Fr8star Shipping Review

P0234

Member

Equipment
BX
Nov 13, 2023
57
37
18
NoVA
Hopefully this is in the right place.

After looking around locally for a "deal" on a BX since the latter part of summer, I had to broaden my search area. Frankly the local dealers and individual sellers in the NoVA/DC area are very proud of their machines, especially the individual sellers. I found an excellent deal on a humble BX1880 "rental" unit with a whopping 2 hours on it via Tractorhouse at Green and Sons in Ohio. The deal was the easy part, then I had to arrange shipping. I've never shipped anything LTL, closest was shipping a car over a decade ago, but I decided to use Tractorhouse partner Fr8star.

Fr8stars's website is nice and modern, in fact from the Tractorhouse ad you can click through and get a ballpark of shipping cost before you get actual quotes. You enter what you "expect" to pay and it tells you if you are in the range, all without registering or giving your contact info. in my case it was within about $50 of what the quote I chose was. Of note for later, I selected my tractor was running and I selected it would need ramps. I got 5 or 6 quotes, pretty close to each other, interestingly the lowest bidder had the most loads experience and highest rating so I went with them, though the prices were all within 15%, it was a tight market I guess. I booked the pickup with a small portion of the total, the rest is due upon delivery. The chosen shipper contacted me very quickly and promised my load would be picked up that day or at the latest the next day. I mentioned my road and the fact that I was expecting we'd drive the BX off. He said it would be no problem as it would be picked up by a hotshot.

That's when things took a bit of a turn for the worse. The actual shipper was not able to fulfill that portion of the deal and ended up picking up the load 3 days after booking, still fine as I was not in a rush. Then things got a little more challenging. After the load was picked up, via a full size truck and lowboy, I got a call from the "driver" who later admitted he was not the actual driver but a dispatcher. He said they would not be able to deliver to my house and wanted to meet me 7 miles away. They also told me I needed to hire a tow truck to remove the BX as they did not have ramps. Even after multiple attempts to tell him that the country road that was a cross street had plenty of room to unload and almost no traffic, he would not agree to anywhere near my home, the closest they would drop it off was a parking lot 2 miles away and I was to hire a tow truck to get it off the low boy, which btw this dispatcher didn't even know what a low boy was...

The truck did arrive at the agreed upon time and the BX was in great shape. I hired a local tow company that I've worked with before and they showed up at the agreed upon time as well, and even went the extra mile to drive me the 2 miles since they felt it was a bad idea for me to drive my BX down a highway (duh!).

I reached out to Fr8star support after everything was home. They made it clear they understood the issue and would make it right. They followed up with the shipper and got them to agree to pay the undecking fee. It would have been nice for Fr8start to directly credit me, the credit from the shipper is still pending....

A- for Fr8star, C- for the actual shipping company which isn't really worth mentioning.
 
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Reactions: 1 user

fried1765

Well-known member

Equipment
Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, Ford 8N, SCAG Liberty Z, Gravely Pro.
Nov 14, 2019
6,908
4,337
113
Eastham, Ma
Hopefully this is in the right place.

After looking around locally for a "deal" on a BX since the latter part of summer, I had to broaden my search area. Frankly the local dealers and individual sellers in the NoVA/DC area are very proud of their machines, especially the individual sellers. I found an excellent deal on a humble BX1880 "rental" unit with a whopping 2 hours on it via Tractorhouse at Green and Sons in Ohio. The deal was the easy part, then I had to arrange shipping. I've never shipped anything LTL, closest was shipping a car over a decade ago, but I decided to use Tractorhouse partner Fr8star.

Fr8stars's website is nice and modern, in fact from the Tractorhouse ad you can click through and get a ballpark of shipping cost before you get actual quotes. You enter what you "expect" to pay and it tells you if you are in the range, all without registering or giving your contact info. in my case it was within about $50 of what the quote I chose was. Of note for later, I selected my tractor was running and I selected it would need ramps. I got 5 or 6 quotes, pretty close to each other, interestingly the lowest bidder had the most loads experience and highest rating so I went with them, though the prices were all within 15%, it was a tight market I guess. I booked the pickup with a small portion of the total, the rest is due upon delivery. The chosen shipper contacted me very quickly and promised my load would be picked up that day or at the latest the next day. I mentioned my road and the fact that I was expecting we'd drive the BX off. He said it would be no problem as it would be picked up by a hotshot.

