Sheets of styrofoam are those light, white, boardlike materials you see in packing boxes. They make a good packing material in special cases. Their main virtue is that these sheets can support heavier loads than can peanuts.If you are packing a large, heavy item in peanuts, consider completely lining the inside of the packing box with sheets of styrofoam. This is a great way to pack furniture.
Work the styrofoam sheet this way. Choose 1″ or 1 1/2″ thick sheets. Cut each piece of foam to exactly the size of the space (or 1/32″ larger) so the foam fits snug. Force the foam into the box with light pressure. Measure each space and cut only one piece at a time and measure the space before cutting the next piece. You’ll see why as you go along. (You can cut foam part way through with a sharp knife and then break it over a table edge. It’s easy and it’s fun.)
You’ll generate a lot of small pieces of scrap while cutting foam sheet. Don’t throw them away. Mix the foam scraps with peanuts and use them as loose fill.
Snug fitting foam will reinforce the box and will guarantee that the thickness of the padding will never be less than that of the foam.
Note: You cannot build a good insulated foam shipping box this way. Air leakage will be excessive and the box will not be as well insulated as you would expect.
Styrofoam can be secured to a corrugated box with any number of commercial mastics or adhesives. You will not get a strong bond because the styrofoam is weak but the stuff will, pretty much, stay in place.
Sheet styrofoam is sold as a thermal insulator at building supply houses.
Sheet styrofoam can be loaded to between 3 and 6 pounds per square inch. This is to say, an item weighing 90 pounds could be supported by an area of only 15 square inches of packing styrofoam sheet (although an area three to five times as great would be safer.) This is the greatest loading pressure which can be applied against a common commercial packing material.
WE CARRY 2′ X 4′ SHEETS IN STOCK: $5.49 EACH (one-inch thick)
WE ALSO CARRY 2′ X 4′ SHEETS (TWO-INCH THICK): $8.95 EACH