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Beyond the Crate – The Difference Between Shrink Wrap and Stretch Wrap

While a wooden crate can be perceived as the most important component of shipping your goods, the other materials you use for shipping can be just as crucial in getting your goods to their destination in one piece. One of the most important parts of ensuring your custom crate makes a successful journey is the plastic wrap.

There are two main kinds of plastic wrap that may be used in packaging and shipping, including shrink wrap and stretch wrap. While they may appear to just be plastic, they actually have different functions and should be used in different situations.

Shrink Wrap

As the name suggests, shrink wrap will become smaller to fit the form of the custom crate it is protecting. The layer of plastic protection is placed around the item, heat is applied, and the plastic conforms to the shape and size of the package.

Shrink wrap has a number of benefits, including creating a waterproof barrier around the package, holding together any loose items like pallets, and protecting the wooden crate from the elements. Because the plastic is wrapped so tightly around the package, it is important to remember that the items inside will not have any air circulation. Furthermore, if the package will be exposed to heat during its trip, the plastic may shrink more.

Stretch Wrap

Unlike shrink wrap, stretch wrap does not adjust to fit the size and shape of the package. Instead, it is wrapped tightly around the wooden crate to hold together any loose items. As the name suggests, stretch wrap will stretch when it is pulled.

Because stretch wrap doesn’t create an airtight barrier around the package, it will not completely protect the crate from moisture, dirt, or dust, but it can do a decent job of ensuring everything stays in one place.

Both shrink wrap and stretch wrap will have their own benefits and time for use. Before you package your item for shipping, discuss with us if shrink wrap or stretch wrap is right for your situation.

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Is a Custom Crate Really Necessary?

When you’re preparing to ship something, you’ll want to ensure it reaches its destination as safely as possible. To do so, you’ll probably need to purchase a crate that fits the unique needs of the goods being shipped. While it can be tempting to purchase a cheaper, more standard crate option, there are actually a number of reasons why a custom crate might be necessary.

  1. Protect from Damage

The number one reason you might want to splurge on a custom crate is to prevent damage from occurring to the goods you are shipping. With a wooden crate made to uniquely fit the dimensions of your item, it will have better protection.

  1. Gives Support

Your custom crate will take into account the weight of the goods or products you’re looking to ship. This means that you don’t need to worry about the crate breaking while it is being transported or moved around. The design of the crate considers exactly what is going to be put inside the wooden crate, so it can account for things like size and weight.


  1. Prevents Shifting

When your goods or items are being transported, they’re constantly being moved. The workers who are in charge of getting your shipment from Point A to Point B aren’t likely to deal with your package with the delicacy you would like, so you need to do all that you can to protect it from shifting and getting damaged. A custom crate considers the size of the item you’re shipping and accounts for the possible shifts and movements it can make.

For some things, you may be able to get away with just a regular, standard crate. If you’re not attached to the item inside and don’t mind if it gets a little dinged up in the moving process, a store-bought crate could fit your needs. But if you’re looking to safely ensure your good arrives at its destination completely unharmed, a custom crate is absolutely necessary.

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A Basic Step-by-Step Guide for Industrial Packing

If you’re looking to send products, goods, or items industrially, you’ll want to ensure you’re packing correctly. You’re not going to want to throw everything together and hope it makes its way to your destination. There are a few steps you’ll want to take to ensure everything runs as smoothly and efficiently as possible.

Step 1: Choosing Your Boxes

You’ll want to give all your small items an independent box of its own or compiled with similar objects. Unless your item is large enough to fill a crate alone, smaller boxes keep everything together and add another level of protection.

Select boxes that can fit your items comfortably while supporting the weight of the goods.

Step 2: Determine If Your Items Are Fragile or Non-Fragile

Whether your items are fragile or not will determine how you package them, including what support and additional materials you will need. If there is a high chance that the product could break while moving to its new location, it is considered fragile. Some examples include glass, household goods, or electronics. Non-fragile materials are difficult to break, including paper and canned goods.

Step 3: Boxing Your Items

If you simply throw all your items in a box and let it go, they will probably become damaged during your travels. You’ll want to ensure you are providing enough support to your items, especially if you have considered them to be fragile. Be sure your boxes have the right protection, including foam or bubble wrap.

