Corrugated fiberboard

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Corrugated fiberboard is a paper-based material consisting of a fluted corrugated sheet and one or two flat linerboards. It is widely used in the manufacture of corrugated boxes and shipping containers.

The corrugated medium and linerboard are made of containerboard, a paper-like material usually over ten mils (0.010 inch, or 0.25 mm) thick. Paperboard and corrugated fiberboard are sometimes called cardboard, although cardboard might be any heavy paper-pulp based board.

Contents

History

In the mid-19th century, an ingenious concept enabled flimsy sheets of paper to be transformed into a rigid, stackable and cushioning form of packaging for delicate goods in transit

Corrugated (also called pleated) paper was patented in England in 1856, and used as a liner for tall hats, but corrugated boxboard was not patented and used as a shipping material until December 20, 1871. The patent was issued to Albert Jones of New York City for single-sided (single-face) corrugated board.[1] Jones used the corrugated board for wrapping bottles and glass lantern chimneys. The first machine for producing large quantities of corrugated board was built in 1874 by G. Smyth, and in the same year Oliver Long improved upon Jones' design by inventing corrugated board with liner sheets on both sides.[2] This was corrugated board as we know it today.

The Scottish-born Robert Gair invented the pre-cut paperboard box in 1890 – flat pieces manufactured in bulk that folded into boxes. Gair's invention came about as a result of an accident: he was a Brooklyn printer and paper-bag maker during the 1870s, and one day, while he was printing an order of seed bags, a metal ruler normally used to crease bags shifted in position and cut them. Gair discovered that by cutting and creasing in one operation he could make prefabricated paperboard boxes. Applying this idea to corrugated boxboard was a straightforward development when the material became available in the early twentieth century.[3]

The corrugated box was initially used for packaging glass and pottery containers. Later, the case enabled fruit and produce to be brought from the farm to the retailer without bruising, improving the return to the producers and opening up export markets.

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