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May 9th, 2019

How to Ship Guns, Barrels, Scopes, and Ammo Safely

Shipping information news Fedex UPS USPS postal service

shipping gun parts UPS FEDEXGun guys are always shipping stuff around the country — whether it’s a barrel to be chambered, or a scope that needs to go back for warranty repair. Or maybe you’ve sold some bullets or reloading dies you no longer need. To ensure your precious packages get to their destination in one piece, it’s important to take precautions when boxing up your items. And by all means insure packages for full value — even if your packaging is perfect, there is always the possibility that your shipment might be lost altogether. Sadly, that can happen, no matter which carrier you choose: Fedex, UPS, or the U.S. Postal Service (USPS). Here are some tips for shipping gun stuff — we explain how to pack items properly and how to minimize the risk of loss.

Tips for Shippers
Dennis Haffner from McGowen Precision Barrels offers some advice on how to avoid damage when shipping gun parts or other valuable or heavy items. Dennis explains:

shipping gun parts UPS FEDEX“First, I started double-packing the contents and in many cases double-boxing. I spend a fortune on heavy-reinforced shipping tape. If the contents are loosely packed, the package is going to get crushed. On real important items or delicate items, wrap the content in plastic and spray the inside void areas with non-expanding foam. They make shipping foam just for this. This method really works. Since I started paying more attention to packaging, I have just about wiped out my issues with all three companies (Fedex, UPS, USPS). Yes, I hate doing it, but in the long run for us, it’s cheaper.

Bullet shipments are the worst — a shipment of 500+ bullets can destroy a cardboard box. I have ordered bullets from individuals who put them in baggies and filled the remainder of the box with foam peanuts. That is not going to work. Any piece of metal, including a die, will puncture a cardboard box, or destroy a padded envelope. Just look at the tracking information and imagine your package bouncing around in the back of the shipping truck, probably under many other packages. My advice is to NEVER use padded envelopes. Barrel nuts or recoil lugs will most likely never make it.

ORM-D items are required to be shipped in heavily-reinforced, double-walled containers. The packages still get a little damage, but the contents usually survive.

shipping gun parts UPS FEDEXHow do shipments get damaged? Consider this — one of the shipping companies this year flipped (overturned) one of our new CNC machines (which rendered it useless). Maybe your small packages were in the same delivery truck as my CNC machine. I wonder how many little boxes were crushed underneath it.

As for USPS flat rate boxes — you would not believe what people try to stuff in these boxes. USPS finally put a weight limit on the boxes — they had to. I sometimes take my delicate items packed in an envelope or small box. I spray foam in a larger flat rate box and insert the smaller package, then fill the remainder of the void with foam. It works, and part usually arrives undamaged.”

shipping gun parts UPS FEDEX
Shipping Rifle Barrels (PVC Tube and Tennis Ball Method)
A new match-grade barrel can cost $350 or more, and it might take six months (or more) to replace it, given the current wait time with top barrel-makers. So, you don’t want your nice new tube to get damaged in transit. Forum Member Chuck L. (aka “M-61″) offers these tips for shipping rifle barrels:

shipping gun parts UPS FEDEX“Packing a barrel can be a problem. Here’s a shipping method that won’t stop lost shipments but so far has stopped damage. Get a PVC pipe (of size appropriate to your barrel) with fitted caps for each end. Attach a cap to one end. Tape the barrel threads and tape over the muzzle. Then drop one standard tennis ball into the pipe. Place barrel in pipe. Next add whatever peanuts or foam you can jam in to support the barrel on the sides. Then place a second tennis ball into the opposite end of the PVC pipe. (So now you have a tennis ball on either end of your barrel.) With everything secure inside, attach the upper cap and tape it down securely. With this packing procedure, when the carrier launches the pipe like a javelin, at least the barrel will not come through like a spear and be gone. Label the pipe with very large address labels so no one suspects it’s just garbage laying around. This procedure may seem ridiculous but it has worked for me. Oh and definitely get insurance. If your item is insured, the shippers will look harder to find it.”

