Resolving Rattlers: Protect DVDs in Shipment!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Patrick_J, Jan 29, 2002.

  1. Patrick_J

    Patrick_J Agent

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    This is a call to arms for all of you buying, selling and trading DVDs through the mail. Having purchased my share of discs via eBay, Half.com, Amazon, Deep Discount and others I must state that one of the most frustrating aspects of buying DVDs though the mail is the occasional rattler.
    Rattlers, for those of you who have never experienced the joy of having your mail person deliver new movies in subzero weather, is a DVD disc which has some how dislodged itself from the retaining hub of the DVD case and spends its journey to you getting marred and scratched on everything inside the case; especially said hub. Last month I was the lucky winner of a sealed Criterion title on eBay. The disc arrived factory sealed as promised but when I opened the case to view the movie, the disc surface was badly marred because it had become loose within the case. Fault would be hard to place and useless anyway (the disc still performed flawlessly), but ultimately I propose the following for everyone mailing/shipping DVDs across the country or world:
    1. Take a thin layer bubble wrap or the protective foam that most electronics come packaged in. Those of you DVD addicts on tight budgets can even split an overused bubble padded envelope in two.
    2. Take a ruler and measure out a rectangle 5 inches wide and 7 inches long. The rectangle doesn’t have to be completely square and it doesn’t even have to be exactly 5” x 7” so long as it isn’t larger.
    3. Repeat the process to coincide with your DVD mailing volume for the next month.
    The next time someone purchases or trades a DVD with you, be sure the disc is in securely locked into place and then lay one of these sheets inside the case prior to closing it up. If the case won’t close don’t force it, use a thinner layer of material. It also important that you protect the outside of the DVD case as well, although these can be replaced affordably (with the exception of the cardboard crapper cases). Encourage those who receive your safety sheets to use them when they send DVDs to others. The sheets are light weight and don’t add anything to shipping costs and should assure safe arrival of the DVDs.
    For more tips for DVD addicts, visit my Yahoo Group at Martha Stew...
    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/DVDs-in-Demand/
    -pjc
     
  2. Greg_Y

    Greg_Y Screenwriter

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    A folded piece of (unused) paper towel is also the perfect way to keep a disc on the spindle.
     
  3. Jean Paul Villeneuve

    Jean Paul Villeneuve Second Unit

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    The paper towel still moves around in the case and doesn't offer enough protection, IMHO [​IMG] A 5" x 7" piece of bubble wrap or foam padding is the best way to insure the disc won't fall off it's spindle.
    Jean Paul
    [​IMG]
     
  4. Elizabeth S

    Elizabeth S Producer

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    Patrick, I've encountered this frustration many times myself. I once WON a Criterion in a contest, which unfortunately came loose in the case, with case cracked. [​IMG]
    I make it a point to always place the bubble wrap or folded paper towel over the disc. But heeding Jean Paul's wisdom, I'll stick to bubble wrap from now.
    I've gotten to the point where I've requested this form of protection from EBayers I've won auctions from, especially when it's an opened item to begin with. I'm always a little wary with online etailer purchases, though, I've found Barnes & Noble packages their items wonderfully. When it's a single DVD case, they always enclose an additional sheet of cardboard in the slim box to prevent the case from rattling. But I'm convinced some of the discs are never properly placed on their spindles in the factory, though. I received a very well-packaged "Queer as Folk First Season" set from DDD, with one disc loose -- luckily, scuffing was very minimal.
    Thanks for the reminder, Patrick!
     
  5. Keith Plucker

    Keith Plucker Screenwriter

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    Well I use a variation of the paper towel method that, to my knowledge, has never allowed a DVD to become unseated. In fact, I have had several traders comment on how much they liked how I packed it. I also use this method when shipping computer software that came in a jewel case.

    I take the DVD out of the case and wrap toliet tissue completely around it. I wrap it once for tight fitting spindles, twice for easier to remove spindles. The DVD is now completely wrapped in tissue. WITHOUT first putting a hole in the tissue, I snap the DVD back on to the spindle. This helps hold the DVD in place on the spindle and since the tissue is pinched on the spindle itself, it doesn't move.

    You might think this makes the DVD/tissue tough to remove but it really isn't. Also, most people have toliet tissue around but may not have suitable bubble wrap. I also like that this method helps to keep the DVD on the spindle in the first place.

    Of course, I sure the bubble wrap method works well too. However, if you don't have any handy give this a try.

    -Keith
     
  6. Steve_Ch

    Steve_Ch Supporting Actor

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    >>1. Take a thin layer bubble wrap or the protective foam that most electronics come packaged in. Those of you DVD addicts on tight budgets can even split an overused bubble padded envelope in two.
     
  7. Patrick_J

    Patrick_J Agent

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    Elizabeth,

    It's my hope that if this practice becomes more common DVD duplicators and manufacturers of higher end sets, such as Criterion or Anchor Bay, will start to insert their own safety sheets (complete with URLs and other propaganda I'm certain) to prevent rattlers. Imagine how little that would add in cost but increase customer satisfaction (and decrease product returns!).

    It's a long shot, but we have to start somewhere.

    -pjc
     
  8. ashley c

    ashley c Stunt Coordinator

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  9. David_B

    David_B Stunt Coordinator

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    Paper napkins are fine, although i usually have the bubble wrap lying around, so I'll ship with that or that foam that looks like dryer sheets (but not dryer sheets right Jean Paul [​IMG] ). The thing is with paper napkins, or anything else soft you stick in there, is that when you close the case, it applies some pressure on the DVD to stay on the hub. This may mean a few of them folded up to present a thick section. After you put whatever you choose (or are requested to put) in the case, shake the case, you should hear or feel no movement in the case whatsoever. I've been packing this way for quite awhile now.
    On another note, using boxes helps as well. Those bubble envelopes just don't offer as much protection for the disk and they tend to damgae them a little more IMHO.
     
  10. Jean Paul Villeneuve

    Jean Paul Villeneuve Second Unit

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  11. Chad B.

    Chad B. Second Unit

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    I always use a piece of folded bubblewrap over the disc and have heard no complaints yet. [​IMG]
     
  12. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    What if you're selling sealed DVDs? Just hope for the best?
     

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