That's when things took a bit of a turn for the worse. The actual shipper was not able to fulfill that portion of the deal and ended up picking up the load 3 days after booking, still fine as I was not in a rush. Then things got a little more challenging. After the load was picked up, via a full size truck and lowboy, I got a call from the "driver" who later admitted he was not the actual driver but a dispatcher. He said they would not be able to deliver to my house and wanted to meet me 7 miles away. They also told me I needed to hire a tow truck to remove the BX as they did not have ramps. Even after multiple attempts to tell him that the country road that was a cross street had plenty of room to unload and almost no traffic, he would not agree to anywhere near my home, the closest they would drop it off was a parking lot 2 miles away and I was to hire a tow truck to get it off the low boy, which btw this dispatcher didn't even know what a low boy was...

The truck did arrive at the agreed upon time and the BX was in great shape. I hired a local tow company that I've worked with before and they showed up at the agreed upon time as well, and even went the extra mile to drive me the 2 miles since they felt it was a bad idea for me to drive my BX down a highway (duh!).

I reached out to Fr8star support after everything was home. They made it clear they understood the issue and would make it right. They followed up with the shipper and got them to agree to pay the undecking fee. It would have been nice for Fr8start to directly credit me, the credit from the shipper is still pending....

A- for Fr8star, C- for the actual shipping company which isn't really worth mentioning.
WOW!
I recently had an EXACT opposite experience.....but with a very different shipper.

I searched for, and found, a private sale 2021 M62 TLB....$63,500.
M62 was for a friend (he paid) in VA,..... but the machine was in MA.
I asked, and the private seller recommended a "hot shot", from PA, that he had previously used.

Great guy, with a magnificent all aluminum equipment trailer, towed by a GM one ton diesel.
550 mile shipping for $1,200.
Excellent experience,.....door to door,.... and both ends were very rural.

For anyone interested:
USA Trucking
518-898-1929
Ondrej Plzak

I made nothing on the deal!
It was a favor for my long time friend, who had never owned a TLB.
HE LOVES IT !
 
Last edited:
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Reactions: 1 user

fried1765

Well-known member

Equipment
Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, Ford 8N, SCAG Liberty Z, Gravely Pro.
Nov 14, 2019
6,908
4,337
113
Eastham, Ma
WOW!
I recently had an EXACT opposite experience.....but with a very different shipper.

I searched for, and found, a private sale 2021 M62 TLB....$63,500.
M62 was for a friend (he paid) in VA,..... but the machine was in MA.
I asked, and the private seller recommended a "hot shot", from PA, that he had previously used.

Great guy, with a magnificent all aluminum equipment trailer, towed by a GM one ton diesel.
550 mile shipping for $1,200.
Excellent experience,.....door to door,.... and both ends were very rural.

For anyone interested:
USA Trucking
518-898-1929
Ondrej Plzak

I made nothing on the deal!
It was a favor for my long time friend, who had never owned a TLB.
HE LOVES IT !
EDIT: This "hotshot" guy has apparently moved to POLAND,....so is no longer hauling tractors in the USA!
 

P0234

Member

Equipment
BX
Nov 13, 2023
57
37
18
NoVA
EDIT: This "hotshot" guy has apparently moved to POLAND,....so is no longer hauling tractors in the USA!
Well Kurwa....

On a related note, I was shopping around for a chipper and compared rates again, Fr8star definitely had better prices that U-ship and just seemed more professional. Ultimately not doing to use either I think as the guy selling the chipper stopped responding to me, probably thought I was the prince of Nigeria.
 

North Idaho Wolfman

Moderator
Staff member
Lifetime Member

Equipment
L3450DT-GST, Woods FEL, B7100 HSD, FEL, 60" SB, 743 Bobcat with V2203, and more
Jun 9, 2013
29,020
5,346
113
Sandpoint, ID
Well Kurwa....

On a related note, I was shopping around for a chipper and compared rates again, Fr8star definitely had better prices that U-ship and just seemed more professional. Ultimately not doing to use either I think as the guy selling the chipper stopped responding to me, probably thought I was the prince of Nigeria.
Or he was!
 

kris77

Member
Jun 9, 2016
105
1
18
CA
Ran into a shipping snag myself a while back. The key takeaway? Picking a legit company with solid experience makes all the difference.
 

fried1765

Well-known member

Equipment
Kubota L48 TLB, Ford 1920 FEL, Ford 8N, SCAG Liberty Z, Gravely Pro.
Nov 14, 2019
6,908
4,337
113
Eastham, Ma
You are both the buyer and the shipper. In other words, you go pick it up yourself.
The weight, shipping distance, and time, can be a real issue.
In our case, making an 1,100 mile round trip to pick up a 10,000 lb. tractor was just not practical.