A mint graded album with a tent to cover it from Discogs..

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Picked this up from the Post office today, a record with a tent. Bought this from Discogs and both record and cover were graded as Mint. I think that we have some differences about grading records with this seller. The point is that this is not supposed to be gatefold cover..

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and yet another picture of this “Mint” cover..

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Well, is there more I can say about this.. no. But the question is: How would You grade this cover?

John Carpenter: Halloween 2xLP (orange) Replaced One!

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And with this one I’m very happy!! This came today from Mondo. Some of you who have been following this blog of mine know that I got this record few months ago with nasty looking seam splits. I was not that pleased with it (you can read about that here and here). 

But now, I’m very pleased about Mondo’s customer services (especially Thanks to Mo!). This replacement album came records taken out of the cover and in perfect condition (and this came on orange vinyl!!). Now I just keep on waiting for the replacement for that version B (It was sent on same day with this package but according to USPS it’s jammed in Austin.. :( and somehow that does not sound good). Anyways, Thousands Thanks to Mo & Mondo, I really appreciate this!!

Here’s few pictures of that damaged one:

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One example of awesome packaging!

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Got that Luke Howard’s album today and it was packaged the way I like, the way I asked it to be packaged. Record was taken out of the cover, wrapped in bubble wrap, secured with carton stiffeners and packaged in mailer with lovely “bumper zones” (securing the corners of the cover). And the record, it turned out to be in perfect condition!

The main point is that this package came from Australia to Europe and the record was in perfect condition. What I’m trying to say here is that artists/record companies should take little more effort on packaging LP’s: rip those shrink wraps away (those causes only seam splits), take records out of the cover before sending (seam split issue once again) and use mailers with “bumper zones” (or secure those corners of the cover some other way, read: use your imagination). This may save you from everlasting harms of claims and returned records..

Of course there are those who want their records to be sealed, choice is yours. But keep in mind that You, as a customer, have a right to get what you have paid for in that condition it was when you ordered it. It’s sellers job to make that happen.

Fortunately I have seen more and more companies/artists using these secured mailers nowadays and I’m very glad about that. And those who read their emails..

Mailers with “bumper/buffer zones”:

Brookvale Records has awesome mailers: http://brookvalerecords.com/vinyl-shipping-boxes/

And here is one in UK: http://covers33.co.uk/index.php/record/record-mailers/reinforced-lp-mailer-suitable-for-box-sets

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And thanks to Luke Howard for this one, I really appreciate how well this was packaged and secured!

 

 

John Carpenter: Halloween 2xLP (translucent orange with black splatter) and once again.. with NICE seam splits!

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Got this today, and now I have to say that I’m not happy at all. Some time ago I wrote here on my blog about the other version (version A) of this soundtrack and how disappointed I was when it came seam splitted.. With this version I sent email that could they remove shrink-wrap etc.. and send records taken out of the cover blah blah blah.. And this is what I got (version B).

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Shrink wrapped album, once again and nice seam splits…

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I’m kind of pissed of because these albums were not cheap to order here over the ocean.. Oh and just to remind, here is a pictures of version A I got earlier..

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Another pile of records.. and damaged covers

Picked these form Post office earlier today. And once again I could see with my bare eyes that there is going to be records with damaged corners. I was not wrong (once again).

From this day on when I’m going to purchase any record I’ll do this:

 Contact the sellers and suggest that I’m ready to pay more if they can promise me that they do everything that the record will arrive secured. Ask them to add carton stiffeners, bubble wrap etc. And  I’m ready to pay extra if they decide to use those mailers with bumper zones (I know that those are expensive but I’m ready to pay that too). I’ll do all this even though it’s not my fault if record is packaged incompletely and arrive damaged.

Package 1.

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On the top of the pile we can see this big carton letter (these are usually used by British..). So let’s take a closer look of this one. First few pictures of the mailer (or can we even call it a mailer..)

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And as we can see, all corners has taken some damage during shipping.. And next we can see few pictures of the cover itself.

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Bends. In the other picture it is not as visible as the bend on first picture. These “mailers” are the worst anyone can use (I have seen Rocket Recordings using these and it’s interesting to see how damaged my upcoming Goat’s live album will be).  Not happy with this one.

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Package 2.

This came from The States. Holding this in my hands reveals that what ever this package is holding, it’s moving freely around the package.. So I expect that this item is not wrapped in bubble wrap etc.

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Let’s see some pictures of the mailer’s corners..

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Yep, doesn’t look very promising. The thing is that I paid quite lot of this (deluxe) item and it is already sold out. Let’s take a look what we got inside.

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Three of four corners ruined. And that is not all, a seam split..

