Lumber Sources

Gruber Pallets can supply your pallet needs using all-new lumber if that is what your company or application requires. We partner with several local lumber mills to ensure availability and dependable quality. We construct our pallets from mixed hardwoods and softwoods and are also able to Heat Treat your pallets for ISPM 15 compliant exportation.

GPI Lumber Sources

Pallets Designed for Your Needs

Our sales professionals create and analyze your pallets using the leading pallet design software, Pallet Design System (PDS). Our expert examination process ensures that you are getting optimized performance for a reduced price. Our team understands how pallet dimensions affect handling cost, and we use this knowledge to save you time and money. Our knowledge and software ensure the following:

  • Pallets meet all necessary weight requirements
  • Custom design optimizes space for plant and delivery method
  • Cost reduction through intentional engineering

 


New Wood Pallets

Definition  

New wood pallets refer to a pallet that has been put together with any grade of new wood material. There are all kinds of options: Dry, wet, high-density, low-density, bark, no bark, any many different types of species, but we will save that for another time. In this video, we will take a look at some common characteristics, along with some advantages and disadvantages of using a new pallet.  

Characteristics   

Most new 48 x 40 pallets are made to the GMA specification and can hold anywhere from 2000 – 3000lbs of evenly placed product. Some companies manufacture by hand, and some build on a machine, but there is not a significant difference in pallet quality between hand-built and machine-built pallets. Now keep in mind that although the process to build new pallets is fairly simple, not all pallet companies orient their business around new pallets. Some focus mostly on recycling, while others have streamlined their process and pricing for building new. 

Common Industries 

Here are a few industries that often particularly benefit from using a new pallet: Infant formula, Powdered / granulated food ingredients, raw food ingredients, medical devices, club distribution, or electronics manufacturing. 

Advantages 

Sanitary Brand new pallets are assembled from never before used, clean, virgin lumber. This provides a peace of mind to whoever puts finished product on it that there is no way that it will have any quality problems. Pallets that have been recycled or built from recycled material may have been exposed to the weather, they may have been stored outside, and they may have transported a contaminated product on it. New pallets overcome all of those problems.  

Trackable Each pallet company knows the mill where new lumber was cut and approximately how long ago it was taken from the log. Companies that use new pallets don't need to ask the question about the safety of the pallet's origin because it has never been used before. 

Consistent A new pallet will be built to the same specification every single time, no matter whether it is built by machine or by hand. If a group of pallets are hand built, there may be small variations in where exactly the nails are placed in each board, but those variances typically do not present a meaningful difference. 

Aesthetics The fact of the matter is that new pallets just look great. They look amazing. They are fresh, they are clean looking, and they can even make a product look even better simply by the strikingly beautiful pallet presentation. 

Disadvantages 

Moisture Certain grades of new lumber have higher moisture content than others, and those specific grades can present issues when stored in enclosed areas with little ventilation. One example of this environment would be a warehouse or trailer with no moving air. This is not the case with all new grades of lumber but it is worth considering when deciding which type of pallet is best for the particular application.  

Price New pallets have a number of wonderful and amazing features, but they can be expensive. Based on national averages, a new pallet costs anywhere from 40 – 60% more than a similarly built recycled pallet. 

Summary 

New pallets are durable, trackable, traceable, clean, and more consistent than recycled pallets although they cost more up-front to purchase. They do their best work for applications that demand a sanitary shipping device or simply just a good looking pallet. 

 

New Wood Pallets – Advanced 

Introduction 

In this video, we build upon what we discussed in our first New Pallet video and get in to some more specifics regarding the differences between hardwood vs softwood, #1 vs #2 grade lumber, and green vs kiln dried. If you have not yet seen our first video, we recommend taking a look at it for some context. But far be it from us to tell you what to do. Let's get to it.

Hardwood / softwood  

Hardwood trees are angiosperms, which simply means that their seeds are protected by a shell. A couple examples of a seed inside of a shell is the acorn which comes from an oak tree and the walnut which, you guessed it, comes from a walnut tree. You can usually tell a hardwood tree by it's 1) shell encased seed, 2) broad leaves, or 3) its densely packed wood grain. A standard size lumber cut for hardwood pallets is between 9/16 – 5/8" for the deckboards and between 1 1/8" - 1 and 1 3/8" stringers. 

Softwood trees are gymnosperms, which literally means "naked seeds." An example of this would be the pine or spruce nuts that you find by shaking out a pine or spruce cone. You can usually tell a softwood by 1) the cones that develop on the tree, 2) its spindly needly leaves, or 3) its loosely packed wood grain that easily dents and scratches. A standard lumber cut for softwood pallets is anywhere between 11/16" and ¾" for the deckboards, and 1 1/4" and 1 ½" for the stringers 

#1 vs #2 

The defining characteristic between #1 and #2 grade lumber is the amount of bark or wane left on the piece after it has been cut from the log. #1 grade wood is bark free and each piece is able to pass inspection for ISPM-15 Heat Treat compliance. #2 grade lumber has either too much wane to hold the same weight as a #1 grade board or has too much bark and is therefore not able to be heat treated and is too brittle to hold the same load as #1 grade. Each sawmill determines the point at which a piece can pass as a board and when it is too compromised to be safely used on a pallet. Companies that keep more pieces  sell their wood cheaper while companies that adhere to a stricter quality standard are more costly. 

Green vs Kiln Dried 

Standard softwood pallets tend to be kiln dried while hardwood pallets are almost never kiln dried. The reason for this is that softwood lumber is more porous and therefore able to dry much more quickly than densely fibered hardwood. Softwood also benefits more from being kiln dried because it molds much more quickly than hardwood. Although both are susceptible to mold, kiln dried has an edge on green hardwood because it has been dried to lower than 15% moisture content while green hardwood can be between 20 – 40% moisture content. 

Pricing  

Pricing for softwood vs. Hardwood is funny. Although each region will have different average prices, the general principle is the same. At the bottom of the bottom you have #2 grade green soft and hardwood, they are basically the same, then you have #1 grade green softwood, #1 grade wet hardwood, then dry softwood above that. When you get into heat treating for export, it can be a toss up between which is more cost-effective, hardwood or dried softwood. Some companies have streamlined their hardwood process and some focus on softwood. Check with your local companies on how exactly it goes, it will vary depending on how each manufacturer has oriented their operation. 

Which type of lumber is best? 

If you are considering using new pallets and need to figure out which type of lumber would best fit you, call your local pallet company and they should be able to help you. Keep in mind that some pallet companies are oriented towards pallet recycling and while other companies are oriented towards new pallets and might have more resources for you.