You will also want to ensure that your boxes are completely packed before you close them up. Using things like packing paper, bubble wrap, packaging peanuts, and other similar items can prevent the goods inside from sliding around.

Step 4: Securing the Pallet

If you’re transporting multiple boxes, the easiest way to do so is through a pallet. To ensure all your boxes are kept together, they will need to be secured with a plastic wrap. You’ll want to completely cover the pallet and your boxes with enough shrink wrap that there isn’t a chance it will come loose.

For assistance with custom crates or shipping, contact Crate Tech today.

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Custom Wooden Crate

Shipping Methods: Custom Wooden Crates

Sometimes the items you are looking to ship are either too large or too small. The standard “one size fits all” shipping box has slowly become a method of the past. The crate experts over at Crate Tech have determined that custom wooden crates are the best way to go for shipping virtually anything you need! Custom wooden crates provide a way for you to safely store and ship items that traditional packaging techniques cannot accomplish. Take a look at this list that we have compiled that displays the benefits you can take advantage of when using custom wooden crates for shipping your items.


Why Use Custom Wooden Crates for Shipping?


Worry Less About Size

One of the perks about custom wooden crates is that they can be built around just about any item that is in need of shipping. In order to meet customer’s specific needs, it is important that a crate can be built for any specification required. Crate Tech prides themselves on being able to meet any crating need desired from a customer.


Safe & Secure

The beauty of custom wooden crates is that they ensure the protection of your item during transportation. To restrict any movement and reduce minor damages, the crates are built around whatever it is you may be shipping. This guarantees quality protection because your valuables will have a snug fit in the crate.


Reuse of Materials

If you’re a DIY type of person, or simply just enjoy recycling and reusing products then custom wooden crates are perfect for you. Once your item is safely transported, it is easy to break your custom crate down and reuse the material. In the past, we have seen customers reuse their custom wooden crates to create bookshelves, desks or even additional storage crates!


In Need of a Custom Wooden Crate?

Crate Tech is here to serve all of your custom crate needs! Committed to “service beyond expectation,” our craftsmen have been building wooden crates for over 20 years. We are constantly meeting the needs of our customers by being able to take on jobs of any size. The benefits of using custom wooden crates to transport your items outweigh other traditional methods of shipping such as the use of pallets. If you’re located in Seattle, Wichita, Chicago or Kingston, NC and are in need of a custom wooden crate then get in touch with Crate Tech today! Give us a call at 253-872-6857 to see what how we can be of service to you!

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The Best Crates for Shipping

wooden crate

There are different materials used in constructing shipping crates and boxes. There are also different designs of boxes and even pallets can be used to ship freight or to stack shipments on. There are even custom crates that can be designed to hold any shape or sort of material. So when looking at all the different options, it’s important to know what the best crates are for shipping.

Packaging and freight is a vital industry to the economy of the United States. The ability to ship supplies long distances sustains industries and companies who manufacturer products that need to be shipped. That’s why those in the crate and packaging industry manufacture crates of different sizes which are used to ship all sorts of materials.

Best Crates for Shipping

Custom Crates

Crate Tech takes the “custom” to the max, and the biggest benefit of wooden crates is that they are able to be customized to fit any order or specification. Quality crate companies pride themselves on being able to meet the customer’s needs. Sometimes standard crates are able to complete a job successfully, and in these times each shipping job is treated individually, because each one has its own specific needs.


The benefit of pallets is that freight is able to be stacked on them in an efficient way, and pallets are the preferred method of shipping for a number of different jobs and scenarios. There is a time and place for using pallets as opposed to crates and it is best to consult with a crate or shipping company as to which type of crate option is best for a certain job.

Custom Projects

Storage units, work tables, and racks, are other items that have been constructed in the past to be able to meet the needs of companies that need to ship an item. At times wooden crates are even paired with metal or aluminum fabrications to be able to sustain the needs of a customer with a more rigorous job requirement. The one thing that’s certain is that custom crates fill a great need in a job that has specific and technical requirements for shipping.

