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CUSHIONING Learning  Objective:  Identify  the  types  of cushioning materials used in the preparation of mailing containers. Cushioning absorbs and distributes forces caused by  shock  and  vibration.     Examples  of  acceptable cushioning materials are as follows: Foamed plastics Rubberized hair Corrugated fiberboard Excelsior (wood shavings) Shredded newspaper Figure  3-l  shows  the  proper  method  of  using cushioning material. If  loose  fill  cushioning  (excelsior,  shredded newspapers, and so forth) is used, it must overfill the container  before  it  is  closed.    This  is  to  prevent movement of the enclosed items to an outside surface of  the  container  or  between  any  other  items  in  the package. CLOSURES Learning Objective: Identify the authorized closing and reinforcement materials used for securing  mailing  containers  and  approved outer markings. The closing and reinforcement of a package should be  carefully  checked  at  the  time  it  is  presented  for mailing. The most common types of materials used for closure and reinforcement of packages are as follows: Gummed tape Pressure-sensitive tape Adhesives (cement, glue, and so forth) Strapping  (twine,  cord,  metal  bands,  and  so forth) TAPE Tape, other than cellophane and masking, can be used for closing, sealing, and reinforcing fiberboard containers.  Cellophane and masking tape should only be used to augment adhesive closures on envelopes or to  cover  staples  on  bags.    It  is  recommended  that pressure-sensitive tape or filament-reinforced tape be used for closing and sealing of containers. Paper Tape Paper tape is widely used for closing and sealing, but is not adequate for reinforcement.  If paper tape is used, it must be at least a 60-pound basic weight kraft. Reinforced   kraft   paper   tape   should   be   used   if reinforcement of a container is required.   It is more durable than plain kraft tape and takes less time and tape for an equal closure. Pressure-Sensitive Tapes Pressure-sensitive tapes come with various paper, cloth, or plastic backings, both plain and reinforced. They may be readily applied on a clean surface at any temperature above freezing.   Pressure-sensitive tape should  be  used  on  containers  in  the  same  way  as gummed tape. Figure 3-3 shows the proper application of tapes.   Except for pressure-sensitive filament tape, tapes used for closure and reinforcement should be at least 2 inches wide. ADHESIVES Adhesives  for  closure  on  box  flaps  or  on  tapes must  remain  serviceable  from  -20  degrees  to  +160 degrees Fahrenheit.  Hot melt adhesive may be used if at least four strips are applied on each box flap where the outer flap overlays the inner flap; each strip is 3/16 inch wide after compression; the strips are not more than 1-1/2 inches apart, with the first strip no more than 1/2 inch from the center seam; and all strips are the full width  of  the  inner  flap,  unless  hot-melt  adhesive  is applied to 25% of the area where the outer flap lies over the inner flap. BANDING If banding is used for closure and reinforcement, it should encircle the length and girth of the package at least  once.    Although  not  preferred,  twine  and  cord may  be  used  as  reinforcement.     You  should  not encourage customers to use twine or cord as this type 3-4

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