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Old 02-10-2010, 10:34 AM #1
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Default Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

Hi all,
I recently sold a 612nm to aryntha who made me an offer I couldn't refuse. Well, yes I could have because it's a very rare tube but I've enjoyed it and it's been sitting in a drawer for ages. So time for someone else to enjoy it now.
I know I'm probably preaching to the converted but when you sell someone a valuable item like this, you want to do the best you can with packaging to protect their investment. It's a long way from Australia to the US.
So I thought I might post up the process with a few pic of the packing and hopefully this shares some useful ideas to some of you who sell lasers. It's also a great opportunity for aryntha to see his treasured tube being packed.
Enjoy!

Here is the tube being prepared for packaging. Also shown is bubble wrap and a solid large tube in which the laser will be suspended in the middle inside the tube.


This is the tube wrapped in bubble wrap and I used sponge that will suspend the laser through the center of the tube and give excellent shock absorption.


The laser has now been placed into the tube and all cavities around the tube have been filled with void fill or 'foam peanuts'. there are 3-4 inches of foam peanuts on either end of the laser head.


Finally the plastic end caps are inserted. The laser head should not be too tightly packed and you should be able to feel the laser move around very slightly within the packaging for best shock absorption. If it's packed to tightly, there's more change if it being damaged even with all this protection around it.


These tubes provide outstanding protection. They are so solid, much better than a cardboard box.


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Old 02-10-2010, 10:49 AM #2
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

Nice packaging guide!
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Old 02-10-2010, 12:57 PM #3
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

Good Packing for that Tube...

The only issue I have is that I would have put Solid Foam Circles at both
extreme ends of the tube as well...
Packing peanuts can settle with shipping vibrations and the Laser ends
could work their way through the peanuts and butt up directly on the
end tube cover...

Maybe I'm being too cautious... I don't like the Postal or UPS Gorillas...

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Old 02-10-2010, 02:53 PM #4
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

I think that's great... Really makes me feel a lot safer. And I'll have a good container to store the laser in, too. I like this.

I'm asking Rob if he can go one slight step further and slip that tube into a cardboard box that's a bit bigger than it and add some peanuts to that... kind of as a 'crucible', as maybe a barrier to keep forklift blades/other items ever so much farther from the laser itself... plus one more layer of absorption where the tube itself could slightly move in the box. Plus, what UPS always says here is: "Electronics? Was it double boxed?"

Oh yeah -- and one more good reason to "box the tube" -- to keep it from rolling. And perhaps rolling off of things, say, cargo bays, and out of a plane onto the pavement

Lasersbee has a good point - .. But perhaps the foam peanuts would be compressed, and likely couldn't penetrate and butt up against the ends. (I'd hope.) Though I had another friend say that a disc of foam at each end might be a good idea.

I totally agree with allowing a bit of "play" during movement; that way, abrupt shocks aren't transferred to the laser. He's right, you don't want it "tight", because then all you're doing is coupling vibration to the laser itself. You want those sharp "peaks" of impact to become rounded, and expressed over a longer time. So being able to feel the laser move (a tiny bit!) is the right way to go.

I may be a bit paranoid too after losing so many lasers in shipping in one week. I fully expect these guys to hike the thing from the plane to the tarmac, and miss. And then kick it around a bit and see who can score a goal.

I'll see if Rob can put the tube in a box; hopefully that wouldn't augment shipping charges much, and it'd just add that one more layer of protection. Oh. and it wouldn't look 'different' to the UPS/USPS/etc guys. Nothing like a little "So what do we have heeere? Hey Bob! Catch this!"

... Yes, I do really believe that kind of business goes on at sorting facilities. It'll be interesting to see a before-and-after just for the outside packaging. Last week I had a Melles Griot box that was apparently intact before shipping, just torn to pieces and hanging. I don't know how the shipping companies manage it. You'd think it'd take MORE work for them to treat packages the way they do.
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Old 02-10-2010, 06:42 PM #5
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

I figured I'd post some pictures of the amazing feats involved in some of the lasers i've received this last week.

This is the supplementary addendum to Rob's post, which I will title "How NOT to pack a HeNe head for postage."

Not shown:

-A JDSU 1125p head sent from Israel to the US in nothing but a padded envelope (really. No, it did not survive.)

-A 612nm Melles Griot head that was half hanging out of the box, kept in with tape securing half of the box to the head, with the power supply loose and bashing into the HR mirror collar.

None of these packing jobs reflect on anyone in this forum; these were all eBay "situations". So far, the gas lasers I've received from daguin and hakzaw1 have worked great -- **no problems at all** with anyone on this forum. Also, Sam Goldwasser has been great to deal with. This is the difference between buying from "laser guys" and not.