The packaging and crate industry is one that requires experience. Crate Tech, Inc. brings 20 years of experience in the wooden crate industry to the table and is currently committed to “service beyond expectation.” Clients have been pleased with the service and products from Crate Tech for years and continue to be amazed by their commitment to excellence. Crate Tech now has 4 locations across the country, in Seattle, Wichita, Chicago, and now in Kingston, NC. To get in touch with Crate Tech today and get started with custom crates, give them a call at 253-872-6857!

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wooden crates

Wooden Crates are the Best Crates

Those who are involved with shipping are more aware of the many different types of boxes and crates that are available for shipping. Sometimes, because of weight or safety reasons, a metal or aluminum crate might be the best bet. Much of the time, however, wooden crates and even custom ones are going to be a safe bet for shipping. But what makes wood so popular as the material to be used for shipping materials across the country, and even around the world?

3 Reasons Wooden Crates are Best

Renewable Resource

Wood is a renewable resource, and depending on the type of wood used to make a particular crate, some trees can grow to within cutting height within a few years. This makes the production of wooden crates less of a strain on the environment than materials that would take a long time to make and produce.

Easy to Customize

Wood is also a material that is easy to construct abstract shapes out of. This makes it ideal for the custom crates that Crate Tech specializes in designing. Small and even large items can sometimes call for an extraordinary crate shape to be able to accommodate the shipping material most effectively. The best way to go about doing that is with wood, which can be used to construct crates of all shapes and sizes.

Wooden Crates Can be Reused

The last blog post here at Crate Tech referred to how wooden crates can be re-used in a variety of creative ways to keep them from going to waste. This is one of the exciting benefits of using wooden crates for shipping and freight purposes, the crates used are able to be customized into useful purposes, for residential as well as commercial use. Wooden pallets have even been spotted, painted and sitting in the front of houses.

Crate Tech, Inc. is one of the premiere providers of custom packaging and shipping in the United States and around the world. Their impressive resume includes a list of all sorts of unique shipping jobs, such as the giant helmets used before Super Bowl XLVIII, where the Seahawks were the victors over the Broncos. Crate Tech can be used for a variety of different shipping purposes and needs, and the best way to get quoted is to get in touch with them! Call Crate Tech today at 253-872-6857!

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What the European Union Has to Say About Wooden Crates

eu shipping standards

The European Union is setting the standard for health and safety for wooden crates that are used for shipping and freight. The regulations set by the EU are designed to keep the tree pests that are prevalent around the world from being transported through the wooden crates that the trees are being used to make. The EU has implemented these regulations to keep these harmful pests from spreading.

Meeting the standards for wood treatment and regulations is essential for protecting the environment and eco systems from the infestation of foreign pests. There are many factors that go into the treatment of the wood used for shipping.

The EU Standard for Wooden Crates

The International Standards for Phytosanitary Measures (ISPM15)

ISPM15 is the most commonly used standard around the world for wooden crates entering or leaving countries. ISPM15-compliant packaging must match the business requirements of the country it was manufactured in as well as the destination country it is going to be shipped to. Developed by the International Plant Protection Commission, its goal is to prevent the spread of the aforementioned pests, in order to keep foreign plants and ecosystems from being affected by them.

Wooden Crates must be Heat-Treated

To deal with the pests can live in the wood of the trees used to manufacture crates, the way these wooden crates are treated is with heat to remove the risk of pest infestation. Wood must be heated until its core reaches 56 °C for at least 30 minutes. This ensures that any pests or their eggs are dealt with completely. There are several ways to go about heat-treating the wood. The wood can be heat treated in a regular chamber (HT), kiln-dried (KD), or even mobile-treated (HT) in heating systems that are installed in the back of trucks to ensure that the process can be completed anywhere.

The abbreviations for the methods of heat treatment are important because they will be imprinted upon the crate in the ISPM emblem (see picture above).

Bark Removal

It is also mandated that prior to being heat treated the wood of the crates has its bark removed. The wood is debarked to prevent the spread of pests from country to country worldwide.

Standards Vary Country to Country

Each country around the world has its own requirements and specifications for shipping with wooden crates. These requirements can be found under the global guide listed here. It is important to be aware of the differing standards around the world when shipping. If a wooden crate does not meet the standards for importation into a certain country, then everything within a certain crate that fails to meet the standard could be confiscated or destroyed.


