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How to Build a Custom Shipping Crate

10-18-2017 04:18 PM CET | Logistics & Transport

Press release from: Formaspace

Formaspace Shipping Crate

Formaspace Shipping Crate

Behold the custom shipping crate — an often-overlooked cog in the fast-moving wheels of commerce. Well-designed custom crates can save you time and money — especially when you make them out of low cost recycled materials — so if you're in the business of shipping (https://formaspace.com/industrial-workbenches/packing-shipping/) large items safely and securely (as we are here at Formaspace), you might want to learn how to build your own customized, reusable crates when delivering goods to customers, or when dispatching trade show crates to exhibitions.

Here at our business furniture (https://formaspace.com/) factory in Austin, Texas, Formaspace employee Albert Gilbert builds custom crates for each piece of furniture we ship to our customers. You might be surprised to know that Albert can build most of these custom crates in just five or ten minutes!

To be this productive, you have to be organized and have a plan. And, because we like to recycle as much left-over material as possible, we also employ a comprehensive program throughout our factory to collect every bit of manufacturing scrap material — ranging from plywood to melamine sheets, to hinges — even used nails get recycled! Often these recycled materials find their way into our shipping crates.

For furniture shipped short distances on a single vehicle, Albert typically builds an open style wood frame crate from scratch, starting with a pallet made from recycled lumber, plywood or melamine pieces. After the furniture is securely mounted on the pallet, Albert adds a protective frame made of wood around the furniture.

Furniture that is shipped LTL (aka "less that a truckload") needs more protection, as it may be transferred a number of times between different trucks and warehouses on its way to its final destination. In these circumstances, Albert builds custom crates that are fully enclosed with plywood or OSB (oriented strand board) sheathing for added protection.

How to Build Your Own Reusable Crates or Trade Show Crates

What about building your own custom crates to use for shipping items to your own customers or for transporting items to and from a trade show? How do you go about it? It turns out you can build custom, reusable crates and trade show crates quite easily, at very low cost — especially if you have access to some recycled lumber.

To illustrate how to build your own crate, let's create a crate from scratch to ship an item that is 40" wide, 36" high and 62" long.

Our Custom Crate Design: Base Out Crate with Built-In Block Style Pallet

The style of crate we have in mind is called a 'base out' design, which simply means that the wood support pieces are mounted on the outside. The cargo itself will be enclosed in a sandwich of heavy duty cardboard and rigid foam, which is significantly lighter than solid plywood sheathing*. The crate will sit on a built-in pallet that uses blocks (rather than stringers with notches) to provide clearance for forklift blades to pass underneath. As a final step before shipment, we'll use packaging film to seal up the entire crate to protect it from the weather.

(*A cardboard and foam combination is lighter than plywood or OSB sheathing (which means lower shipping costs)— but if you prefer a solid exterior, we'll also show how to sheath the completed design with plywood or OSB during the final step if you need this added level of protection.)

Before You Start: Shipping Custom Crates Overseas May Require an ISPM Wood Pest Certification

This is also a good time to mention that if you are sending your crates overseas (even from the USA to Canada), you may be required to use wood that is stamped with an official ISPM logo* that certifies it's been treated for pests. Natural wood products thicker than 6 mm will require certification, however, processed wood products, like OSB and plywood, do not.

(* The ISPM logo certifies that wood has met the International Standards for Phytosanitary Measures (https://www.ippc.int/en/core-activities/standards-setting...), an international accord to prevent transmission of invasive species (such as Formosan termites) in wood products. Fraudulent misuse of the ISPM logo is a serious offense and could be prosecuted as a felony.)

Getting the Materials Together to Build a Custom, Reusable Crates

We'll be using 1" x 4" wood lumber stock to build the structure of our reusable crate. Depending on what materials you have on hand, you can also use a band-saw to cut down 2" x 4" lumber to create the 1" x 4" stock.

In addition, we'll want to set aside some heavy duty cardboard sheets and optional rigid foam panels or rolls of soft foam. Depending on the type of foam used, you may need some glue or staples to hold the foam and cardboard in place.

What Fasteners Should You Use to Build Custom, Reusable Crates?

To build a reusable crate, use heavy-duty screws with a screw gun to assemble the project. Don't use inexpensive screws like those used for installing sheet rock — as these will corrode quickly when exposed to the elements — losing their strength in a surprisingly short period of time.

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Read more ... https://formaspace.com/articles/material-handling/how-to-build-custom-shipping-crate/?utm_source=openpr&utm_medium=content&utm_campaign=article-050917

Formaspace advances the spirit of discovery and creation through the design and manufacture of custom business furniture. Our furniture marries form to function with flexible solutions for clients in the laboratory, industrial, and office environments.

Formaspace serves over 80% of the Fortune 500, as well as universities, governments, small businesses, and individuals.

Formaspace

1100 E. Howard Lane, Suite 400
Austin, TX 78753

800.251.1505

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