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There was not any kind of carton stiffeners nor bubble wrap or anything to secure the album. JUST AN ALBUM IN THE BOX.. I’m seeing RED right now!!

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Package 3.

I’m so damn angry at this moment. But lets see the package number 3. and what it is holding in.

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From outside the package looks pretty fine. There is just one problem. The item inside the mailer is moving so I expect that there are no carton stiffeners etc.

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I was right with this one too. No carton stiffeners or bubble wrap of any kind. Amazingly just ONE corner of the cover has bump.. but sad to say, this is not enough.

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Package 4.

Let’s see the package number four, and in this point I have lost my hope with these totally.

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Quick look and it does not seem that bad but let’s take closer look..

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Three of four possible corners does not look fine to me anymore. Opened the package and no carton stiffeners but there was little piece of bubble wrap around the record.. and it is just amazing that only one corner has taken minimal damage, with this little bump I can live.

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Uuuuhhh.. This is what it seems to be nowadays. It seems that artists and companies, who are selling and shipping records to fans and customers, do not have respect towards their customers. Or is this just lack of common sense when it comes to shipping items around the world.

At least three out of these four companies/artists will have email from some angry customer within few days. I do not have to accept this.

And once again, feel free to comment if you like

Sincerely, MugWumb.

Here are related posts about this issue:

little post about vinyl mailers..

About packing vinyl records… part xxxxxx

more about packing vinyl records… part xxxxx2

pile of packages i picked up this morning..

Pile of packages I picked up this morning..

Here we are, with a pile of packages I picked up this morning from Post Office. Let’s go these trough one by one with pictures.

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Package 01

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This is that usual mailer most of the companies are using. With this case there are visible bumps in every corner of the package. I can also feel how record is moving freely inside the mailer. Few closer pictures of the mailer’s corner (actually pictures of every corner..)..

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Well, looking quite sad? Opened the package and no carton stiffeners nor bubble wrap. And the result can be seen below.. amazingly only one corner has taken damage..

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How can anyone assume that record packed like that reach the customer in proper condition? Those “Fragile” & “Do Not Bend” stickers can’t help if record is packed like this..

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Package 02

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And then we investigate package number 2. Little better looking package and I can say right away that there are carton stiffeners inside. But lets see closer pics of those corners.

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Not that bad but I got a feeling that it’s not enough. Well, stiffeners have been used but those corners.. see for your self..

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a bump.

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Package 03

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hmm.. picture tells more than thousand words. Packed in thin carton envelope and as we can see, there are visible bands on corners.. Few closer pictures follows..

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Can some one honestly say that this is proper packaging for LP records? And now some pictures of the record cover itself

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no-no.

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Package 04

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Looks pretty fine even though there is visible bend on top left corner of the package. But lets see some closer pictures.

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Actually there is just one bend.. hmm. And then the record..

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Only this minimal bump.. I can live with this one. Amazingly there was no major damages even though this was packed in these common mailers..

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Package 05

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Right away I can see that there are some kind of bumper zones in this package.. Let’s open the package.

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This is the way to do it! Bumper zones to protect the corners. Packaging done right with this one. But. This was purchase from Discogs and record/cover was grated (NM or M-).. well, cover is more like VG or VG+ to me..

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Yep.

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And the conclusion is that there was 1-2 records that came in acceptable condition. Some might say that I’m whining too much, but the THING is that I buy records and I assume that sellers pack those in proper way and customer gets what customer ordered. If it’s impossible task to provide buyer what buyer is expecting, then there should be a mention about that. For example, I do not want to pay full prize from the car that has scratch on the windshield. Frustrating.

You can follow my battle against windmills here

more about packing vinyl records… part xxxxx2

And here is another post about packing vinyl records more secure way.

With this case we need: packing tape, double-sided tape, carton stiffeners, some kind of knife (pink scissors can do), bubble wrap and two large pieces of carton. Oh and of course we need a plan!

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1) We have to plan the body of this mailer. And here are plans how to cut and fold those carton pieces:

The plan of smaller piece, let’s call it hmm.. a small piece :)

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and then we have to make a plan for a… big piece

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This may look little confusing but it will get clearer and clearer when we reach the end of this post.. I hope. But anyways, here are these carton models nicely cut and folded :)

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big piece

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2) Then we take this nice self titled album by Vixen and wrap it all over with bubble wrap.

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3) Place carton stiffeners on both sides of bubble wrapped album.

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and use tape to get the whole thing together

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4) Next part is to combine this nicely wrapped and secured “thing” with the small piece (that smaller carton piece). Just like shown in the picture.

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Place double-sided tape like shown in the picture below

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And now just fold and attach the small piece to your nicely wrapped vinyl..