Attachments below.
Attached Thumbnails
Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage-laser2.jpg   Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage-laser3.jpg   Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage-laser1.jpg  

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Old 02-11-2010, 01:43 AM #6
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

Have you considered these?
Shockwatch indicators - might deter mishandeling. Saw them on Mythbusters.
Shock Sensors for Shipping Fragile Goods
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Old 02-11-2010, 01:56 AM #7
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

Quote:
Originally Posted by aryntha View Post
I figured I'd post some pictures of the amazing feats involved in some of the lasers i've received this last week.

This is the supplementary addendum to Rob's post, which I will title "How NOT to pack a HeNe head for postage."

Not shown:

-A JDSU 1125p head sent from Israel to the US in nothing but a padded envelope (really. No, it did not survive.)

-A 612nm Melles Griot head that was half hanging out of the box, kept in with tape securing half of the box to the head, with the power supply loose and bashing into the HR mirror collar.

None of these packing jobs reflect on anyone in this forum; these were all eBay "situations". So far, the gas lasers I've received from daguin and hakzaw1 have worked great -- **no problems at all** with anyone on this forum. Also, Sam Goldwasser has been great to deal with. This is the difference between buying from "laser guys" and not.

Attachments below.
I LOL'ed at pic 1 and 2... I know its not funny but srsly WTF were they thinking???
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Old 02-11-2010, 02:03 AM #8
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

I used a 3" ABS tube with end caps that I bought at Lowes to ship a HeNe to Slovenia. Stuffed it with padding and then placed it into a box...more padding in the box. It was probably over kill, but I didn't want to risk sending it in a cardboard tube. It got there safe.

Edit: I like the foam donuts. I wish I would have thought about that.

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Old 02-11-2010, 02:06 AM #9
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

yes I also believe that when you pack them the circular foam end caps would prevent the packing peanuts from settling to the point of compromising the hene.
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Old 02-11-2010, 02:38 AM #10
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

Quote:
Originally Posted by bobhaha View Post
but srsly WTF were they thinking???
That's the whole thing --- they weren't thinking.

It's not even the end of the workday in Australia, so hopefully Rob can come back and see what he thinks about the ideas... If he'd be willing to do the foam pads on the ends, and the tube-in-a-box, i think i could sleep at night just fine.

This also could be a useful thread in general for folks shipping HeNes though, so I'm glad he posted it here.
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638nm:Sanyo 40mW ∙ HL63133 200mW ∙ PGL3C 463mWpk ∙ ML520 700mW
633nm:JDS1145 HeNe 28mW ∙ JDS1145 HeNe 26mW
612nm:MG 05LOR151 HeNe 3mW ∙ REO LSTP 3mW
609nm:REO LHOR 1mW
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589nm:CNI PGL3C 106mW ∙ CNI PGL3C 85mW
561nm:CNI PGL3C 30mW(41pk)
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Old 02-11-2010, 11:15 AM #11
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

Great suggestions guys. Foam pads have now been inserted inside the tube, just inside the end caps. The whole cylinder will be placed in a box with some more padding between box and tube.
Now the big question. What do you guys think about placing 'FRAGILE' stickers on the box? In my opinion, it can go both ways.
1. Postal worker sees the stickers.....ok, better be careful because it's fragile.
2. Postal worker sees the stickers.....fragile huh? lets see how far I can kick this box?
Interested in hearing your opinions, and Matt, let me know if you want the stickers on the box or not.
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Old 02-11-2010, 05:03 PM #12
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

That, I have really wondered about. I think if those "Shockwatch" stickers could be found quickly available -- (I'd pay for those if they could be found in a quantity of <50 for $127!) -- THAT would be a deterrent...

However I'm kind of torn like you are about the "Fragile" stickers. I think -most people- are "good people" and would handle it better, especially if it said "FRAGILE - GLASS". However, I do think if there's *one* sociopath with a sick streak, it would be like a magnet to that guy. And it's probably best to not attract his attention. Here, seems to be a 'story' about it:

http://www.randyrants.com/2004/05/since_when_does.html

It seems to go both ways:

Quote:
Q: Does the post office really handle your package more carefully if you put a "Fragile" label on it?

A: Most of the time, yes. I happen to work for the post office and will tell you that the majority of my fellow employees do indeed try to be careful with fragile mail. Unfortunately, there are some who don't care about the customers and just toss stuff around madly.
Then there are those that say no. There seem to be a lot more folks who say don't do it.

