Most of the logistics and transportation specifications in the transport packaging industry were developed and refined by the U.S. government from the 1950s to the 1980s. Because of technological limitations, these documents were typewritten and had minor flaws that made them difficult to read -- and often unusable -- after multiple photocopies.
A newer yet similar set of standards has been available for a fee from ASTM International, but because of the fees, many packing and crating companies have opted to simply avoid following the protocol altogether.
"My experience in the industry over the past 20 years leads me to believe that more than 50 percent of the people that make wood shipping containers have never even seen the standards for them, and more than half of those that have seen them have great difficulty in understanding them," said Wooden Crates Organization founder Jeff Duck.
The database at WoodenCrates.org provides a clean, organized and more accessible version of the specs for wooden shipping crates and more. Extensive proofreading has eliminated errors that could lead to serious design flaws, and crating standards are easier to understand in their new version. Links have been added that provide further information, as well as helpful sources. The documents are simpler to find and search through than ever before, as they're named and organized logically to allow for easy, permanent access.
"The importance of streamlining military specs is tremendous," explained Paul Vieria, chief engineer at Specialized Packaging Solutions in Newark, California. "The new index will allow quicker discovery and more efficient production, which will give all companies involved greater profitability. I applaud WoodenCrates.org for taking on this time-consuming step."
However, the project is not complete. WoodenCrates.org has plans to upload, update, and refine over 100 additional documents to offer visitors a complete resource for shipping container standards and guidelines.
"We hope that our website allows manufacturers to make safer, more reliable products that meet and exceed guidelines," Duck said. "This type of free resource has been in demand for a long time, and we're happy to finally provide it."
The refined standards are available free of charge on the Wooden Crates Organization's website, www.woodencrates.org.
SOURCE: The Wooden Crates Organization