I think the packaging was more expensive than the tile

I needed some un-glazed quarry tiles* to insulate the toaster oven I use for baking polymer clay.

I usually shop online; but since these would be heavy I presumed the shipping charges would be astronomical and I thought half the tiles would crack during the trip.

I checked online for availability at 3 Home Depots and two Loews close enough that I was willing to make the trip. All 5 did not stock the tiles. They were willing to do in-store pickup; but charged the same shipping to their store as to my house.

But wonder of wonders only $3 shipping from UPS.

The box arrived too heavy for me to lift; so I opened it to remove a few tiles at a time.

The box of tiles was nestled in two huge globs of insulating foam in big gray plastic bags. They must have filled one bag; then before it hardened put the box of tiles in and repeated the process on top.

Very impressive and no broken tiles.

*I do not know why they are called quarry tiles since they are fired clay and not mined rock but whatever. Maybe the clay comes from a quarry :smack:

Maybe they’re recycled from tiles thrown down there.

Darn I could have climbed down in and saved myself some money. :slight_smile:

A few years ago, I bought a guitar and a case from Amazon. The $600 guitar was delivered in a thin cardboard box that was damaged in shipping. The UPS guy made me open it on the spot before I could sign for it. Surprisingly, it was fine.

The $100 case was delivered in a HUGE box, and padded by lots of bubble wrap.

The packing material sounds like VersaPak, it’s a two part expanding foam, the components are injected into the bag, and there’s a short delay before it expands, it’s actually pretty inexpensive and it’s great for packaging odd shaped items as it does form to fit the packaging and item

A friend worked where they rewound motors and starters. They arrived in that versa pac stuff and they shipped them out the same way. Neat stuff.

Someone on Amazon’s message board said he ordered a $200 textbook, and it arrived intact - packaged in a grocery bag that had been taped shut with black electrical tape! :smack: He was glad he got his book, but c’mon.

That story was followed by someone who ordered a set of children’s books that were also valued at several hundred dollars, and they were shipped in a diaper box. That, however, made a lot more sense.


Everything I’ve ordered from/fulfilled by Amazon has been professionally packaged. I rarely order from 3rd party shops and those have been the ones that run the gamut of packaging techniques.

Everything we ship out on UPS now requires not only the weight but also the dimensions. The computer decides what the “dimensional” weight is and if that’s more than the actual weight it use that as the weight when calculation the cost. The reason for that is to get people to stop tossing things in any box they find. This system dings the shipper when they’re taking up more space that they need to be on the plane/truck.

For example, a few weeks ago I got a tablet stylus (just the stylus) that could have been shipped in a padded envelope. They sent it in a box that was 10x12x3 (kind of that ‘regular’ Amazon box (and one big bubble of SealedAir, thanks guys). I know they have smaller boxes than this. I understand that Amazon should have to pay more for doing that. But they’re killing me. I still haven’t figured out how to give my cashiers ‘shipping prices’ for items that customers want shipped. It’s not possible unless they know the weight AND the size box that someone in the backroom is going to use. Then I have to teach a bunch of kids how to use get the dimensional weight, compare it to the real weight, take the higher one and plug THAT number into the grid that they’ve been using forever. It’s a nightmare. Ya know what they do, not just the kids, but even the grown ups…they say “Joey, can you figure out how much it is to ship this?”

Oh, and Home Depot also doesn’t stock vinyl tiles in black (not Peel and Stick, real tiles). Can’t even special order them. gotta go to Lowes for them.

These were 3rd party vendors; I’m one of them but I wouldn’t send something out in a grocery bag sealed with electrical tape.