Fabrication Packaging: Protective Packaging Solutions by KRA Fab
Protective Packaging Solutions
KraFAB manufacturers parts to meet rigid customer requirements all around the world. After a part has been manufactured or converted to meet the customer’s exact specifications, it’s ready to be shipped. But what type of packaging will ensure that the part is not damaged in transit? What sort of protection or shipping compartment will maintain the integrity of the part?
KraFAB considers packaging an important element of order fulfillment and places the highest priority into being a key member of your supply chain providing undamaged parts. The primary objective of packaging is to maintain the conformity of the finished product. The part should arrive at its destination in the same condition it shipped. Unexpected delays created by damaged parts can be a major obstacle to meeting production goals: The required replacement or reworked parts can unexpectedly add to lead time pushing out the delivery of the final product to the customer while also adding significantly to the costs of production.
Our goal is to eliminate the unexpected delays and costs associated with parts damaged in transit while also offering simple budget-friendly solutions. If the part already has packaging identified, KraFAB can source your materials. If appropriate packaging has not yet been determined, KraFAB can offer as service assistance in identifying appropriate packaging based on the customer’s unique part.
For best results, consider how the product will be used. Is this item best packaged individually? Does it need to be individually bagged and labeled? Or is a label applied to a case of parts more appropriate?
It is also important to keep in mind the unique needs of the product being shipped: Does the item require refrigerated or frozen shipment? Is the size and weight of the shipment better suited for a freight shipment as opposed to a small parcel carrier?
Another consideration is the shape of the product. If the product has sharp edges, they can slice through packaging. If there are threaded studs or pins, improper packaging could lead to bending, breaking or scratching. For form in place gasket parts, the packaging considerations are even more important due to the nature of the gasket and the gasket location. Gasket installed on parts will have sufficient adhesion to stay in place with careful handling during shipping, receiving, and installation. The gasket should be protected from shear forces, and any contact with objects, as it is removed from packaging, handled in the process, and installed in the final assembly.
“Damaged in transit” is a term heard all too often and it is usually the beginning of a major headache. Replacing or needing to touch-up products adds significantly to the cost of parts. When products are not properly packaged, it is difficult to avoid scratches, wrinkles or dents. And although a few missing pieces in a large order may seem minimal, the labor and rework to fix a damaged part may cost more than an entirely new part.
The cost increases with time lost in phone calls, paperwork, and tracking. Whether it be caused by insufficient packaging between parts or inadequate box choices, the loss of just one part can be a significant loss. Insufficient packaging can be very costly but the good news is that it is preventable.
The simplest, most versatile, and most commonly used packaging materials are paper, plastic foam, and cardboard. If a product nests easily and is not fragile, a simple piece of coated paper between parts may be the most cost-efficient. With stackable products, cardboard and plastic packaging is affordable and ideal. When dealing with the weight of a product, ensuring that the skid or container is rigid and sufficient to handle the weight is key.
Using plastic stretch wrap in combination with banding can secure a skid and negate the need for any expensive, specialized, rigid container. For products with very awkward geometries, egg crating may be best. This is because egg crating ensures there is a consistent number of parts per container, thus limiting confusion over the correct number of parts per order.
When parts have an applied form in place gasket, it is essential to protect the gasket from any shear force. Housings should be packaged in cardboard, plastic trays, dividers, or another compartmentalized packaging. Standoffs may be required to prevent the gasket from coming into contact with other objects or being exposed to shear force. Loose paper, plastic sheets, and tape are not sufficient packaging when trying to protect a gasket.
Even with all of these options, sometimes a custom container is the only solution. This type of individualized and specialized packaging helps protect the products while minimizing the per-piece cost of the packaging.
KraFAB’s goal for our customers is to find the best way to protect the product during shipment. We aim to do this without spending unnecessary dollars through damage from careless or ununiformed packaging.
We at KraFAB know that each job will have its own set of criteria and guidelines, so communication during the entire process is essential. A great-quality product is only half of the equation. The other half is to make sure our customer receives the highest quality product, undamaged, and finished to specifications.