Corrugated Cardboard or Fiberboard – A Comprehensive Introduction

We often need corrugated cardboard in the business for a range of different applications. It is a product that has become a staple for packaging, and there are good reasons behind it. While there are many types of corrugated boards, knowing what the material is, how it works, and its different types will allow you to make better decisions. This article will help you move forward more informed.

 

What is Corrugated Cardboard Made From?

 

Corrugated cardboards are mostly made of pulp material gathered from timber and sometimes wood chips and mill waste as well. The main components are two glued paper sheets called “liners” with the inner corrugated layer called fluting. They come together to create a stable structure capable of withstanding pressure and weather changes.

 

There are different types of corrugated cardboards, the main difference being the number of layers. Typical examples are single and double-layer corrugated cardboard. The more the layer, the higher the stiffness and durability.

 

Why Use Corrugated Boxes?

 

There are many reasons why you may want to use corrugated boxes. They are :

  • Light, but more durable than regular cardboard
  • Reusable and biodegradable
  • Flexible and cheap
  • Can be customized and branded
  • Protects against moisture

  

One of our all-time favorite examples is pizza boxes! They have the insulation needed to keep the food warm and are strong enough to hold the weight.

 

Types of Walls in Custom Corrugated Boxes

 

There are four main types of walls in custom corrugated boxes that you can find in use in different industries.

 

  • Single face or single-phase: Made from one flute and one-liner sheets. You can buy them in rolls and use them for packing or cushioning.
  • Single wall: This has one flute glued between two sheets of liner board. You can find them in use for product packaging and shipping boxes.
  • Double wallboard: This has two flute layers between three alternate liner board layers. They are much more robust, and you can use them for packing delicate products like electronics.
  • Triple wallboard: With three flute layers and four liner boards, this one is the most durable cardboard in production. They provide support for products like industrial parts and other heavy equipment.

 

Courtesy: design2015level2

 

Paper Weight Measurement

 

Manufacturers calculate the weight of corrugated board in grams per square meter (GSM). A kraft liner paper for corrugated boards weighs 125 GSM. To give you an idea: regular office paper weighs about 80 GSM. There are many different weights in corrugated cardboard, but the most common ones include the following:

 

  • 115/125 GSM
  • 140/150 GSM
  • 185/200 GSM
  • 300 GSM

 

Flute Types in Corrugated Boards

Flutes are the wave-like mediums that you find between two layers of liner board.

 

There are a number of different flute types:
  • A Flute: With a density of 36 flutes per square foot and a thickness of 1/5 inches or 5 mm, this is good for packing general goods.
  • B Flute: This one has 46 flutes per square foot with a thickness of 1/8 inches or 3 mm, and you can use them for packing fragile items due to their ability to endure crushing and resisting punctures.
  • C Flute: 5.32 inch or 4mm thick. With enough resistance against crushing and compression, this flute is commonly available for making shipping boxes. 
  • E Flute: This is a 1/16-inch-thick or 1.5 mm material with a 90-flute density.
  • F Flute: The thinnest of all with 1/32-inch or 1mm thickness and 124 flutes, you can see this type of flute used in more refined boxes.
  • BC Flute: A combination of B + C flutes.
  • EB Flute: A combination of E + B flutes.

 

Courtesy: kaanoluklu

 

Corrugated Box Styles

 

There are several different styles in custom corrugated boxes, and each of them has its application. These types include the following:

 

  • Regular Slotted Container (RSC): This is the general-purpose box you see in most ordinary packaging. It has those signature four flaps on top and bottom, and you can use it as a container.

  • Full Overlap Container (FOL): This is pretty much the same as RSC but with thicker top and bottom and larger flaps.
  • Half Slotted: Same as the first two but with only one open side for providing extra protection
  • Telescope: This one is like a shoebox but with the top covering the bottom all the way. It is mostly for packing fragile goods.
  • Fold type & tray: You can use these two in different food-related settings. An excellent example of fold type is pizza boxes, whereas tray types are the ones which you can often see in the fresh produce section.

These are only the most common styles, as customization for specific needs also adds an endless array of other types.

 

How to Buy Corrugated Boxes?

 

If you find yourself in need of corrugated boxes, here are three aspects that you need to consider:

 

  1. Purpose of the box: Shipping and product displays are entirely different directions. 
  2. Type of product: Most generic products have boxes for their exact style. However, if you have a custom product, you may need custom corrugated boxes too. Keep the essential factors in mind, such as product dimensions and weight, package protection requirements, shipping hardships, requirements from your customers or buyers, etc. 
  3. Printing Methods: It’s affordable (sometimes free) to print brand information on corrugated packaging. For premium cartons, you can opt for offset printing as your choice. For a simple text or pattern, use water-based print.  

 

We hope that the guide provides you all the necessary information you need to make a purchasing decision. If you have any further queries regarding custom corrugated boxes or anything related to their use and applications, feel free to contact Belpax at any time! We would be glad to help you out.

 

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