The right crate for the job

Shipping crates may seem to be a simple item to construct, but there's much more to a good shipping crate than may be easily seen.  Durable and tough, a good crate will keep its contents safe while being moved, whether across a city or across an ocean.  There will be features to make a good crate easy to handle, easy to secure and easy to ship.

Crates come in a wide variety of standard sizes.  There are advantages to using containers that are pre-made, particularly if using several.  They will stack neatly and are often constructed to fit evenly with many different sizes of crates that a company manufactures.  This allows for tighter, more efficient packing into cargo beds, trucks or shipping containers.  Using a standard sized crate also cuts down on time, as they are often available on demand or can be quickly fabricated.

Custom crates are commonly used for unusual cargo, including large or oddly shaped items.  If the cargo requires particular care, a custom crate can be designed and crafted to take the requirements into its build.  Added padding, tie points and vibration protection can all be easily added to keep your cargo safe and secure during shipment.  Internal compartments within a larger crate can be made for shipping multiple items within a single crate.  Many crate building companies use highly accurate CNC machines to build the various panels and pieces needed for a custom crate, and produce a polished, good looking finished product.

There may be a temptation to build your own shipping crate, but this is rarely a good idea.  A crate has to be strong enough to withstand multiple moves by a variety of equipment, including ground clearance for fork lifts and strapping points for overhead lifts.  Many countries have restrictions on the movement of natural materials unless heavily treated to avoid the spread of insects, moulds and other plant based diseases.  These restrictions may be in place not just across borders into other countries but within the country itself.  A shipping crate must be able to be secured within the cargo area of the vehicle moving the crate.  It should have a way to dampen the vibration that occurs during travel, which can damage the contents.

While a good crate may seem like a simple thing to build, it should be left to the experts.  If an item is valuable enough to ship safely, it is also valuable enough to spend the extra money to buy a professionally made shipping crates that will keep it safe and meet all the requirements of travel.  The expense of replacing cargo will be far higher than being sure your cargo will travel well the first time.