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Whats the best way to ship long guns?
September 5, 2009
10:06 pm
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I just received a gun (antique of course) shipped by USPS Priority mail Registered and insured. It was shipped Monday and I just got it Saturday and the whole time you could not get any tracking info so I didn't know where it was. It came from NH to WI. In the past I have gotten them UPS or Fedex next day but this guy really likes the USPS. I have also heard that the insurance from some of the shippers is worthless for expensive guns.

By the way this is what I got, Butt plate needs a little work but otherwise its a keeper.

http://www.antiquesandguns.com/terry73.html

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September 6, 2009
4:43 am
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Win 1873,

It's way better than just a "keeper." Congratulations.

Michael

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September 6, 2009
11:46 am
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1873man said
I just received a gun (antique of course) shipped by USPS Priority mail Registered and insured. It was shipped Monday and I just got it Saturday and the whole time you could not get any tracking info so I didn't know where it was. It came from NH to WI. In the past I have gotten them UPS or Fedex next day but this guy really likes the USPS. I have also heard that the insurance from some of the shippers is worthless for expensive guns.

By the way this is what I got, Butt plate needs a little work but otherwise its a keeper.

http://www.antiquesandguns.com/terry73.html

Talk about stepping up to the plate, I think we found the winner of the big prize.

September 6, 2009
1:50 pm
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😯 Wow! 😯 What a pretty 1873 rifle.You did good! 😀

September 6, 2009
1:51 pm
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1873man said
I just received a gun (antique of course) shipped by USPS Priority mail Registered and insured. It was shipped Monday and I just got it Saturday and the whole time you could not get any tracking info so I didn't know where it was. ....

Sorry I cannot answer your question. I used to like UPS just fine because of their tracking, but have not been happy with them lately.

That's a really fine gun. Would you mind tutoring us neophytes on your problem with the butt plate? As the seller indicated, it is unusual, but how would you know that it is not factory correct? Inletting looks fine.
John

September 6, 2009
2:10 pm
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1873man....What a great model 73! Whoever did the modification to the butt was a fine craftsman, from what I can tell from the pics anyway. Do you plan to bring the butt stock back to specs? The stock doesn't look like it'd accommodate the usual Swiss Plate, unless that's a Special Swiss Plate????

I've never encountered that seller before, looks like he's had some fine Winchester's for sale, do his prices vary from seller to seller(?), he doesn't post prices.

Oh Yea! On pre-98 long guns I've switched to Fed-x for shipping...no hassle and shipping rates are better than UPS and USPS, so's insurance. Fed-x Ground usually only takes 5 days at most coast to coast. I take it to a local Fed-x center rather than a packaging and shipping store.

Great looking repeater!

Best regards,
Marty

September 6, 2009
7:11 pm
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The stock is correct just that someone had cut and filed off the ears of the butt plate. You can see that the nickle is gone where they filed the metal away. Most people don't know how to fire a swiss butt gun and they pull the gun up to their shoulder and the ears of the swiss butt digs into them and the next thing they do is cut them off. My gun smith has repaired them before by building them up and reshape the ears. This what it should look like.

[Image Can Not Be Found]

I have seen several butt plates like this on the 73's but they are only in a narrow serial number range. I don't believe they where made by Winchester but they were definitely put on by them. People that I have talked to about them have refered to them as a Ballard style. So far I have seen 4 guns with them on that DO LETTER swiss butt. I have taken the butt plates off on 3 of them and they all have assemble numbers that match the wood and tang. In addition the screws that hold the plates on are numbers to the gun with 2 digits. Here is the letter for the gun.

[Image Can Not Be Found]

The other reason I bought it was I already had one just like it and I thought what the odds to have two guns that letter exactly the same with all those special features, just a different serial number. The one I had already is only about 1000 away from this one. The picture of the butt plate is from the one I have.

Yes he doesn't post prices but when I saw it I had to call. He doesn't keep his site up to date so quite a few of them are already sold. I found his web site by googling "Swiss butt 1873"

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September 6, 2009
8:27 pm
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That is a Marlin Ballard off hand butt plate. It was used on a few Ballard models and on Marlin 1881s I have seen it on a 1893 and I have an 1895 Marlin with one
Clark

September 6, 2009
11:53 pm
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Very nice old Model 1873 8)

The exact same style Swiss butt plate was used on the early production Model 1885 Single Shot rifles. I have seen several dozen of them over the years.

Bert

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September 7, 2009
7:21 am
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thanks guys,

I didn't want to make this about the gun but I don't mind. I was trying to find a better way to ship a gun. My brother had one sent fedex and it got lost. It was sent in a hard case but no box, we think the lable came off the plastic case. It took several weeks but we found out that fedex has a armory at their hub for any guns. After describing the case they found it, it did have his name and address melted into the case but that mean much to them. The other thing I heard is even if you insure a gun for the full amount, they only pay what a new hunting gun is worth. Now I read this in a artical but I don't remember where.

