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Thread: Fast, High Quanity Mailing

  1. #11
    Wizengamot Ravenclaw
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    Oh, another good idea!

    I have somthing I'm wondering about that method too, though. If the bag were charmed and then sent to a Muggle, do you think the Muggle would be able to fill it? If it is just the question of dropping something into a bag, that doesn't seem like it would require any magic? Or do you think even this would require someone with magic to do it?

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  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Halgy
    Oh! Another simple idea is to use an un-detectable expansion charm like Hermione did on her bag. She hauled around tons of stuff and it didn't weigh her down at all. In that way, something small (like an owl) could carry anything. Plus, the idea of pulling a grand piano out of a owl's message pouch could be quite funny.
    She was able to cram lots of things into her bag with the expansion charm, but the bag still weighed the same - it thudded unusually audibly whenever it was dropped.

    So, you could put a lot of things into a bag with an expansion charm on it, but I think it would be too heavy for an owl to carry.

    Tim the Enchanter

  3. #13
    Inverarity
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tim the Enchanter
    She was able to cram lots of things into her bag with the expansion charm, but the bag still weighed the same - it thudded unusually audibly whenever it was dropped.

    So, you could put a lot of things into a bag with an expansion charm on it, but I think it would be too heavy for an owl to carry.
    There's a point here which I've alluded to in other threads -- sometimes, when considering what can be done with magic, you need to take into account not only what's established in canon, but what would "break" the setting. (Also known as stretching the reader's suspension of disbelief.) If magic can do certain things, the implications would be far-reaching; therefore, you shouldn't let magic do those things.

    Anything involving instantaneous communication and/or rapid transportation of large masses falls into that category. Communication is obviously an issue in the wizarding world; if wizards come up with the magical equivalent of cell phones, then a lot of the plot in the Harry Potter books falls apart. ("Hello, Sirius? Have you been captured by Voldemort? No? Okay, I guess I won't run off to the Department of Mysteries, then.")

    Likewise, being able to just ship lots of stuff by shrinking it and sending it by owl or Muggle post would have nearly as great an effect as giving wizards unlimited Apportation around the world. If you let magic easily get around logistical difficulties like that, a lot of stories are going to fall apart. I think letting wizards have the equivalent of a portable Room of Requirement is a bad idea, plotwise.

    Tim's idea, that shrinking an object won't change its mass, is a good one. Sure, maybe a Shrinking Spell will let you put a grand piano in your purse, but good luck lifting it.

  4. #14
    Wizengamot Ravenclaw
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    Alright, so far I have been given a lot of reason for how shipping something would be impossible, but I am still drawing a blank as to how it would be done. Listening to all of you talk, one would think every store shelf in Diagon Alley would be bare because there is no way to ship the inventory.

    So that poses the question again: how can a large quanity of materials be shipped in the wizarding world?

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  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by OliveOil_Med
    Alright, so far I have been given a lot of reason for how shipping something would be impossible, but I am still drawing a blank as to how it would be done. Listening to all of you talk, one would think every store shelf in Diagon Alley would be bare because there is no way to ship the inventory.

    So that poses the question again: how can a large quanity of materials be shipped in the wizarding world?
    By train?

    The wizarding world doesn't seem to have a lot of raw materials or heavy industry -- things sold in Diagon Alley are mostly hand-crafted artifacts, books, clothes, and the like.

    I suspect wizards have their own equivalent of shipping companies, which probably improvise with everything from winged horse-drawn wagons under Disillusionment Charms to Muggle shipping routes. (But shh! Don't tell the pure-blood customers that!)

  6. #16
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    What I really need specifics on, though, is how paper can be shipped in order to print a newspaper, along with distribution. Maybe I just wasn't being specific enough before.

    But just how much weight do you think would be realistic for an owl to carry? They do deliever packages, after all.

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  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by OliveOil_Med
    What I really need specifics on, though, is how paper can be shipped in order to print a newspaper, along with distribution. Maybe I just wasn't being specific enough before.
    Why couldn't a wizard order paper from a Muggle paper company?

    If there are some wizards who disdain anything Muggle (and like to believe that every chair, plate, ream of paper, and brick in the wizarding world is manufactured by wizards) then there are probably wizard businesses that cater to them (mostly by buying Muggle goods and "rebranding" them).

    But just how much weight do you think would be realistic for an owl to carry? They do deliever packages, after all.
    Are you talking about an African or European owl?

  8. #18
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    Are you talking about an African or European owl?
    Well, since the books take place in England, let's go with European. I think people might notice an indiginous African owl flying around Scotland in the middle of winter might draw a bit of attention.

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  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by OliveOil_Med
    What I really need specifics on, though, is how paper can be shipped in order to print a newspaper, along with distribution. Maybe I just wasn't being specific enough before.

    But just how much weight do you think would be realistic for an owl to carry? They do deliever packages, after all.
    What if the Daily Prophet makes its own paper? Perhaps they order lumber every now and then (shrunk and sent by Portkey), which is then turned to wood pulp and then paper in some workshop in the basement.

    Concerning how much owls could carry, I would go by percentage of body weight rather than set weight, since owls come in all shapes and sizes.

    But for an idea of what the maximum load is, the largest Eagle owls weigh up to 4.2 kg and can fly off with small animals no heavier than about 3 kg. This works out to about 71% of a large Eagle owl's body weight. Note that this kind of owl is quite large and strong, so smaller owls with less wing area (like Pigwidgeon) probably wouldn't be able to lift as high a percentage of their body mass.

    Quote Originally Posted by OliveOil_Med
    Are you talking about an African or European owl?
    Well, since the books take place in England, let's go with European. I think people might notice an indiginous African owl flying around Scotland in the middle of winter might draw a bit of attention.
    Does 'Monty Python' ring any bells? You really should watch Monty Python and the Holy Grail - you'll find it immensely educational!

    Tim the Enchanter

  10. #20
    Halgy
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tim the Enchanter
    She was able to cram lots of things into her bag with the expansion charm, but the bag still weighed the same - it thudded unusually audibly whenever it was dropped.

    So, you could put a lot of things into a bag with an expansion charm on it, but I think it would be too heavy for an owl to carry.

    Tim the Enchanter
    I know that it doesn't make sense (logically), but there's no way that Hermione's bag weighed as much as it should. She had a large pile of books (Harry obvserved that her 'keep' pile was bigger than her 'discard' pile, and you know how many books Hermione had), plus a tent, potions, clothes, and a picture frame, not to mention other stuff.

    That bag would have weighed several hundred pounds, but there was no mention of it ever being heavy from an outsiders (the carrier's) perspective. Yes, it thudded when she dropped it, but that's because the inside of the bag was susceptible to the laws of physics (weight), but the bag as a whole was not.

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