Why is a custom wood crate closure important?
When discussing the wood crate design with your vendor, addressing the method of closure and end customer opening is vital. Thoughtful crating vendors will remember to address this critical feature because how you close the crate will determine how it will be opened.
This can impact the end-user in that tools and manpower may be needed. If an end-user sustains an injury attempting to open your package, this not only becomes a potential liability to you but could alter the perception of your product's quality.
Expect questions about your needs
There are many ways to construct a basic custom wood crate, which is why a good crating expert should ask about your access inside the crate. Will your team be opening and closing one time or many times? What are the lifespan expectations of the custom wood crate?
Answers to questions like these can result in some pretty cool ways to meet customers' specific custom wood crate needs. If the closures are not properly addressed during the design phase then the crate may not live up the expectations of the customer.
One-time wood crate
Uses: 5-10 uses related to insert/removal screws. Best for one-way shippers.
Closure: Drywall screws thru the 1x4 cleating material rely on the strength of the screw teeth into the custom wood crate material.
Pros: Low price due to low labor requirements and thinner/less material. Lighter weight saving on shipping fees.
Cons: After repeated screw use the wood material will begin to degrade and potentially reduce the ability to secure the lid with drywall screws.
Reusable custom wood crate
Uses: 50+ uses related to insert/removal bolts. Best for repeated use.
Closure: Carriage bolt + washer + T-nut assembly thru 2x4 cleats
Pros: Increased clamping strength from the bolt and T-nut as opposed to screws which rely on the teeth of the screws biting into the wood material. Longer lasting and more durable crate due to great reinforcement from 2x4 cleats and non-degradation of cleats from screws.
Cons: More of an initial investment in price. Price is higher due to increased material and labor costs. Heavier which can increase shipping costs.
Communication with your crate designer is critical. Discussing the full life cycle of your crate including how the end user will use it can drastically change the finished crate design. Make sure you weigh all the pros and cons with your crate designer.
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