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And now we have much nicer package.. but this is not done yet.

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5) Next part is to attach this nice little package to that bigger piece of carton we have cut and folded. Place double-sided tape as shown in the picture

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Then turn the whole thing around and attach it center of that bigger piece of carton (big piece).

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Then place more double-sided tape..

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fold and attach..

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And what we got here. We have created bumper zones to our package! You may ask what are these for? Well, these are created just to secure the corners of the vinyl album. As we all know, during shipping these precious items (vinyl records) without exception will be handled very roughly.

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6) Finally, use packaging tape and tape the whole thing together, for safety’s sake. Package might not be beauty but it surely will secure your vinyl better than some so-called “professional” mailers.

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Oh, then you can attach some nice “Thank You!” card inside the whole thing. Makes the shipment more personal :)

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And once again, this just one way to wrap your shipment together, little more secured. Feel free to comment.

-MugWumb-

About packing vinyl records… part xxxxxx

Here I’m going to show how you can, at least, pack records for shipping. I know that everyone has their own secret ways but this is minimum what you can do..

1) Well, here is what we need: mailer, packing tape, bubble wrap, carton stiffeners (carton, cut to size of the record but it’s better cut those cartons little bigger than the cover, choice is yours), some kind of paper knife (Rambo knife and scissors can also do that job) and little extra pieces (thicker the better) of carton for the corners of the record mailer..

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2) In this example I use brilliant album (latest) by Cloudkicker (do not worry, I’m not going to sell this one). Take the record out of the cover, this is just to prevent seam splits to form. What seam splits? Well, inside the cover, record use to move during shipping and when it bangs all over inside the cover, it usually split seams from inside. And if you have those blank inner sleeves to spare, use those if your record has printed inner sleeves (those are on the line also during shipment). Seam splits are big problem when record is sealed in shrink-wrap. In those cases, I usually politely ask seller to open shrink and send record and cover separated.

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3) Use bubble wrap (lots of it) and wrap it like hell around the record..

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4) Use carton stiffeners, place those on both side of the record (and use tape to wrap this whole thing together).

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5) And here is the mailer itself (use these regulars if you do not have already those with bumper zones.. I have mentioned about those earlier in my blog).

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6) And now we come to the most important part.. using these extra pieces of carton just to secure corners of the mailer (usually corners of the mailer take the most of the damage during shipping). Use packing tape (or glue) to attach these on the corners of the mailer.

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7) And here we are. At least you can do it like this, in my opinion. I do not say that this is the best way but this is one step closer to secured shipping of the vinyl record.

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And thanks, I hope that this is useful to some of you out there. Feel free to comment on this one.

-MugWumb-

Near Mint (NM or M-) both, vinyl & sleeve… no no no

Today I got a record that I purchased from Discogs. Usually I do not buy used records, definitely without seeing those items with my own eyes, but sometimes I make exceptions (with records I have been looking for a long long time) hoping that item is as described.

Question is: Does this look Near Mint (NM or M-) to You?

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Bottom seam looking like this (over the entire length, and the top seam looking nearly the same).

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And of course we have at least one ding.. and then the record itself ->

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Do not mind the dust but what is that white stuff on the vinyl…

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And little more dust and visible scratches.. And the conclusion is: it seems that some people are little lost about proper grading when it comes to vinyl records. This would have helped a little: http://www.discogs.com/help/mp-grading.html

Money well spent.

Galactus says YES to Southern Lord Recordings!!

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“At first I was afraid, I was petrified..” Package looking like this came today. Big envelope and I was sure that whatever it was holding is in thousands of pieces..

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For my surprise, there was a record mailer inside of this big bubble wrap envelope..

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Inside the mailer I found a bubble wrapped vinyl record! No seam splits, dings, bumps, bends etc.. perfect condition!

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And this is the point when GALACTUS says YES!! Approved by Galactus and I have to thank Southern Lord Recordings for securing my order like this, Thanks!

little post about vinyl mailers..

This post is about mailers used to send out vinyl records.. from best to worst. This is purely my opinion, feel free to comment if you like..

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 This is one of the best, with bumber zones to secure corners of the cover..

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and another one with bumber zones (love these ones).

mailer03This is the usual one, most of records comes packed mailers like this.. not that bad (but these do not secure your vinyl enough).

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And here’s the worst one of these four. Inferior.

Nicely packed shipments that came today..

There must be something totally wrong about the way they pack vinyl albums in UK. I got two shipments today and I am quite horrified about the condition of albums, just wanted to attach few pictures I took. Covers ruined and the other album was “nicely” twisted.. yes yes..

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I do not really know what these people are thinking.. sending records out packed like that and even bother pack those on proper LP mailers..