Shipping cases are containers designed to hold and protect a wide range of items as they are being transported from one location to another. They hold the vital role of protecting their contents from shock, vibration, moisture, dust, and other potentially damaging factors. Shipping cases are manufactured in many sizes, shapes, and materials because of the high demand and necessity for such cases.
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Applications of Shipping Cases
Most industries use shipping cases because the majority of consumer, commercial, and industrial products need to be transported to a retail location or customer. Shipping cases are commonly used for electronic instruments, computers, monitors, screens, individual parts, and tools, as well as many other products. This type of case is particularly useful in safeguarding fragile items, such as medical, electronic, and computer equipment.
Shipping Case Design and Customization
Shipping cases are typically meant to be reused to increase efficiency. They may be constructed from wood, aluminum, steel, or plastics, such as high density polyethylene (HDPE), fiberglass reinforced polyester (FRP), carbon fiber, rotationally molded polyethylene, or linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE). Shipping cases have traditionally been simple in design, although custom and specialty cases are also widely used. Many are boxlike and have packing material inside, such as packing peanuts, heavy foam, special racks, shelving, or a lining made of paper, foam, rubber, wood shavings, plastic, or other materials.
Shipping cases can range from large basic crates to ones that are customized for a specific product. For sensitive, delicate, or expensive items, the packing material inside is often custom cut foam specially made to fit around the item.
Other available features for shipping cases include:
- Heavy Duty Swivel Casters
- Twist Latches
- Spring Loaded Handles
- Rubber Gaskets Around the Doors for Water Resistance
- Recessed Latches to Meet Military Standards
- Molded Lugs for Secure Stacking
- Shock Mounts
- Enhanced and Fortified Steel or Aluminum Framing
- Molded Tracks for Easy Stacking
Manufacturing Process of Shipping Cases
Because of the variation in materials, many different fabrication methods are used to create shipping cases. Wooden cases are formed using wooden slats that are fastened into the frame. This style of shipping case usually does not have a door that can be easily opened and closed. Instead, a top or side panel is nailed shut after the product has been loaded. Metal shipping cases are made from thick sheets of metal fastened onto a metal frame. The corners are often reinforced with steel to counteract pressure applied during transportation. Plastic shipping cases are molded through a number of processes. FRP plastics have fibers that are first woven, knit, braided, or stitched together before bonding to the surface of the matrix, a tough plastic.