Chances are you have handled cardboard today without even noticing it, and even if you haven’t then look around, you’ll notice a lot of your stuff packed in cardboard. But have you ever thought about what cardboard it? Probably not! It is has become so much common in our lives that we do not even pay attention to it. Cardboard can be referred as a type of paper. It can be manufactured in a single layer or multiple layers depending on the type of items is going be packed in it. Generally, the packaging materials are divided into three main categories, which are paper, paperboard, and cardboard. Small boxes are made from the paperboard while the material used in the manufacturing of large boxes is corrugated. However, cardboard is the most common packaging material we are familiar with and is used for practical purposes.
The cardboard box was invented in England back in 1817. Kellogg cereals made it famous in the mid-1800s. The packaging they used was simple paperboard not corrugated. Many people begin to realize these boxes as a packaging solution due to which different industries started to use them to pack, store, and transport their good. For quite some time they were used as plain brown boxes just for packing and transporting purpose, but with time, brands started to print them beautifully to present their products in them.
What are Custom Cardboard Boxes?
Custom cardboard boxes are used all around the world. All the businesses customize cardboard packaging according to their requirements and business needs. They choose color, size, style, design, and printing methods for tailor-making these boxes according to their desire. For this, different techniques, innovations, and advancements have been introduced to make the packaging look appealing and attractive.
The cardboard itself can be layered up to make it even strong depending on the type of products. The customizing facility allows brands to create their own identity in the market. You might have noticed that from food items to cosmetic products, everything comes in some sort of cardboard packaging. They all look different because they are customized in a way to present every brand individually in the marketplace.
How are Custom Cardboard Boxes manufactured?
Cardboard boxes are one of the main packaging solutions in the packaging industry. They are available in both new and recycled form. In your daily life, you encounter products in these boxes but have you ever wondered how they are made? To learn how Custom Cardboard Boxes are manufactured, keep in reading!
To make cardboard or corrugated boxes the raw material comes from fast-growing pine trees. Usually, the largest packaging manufacturing companies own thousands of acres of land on which they grow and harvest pine trees. After the trees are harvested, only the trunk of trees is sent to the pulp mill for further procedures. Largest packaging companies also own mills where they convert trees into Kraft paper.
Pulping the Pine Chips
The cardboard box manufacturing begins with the pulping of wood chips in the kraft (sulfate) process. First, the tree trunks are torn into small chips and then are placed in a large batch digester. In this high-pressure tank, these chips are cooked in a solution made of sodium hydroxide (NaOH) and other ionic compounds like sulfates, sulfides, and sulfites. These alkaline chemicals degrade the lignin which is the glue-like substance that keeps the wood fibers together. After many hours the pressure is released, and the wood chips turn into fluffy masses of fiber.
From Pulp to Paper
Paper mills outsource the pulp for the papermaking process. Paper mills use single or multiple machines which can make a verity of paper grades. For turning pulp into paper, it has to go through the process called beating. In this process, the pulp is squeezed and crushed in a large tub by machine beater. Different filler materials including clays and chalks can be added which affects the opaqueness of the final product. Sizing’s like rosins, starch, and gums can also be added at this stage, which will influence the way inks reacts with the paper; this is an important step for when the cardboard is going to be customized, and the printing techniques will be applied on it.
For the pulp to make into paper, it is fed into a large automatic machine. This machine has a moving fine mesh belt using which the pulp is squeezed to drain water. A suction device drains excess water. The nearly made paper is then passed through steam-heated cylinders to eliminate any remaining water. The paper is ready, which is wound onto a wheel for the use of corrugated paperboard.
Completed paper is ready to be used as liners of paperboard, which is sustained by the flutes.Normally, Kraft paper is used for the outer liner of the board. As it is made from softwood it allows smooth printing on it and provides some resistance to water penetration than test papers which is made from recycled paper or hardwood. Plus the surface of the test paper is not smooth for printing which is why it is used for this inner liner.
After all the elements are ready, they are stick together. When the paper goes through the corrugation, hot steam is sprayed on it to allow it to be pressed, then other roller glues of one side of the flute. These two liners are glued together to the board by the machine. The next step is to trim each side of the cardboard to make the sides straight with the circular saw. After that, depending on the box size, the board is trimmed nine times.
Once the cardboard is prepared it is then customized according to different requirements. Packaging industry then uses this to make customized product packaging. Custom printed cardboard boxes represent different brands individually in the market.