Editor’s Note: Fedex also makes a triangular-profile cardboard shipping box. This 38″ x 6″ x 6″ x 6″ Fedex Tube (designed for blueprints and posters) is free for the asking. For most barrels, there should be enough clearance to hold your PVC tube (with barrel packed inside tube). However, don’t ship the barrel inside the cardboard box by itself. Cap and pad the ends and bubble wrap it heavily, or better yet, use the PVC tube method described above, with the PVC tube inside the box.

For More Packing and Shipping Advice, Read this Forum Thread.

Permalink - Articles, Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Tech Tip 4 Comments »
June 25th, 2018

Bargain Finder 144: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

Accurateshooter Bargain Finder Deals of Week

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Brownells — Howa KRG Bravo 1500, 6.5 Creedmoor, $999.99

Howa 1500 tactical rifle KRG Bravo Brownells $999 bargain PRS PRL

You could actually win a PRS match with this rifle, a Howa KRG Bravo rig in 6.5 Creedmoor. Yet, at $999.99, this KRG Bravo is one-third to one-forth the price of custom tactical rigs (less optics). This Howa was chosen as the official factory rifle for the National Rifle League (NRL), and we can understand why. With the KRG Bravo, you get a complete rig with a smooth-running action, nice two-stage trigger, AICS mag compatibility, good ergonomics, and competitive accuracy — all for less than you’d spend for a custom tactical action by itself. The polymer KRG stock features an aluminum internal sub-chassis. NOTE: Brownells also sells a KRG Bravo 6.5 CM rifle with a 26″ barrel for $1127.99. Both 24″ and 26″ lengths will shoot well, but the 26″ should deliver about 30 FPS more velocity. It’s really a matter of your budget and personal preference.

2. EuroOptic — Vortex Viper PST FFP 6-24x50mm Optic, $619.99

Vortex Viper PST MRAD 6-24x50 scope sale bargain First Focal Plane

Here’s a killer deal on a Front Focal Plane (FFP) optic good for PRS competition and tactical applications. The Vortex Viper PST 6-24x50mm scope features 0.1 Milrad clicks with an EBR-2C illuminated reticle with Mil-based hash marks. This reticle also features the “Christmas Tree” type lower half, which provides range hold-overs with horizontal markings for wind holds. Not that long ago, this scope sold for around a thousand bucks. Now you can get the Vortex Viper PST 6-24x50mm for just $619.99. That’s a great price for a PRS-ready FFP comp scope with a proven track record and rock-solid Vortex warranty. This price is for Pre-Orders, with inventory coming soon. EuroOptic’s Sale price is $649.99. Use Code POVIPER during check-out to save another $30.00.

2. Midsouth — $2 Per Pound Rebate on Alliant Powders

Alliant powder midsouth Reloder Reloader AR COMP 15 16 17 19 23 sale

If you are looking for popular Alliant powders, now’s a good time to buy. Midsouth Shooters Supply has discounted its inventory of Alliant powders, plus there is a $2 per pound factory rebate. So, for example, the sale price might be $1.50 off regular retail, and then Alliant gives you another $2.00 back for every pound you buy (up to 10 pounds or $20 total rebate). But act soon — this Powder Promotion ends June 30, 2018.

4. Brownells — Howa 1500 Barreled Actions, Starting at $259.99

Howa Barreled Action Mini Cerakote Tan HACT trigger 1500 Brownells

Howa makes excellent, smooth-running actions, and the Howa HACT 2-stage trigger is WAY better than most domestic factory triggers. Right now you can save big bucks on Howa 1500 barreled actions, complete with HACT trigger and trigger-guard, starting at $259.99. Both regular actions and Mini Actions are offered. Available chamberings include 6.5 Grendel, 6.5 Creedmoor (back-ordered), 7.62×39, .308 Winchester, and .300 Win Mag. Some of these barreled actions come with a rugged Cerakote finish, while others have a blued finish. You can also get FREE Shipping with Code MDV during checkout. Here is a partial list of the Howa 1500 barreled actions available:

