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five per cent waste space in these boxes. When one considers that the transportation of a ton of freight costs $50, it can readily be seen that the purchaser does not desire to pay for waste space, thus adding to the actual cost of freight on his consignment. It has also been suggested that the various shippers of motor cars and machinery should standardize packing cases wherever standardization is possible, thus saving not only tonnage, but lumber in constructing the case.


Some of the large concerns of this country have turned these suggestions to account by adopting the device of assembling a shipment on a table or platform. It is measured by a form in the shape of a skeleton box, which is provided with movable sides and a measured framework. This enables the packer to determine the exact size of the container required, whereupon a box of that size is constructed. This plan, while entailing a little more initial expense, is most economical in the long run because of satisfied customers, reduced transportation expense, and lessened lumber bills.

The suggestions just made apply not only to export business, but also to domestic trade.

In the case of domestio shipments, various ratings are provided for the same article according to the manner in which it is prepared for shipment. Hand crosscut saws, for example, when shipped without packing protection, take a rate of one, and one-half times first class; when on boards, they take a firstclass rate; when in crates, a second-class rate; and when in boxes, a third-class rate. These ratings, it may be observed, decrease as the risk incurred in transporting the article decreases. Obviously, a saw completely boxed is much less susceptible to damage than one not packed, or one packed on a board or in a crate.

In the case of miscellaneous shipments weighing as little as 200 pounds, except when the rate is unusually high, it is not economical to sort out the goods into separate containers. The increased cost of separate containers offsets the saving effected under the lower. rating for a part of the shipment.


Definitions It is to be regretted that transportation agencies have failed to define accurately what is a box and what is a crate, etc. At present it is very difficult to decide what is a box or a crate, a bale or a bundle. Tho an attempt has been made by the classification committees to define these containers, as yet the situation is unsatisfactory.


The need also exists for tests of the merits of various materials for containers. Many shippers have found that fibreboard containers afford as secure protection as those of wood, and cost somewhat less. An added advantage of fibreboard containers is that when folded, they require less space for storage, and thus render valuable space free for other purposes.

Waste in Use of One-Trip Containers The use of the one-trip container is very expensive. Professor Breed, of the Massachusetts Institute of

Technology, is reported to have demonstrated that $120,000 000 is annually spent for wood containers used only once and then destroyed. Mr. John H. Leonard, editor of the last report of the Interstate Commerce Commission, in Freight Handling and Terminal Engineering, says:

During the year our railroads paid $32,000,000 for loss and damage claims, of which amount fully one-half could have been saved by substantial containers and the whole question is now recognized as a question of containers.

In strong containers, eggs, the most fragile of staple commodities, have been brought uninjured from Russia to Pittsburgh (9,000 miles). In weak, three-sixteenths-inch wood cases, or crates, prescribed by the railroads, eggs are destroyed or damaged every month to the value of thousands of dollars while being carried short distances-frequently less than 100 miles.

In the old days when cases were made strong, damage claims were rare, and under free rates the empty cases were returned and used again and again.

To-day the railroads are urging the shippers to use strongly built cases which would weigh twice the present weight, and three-fold charges for carrying them. Even if built strong enough for repeated use, the return freight would bar this, for even on short hauls, these would exceed the cost of the present fragile containers. Plainly the first move toward the solution of this problem must come from the railroads and the mode seems easy. Let them decide, jointly if possible with the shippers, on a standard type of container of such strength and quality as will afford the utmost protection against all forms of loss and damage and invite and encourage its use by free transit one way, or the same charges that are now made on fragile containers of like capacity.

One of the most recent indestructible containers is that provided by the Pneumatic Scale Corporation.

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Fig. 33.-Shipping RoomNational Cash Register Company

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