I've found the problem with that is the paper can easily get ripped on the book's corners and then the corners get kind of bent.  Brown bags are less likely to tear, so it is probably fine, especially if you taped it well. 

I use grocery bags and re-used manilla envelopes most of the time now. 

Date Posted: 2/17/2009 3:05 PM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2009
Posts: 227
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Last Edited on: 2/7/10 10:02 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/17/2009 3:14 PM ET
Member Since: 12/9/2007
Posts: 9,601
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The advantage of sending paperbacks in  the printer paper or manila envelope paper or grocery bags is that the covers and pages are the same size so there are no "corners" to cause a tear in the wrapping or a difference in the size of the pages to the size of the covers to allow some other package to penetrate the wrapping of your book.  You mainly want to be sure the wrapping is as tightly wrapped around the book as possible so that slipping doesn't happen.  Using plastic is not a requirement - but it is definitely worth doing.  I use bubble wrap for HC's because it cushions the books covers and corners both protecting them and causing them not to cause damage.  Quality adequate taping is the other really important thing.  Tape can save a book in many situations.  Some people don't like a book to be "mummified" in tape because it makes the wrapping harder to get off.  Personally, it doesn't bother me.  Others it does.  Use your own discretion.  Most likely you will make the right decision becuase you cared enough to ask in the first place.