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Eliminate wood crates from your packing program: engineered paperboard can be an alternative to wood crates for protecting large, irregular-shaped products.

When is paper stronger than wood? When it's laminated paperboard engineered to protect and enhance the stackability of large, heavy or irregular-shaped and hard-to-box items--such as generators, machine components, personal recreational vehicles, riding mowers or motorcycles--explains Aaron Sass, new business development manager for Laminations.

"SURECrate was developed as a protective packaging application for our VBoard line of 100% recycled, laminated paperboard when a customer asked us to figure out how to eliminate wood crates from their packing program," says Sass.

That's because wood for protective crates often requires long lead times and large order volumes, making it difficult to estimate the correct amount of packaging needed. Further, crates shipped overseas must show certification that they are made of heat-treated or fumigated wood (per international regulations).

Although wood crating is frequently delivered pre-cut, assembly is still required. As a result, an employee may need to sort through pieces to avoid warping, cracks or knots. And, a company might go through more wood than necessary or need to pay a premium for wood without defects. Aside from the ergonomic and safety risks associated with handling raw wood, the materials need dedicated storage space prior to use and disposal upon arrival at the shipment's destination.

"When you add all that up, the overall cost of an engineered SURECrate system is extremely competitive," Sass says, noting that the paperboard can be recycled at the end of use. "It's lighter weight than wood, and the V-shaped boards nest together to take up less space prior to crate assembly."

The paperboard is manufactured in range of calipers to meet differing load specifications. As a pre-engineered solution, each system is customized. Although highly dependent on the application (such as load dimensions, weight and desired stack height), once engineered, the packaging provides excellent protection and strength, even in damp and humid environments, he says.

"Each engineered system is delivered cut to the size needed, and we train the packagers on how to build the crate to maximize its structural integrity," Sass adds. "Assembly requires limited tooling and, once trained, employees can often build a crate in five minutes."

By Sara Pearson Specter, Editor at Large

Sara Pearson Specter is an editor at large with Modern and can be reached at sara@saraspecter.com.

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Title Annotation:PACKAGING CORNER
Author:Specter, Sara Pearson
Publication:Modern Materials Handling
Date:Feb 1, 2016
Words:375
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