Standard Pallet vs. Specialized Crating Services: Tips to Help You Choose

Pallets work because they are simple. They are a flat surface to ship your goods that are easy to handle and stack. Sometimes though, you need more than just a standard pallet. A standard pallet is 48 x 40”. A pallet manufacturer that also specializes in customized packaging can offer many other wooden shipping containers from specialized pallets to custom designed wood crates. It’s a more complicated process for a niche market, but the custom market is growing rapidly. When do you need a standard pallet? Why might a company decide to go with custom crafted wood crating? What are the benefits?

When will a standard pallet be what you need?

Standard pallets are an essential tool in many industries and have multiple business applications. Pallets are used to ship boxes of grocery items, bags of cement, and a wide variety of other goods. They are also used to move materials around factories as part of the assembly or manufacturing process. They are a cost effective solution to transporting needs.

When do you need a custom solution?

By using custom crating, you can get a transportation and storage solution that is compatible with loaders and forklifts, but also ideally designed to handle your heavier goods. Custom crating can be optimized for your warehouse and factory space. Crates like these are typically used to house large equipment such as industrial stoves and large compressors, or other large and valuable goods that cannot be safely shipped on a standard pallet. Knockdown crating is an option where the bases, sides, ends and top are shipped out to buyers who assemble the crate around their product.

When will you need to move to Specialized Design and Custom Work?

Often crates or specialty pallets that have been designed based on CAD specifications can be manufactured based on the dimensions of the product that needs to be shipped. Experienced pallet manufacturers will have engineers and software to help design pallets specifically for these needs. For example, a crate can be designed with a cradle system that holds large engines so they can be shipped to the assembly plant. In this case, there would be a small order of a specific number of these crates. Some of these custom projects are one-off used only once for a specific shipment.  An example would be custom design work for the farm industry where a client has ordered a piece of equipment for feeding or handling farm animals such as poultry or beef.  These are usually very large items that are constructed of stainless steel.  Therefore, the shipping crate has to not only be strong but also able to be manipulated for forklift access and delivery. 

If standard pallets won’t work for your needs, custom pallets or crating or specifically designed crates may be the solution.