Shipping guitars across the ocean

Discussion in 'Tele Home Depot' started by matmosphere, Jul 11, 2019.

How should I get this thing across the ocean?

  1. Slow boat across the ocean is fine

    5 vote(s)
    26.3%
  2. Make sure it is flown over

    8 vote(s)
    42.1%
  3. Other ideas

    1 vote(s)
    5.3%
  4. Shut up and post more pictures

    5 vote(s)
    26.3%
  1. matmosphere

    matmosphere Tele-Meister

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    Okay guys so first off.. Why is this thread in the Tele Home Depot you ask?

    Well I finally got a hold of this beautiful bass that my older brother built from a fretwire kit. It's a 34" scale length ES 335 bass. Replaced most of the hardware and got custom wound pickups from Sunday Hand-wound. Neck is a thunderbird bass pickup, mudbucker-esque and really brings the rumble. The bridge pickup is a slightly smaller version of a p-bass pickup under a humbucker cover. The bridge is made by hipshot and is vastly superior to the gibson three point bass bridge that came with the kit.

    So needless to say, I was super excited to get my hands on this thing a few days ago and haven't been able to put it down since.

    I'm moving from the US to Ukraine in a couple of weeks and want to take this and one of my guitars with me because I'll probably be their for a couple of years and it'd be really lame to have to leave this thing in storage.

    problem is, because of the size of it the moving company is unwilling to ship it with our person effects that are being flown over. (wife's job is moving us, and they are paying the movers, sweet deal) they want to ship it by boat across the ocean. It'll be in a hardshell case and I'll make sure it's packed well, but I'm concerned about the temperature and moisture changes damaging it. If it needs a setup when it gets their fine, but if the neck is twisted or it's really damaged that would obviously be an issue.

    Does anyone have any experience with this type of thing? Am I just being paranoid, is the boat fine? I figure that every guitar made in asia is shipped via boat and they make it, right? So this will probably be fine, just like a solid wood table or dresser would be fine as well.

    BTW, I promise to post more pictures of the bass if you guys want. Maybe one with it's older sibling, my '64 Epiphone Rivoli that this was envisioned as a back up for.
     

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  2. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    I imported an electric from Japan. Came by air with no issues. Seems to me that the shorter time something is in travel mode, the less chance of damage. My best recommendation is to take it with you when you fly to Ukraine.

    BTW, I hope they are paying your wife big bucks to relocate for a couple years.
     
  3. matmosphere

    matmosphere Tele-Meister

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    Don’t think I can take it with me on the flight. It’s too big to do as a carry on, especially considering there is a connection outside the US.

    Plus I have more important things I need to worry about with the flight.. my three kids.
     
  4. Chunkocaster

    Chunkocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    I've purchased a bunch of guitars from overseas. Japan packs the best, they used a middle man that repacked the guitars in huge thick boxes full of foam beans in small plastic bags. That method is pretty much bullet proof. Recently I have been using those same boxes to ship guitars I have sold. They give great piece of mind the guitar wont get damaged.

    I would ship the guitar to yourself in one of those boxes.
     
  5. Obsessed

    Obsessed Telefied Ad Free Member

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    You could buy a seat for your guitar and check the kids in as ba.... :D
     
  6. GARAGE HERMIT

    GARAGE HERMIT Tele-Meister

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    a few silica-gel bag's in with the guitar wouldn't hurt, or would it,
     
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  7. Jim_in_PA

    Jim_in_PA Tele-Meister

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    Regardless of how you choose to ship it, be sure that it's insured for full value, not by weight which is unfortunately "standard" for most moving situations. Same goes for any other valuables... ;) Insist on that with the package, but if there is refusal by those paying for the move, pony up the extra insurance cost yourselves for peace of mind.
     
  8. Matthias

    Matthias Tele-Afflicted

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    Trogly on YouTube does some packing tutorials.
     
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  9. matmosphere

    matmosphere Tele-Meister

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    This is all super helpful guys! Thanks

    It’s looking more and more like the boat is the only option but I’m gonna keep pushing.

    It’ll be enough to offset the lose of my teachers salary for the most part, and once you factor in the fact that they’ll pay our housing we’ll be coming out ahead. Plus it’ll hopefully lead to earlier promotion/better pay down the road.

    The guitars I’m taking aren’t super expensive, a Mexican jazz master and the kit bass, but I might talk with them about how much they insure them for. The bass would be a big hit cause my brother put a lot of work into it, but I suppose nothing good comes without some risk.
     
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  10. matmosphere

    matmosphere Tele-Meister

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    Spoke with the movers and was surprised with what they said.

    They said they’ll be better off on the boat because the biggest risk for damage is the handlers at the airport. So apparently thats still a thing for shipments, not just luggage.

    Frown
     
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  11. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Tele-Afflicted

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    I have shipped one guitar from the US to Austria and hand carried another from the US to NZ. Others have told you about packing and I can elaborate on that if you would like. For the guitar to the EU I investigated a number of shipping options, settled on USPS and had absolutely no issues. (On the other hand I just shipped a guitar across the US by UPS and it was damaged).

