Corrugated Cardboard Fluting Types
Corrugated cardboard fluting construction helps support a lot of weight and provides great cushioning. These curved arches also serve as insulation from sudden temperature changes.
B-flute cardboard has 49 flutes per foot and has lower arch heights than E-flute material. It has good crush resistance and provides a stiff, flat surface for printing and die cutting.
Type B Corrugated Cardboard
In the most basic form of corrugated cardboard, there are two liners and a fluted center sheet. The peaks and valleys of the fluting offer load-bearing and protection qualities, while also allowing for an excellent printing surface.
The most common of these is the ‘B’ flute, which has excellent crush and puncture resistance as well as good printing characteristics. It’s great for inner packaging components and is often used to protect metal or glass items during transportation.
It is possible to combine the different types of flutes, known as ‘Double Walled’ material, which is typically reserved for more specialist applications. However, this comes with additional costs and increased environmental impact. Additionally, while EB-flute is very strong and offers high levels of protection, it uses twice as much material as single-wall fluting which increases the price and carbon footprint. Consequently, it’s only really suitable for use when protection is paramount. Moreover, it’s not ideal for lightweight retail items.
Type E Corrugated Cardboard
If you are interested in creating a corrugated box, it is important to understand the different types of flutes. Fluting affects the strength and durability of your packaging, as well as how it will print. The thickness of the flute also determines its ability to withstand pressure.
F and N-type micro-flute are becoming more popular because they offer a smoother printing surface than E-flute and still provide a high amount of crush resistance. They are also very good at providing support for heavier items, such as bottles and jars.
Adding an extra wall of cardboard increases the load-bearing capacity and makes your carton more resistant to impact damage. This type of box is known as a triple wall and is typically used for items that are extremely valuable or require a very high level of transit protection. BC and EB flutes are a combination of B and C flutes, which means the inner wall offers great transit protection while the outer layer provides excellent printability.
Type F Corrugated Cardboard
The most common of all flute types, C flute cardboard is crust-resistant and a good choice for transit packaging. It has a high stacking strength, and it provides an excellent print surface for branding.
The thinner construction of type E flute cardboard helps to reduce storage space and is ideal for printed retail cartons. It has excellent crush resistance and a flat surface for printing, although it would not be suitable for shipping packaging due to its thinness.
R flute is a newer style of fluting that has smaller and closer flutes, allowing for more accurate folding and a higher quality printing surface. It is a good option for smaller, lighter items and is typically used in conjunction with B flute for greater rigidity and strength. It is also available in a 7-ply construction which is used for pallet packs. This consists of three pieces of fluting board and four pieces of linerboard. It is strong enough to be used as a substitute for wooden crates.
Type C Corrugated Cardboard
All corrugated cardboard has a liner and a fluted centre. The fluting consists of curved arches that are designed to give the board strength and resilience. These arches are positioned in different ways, creating the various board types. Each type of flute has a specific take-up and bending resistance, which are important factors for packaging designers when designing boxes for shipping products.
The most common flute is the C flute. This type is a good choice for most packaging because it offers a great print surface, and has a strong take-up and bending resistance. The only drawback is that it doesn’t have as much compression strength as B flute.
Single-Face corrugated has only two layers – one is the lining, and the other is the fluting. This makes it less durable than other types of cardboard, but it’s cheap to produce and works well for inner packaging components that provide additional cushioning. It can also be printed on using a variety of methods, including lithographic and digital printing.