A cram course in shipping
Recommended Proceedure: Indicate that you want your package sent "Best Way" and trust us to do a good job.
Please call if you have a rush order, if you simply say send it "Overnight" you will shocked when you see the shipping charges.
Hopefully this sheet will help you understand how we do our shipping to destinations in the USA. (Domestic means the United States only and doesn't include Canada.)
Shipping charges are based on size, weight of the package and the speed that you want it shipped to you. When you indicate in your order that you want it shipped "Best Way" we will use our own judgment to send it in a matter that will; save you money, get there with the least risk of damage and won't violate any shipping laws.
We don't give shipping quotes, only estimates. You can get a good idea of shipping charges simply by going to the websites given below. Please allow for packaging, variation in sizes of boxes, the need for more than one box, insurance, size limitations, hazardous materials, insurance, tracking or delivery confirmation, and other charges.
Weight is based on the gross amount of the package rounded up to the nearest pound. Don't think that because you have ordered a ten pound bag of plaster that the box will weigh ten pounds. Like almost everyone on the planet we package based on net weight. To the net weight you need to add the weight of the container, the box, stuffing materials and even the paperwork. It all adds up rather quickly. In most instances we are required by law to provide enough packaging to absorb leaking fluids.
Depending on carrier policy we sometimes have size limits. Bulky products, such as empty containers take a lot of space and may be billed for size rather than weight in the case of an air shipment. For example a five pound box of peanuts is huge and would normally cost only a few dollars to be shipped by ground. But because the box is so large it will take up expensive space in the airplane. When we enter the dimensions of the box, we might find that we must pay as though the box weights 30 pounds. Often, size doesn't matter if shipped by ground.
UPS charges an extra $5 for items that are round such as large pails of plaster, the face-casting kit and large alginates. The reason is simple; they can't put them on the automated conveyer so they must be hand carried to the truck.
If you want it quick, be prepared to pay for it. Your UPS options are:
- Overnight Early AM: early the next morning, very, very expensive
- Overnight Standard: 10:30 the next morning, very expensive
- Overnight Saver: Sometime the next day. Expensive, but you can save a few dollars.
- Two-Day: Gets there in two business days, expensive.
- 3-Day Select: Gets there in three days either by ground or air and that's up to UPS.
- Ground: Our normal shipping method. Takes five business days to get anywhere in the USA from Utah. If we ship on Monday you will probably see it the next Monday.
For specific information on UPS rates go to ups.com. Our zip code is 84054.
U.S. Postal Service
We usually send small stuff via the post office. These package are normally sent Priority Mail, which is reasonable and fast. We include insurance and often delivery confirmation, which helps us track down a problem later. The USPS doesn't have tracking numbers so don't ask for one. Priority Mail is not overnight service and the post office claims that it only takes 2 to 3 days to reach it's destination, but we know better. Delivery times are not guaranteed. Since 9-11 this service has become very inconsistent with some packages taking a week and others only a few days.
The USPS also has "Overnight" delivery, which is also undependable, but it will be delivered on a weekend. The USPS does work on the weekend, so you can include Saturday and Sunday into your delivery schedule. Overnight is reasonable on small items. The postal service is self-serving, everything is done at their convenience, if we ship with this method is it up to you to make sure everything gets done.
For specific information on UPS rates go to www.usps.com Our zip code is 84054.
We love our driver, but hate the company. Please don't ask us to ship by Fedex unless we use your billing number. Be prepared for very expensive service. If you can get the service at the price quoted to you, then more power to you, we can't. (We can make two or three calls in the same day and get two or three different prices, and then be charged with a $4 pickup fee.)
Many, but not all hazardous materials are listed on our website and in our price lists with an "S". There are simply some things we can't send by air (which includes Priority Mail.) Examples are anything with FLAMMABLE on the label, spray cans, or anything too terribly toxic.
Surface versus Air
Air is send by cargo planes or by commercial planes depending on the carrier. "Ground" means by truck. Surface means truck and boat. Air shipments have the most restrictions for obvious reasons. This all might seem obvious to you, but you would be amazed by the number of people who think UPS is going to drive a brown truck to Hawaii.
Shipping and SES, joined at the hip
NOT! People without business experience often intertwine the shipper and the merchant, thinking we are one in the same. This is not true. If UPS does their job, then we look good. If they fail, then we look bad. The instant the man in brown picks up a package he accepts responsibility for it on behalf of UPS. It is out of our hands. If UPS looses a package, it is not our fault, nor is it our responsibility. We buy insurance on your behalf when we ship. The best we can do compensate for their mistakes by sending out replacement goods. If it is the fault of the carrier, we will file a claim and collect damages from them. So please report missing, delayed or damaged goods immediately!
This issue also raises the question of shipping charges. Because we are not the freight carrier we have no control over shipping charges. We don't even get shipping charges at wholesale or discounted rates (we do get a small discount, but we pass that on to you.) If you order a large box of stuff and have it shipped overnight we have to charge you for it and then turn around and pay the carrier. If you refuse a COD shipment we have to pay for shipping in both directions - that's why we put creeps who refuse delivery on CODs on our permanent blacklist.
We must include insurance on every package we send, this fee is added to your shipping charges. For UPS it is an additional $.35 per $100 coverage. The post office charges more for insurance, and postage is not covered so if it gets lost, you are out.
About Handling Fees
After loosing thousands of dollars every year to miscellaneous costs such packaging materials, fuels surcharges, labor and other costs. We've finally become like everyone else and charge a handling fee of several dollars for every order (not every box) I let the shipping department determine these fees on their own (I'm too nice.) based on all the factors in getting your package ready for shipment including aggravation. If you call late in the day for a rush order, please be prepared to spend a few more dollars on handling fees.
The Best Procedure
Now, having said of this, the easy way to do it is to use a credit card, tell us how fast you want the package and to indicate, "Best Way." We'll do that for you. If you are worried about excessive shipping charges, then explore the websites of the respective carriers. We often call customers if shipping charges are getting out of control. Please give us a daytime number so we can reach you.