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Shipping a Computer

TychoCelchuuuTychoCelchuuu PIGEONRegistered User regular
edited May 2008 in Help / Advice Forum
I have a desktop computer that needs to get from Missouri to Washington state. The way I see it, I have three options:

1. Disassemble the entire thing, stick everything in the original packaging, and ship it all. Pros: nothing will break. Cons: time consuming, a bit more expensive, larger box to ship.

2. Take out the fragile bits and the hard drive, ship those in their boxes, and ship the rest of the computer in one piece in the box the case came in. Pros: fragile stuff is out of there, much much much less time consuming. Cons: Still have to open up the case and take a bunch of stuff out, and still have to ship multiple boxes.

3. Just ship the thing. Pros: easy! Cons: What if something comes loose?

I have no experience shipping anything like this. To get it TO Missouri, I disassembled/reassembled everything and it wasn't awful but I could save myself a few hours if this is unecessary in part or in whole. I understand that premade system vendors ship fully assembled computers all the time and they don't have any problems. Is there any reason why I can't do this?

TychoCelchuuu on

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    MagicPrimeMagicPrime FiresideWizard Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    Are you shipping it to yourself or a client?

    Also - there is no reason you can't ship it assembled, but if it doesn't immediately turn on when it's taken out of the packaging check for loose connections before jumping to conclusions.

    MagicPrime on
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    DaenrisDaenris Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    If you ship it assembled, you'll want to at least open up the case and put some packing material or something inside the case to prevent things from banging around if they do come loose.

    And however you ship it you'll want to make sure to get insurance on it.

    Daenris on
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    Oz K. FodrotskiOz K. Fodrotski Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    When I moved to Seattle from Alaska, I dismantled my computer, put the pieces in anti-static bags and packed them with my carry-on; this warranted questions from the Tee Ess Ay, but it gave me piece of mind that my parts weren't being battered about.

    I shipped my monitors in-packaging -- could have shipped the case, too, but I wanted a new one anyway, so I ordered one and pointed the shipping information at my temporary residence, so it would be there when I arrived.

    This method worked very well for me, and is good, psychologically, for those that worry about the treatment of shipped / luggage items.

    Oz K. Fodrotski on
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    saltinesssaltiness Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    I would just leave it all assembled and fill up the inside of the case with bubble wrap or newspaper so nothing gets jumbled around.

    saltiness on
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    CycophantCycophant Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    saltiness wrote: »
    I would just leave it all assembled and fill up the inside of the case with bubble wrap or newspaper so nothing gets jumbled around.

    Exactly.

    For reference, I shipped my computer a few thousand miles via Purolator (only because I got a discount) and although it arrived quite damaged, virtually everything does here. What ended up happening is that the box was dropped, and the video card got bent and probably cracked the circuit board in the impact, most likely due to the weight of the cooler.

    But all I did was take my case, and put it into the box the case came in (complete with stryofoam and such), and shipped it like that. Obviously I requested extra insurance (be SURE to do this!) which covered all the above damage.

    The only other advice I have is to be cautious - I remember reading a line in the insurance contract that any items not shipped in their "original packaging" could be considered improperly packaged, and any claim automatically declined. I'm assuming it's not something they do often, but if you're looking at using a different box, it's something to consider.

    Cycophant on
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    WalterWalter Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    I just shipped a computer from Mississippi to the west coast and back. I packed that box with a ridiculous amount of styrofoam and bubble wrap, I really overdid it. Still, the network card popped off and the fan came loose. You can surround it all you like, but that doesn't change the fact that the interior of the tower has no padding. My suggestion is to take out the important/delicate pieces and ship them individually, which is what I did on the return trip.

    Walter on
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    GdiguyGdiguy San Diego, CARegistered User regular
    edited April 2008
    I have a desktop computer that needs to get from Missouri to Washington state. The way I see it, I have three options:

    1. Disassemble the entire thing, stick everything in the original packaging, and ship it all. Pros: nothing will break. Cons: time consuming, a bit more expensive, larger box to ship.

    2. Take out the fragile bits and the hard drive, ship those in their boxes, and ship the rest of the computer in one piece in the box the case came in. Pros: fragile stuff is out of there, much much much less time consuming. Cons: Still have to open up the case and take a bunch of stuff out, and still have to ship multiple boxes.

    3. Just ship the thing. Pros: easy! Cons: What if something comes loose?

    I have no experience shipping anything like this. To get it TO Missouri, I disassembled/reassembled everything and it wasn't awful but I could save myself a few hours if this is unecessary in part or in whole. I understand that premade system vendors ship fully assembled computers all the time and they don't have any problems. Is there any reason why I can't do this?

    I'll say that I did ship mine out from NY to CA by just packing it very tightly in styrofoam & a big cardboard box, and it survived alright (although my graphics card fan and psu wound up dying a few months later, which could or could not be related)
    And however you ship it you'll want to make sure to get insurance on it.

    Read the policy very carefully; when I looked into it I was fairly positive that electronics/computers were specifically excluded from being covered

    Gdiguy on
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    Nohbody8Nohbody8 Registered User regular
    edited April 2008
    I shipped a computer I was hanging onto for a buddy of mine from Texas to Oregon. As he was paying me back, I simply took it to UPS. The guy put the case in a box full of packing peanuts and then put THAT box inside another box full of packing peanuts. This was a few years ago but I wanna say it only cost around $30 and I never heard of any problems once it got there.

    Nohbody8 on
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    TychoCelchuuuTychoCelchuuu PIGEON Registered User regular
    edited May 2008
    Does anyone else have experience shipping computers? I think I'll probably take the hard drive and graphics card out and ship the rest in one piece, but do I need to put any bubble wrap or something in side? Would that lead to static electricity?

    TychoCelchuuu on
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