Posters, regardless of size, are some of the most challenging items to ship — first and foremost because they can’t be folded, which rules out the easiest form of packaging: Corrugated boxes.
To keep posters in perfect condition, poster shipping tubes are the best option. Rolling them obviously prevents creasing; beyond that, poster packaging tubes are reasonably priced and efficient to package for parcel or palletized shipping.
Here are key factors to keep in mind when selecting poster mailing tubes:
- Be sure to select a tube with a large enough diameter to prevent or minimize curling. Rolling your poster too tightly can cause permanent curling and/or create problems for the recipients of your posters. Not sure which diameter is right? Test different sizes, or contact us for recommendations. The two main variables in your selection are poster dimensions and paper stock.
- Select a tube with a thick enough wall to stand up to whatever conditions your poster will be exposed to in transit and storage. Heavier poster shipping tubes are recommended for LTL truck shipments and some parcel carriers. Lighter poster mailing tubes are recommended for U.S. mail, courier services, etc., where the poster will be handled more gently.
- If your poster is valuable or will be exposed to moisture, vermin infestation or other hostile environmental conditions, a coated poster tube will offer the necessary level of protection.
- Closure of the tube is a very important consideration. Some poster packaging tubes have end caps that require the use of staples, glue or tape. These items, especially staples, can damage the poster during the packaging process. Additionally, removing the caps at the receiving end can be a clumsy affair, again opening the door for damage. Metal caps are another closure product that can damage posters, and also damage fingers. Erdie Industries, Inc.’s patented Twist-n-Pull® poster tubes have plastic end caps that require no tape, staples, etc. —relieving you of all of these potentially serious problems.
- Quality considerations are another important item, and ones that can be easily overlooked when a poster container is viewed as a mere commodity. The fact is, there are high-quality manufacturers of poster packaging tubes (like Erdie Industries, Inc.!) and others that are, well … not so good. Quality issues that can cause poster damage include loose-fitting or inconsistently fitting caps; excessive dust inside the tube; and low-quality cardboard with too high a recycled content that makes the poster vulnerable to puncture, crushing and other shipping stress. In addition, if printing is desired for branding or product identification, a poor-quality print job will hurt the cause rather than help it.
- Consider the trade-offs between stock tubes and custom-made tubes. A stock size may not offer the perfect fit, but may still work well enough. For smaller quantities of poster tubes, a custom size may be cost prohibitive, but be sure to check with the manufacturer before ruling anything out.
Not sure where to buy poster tubes? Please contact us for more information, samples, a quotation or to discuss a challenging poster packaging application. We specialize in poster tubes, and are eager to help you find the perfect, cost-effective solution.