Tim, I don't think his initials are TIA - I think he was thanking you in advance.
Anyway, enough pleasantries. The original poster wrote:
I don't have too much stuff to move. I have approximately 10 24x18x24 inch boxes, 1 24x20x24 inch box and 3-4 small boxes. In the furniture i have one three seater sofa, one small dining table with four chairs, one crib and a couple of tables here and there. I have one 25inch TV and a microwave oven.
If we all put our heads together I think we can advise you pretty well how to load an ABF container if that's what you want to do, even without anyone to help you. You have a lot of boxes, which makes it easy. The container is about 8 feet high, 7 feet wide, and 6 feet deep on the outside.
First measure the sofa to make sure it will fit standing on end in one of the rear corners. That's the way it should be loaded, with its feet to the wall. Let's say you put it in the left rear corner of the container. It will take up about 3 feet of the width and 3 feet of the depth of the container, i.e. the left rear quadrant. You can take the sofa cushions off if they are loose and use them to pad things like the TV later on. If they're not loose then you might want to shrink-wrap the whole sofa. Any wood surfaces such as your dining table, sofa legs, and other tables should be protected with soft material wrapped around them, preferably old bedspreads, blankets, or whatever. In a pinch you can use cardboard cut to size. The soft material or cardboard can be held on with package sealing tape wrapped around the whole item, but don't apply the tape directly to the wood surfaces. It will come off cloth easily, but not wood.
There may be space left between the sofa and the rear wall where you can wedge vertical things in like torchiere lamps, vacuum cleaner, ironing board, etc. These things should be wrapped in soft material or cardboard if possible, except for things like ironing boards that don't matter.
You should take the crib apart so it's flat and find some heavy cloth items or big sheets of cardboard to put around it. Again, hold them on with tape. Probably the disassembled crib can be placed vertically against the wall next to the sofa on the left side as you're looking into the container. If you can take the legs off the dining table, do so and lean it against the crib, again with ample padding to protect any wood surfaces in case they rub against each other in transit (this is what you want to avoid to prevent damage). If the legs don't come off, put the table upside down on the floor, protecting the tabletop well with cloth or cardboard under it, and stack things in between the legs.
I think I would put the TV and microwave oven on the floor, wrapped well in cloth or cardboard. If you can find a box for those items, so much the better. You can probably call an appliance store or Home Depot to get castoff boxes. Inside the TV/microwave boxes stuff more soft material or corrugated paper or even lots of crumpled newpaper or your own clothing to keep the TV and microwave boxes from collapsing if things are stacked on them and to protect the surfaces, especially the TV screen.
Now you will have the right-hand side of the container more or less empty. On that side I would stack your boxes, starting against the back and right wall. You have the equivalent of about 13 24x24x18 boxes. Each one takes up 6 cubic feet (2 feet wide and 2 feet high and 1-1/2 feet deep). Since the container is 6 feet deep you can start stacking the boxes against the right-hand wall as you look into the container and bring them out toward the center of the container. You should have room for 3 boxes side-by-side against the right-hand wall. Then put 3 more layers of boxes on top of them for a total of 4 layers and you should have a stack 8 feet high against the right-hand wall.
That will take care of 12 boxes, providing they all fit (the inner dimensions of the container may not quite permit this because they are smaller than the outer dimensions, but this will soon become clear). That leaves the equivalent of 2 boxes, which you should be able to fit in against the rear wall easily. Try to wedge the boxes in tight to keep the TV and microwave boxes from sliding around. You can wedge garbage bags full of soft items or pillows into the crevices.
Your chairs are probably lightweight so they should be completely wrapped in cloth, taped, and placed on top of the TV, microwave, and boxes.
You can buy straps that click into the e-track to keep things from moving around inside the container. For example, you might want to use straps to keep your boxes from sliding around and toppling, especially if they're made of plastic. The ABF terminal should be able to advise you where to get the straps. I think they are available at places like Home Depot. You need straps with e-clip on the end.
If the sofa is a little too long to be stood on end, other people have said that they slanted theirs a little bit and it fit into the ABF container that way.
Diane, just out of curiosity, do you have those instuctions saved, or did you just write every step needed to fill a particular size container with a custom sized shipment. IF you just typed that, I must say I am impressed.
Guest 2 wrote: Diane, just out of curiosity, do you have those instuctions saved, or did you just write every step needed to fill a particular size container with a custom sized shipment. IF you just typed that, I must say I am impressed.
I wrote it out for his particular shipment, trying to help him. I've loaded an ABF trailer myself so I sort of know the issues, and then I've learned a lot since then from people here, especially "hardatwork" and "Fred0844." I've seen several BE loads and unloads in my area and have photographed them so I could post the photos on this website to show people the basics of loading a trailer. ABF U-Pack doesn't supply any pads or packing materials free, and although they may sell them through their website, I don't think the terminals stock them.
The difficulty, as I understand it, is that the original poster has to start work in Ohio on Friday December 9th. That means that he would have to load, like, tomorrow. It just seems to me that he doesn't have much time to explore alternatives to ABF, and if his list above is accurate, he has very little stuff, maybe 2000 pounds as he says. So the container would make a lot of sense, especially since he doesn't have a delivery address.
Diane wrote:Archie White just posted that there are 40 pages of movers listed in the Atlanta Yellow Pages, so you should be in a good position to get a good deal from Atlantic Relo if the scheduling works out for you - http://www.relorow.com/forum/forum_post ... PN=0&TPN=1
Yes there are all kind of movers ads in the yellow pages. I was trying to call the movers who had posted full page ads and they were mostly black listed on the websites. Someone told me to directly call the movers and don't go with the agents. so i was only trying to contact the movers, who were actuall black listed. And that way I ended up wasting a lot of time. Anyways I think in the end I got a not so bad deal. Thank you again.
2scared2move wrote:Someone told me to directly call the movers and don't go with the agents. so i was only trying to contact the movers, who were actuall black listed. And that way I ended up wasting a lot of time.
Out of curiosity, who told you not to go with the agents (I assume you mean agents of major van lines) and what reason did they give?
Incidentally, when I looked at the New York City Yellow Pages, I decided that the quality of the moving company was almost directly opposite to the size of the ad. The only exception I found was Dahill, which is good and still has a large ad. The "iffy" companies had huge ads. How they pay for them, I don't know, because those things are enormously expensive. One owner of a reputable company thought that they may pay only part of the cost and then default, knowing that the Yellow Page ad (once printed) lasts for a full year.
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