Most of the standard shipping boxes are held together with tape, but boxes that were designed to hold a specific product--something electronic, perhaps--are often folded into shape and can be unfolded and flattened without cutting any tape at all. (Like a pizza box.) Not only that, but sometimes the inserts are also just cleverly folded cardboard, designed to hold a particular shape of product securely during shipping.
Who comes up with this stuff? How do they do it? I imagine the packaging engineers must have a whole repertoire of standard folded box templates. Then, when assigned to make a package for some assortments of product and parts, they tweak them. Surely there's a computer program involved, too. (Maybe it measures how much cardboard different potential packaging solutions would require.)
But really I don't know anything about how they do it. I just know that a lot of ingenuity apparently went into these pieces of cardboard that I am about to recycle, and so, in appreciation, I took a few photos recently to offer as samples.
|I think this one had a lid with tabs.|
|Box with fold-over lid with tabs.|
|See the attached insert on this box. I'm not sure what it held.|
I wish I had taken photos of some of the more elaborate folded inserts I've seen, and also photos of the "before" stage--when they were still boxes and compartments and oddly shaped cradles for cables.
Till next post.