What Wood Should I Use to Make a Shipping Crate?

Shipping Crate

If you’re going to be involved in the shipment of international goods, regardless of the reason, you need to use certain packaging for your items. This is typically in the form of wooden crates, although you must use specific types of wooden crates depending on what you’re shipping, as well as how large your shipment is. There is the option of purchasing pre-made wooden crates for such shipments, but some businesses opt to build their own crates. If you’re going to build your own shipping crates, what type of wood should you use to make them?

Why wood for shipping crates?

Wood is the most prevalent type of material used in military and international shipments because of its ability to provide secure protection for fragile items as well as its strength and durability that enables it to accommodate shipments of immense weight. Wood is also one of the most versatile materials available, due to its ability to be used in multiple ways and to ship just about any product.

The two most popular types of wood that are used in building shipping crates are southern yellow pine and oak. Oak is used for building shipping crates because of its solid mass and robustness. Some shipments that are sent to the military may not be opened for several years, so shipping containers that are constructed of oakwood can easily secure and preserve these products inside shipping crates that must be stored for indefinite periods of time.

Pinewood is used to build shipping crates because of its affordability and due to the fact that it’s widely available. Yellow pine wood is a very soft wood with great malleability, and this type of wood can improve the ease of loading crates. Its extreme stiffness is another reason pinewood is a great choice for shipping boxes. Pinewood is also a relatively dry type of wood, which increases its chances of repelling moisture, and therefore mildew, so your products can remain mildew-free.

Securing wooden crates

Some types of wood make it easier to secure the shipping crates once they have been filled. Due to the great malleability of pinewood, it makes adequately sealing and securing a crate much easier to achieve. It is necessary to use nails and screws for the sealing and securing process, and pinewood makes this process practically effortless, which is yet another reason why it’s a preferred choice for making wooden crates.

Some other popular wood choices for shipping crates

When planning to purchase the proper wood to build your shipping containers, it’s important to stick with the types that are accepted. Don’t choose random types of wood, because if your packaging doesn’t meet the guidelines, then all your hard work will have been for nothing, as your shipment won’t be accepted.

Plywood is an approved type of wood, and it is available in various levels of thickness. Termites and other vermin are attracted to wood, but plywood is a great choice because it’s resistant to not only termites, but also moisture, heat and mold once it’s been properly treated. Certain wooden crates must undergo a fumigation process in order to obtain a required “bug stamp,” and plywood is able to easily undergo this process.

Baltic birch is a very popular type of plywood because of its high level of affordability and durability. Douglas fir is another good choice because, even though it’s considered to be a softwood, it’s one of the hardest of the softwoods, and it is able to easily accommodate shipments of any size and weight due to its hardiness.

Spruce is another appropriate wood type to use when building shipping crates, and although it’s not quite as hard as Douglas fir, it still has the ability to perform well as a shipping crate material. Douglas FIR isn’t quite as readily available as other types of wood, because it is used to create musical instruments, jewelry, and trinket boxes. The primary reason that Douglas Fir has so many different uses is because of the fact that it is highly visually appealing. Even when used as shipping material for crates, many people are impressed with its attractiveness.

Many shippers opt for building shipping crates with oriented strand board, which is a combination of different woods melded together to create boards. This is sometimes a preferred shipping crate material because it can be easily waterproofed by covering it with wax. The ability to easily waterproof a crate is important for the preservation of its contents.

Know your specifications

Now that you’re aware of the types of wood that are most appropriate for use when building shipping crates, before beginning your project, be sure to obtain the specifications for shipment of your particular products. The type of shipping crate that you will need will depend on the total weight of your shipment, the specific product, where it’s going, and more. It is imperative that you determine the specific requirements in advance.

As you can see, it can be quite complicated and tedious to build wooden shipping crates to meet certain specifications. Fortunately, there are professional shippers available who can manage all of your international and military shipping needs from A to Z, to prevent you from having to go to all the trouble of ensuring your crates meet or exceed the required specifications. When choosing a professional shipper, be sure to choose one that is not only experienced and familiar with properly securing shipments, but also one that is knowledgeable of the requirements of military and international shipments.

Kaiser & Johnson has many years of expertise in the military and international shipping industry, and they’re familiar with all the criteria that must be met as well as every other aspect of these types of shipments, including dealing with customs forms, and everything else that is involved in the process. You can rest assured that by dealing with Kaiser & Johnson, that all your packages will reach their destinations, intact and on-time.

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