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A Short History of Chipboard

A Short History of Chipboard
A Short History of Chipboard
Photo credit to thecambridgeroom.wordpress.com

Chipboard (which can also be described as cardboard), is a thick, paper-based material used for a variety of purposes. It is thicker than regular paper, as well as more rigid and foldable. This makes chipboard a useful material for storage and shipping; they can be folded flat for ease of storage, and made and printed faster than more rigid boxes.

Some other potential uses you can find for chipboard include dividers, displays, book covers, and binder panels. Chipboard also comes in different sizes so you can get sheets in different calliper sizes. This can be achieved with die cutting (by Hammond Paper, Belcorr Packaging Inc., and other chipboard companies).

To understand chipboard properly, it helps to know something of its history; and to do that, we have to take a look at the history of paper. Before the discovery of papermaking, information was written on animal skins, papyrus, or leaves. In roughly 105 A.D., the Chinese developed an early form of papermaking by combining silk, hemp, and tree bark. This combination formed a pulp that could be pressed and dried to make sheets of paper. The knowledge of producing paper eventually spread across Asia and Europe.

A Short History of Chipboard
Photo credit to commons.wikimedia.org

For much of history, paper was made by hand. Only with the invention of the printing press in the 15th century did the need for paper explode. At the time, paper was still made using cotton and linen as these were readily available materials.

Modern papermaking can be traced back to the 18th and 19th centuries. In 1719, Rene de Reaumur suggested that wood fibre could be used to produce paper by observing how wasps build their nests. In 1806, Fourdrinier brothers developed a machine that could produce paper in continuous sheets. These discoveries, along with new breakthroughs in pulping technology, made it possible to produce high-quality paper from wood chips.

The first chipboard carton was produced in England, 1817. At first, paperboards were shipped in bulk and sold from barrels in local neighbourhood stores. However, in the 1860s and 1870s recycled paperboard began to be manufactured in mills, allowing for mass production of paperboards and distribution over a wide area. One of the first products to use recycled paperboard was Quaker Oats Oatmeal, which was packaged in 100% recycled paperboard.

A Short History of Chipboard
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The 1860s also saw the development of folding cartons, which could be folded to save space and make transportation easier. Customers could also set up their cartons themselves when they were needed. In 1879, mechanical die cutting and creasing were developed. These developments allow for distinct, durable, and narrow fold lines on paperboard without causing cracking on the folds.

In the 1930s, paper manufacturers began to move away from recycled materials in favour of “virgin” (non-recycled) tree fibre. Initially virgin fibre was used for corrugated boxes, and then for bleached folding carton board in the 1950s. Up to now, virgin and recycled paperboard manufacturers still share the market for paperboard (or chipboard) packaging products.

A Short History of Chipboard

Modern recycled chipboard products include moisture-resistant refrigerated food boxes, crisp pharmaceutical packages featuring sharp type and bright graphics, giving you a large number of possible applications for your chipboards.

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