Packaging fragile items

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Ebay, Auctions, Car Boot & Jumble Sales
7 replies 754 views
BoltonMinxBoltonMinx Forumite
1.4K Posts

I want to send some items in the post. Ive got a box and some bubble-wrap with large bubbles. I was planning to double-wrap each in the bubble-wrap, then either pack in the box with

a) old carrier bags
b) shredded paper

As I don't have any foam packaging material.

What do you think ?
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  • black-saturnblack-saturn
    13.9K Posts
    This might not be enough to ensure it doesnt break. Then if it does the buyer will complain that you didn't use proper packing materials. Try and substitute the carrier bags and shredded paper with bubble wrap which you can buy in Poundland and also ask the post office to stick a fragile sticker on them which is free.
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  • jaffa30jaffa30 Forumite
    19.3K Posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker Photogenic

    Also check out the royal mail site for guides on packaging.

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  • se999se999 Forumite
    2.4K Posts
    Thanks for starting this thread. I've wondered about selling fragile things before but after pricing up front online managed to get Ok prices at carboots. But I do realise that I'll need to sell fragile things online in the future too.

    Is buying a paper shredder a good idea? It means increased security of personal information, recycling of paper waste and relatively low cost after initial investment. But for very fragile items what do people do?

    If you are recycling packaging materials the response I'm getting from some posts in various places is that you probably need to put it in your packaging information, so that people know upfront what they're paying for. I like being green too, but some people think they're not getting what they paid for.
  • grownup1grownup1 Forumite
    270 Posts
    I'd suggest loads of bubblewrap (from local supermarket fruit boxes if poss) inside a solid box. Paper will end up too heavy and cost more to post.
  • martindowmartindow Forumite
    9.3K Posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Name Dropper
    I find that shredded paper or scrunched up bags tend to compress and can also end up surprisingly heavy. They only really work if the item your sending is quite light. The most important thing with packing is to ensure that things can't move within their box. If you are sending several things in one box, wrap each thing in bubble wrap and then wrap them tightly together. A lot of damage can be caused by items banging against each other within the box.

    Loose fill packaging (rather like big bits of popcorn made from polystyrene or a more squashy material) is very good for filling the space around your bubble wrapped items. Another packaging material that is very light is small inflated plastic cushions. Try asking at shops to scrounge some; I'm sure most of it gets thrown after being used once. My PO is well trained and gives me any packaging they get. They are more than pleased to give it away as commercial waste collections are not free.
  • Contains_Mild_PerilContains_Mild_Peril Forumite
    4.1K Posts
    I would never buy bubble wrap from Poundland: I actually think it's quite expensive since you don't get a huge amount. As others have suggested, it's usually possible to scrounge some for free from other shops, and I also keep any received in eBay parcels for re-use.
    SHredded paper can be useful, but can also add significantly to the weight. Scrunched up carrier bags are marginally better.
    If you can get hold of foam, either from packing or from things like old upholstered furniture which is not in good enough condition to give away (look out for old 3 piece suites put out for bonfires - I'm sure no-one will miss the odd cushion disappearing in the dead of night!) this can be extremely useful. Always wash with the cushion cover still on, preferable separately, because tiny bits can contaminate other washing if you put naked foam in your washing machine!
    Do bear in mind that RM does not offer compensation for glass or ceramics damaged in the mail, and you can't expect them to treat the package gently just because you mark it "fragile".
    I once sent a £53.58 ceramic ornament to an eBay customer, and it survived postage (and positive feedback mentioned it was well packed). I wrapped it in tissue paper then bubble wrap, put it in a small, light cardboard box with enough packing so it wouldn't move, then put in in a bigger, stronger box with upholstery foam between the inner and outer boxes.
  • apprentice_tycoonapprentice_tycoon Forumite
    3.3K Posts
    I sell china and antiques on ebay and post around 20 -30 breakables including some high value pieces, worldwide each week. The only bubblewrap worth using is the sort with large bubbles (viking direct). I wrap each china item in 4 - 5 layers of bubble and then they go in a supermarket scavenged box.
    I push crumpled newspaper in the corner voids for UK parcels, for overseas ones where the weight is more critical I fill the corner voids with either poly chips or more bubblewrap cut into small pieces, all voids must be well stuffed so the box can't crumple anywhere.
    When you think that you have finished with the box imagine dropping it on a stone floor, if you are happy that it would be OK then you've done, seal it and put lots of FRAGILE tape around.
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