Small Packing Cases

In the last 40 years the market for small to medium timber packing cases has taken a battering from the huge increase in the use of pallets and freight containers. It is now a very small part of the international goods freighting industry which is now dominated by unit loads made up on pallets shipped in freight containers.

The larger end of the industry which is often classified as cases weighing over 1500 kg (covered in the next page LARGE EXPORT PACKING CASES) is relatively healthy due to the size and weight restrictions of freight containers and the necessity of adequate protection for many large exported manufactured items.

Small battened timber case

Precision manufactured and moisture sensitive goods needing a higher level of physical protection may still be packed in small timber cases made from sawn timber (as illustration), or plywood, waferboard or multi-wall fibreboard supported by a timber frame. High value items such as antiques are often also packed in sawn timber or plywood cases even if shipped in a freight container.

There are many styles of small case in the developed world, each with its adherents and often covered by a National standard with detailed design information and information on strength of materials such as the BS 1133: Section 8: 2011: Packaging Code - Wooden boxes cases and crates. Overseas examples of design guides are published by the German Pallet and Packaging Association HPE (Bundesverband Holzpackmittel Paletten Exportverpackung) and the design guide in English by Japanese National Standards Association JIS Z 1402: 1995: Wooden boxes for packing up to 1.5 tons.

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