Quote:
I used to do courier work - most depots use the ones marked fragile as footballs or put them on the bottom of the pile!
And this is an interesting notion:

Quote:
2ndly, from experience (my own and a fair amount of friend's experiences) packages/suitcases marked FRAGILE had an "odd" tendency to go missing! Apparently it is a signal to stiicky-fingered employees that the contents are expensive (seeing as most fragile items are expensive it's not hard to see the logic i guess) and therefor too tempting not to pinch!
I know there's a lot of cynicism about shippers. (I feel that way often myself..) I'm actually leaning towards no... Mostly because of the 'attention' and 'theft' issues, and 'attracting one bad egg'.

The tube going into a cardboard box (with space+padding around it), I think, will also make it attract less attention and be less of an appealing shape/size to pick up and toss across a facility...

I think the best option is to overpack madly, and not attract any undue attention to the package - packing for the feeling that 'if it were dropped 3m onto concrete, it'd probably be fine'.
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Old 02-11-2010, 06:00 PM #13
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

If the goods survies beeing thrown off the roof of the empire state building, its packed well enough
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Old 02-11-2010, 06:03 PM #14
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

Yea just what he said befor I could say it !


Quote:
Originally Posted by lasersbee View Post
Good Packing for that Tube...

The only issue I have is that I would have put Solid Foam Circles at both
extreme ends of the tube as well...
Packing peanuts can settle with shipping vibrations and the Laser ends
could work their way through the peanuts and butt up directly on the
end tube cover...

Maybe I'm being too cautious... I don't like the Postal or UPS Gorillas...

Jerry
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Old 02-12-2010, 05:24 AM #15
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

hmm. It's interesting. Sam Goldwasser put fragile stickers on the laser heads he sent me. Laserglow put fragile stickers on the lasers they shipped me from Canada.

... Maybe that would mean that we -should- go with the fragile stickers? Hrmmm.
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3392nm:REO LHIP HeNe 2mW ∙ 980nm:OLIKE 155mW

808nm:OLIKE 200mW ∙ JETL PLC 600mW(682pk)
780nm:OLIKE 120mW
685nm:18650 47mW
671nm:PGL3M 281mW DPSS ∙ PGL3C 278mW
655nm:LOC 254mW ∙ OLIKE 221mW ∙ Yob 320mW
638nm:Sanyo 40mW ∙ HL63133 200mW ∙ PGL3C 463mWpk ∙ ML520 700mW
633nm:JDS1145 HeNe 28mW ∙ JDS1145 HeNe 26mW
612nm:MG 05LOR151 HeNe 3mW ∙ REO LSTP 3mW
609nm:REO LHOR 1mW
604nm:REO LSTP 2mW
594nm:Rigel 3mW ∙ LG PGL3C 15mWpk ∙ Lasos 7512 3mW ∙ CNI MGL3 58mWpk
589nm:CNI PGL3C 106mW ∙ CNI PGL3C 85mW
561nm:CNI PGL3C 30mW(41pk)
556nm:CNI PGL3C 20mW(22pk)
544nm:JDS1675P HeNe 2mW ∙ REO LHGR 2mW ∙ Lasos 7786 2mW
532nm:PGL3C 150mW(180pk) ∙ PGL3C 578mWpk ∙ PLC 440mWpk
515nm:JDS 221420GL ArI 30mW
510nm:52mW DG#2 ∙ 50mW 26650 DG
488nm:Nlx DPSS 7mW ∙ JDS 2214 ArI 40mW ∙ JDS FCD488 DPSS 25mW
ML:MG 65A106025 ArI ML 115mW
476/480nm:Nichia Diode 28mW
473nm:PGL3A 45mW(80pk) ∙ PGL3C 110mWpk ∙ PGL3C 95mWpk ∙ RPLB-25 60mWpk
465nm:DTR NDB7676 2.03w
458nm:JDS 2214VL ArI 8mW ∙ JDS 2214VL ArI 12mW ∙ RHD Diode 1.7W
452nm:Osram SM 47mW
445nm:Yob 1410mW ∙ Polaris 156mW ∙ PGL3C 1200mW ∙ DTR-EHG 32650 2136mW
405nm:Yob 630mW ∙ Qfox 750mW ∙ JETL PLC 780mW
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Old 02-13-2010, 09:16 PM #16
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Default Re: Packing a valuable HeNe head for postage

These are my personal thoughts on packaging.
1-Never EVER add fragile stickers. Either the employees A-Won't care and will throw it around anyway or B-Will decide to be malicious and throw/kick it around even more.
2-If you wouldn't feel confident dropkicking the item down the stairs it probably isn't packed well enough.
3-Never buy or try to ship something that obviously shouldn't be shipped such as a big TV set. In the end it will inevitably wind up at the buyers house broken and then they'll want a refund. If you want a big 58' plasma tv get off your ass and go buy one at the local store. I can't imagine why people buy flat screen tv's on ebay and have them shipped by UPS. *Shudders at the thought*
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Last edited by Razako; 02-13-2010 at 09:21 PM.
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