    However you have some other issues that you haven't mentioned.

    If the guitars are YOURS to start with you will probably not have to pay import duties but you will need to bring them thru customs. Each country treats this differently, but if there are any materials on the CITES lists you may need special paperwork. Materials in Appendix I are strictly forbidden from export/import - its pretty unlikely your bass has any of these. However Appendix II includes all rosewoods, some ebonies, many sell materials. Having the paper trail of where these materials came from, how they were brought into the US in the first place, and particularly when can be vital.

    For example, the ES-335 clone that I sent to Austria had ebony and pearl. I could trace both to suppliers in the US with the proper papers for the import to them. The ebony was pre-ban, the pearl was a by product from the seafood industry. I included a complete list of materials that the guitar was made from, it passed EU customs easily.

    The import of the tele-clone was a little different. I was going to NZ in the first place and I contacted NZ customs. They said just carry the guitar with my checked luggage thru Customs as my personal property. I did have paperwork for the rosewood fretboard but was never asked about it. A NZ friend said that they are pretty easy going about this kind of thing.
     
  12. matmosphere

    matmosphere Tele-Meister

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    As promised here are a few quick pictures. Every time I grab it I’m amazed at how good it came out.

    I wish I had time to get some better pictures but things are crazy right now.

    I think the burst on the back looks fantastic. The raw nickel pickup covers complement the finish very well.

    Still need to find some good knobs though.

    It’s older sibling in a couple pictures is my ‘64 (near as I can tell) Epiphone Rivoli, made in Kalamazoo side by side with the Gibson’s. I’ve wanted to find something to be more of an everyday player so the old one could stay safe at home.

    Definitely still prefer the short scale epi vs the new longer scale one, but I think it’ll just take a little while to get used to. E5D8AB45-E98D-45B6-AE43-74F4D20C1B33.jpeg 30066006-1963-4E7B-A0C4-A9293EFD82CD.jpeg A6D6DA6C-3E6C-4C4D-906C-4F4426999826.jpeg 3F9F7B61-BCB7-43E6-87A7-9E16E248745F.jpeg 0D2E8E8E-12CB-41CF-B456-859F07FA0A00.jpeg Also gonna have to decide what to put on this headstock when I get a little time.

    Freeman Keller I might drop you a PM with a couple of questions.
     
  13. Fretting out

    Fretting out Tele-Meister

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    You don’t have to tell me anything about what you do ,but if you don’t mind is this move for diplomatic purposes.
    None of my business just curious about the location unless you have family over there.
    Interesting choice, do you speak Russian?

    Beautiful instrument by the way;)
     
  14. mfguitar

    mfguitar Tele-Holic

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    Maybe just me but I don't put this on a boat for 3-4 weeks then trust Ukraine Customs then a Ukraine carrier to get the bass safely to me. Good luck if you try to collect on insurance should something happen. I would work with the airline and pay the extra baggage fee whatever it is. I have received several instruments from overseas via air and never had an issue. I will admit I have 0 experience with the Ukraine. Good luck and safe travels!
     
  15. matmosphere

    matmosphere Tele-Meister

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    No family just work, a chance to go on an adventure and broaden the kids horizons a bit. Don’t speak a bit of Russian.. yet.
     
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  16. I_build_my_own

    I_build_my_own Friend of Leo's

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    Moved 3 times over the ocean. Key is to itemize and value every item and insure. It is way more work upfront, but once you arrive and one box plus sporadic things are missing or items are broken you’ll be happy you did it. Way easier to deal with the insurance that way. Don’t go the volume or weight route. Good luck!
     
  17. ricknbaker

    ricknbaker Tele-Holic

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    Err.. They speak Ukrainian in Ukrania.
    And I don't think they're too fond of the Russians. You'll need to sharpen up your drinking skills too. I've worked with a few Ukrainians - all lovely blokes, smashing sense of humour. Enjoy!
     
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  18. Freeman Keller

    Freeman Keller Tele-Afflicted

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    Feel free. I'm not an expert but I've been thru it.

    If you want a really good background and explanation of CITES and how it impacts importing a musical instrument, read thru the article that Chuck Erickson did for the GAL

    https://www.luth.org/web_extras/CITES_Lacey-Act/cites_lacey-act.html

    You have two different issues, I believe - both instruments look like they have listed materials, however one is old enough that it may be grandfathered, the other might not be.
     
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2019
  19. radiocaster

    radiocaster Poster Extraordinaire

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    They speak both, but in some parts of Ukraine they may speak more one language than the other.
     
  20. Old Deaf Roadie

    Old Deaf Roadie Tele-Holic

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    You can check it & claim it at the gate. It will be on the top of the baggage pile in the belly. an oversize bag fee is cheaper than overseas air freight.
     
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