- What Is The Difference Between A Pallet, Skid, And Crate?
- Pallets Are For Stacking Crates And Cartons
- Skids Are For Transporting Heavier Items
- Crates Are For Holding Large Volumes
- Pallet Materials
- Skid Materials
- Crate Materials
- Sizes And Weight Capacities
- Pallet Size And Weight
- Skid Size And Weight
- Crate Size And Weight
- Move With A-1 Auto Transport
When transporting items from one location to another, it is imperative that they are appropriately packed with a suitable packing container or material.
Aside from that, they must be loaded onto platforms and secured nicely to ensure that the items remain intact and safe.
Many types of platforms and containers are used in logistics, such as pallets, skids, and crates. You can use either one or all of these for shipping and storing items, but saving money requires choosing which you'll most likely need.
What Is the Difference Between a Pallet, Skid, and Crate?
Let's dive deeper into the differences between the three and how they function in a logistics operation.
Pallets are for stacking crates and cartons
Pallets are platforms that are used for shipment as a group. Crates and cartons are stacked on them.
These are crucial items in logistics because they enable more efficient movement of large or bulky items with minimal difficulty.
Pallets are stable as they are square-shaped and convenient for racking. Pallet racking involves stacking single items or pallets very high, using a single or multi-leveled system.
Forklift trucks can easily haul pallets thanks to their design and sturdiness.
When shipping companies use standard pallets, securing and labeling them properly is necessary. It would help in tracking and tracing them throughout the logistics process.
Skids are for transporting heavier items
Without a closer look, viewing a skid as a pallet would be easy. However, the design of a skid is what differentiates the two.
The crucial features that define a skid are its single deck, which gives it a completely flat surface, and vertical legs.
In contrast, a pallet has a top and bottom deck, so it is two layers of individual planks that have planks stacked in the middle to give it support.
With a skid, instead of a bottom deck, its vertical legs support the deck, upon which weight will be rested. This enables it to be a permanent foundation commonly used for heavy equipment.
Due to not having a bottom deck, they have a smaller surface area than a pallet. Its size makes a skid easier to drag, which is necessary for heavy items.
Crates are for holding large volumes
A crate is simply a box, probably the most preferred shipping and storing method.
Crates have a stark difference in appearance among the three items. Unlike pallets and skids, crates are three-dimensional and are not simply flat surfaces or platforms. Crates are cubes, in a way.
Thanks to its design, a crate is ideal for securely holding large volumes of valuable items.
A drawback of using crates in logistics is that it is bulky and harder to transport. You can stack them on top of each other, but pallets can be used between each crate for added safety.
Materials for pallets, skids, and crates may vary. Wood, plastic, and metal are commonly used, while customizations are also possible.
Wooden pallets are quite easy to find, making them the most in-demand shipping method and storing cargo.
Many logistics solutions companies offer the option of custom pallets. Custom pallets are when pallets are tailor-made, either from scratch or a redesign of an existing one, to meet your exact needs.
Pallets often come in four types of material: wooden, cardboard, plastic, and metal.
Skids are similar to pallets. They primarily come in three materials: wood, plastic, and metal.
Similar to a pallet, wooden skids are the most common. However, if wood skids get wet, the risk of rot and bacteria build-up increases.
This risk makes it unfit for transporting food and beverages and other materials that cannot be contaminated.
Lastly, crates also are available in wooden, plastic, and metal. Each material has its own uses, and neither material is more common than the other because each is unique.
For example, wooden crates are great for transporting wet or chemical products, as well as food items.
Plastic crates are used not only for storage and transportation but also for organizing products in an assembly line, such as bottle crates.
Metal crates, often steel or aluminum, are suitable for handling delicate items, like glassware, and stacking and storing products in an environment with volatile temperatures.
Custom crating is also possible, like pallets.
Sizes and Weight Capacities
There are different sizes and weight capacities for these three things. Learn more below.
Pallet size and weight
In the U.S.A., standard wooden pallets have a dimension of 48"x40" and can hold up to 2,000 kilograms. However, more sizes can be classified as 'standard,' too.
There are several different standard pallet dimensions depending on their use. There are also 42"x42" and 48"x48" pallets.
The dimensions change even more in other countries. A "Euro-sized" pallet is about 47"x31", or 1,200x800 millimeters. This size is widespread in the United Kingdom and is considered the 'standard' for pallets there.
Skid size and weight
However, there are no verified standard sizes for skids. Skids would follow the sizes of pallets more often than not, thanks to how interchangeable the two are.
Crate size and weight
When it comes to crates, the range of sizes available is endless. If you approach a logistics company that provides crates, you may face a long list of options.
For instance, one carrier may label a 48-cube as 48"x48"x36". Another carrier may not have this dimension but does offer 48"x48"x28" and 48"x48"x48" instead.
As a result, the weight capacity of a crate varies, too. A crate with an outside dimension of 24"x20"x25" may only be able to sustain 135 kilograms. On the other hand, an 84"x48"x48" crate can hold 1,500 kilograms.
This would also depend on the material. The weight capacities provided in the examples above were all for wooden crates.
The range of crate sizes is necessary as logistics service providers need to anticipate the cargo needs of their customers. If only small sizes were available, then a customer would need to pay for more crates to hold their items, which wouldn't be cost-efficient.
Pallets, skids, and crates are often used for shipping and storing items.
Pallets and skids are quite similar, with a significant difference being that a pallet has two decks while a skid has one. They both are used for their flat surfaces to make loading and unloading items easy.
Crates are entirely different as these are essentially cubes used for storing items.
All three are available in wooden, plastic, and metal, with pallets also available in cardboard. Each material has its own purpose, strengths, and weaknesses.
Lastly, you can expect a range of sizes for crates but more standardized ones for pallets and skids.
Move with A-1 Auto Transport
Now that you know more about the differences in packing instruments, you can plan your move much more efficiently.
At A-1 Auto Transport, we use the right tools to help you pack up and transport your belongings with care so contact us today. Let A-1 Auto Transport help you move!