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  1. cardcollector01's Avatar
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    #1

    How to safely package cards!

    Recently, I have had a few trades where packaging was not up to par. I have decided to make this thread explaining how you can package up cards to prevent damage while in the postal service.

    1-3 Cards (PWE)
    I usually send 1-3 cards in a Plain White Envelope. You always need to use an appropriately sized toploader. Never try to squeeze cards into a toploader. Make sure the cards are in a softsleeve or softsleeves to prevent corner dings. Tape the top of the toploader shut tightly, to prevent the cards from slipping out. I send these types of packages as 'Non-Machineable First Class' (costs about 65 cents per envelope). Pretty much what this means is that they treat it like a package, and do not let it go through the machines they use to sort the mail.

    4-25 cards AND Game Used / Autographs (padded envelope)
    Whenever I trade alot of cards (under about 30), I always put them in a padded envelope. I have devised a method of packaging these safely, without using a toploader for every card

    1. Put all the cards your mailing into a team set bag, or zip lock bag

    2. Tape the bag of cards to a toploader (or piece of cardboard, whichever you use) on ALL 4 SIDES. This prevents the bag from manuvering itself free.

    3. Tape another toploader or cardboard piece on top of the exposed side of the cards, and tape again on ALL 4 SIDES. Package it up good, taping the envelope shut.


    This method works extremely well, as I have not had any complaints yet.

    26+ cards (box)
    When trading away a large lot of cards, I mail them in a box. I use the same packaging method as the one above, but also tape the cards to the box, so they will not move around inside, because we all know how the Postal Service treats the packages. Fill the box with packing peanuts, shreaded paper or whatever you prefer to use. Seal the box tightly on every side possible, assuring the box will not break open during transit.


    NEVER put an autograph or game used card in a PWE. This never turns out good, for anyone

    Delivery Confirmation - Use it when you feel like you should. I know some traders use it for every trade, and thats ok. Some of us do not have enough money to do that, and thats alright too.


    Well, hope this was informative to people You are welcome to share your ways of packaging, and I will add them to this list. Also, if this could get stickied, that would be helpful too

    Robbie
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  2. robert326's Avatar
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    #2
    Stickied, as requested by cardcollector01.

    Thanks for the comprehensive read, informative.

  3. worldwideed's Avatar
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    #3
    Good stuff. I use many of the techniques above and have NEVER received a damaged card complaint.

    Also, if any trade newbies are reading this. NEVER send a gu card or think card in a PWE through the regular letter mail it WILL be damaged.
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  4. cardcollector01's Avatar
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    #4
    Thanks guys.

    Robbie
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  5. jaderock's Avatar
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    #5
    JMO:

    I would NEVER send any card in a PWE UNLESS it was a thin card like Topps Total AND it was part of a contest freebie. Toploaders aren't meant for regular mail. They bend AND sometimes crack which results in creases.

    My feeling is: if I buy or trade for a card, it's because I NEED it regardless of "BV" -- meaning it holds value to me. If I get a creased card due to cheap packaging/shipping, then the experience is ruined (and often times not replacable).
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  6. cardcollector01's Avatar
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    #6
    Quote Originally Posted by jaderock View Post
    JMO:

    I would NEVER send any card in a PWE UNLESS it was a thin card like Topps Total AND it was part of a contest freebie. Toploaders aren't meant for regular mail. They bend AND sometimes crack which results in creases.

    My feeling is: if I buy or trade for a card, it's because I NEED it regardless of "BV" -- meaning it holds value to me. If I get a creased card due to cheap packaging/shipping, then the experience is ruined (and often times not replacable).
    Good point. However, if you pay the extra .13 or so cents, you can have it go Non-Machineable first class, which means they have to carry it through the sorting process, instead of allowing it through the sorters. This prevents the toploaders any damage, and it only costs .65 cents per PWE.

    Robbie
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  7. zlw1's Avatar
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    #7
    Quote Originally Posted by cardcollector01 View Post
    Good point. However, if you pay the extra .13 or so cents, you can have it go Non-Machineable first class, which means they have to carry it through the sorting process, instead of allowing it through the sorters. This prevents the toploaders any damage, and it only costs .65 cents per PWE.

    Robbie
    Robbie
    I go through stamps.com
    its only .17 extra to ship a 1oz envelope with nonmachinable surcharge
    Worth every penny!

  8. BiggioDiogu759's Avatar
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    #8
    Thnaks for the read.

  9. ktcardshop's Avatar
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    #9

    Plain White Envelope?

    I never use a PWE. Seems that the post office will miss it an send it through their machines and the card either gets badly curled or ripped out of the envelope and you get the envelope in a plastic bag saying it was damaged in processing.
    Rather I use a 28# Brown Craft 7G Catalog Envelope. It looks like it's larger counterparts but is about the size of a 6 3/4 envelope. Being brown in color and made from much thicker paper, it shows up as being different to the mail sorters.
    I put the cards in a team bag and between two toploaders and securely tape them together in both directions with carton sealing tape. After placing them in the envelope I seal the envelope and tape it shut. So far this has proven to be indestructible to the post office. I would never use a plain white envelope for sending cards!

    Ray
    Looking for cards from 1981 thru 1989
    Trading cards from 1981 thru 1994
    see my web page for links to my want/trade lists

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  10. Texas Brave13's Avatar
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    #10
    In addition to all of these pearls of wisdom in packing/shipping of cards of ANY style, I especially like the best method of all:

    COMMON SENSE

    That Tony Armas 1980 Topps that's worth .05 to you might be worth $1K to the person buying it...
    Thank you for your time, Greg L. Holland
    For the love of God, PLEASE DO NOT PUT TAPE OVER TOPLOADERS THINKING IT SECURES CARDS!
    NOT TRADING AT THIS TIME!

  11. oldmarine0311
    #11
    one important thing that was left out when a person is trading either with a bubble mailer or PWE please please please also on a scrap of paper list the trade number and your return address, if for some reason your PWE is damaged it has an address that it can be returned to. and as the person who is getting the trade it makes it easier to find and grade your trade if the trade number is there too. becaseu if your doing several trades its time consuming and sometimes difficult to know who sent what. plus its just a decent thing to do.

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