There are certain exemptions to the ISPM15 regulations. Wood under 6mm in thickness is safe and exempt. Also, wood comprised of only processed wood, including plywood or particle boards, these are also exempt from ISPM regulations. However it is important to check with the country of destination to ensure that the wood is going to meet their regulations.

It is easy to see how technical the regulations for wood shipments can be. The crates that many items are shipped globally has to meet these standards or it risks never reaching its ultimate destination. The good news is that Crate Tech, Inc. meets all the global standards with their shipments and is in compliance with all regulations. They are experienced in meeting these standards so the client can rest assured that the package shipped in a wooden crate will be dealt with and shipped meeting all global standards. For all shipping needs, domestic or international, contact Crate Tech at 253-872-6857!

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What Are the Benefits of On-Site Packaging?

These days, there are many objects and products that need to be shipped for businesses and companies, both worldwide and here in the United States. Here at Crate Tech, packaging is the specialty. But an option that not everyone is aware of is the on-site packaging. Crate Tech is able to ensure that property is kept safe by not moving it, as well as come and package items that are simply too big to be moved to a Crate Tech location where they can be packaged. That’s great news for those with large items that are needing to ship them for their business. Whether one is manufacturing airplanes, motorcycles, or the propellers for a cruise ship, Crate Tech has the tools to get anything package and ready to ship.

Pros of On-Site Packaging


The shipping and packaging specialists at Crate Tech are able to crate and package items and materials on site so that they do not need to be transported to another location. Freight, shipping, and packaging are each made easier when the service is brought to your location.

Convenience and Efficiency

Crating and Packaging on-site is much more convenient than having to go to the location of a packaging service to have materials shipped for transport. When running a business there are many items that need the attention of the employees. In many cases it is more efficient to have Crate Tech come to the location and do on site packaging right then and there.

Vacuum Sealing

Some items should not be exposed to increased moisture. To prevent oxidization and the growth of unwanted fungi or aerobic bacteria, a great idea could be to have the item vacuum sealed. Vacuum sealing Is helpful because it makes sure that no air or moisture gets in or out of the packaging.

Heat Shrink Wrap

Another way to protect an item being shipped from the elements is to have Crate Tech heat shrink wrap the item. The nature of shrink wrapping allows it to be something that can easily be done on-site. Large items can be shrink wrapped to protect them from weather and the outside world, and smaller items can also be shrink wrapped to group them together safely and securely and prevent shifting during transit.

These are just a few of the many benefits of having Crate Tech handle the crate and packaging needs on-site, rather than attempting to transport a large item to one of the locations. Shipping and freight can be a hassle, and many times the best answer is on-site shipping. Have Crate Tech come out and assist in the Midwest, including Chicago, Kansas, and even the Pacific Northwest including Seattle and Kent. Crate Tech can be reached today at (253) 872-6857!

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When A Standard Box Won’t Do, You Need A Custom Crate!


standard box wont do

Custom crate and box manufacturing can be necessary. Many times an object that needs to be shipped is simply too big or irregularly shaped, and standard boxes and crates simply aren’t going to do the trick. That’s where Crate Tech comes in. With Custom Crate building expertise, Crate Tech is able to custom-build the proper crate to be able to transport what is necessary.

There are many benefits to being able to customize a crate for an item that needs to be shipped.

Custom Crates

  • Built for any specification

    Crate Tech takes pride in meeting the customer’s needs regardless of what they are, and the staff is experienced in working with vendors to employ the most efficient method of packaging for a particular item.

  • Tailored to the needs of the customer

    Whatever the specification, whatever the need, Crate Tech’s passion is being able to meet the requirements of the customer.

  • Feature access doors when necessary

    These access doors can feature a Plexiglas window when viewing is preferable, and can feature hinges to open and close or can even be removed entirely.

  • Optional reinforcement is also a possibility

    For a crate that will need to endure a little more aluminum reinforcement can also be added to a custom crate.


Sometimes a standard cardboard box will work for a packaging need. Other times standard cardboard boxes are not durable or strong enough to ship when a customer has a special need. When more is required for a shipping, freight, or crate need than the traditional box or crate can supply, get in touch with Crate Tech at (253) 872-6857!

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For More Information Call Us @ (253) 872-6857