.223 Rem, 20″ Heavy Barrel, $399.99
6.5 Grendel, Mini Heavy Barrel, $389.99
6.5 Creedmoor, 24″ Heavy Barrel, $399.99
6.5 Creedmoor, 26″ Heavy Barrel, $429.99
7mm-08, Std Cerakote, $579.99
7.62×39, Mini Light Barrel, $259.99
.308 Win, 20″ Heavy Barrel, $289.99
.308 Win, 24″ Heavy Barrel, $299.99
.30-06 Sprg, 22″ Sporter Barrel, Cerakote, $349.99
.300 Win Mag, 24″ Heavy Barrel, $279.99

5. Natchez — Surplus SKB 5041 Transport Cases, $105.99

SKB Rifle Case Military Surplus 50

Natchez has obtained a supply of British MOD Surplus SKB 5041 rifle cases. These were ordered as mine detector cases, but were never issued. Natchez has removed the foam cut for the detectors and replaced it with brand new 2-piece convoluted foam. Interior dimension of the case is 50″x14.5″x5″ INSIDE so this will hold long-barrel match rifles comfortably. These are extremely high-quality cases, very tough and rugged, waterproof with gaskets. These cases feature four SKB patented trigger latches, four reinforced padlock locations, and inline wheels. Though in excellent condition, some case may have minor exterior scuffs. You won’t find a better case at anywhere near the $105.99 price. These normally retail for $199.99.

6. Amazon — RCBS ChargeMaster Lite, $186.99

RCBS Chargemaster lite powder scale dispenser sale Amazon

Need a good, modern electronic scale/dispenser? The modern ChargeMaster Lite offers good performance for the price — now $186.99 at Amazon and $187.49 Brownells. But at Brownells, with Code NCS you can get $15 off and free shipping — lowering your net cost to $172.49! That’s a killer deal — other retailers are charging up to $260.00 for this machine. Once calibrated, we found the ChargeMaster Lite’s dispensing to be very accurate. RCBS claims +/-0.1 grain. This newer machine is a bit easier to program than the original ChargeMaster. Verified purchasers have been happy, but with one complaint: “You cannot turn off the beeping. The [original ChargeMaster] has a way to mute the beeping. This one does not.” Take note.

7. Natchez — Weaver 36X T-Series Competition Scope, $389.99

Weaver 46x48mm XR Competition Scope Amazon Sale

Right now you can order the 36-power Weaver T-Series XR scope for just $389.99. That’s an awesome, but act quick — this price could change. Natchez currently has the silver 36x40mm Weaver XR for just $389.99 — a fantastic price. 36X is enough power for benchrest competition. And even if you don’t shoot benchrest, this is a great scope for load development or general accuracy testing. The 36-power T-Series scopes have a 40mm front objective and side-focus parallax control. You can also get this XR 36X scope in black for $439.99.

8. MidwayUSA — Now Purchase Firearms from MidwayUSA

MidwayUSA Gun Sales online store retail

MidwayUSA is now selling pistols, rifles, and shotguns. Offering firearms for sale is a return to MidwayUSA’s roots. The company actually started out as a small gun shop 41 years ago. Since then the company expanded first to catalog sales, and then became one of the largest shooting sports online retailers. Now MidwayUSA will be offering a full line of firearms, with promotional offers directly from suppliers and manufacturers. We took a quick look — the selection of firearms is outstanding, but you may find better pricing elsewhere. As with anything, it pays to comparison shop. CLICK HERE for MidwayUSA’s online gun shop.

9. Amazon — Two Rolls of 3″ Neon Target Stickers, $14.95

Red Orange Neon 3

We like these bright, Neon 3″ target stickers. They are big enough to see easily at 600 yards, giving you a 1/2 MOA target center at that distance. For $14.95 at Amazon.com, you get 250 3″-diameter self-adhesive centers (125 targets per roll) that stick to almost any surface The high-contrast fluorescent red/orange color provides an excellent HI-VIZ aiming point, along with good contrast for bullet holes that fall within the 3″ circle. To help line up your reticle cross-hairs, the target centers feature black markers at 3, 6, 9, and 12 0’Clock. NOTE: These stickers may qualify for FREE Shipping with combined orders over $25.00.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Hot Deals, Optics, Tactical No Comments »