Shock Absorption Material: Safe Shipping Solution (Case Study)

Shipping is an important part of most industries from manufacturing to retail. The product must be shipped from one place to the next, arriving in good condition without any damage that could decrease its value or worse, render it useless. The more difficult or delicate an item is, the more expensive it might become to ship and the more important finding a good shock absorption material becomes.

Some items are more difficult to ship, not only because of their size but because of their sheer value. Items such as museum artifacts, precious cargo and other national treasures need to be protected with the best possible material so that they are not damaged in any way. Safe shipping is not just about the item at hand; it is about confidence in the company that is doing the shipping and confidence that the job will be done correctly.

Safe Shipping with Sorbothane®: A Case Study

When an item is loaded onto a truck, it is typically invoiced as in good condition. Any damage, even to the outside of the box, would be noted at that time. As the truck drives to its intended destination, bumps and jostles from the road and from other items inside of the truck can damage items – no matter how well packed they might seem. Using the right shock absorption material to protect the cargo is vital – especially when the roads are going to be long and rough.

In some cases of delicate machines or other items, specially designed trucks might be required, which can increase the shipping cost dramatically. However, a Sorbothane containing, shock absorbing pallet may eliminate that need and can keep shipping costs down. Designed like a regular wooden pallet, small isolation pads are included between the layers to absorb and dissipate energy generated by vibration, which protects the item that is on top of it. But, what if the item that was being shipped was a national treasure?

Safely Moving the Liberty Bell: A Case Study

In October of 2003, the Liberty Bell, one of the many, long standing symbols of freedom in the United States, was moved from one location to a new home a little more than 900 feet away. However, this was not just a table lamp or a desk that was being moved- the Liberty Bell is priceless, and any harm could be devastating. To protect it during the five, arduous hours that it took to move from one location to the next, a specially designed cart, complete with Sorbothane isolation system, was used.

The cart was made of steel to be strong, with the isolation mounts between columns to absorb and deflect vibration from the Liberty Bell itself. As the cart’s wheels turned and rolled over the varying surfaces, it generated vibration. That vibration could build up during the trip and lead to serious structural damage to the bell. If the curators at the National Park Service were willing to count on Sorbothane’s ability to be the best shock absorption material for the Liberty Bell, it is safe to assume that it will work for your shipping needs as well.

How a Shock Absorption Material Works: A Basic Example and Experiment

If you want to see exactly what a shock absorption material can do for your shipping, consider an experiment. Put a stack of nickels onto a bare table. From about a foot away from the stack, pound on the table a few times and see what happens. You can do the pounding from above or below the table; it won’t matter. The results will be the same either way – the nickels will jostle and move, eventually falling over. Now, put the nickel stack on a small isolation pad and repeat the experiment. The pounding, which generates vibration, should have little to no effect on the nickels this time as the shock absorption material redirects that energy before it becomes a problem.

There are more than a few sources of vibration on the road – including from the truck’s motor, the road and from other packages inside of the truck. The more vibration sources, the more important your shipping solutions and shock absorption material becomes.

Finding Your Right Shipping Solution

Every item has different shipping guidelines that must be followed. In addition, it is important to keep in mind the type of truck that is being used and the conditions that it is likely to encounter. For instance, a truck might need to go through extreme heat or extreme cold depending on its location. Some materials are not meant for those types of conditions and may become stiff, fragile or even fail completely. Other materials may become sticky and gummy, potentially causing damage to the cargo they are supposed to be protecting. Sorbothane, a unique blended material, is heat stable and can be used in extreme cold. It is waterproof, chemical-resistant and durable.

Because it is fully customizable, the perfect solution to any shipping issues that you might have can be found. For instance, it can be used with the specially designed pallets that allow you to ship items stacked on top of them to be protected from vibration from the road and from the truck itself by floating it above the surface. The Sorbothane that is part of the pallet itself keeps the vibration from becoming a problem by absorbing it and then redirecting it as a bit of thermal energy instead.

If you cannot find the right shipping solution in our standard products guide, then you may be able to customize the right solution with the help of the design team. They will help you find the right solution including the right size for your shock absorption materials, which may shock you. With Sorbothane, bigger is not better, the key is less is more. If the pads are too large, they will not work as effectively. No matter what your shipping needs are, there is a perfect standard or customized Sorbothane solution. Contact us today to learn more.