Flat Rack: Characteristics, advantages and types of rack
Designed for the transport of irregularly sized cargo such as ships or commercial machines, Flat Rack shipping containers are the solution for transporting goods of unusual dimensions or weight.
A Flat Rack is generally intended for the transport or storage of goods of unique dimensions. The flat supports only have sides on the short side of the container, so that the load can protrude over the side of the container during transport. Depending on the size of the cargo to be sent, you can choose a 20′ or 40′ container. Generally, the dimensions of these two types differ only in length; the width and height are often similar. It is available in different sizes. The most common rack types are 20 feet (6 meters) and 40′ (12 meters). The end frames are foldable, so they can be stacked on top of each other, which means a significant saving in storage space.
We must bear in mind that for this type of container it is of great importance that the proper locking of the goods being transported is the only safety measure that will be responsible for preventing the displacement of the loads and, therefore, that these are not they rush out of the Flat Rack container itself. To this end, some anchors are placed to break the load by means of tapes or chains, a process that is simpler than in a traditional container since the Flat Rack lacks side walls.
Among the most frequent uses of the Flat Rack container is the loading of industrial machinery
Due to its structure, the container cannot be covered with a tarp so the merchandise will travel in the open during the entire journey. Nor do they have the capacity to travel stacked as is the case with traditional containers.
Flat Rack Fixed or Folded?
In addition to the flat shelves available in two sizes, there are also two different rack types. As its number indicates, a flat support with a fixed end has fixed ends on the short sides. Therefore, these containers can be shipped and have a higher load because the fixed ends are often stronger. A Collapsible Flat Rack has sides that can be folded so that the empty container can be shipped more efficiently, with four collapsible flat containers taking up the space of a single common dry van container.
Advantages of the Flat Rack
The use of the flat rack in the transport of goods offers several significant advantages:
- Versatility in the load: the open design and without solid side panels of the flat rack allows the transport of loads of large size, unusual shapes or equipment that exceed the standard limits of conventional containers. This provides a flexible solution for the transport of special goods and avoids the need to disassemble or alter the load.
- Cargo security and protection: flat racks are designed to provide a solid and secure base for cargo. The mooring and attachment points make it possible to secure the load effectively, minimizing movements during transport and reducing the risk of damage.
- Efficiency in handling and storage: they are easy to load and unload, as they offer full access to the load from all sides. In addition, these containers can be stacked and stored efficiently when they are empty, which optimizes the use of space in terminals and warehouses.
Compatibility with different modes of transport: they can be used in different modes of transport, including sea, land and rail transport. This allows a fluid integration in global supply chains and facilitates the transit of goods between different geographical points.