Shipping Plywood


From original questioner:

Actually, this is more like receiving plywood.

I believe I have found a source of specialty plywood about 350 miles away from me. At this time my business appears to be out of their normal delivery area. I am not sure if they know how to ship long-distance. So, I am preemptively looking for alternatives.

I could tow my trailer, which can handle about a max of 20 sheets of 3/4" 4x8. That would cost about $240 in fuel and about 11-12 hours of time. To get what I need this may make sense.

If we only needed a smaller quantity at a time, the amortized cost per sheet jumps quickly.

To prevent damage, I could order two sheets of cheap 1/4" ply and ask that they sandwich the good stuff between the 1/4" sheets.

One possible advantage is that there is a major interstate corridor between us.

I am looking for other alternatives.

Any thoughts?

From contributor Ji

Look around for local trucking companies. They might be able to put it on with a load if they are nearby.

A trick that I used was that I asked a couple of retired guys that I know if they would like to earn some extra money. The mill put the load on the trailer and we took it off. They used my truck and trailer. They just had to do the driving. It was worth it to me to not have the time away from production.

From contributor Br

350 miles? You can't find a dealer closer who has the same material? Have them put a unit on common truck carrier. Your fetching 20 sheets at a time doesn't make sense much less worrying about buying two pieces of 1/4" to wrap it in.

From contributor Dr

No matter what, they should provide cover sheets at no cost, especially if you're buying 1/2 a lift.

From contributor La

Careful about shipping costs. Negociate a rate before commiting. Check with some independants that may run that route. There are also the brokers. Might as well get a full unit, shipping cost won't be a lot different for full or half. Split a unit with another shop?

From contributor Ji

Two suggestions:

Try a freight broker. I used an online one (sorry, can't remember who) and he trimmed the cost for me considerably.

Call FedEx. Seriously. They have a freight division. Only don't ezpect them to be any better than anyone else. (I say, based on experience).