Bob

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September 7, 2009
8:13 am
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Bob,

I have received three rifles in the past month. One each from Fed Ex, UPS, and USPS and not had any problem with any of them. I ship to my office so that nothing gets left at the gate in front of the house, Yes there is no tracking with USPS but I have not had a problem with them for five different rifles. There is a slight difficulty with being patient, The tracking option is nice so you can sit there like an expecting father just waiting for your rifle!!! I can understand the Fed Ex problem with a lost label since all the shipping world lives and dies by the bar code and a scanner.

The insurance question definitely deserves some research.

Michael

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September 7, 2009
10:42 am
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The better question would be.

Has anyone ever had to file a claim on a expensive gun and how did you come out?

I'm talking a gun over $1000

Bob

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September 7, 2009
11:22 am
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I've done shipping for years and after troubles more than once, I got some really good sound advice.

This came from the then Anchorage Postal inspector. Before all of the wrapping, get lots of photos of the firearm ready to ship. Wrap the rifle separate from the wood. Use carpet padding (new) to wrap all parts in. No movement of any packed item. I use thousand mile and hour tape over carpet padding to wrap with. For anything coming to Alaska. Know this that the other shippers all use the USPS to ship with and then charge you there own rates and it takes twice as long.

Go to any carpet store and for 20.00 bucks you have all you need for good quality padding for alot of different rifles. I have had folks with a lifetime in this business call me back to brag on the way I ship, thanks to the post office for the help.

September 7, 2009
11:28 am
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Hi Bob,

Not a gun, so it doesn't fall under the noses of the PC folks that frown upon such items, but I had a camera shipped that got lost and finally found it's way back to me with the label mostly destroyed except for my return address and it looked like it was run over by a truck. Filing a claim with the USPS was hassle free but it took nearly 8 wks to process the claim till I was reimbursed, on top of the nearly 4 wks. from the day I shipped it to it's return. About 3 mos. all-in-all.

That was a few yrs. ago, I don't know how a gun would be handled. I did question the Fed-x person once about claims when I 1st started using that service, she said they pay on claims within 10 days, but further advised that if shipping a firearm it's advised to ship FFL to FFL, a pre-98 Black Powder long gun can be shipped directly to a legal recipient. My advice to any shipper of firearms is to insure it and take several good quality photo's of it before it's packaged up.

Regards,
Marty

September 7, 2009
11:52 am
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Marty,

The next time you inquire on shipping, ask about their policy on antiques. I was informed by both Fed-X and UPS that they do not insure antiques. A lot of these old Winchesters fall under this classification. If they have revised their policy, I would like to know about it.

Roger

September 7, 2009
12:00 pm
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Given the choice, I always use USPS. Filing a claim is much easier and is essentially hassle free, and they never question me when I insure an item for $5K (or more). My local Post Master is a gun guy, and he always likes to see what I am receiving (or on very rare occasion, sending).

If forced to, my nect choice is FED-EX Air. Never use FED-EX Ground! For those of you who are not aware, FED-EX is not just one big company. There are several divisions of FED-EX, with each being a separate entity.

UPS is nearly my last ditch effort. Even though they will sell you insurance for more than $500 on a firearm, in their fineprint, the maximum they will reimburse you for a lost or damaged firearm is $500!

The absolute bottom of the heap is DHL... never use them to ship ANYTHING 👿

Bert

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September 7, 2009
2:03 pm
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rogerswin said
Marty,

The next time you inquire on shipping, ask about their policy on antiques. I was informed by both Fed-X and UPS that they do not insure antiques. A lot of these old Winchesters fall under this classification. If they have revised their policy, I would like to know about it.

Roger

Roger, that is what I remember reading in that article about shipping old guns is that you had to have your own insurance policy to cover it. I just looked for that article but can't find it. My brother photo copied it for me and maybe he still has it. It said Fedex and UPS treated old guns like they only worth what a new deer rifle is. I can't remember what it said about the USPS.

This gun I got was shipped registered so everybody that handled it has to sign for it and when its not being transported, it gets locked in a cage until its sent to the next station. I guess that is why it took so long to get is the hand transferring of it slowed its progress. The sender said its the safest way to ship because if its lost, they talk to the last guy to sign for it. I wanted to ship it next day ups or fedex but I remembered that article about insuring guns so I deferred to the best way the sell felt was best.

Bob

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September 7, 2009
2:11 pm
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Bert,

When you ship USPS, what method do you use to send it?

This gun was in a hard case and then inside a plain box. This is how I have shipped guns before but you even have to pad them inside the hard case because they can still slide inside of them.

Bob

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September 7, 2009
3:27 pm
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Hello Bob,

I use the Priority Mail delivery service, and I ship in a hard foam padded hard case, which is then put inside a cardboard box.

Bert

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September 7, 2009
5:26 pm
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Thanks Bert,

Do you also insure with the USPS?

Bob

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