Shipping with expanding foam – won’t be doing that again
Note: Spray can expanding foam from Home Depot was not the proper choice for this job. It worked, it just took too long to cure.
I have shipped numerous engines (a few golf cart but mostly dirt bike) and have been wanting to try expanding foam in place of cardboard.
With the last engine I shipped, I spent about an hour cutting and fitting cardboard:
This is the engine that is getting shipped:
When I have used spray foam from HD before, I don’t remember it taking so long to cure. But I guess I never had to worry about cure time either. Anyway, after putting down this base layer, it quickly became apparent that this was going to take a while:
After a few hours of letting this base layer set-up, I could begin packing the engine. A couple of pieces of double-wall cardboard:
With the engine in 2 large leaf bags, I made a doughnut around the crank. That would keep the end of the crank from hitting anything:
Finally with the engine in the box, I could start packing things up. I put a layer of peanuts on top of the cardboard and set the engine in place. There were two spots where the engine was within a couple of inches of touching the box. I used spray foam to hold and protect the engine in those places.
I put the gaskets in-between some cardboard:
And then placed them on one side:
Piston, rings and seals went into their own box:
More peanuts along with the remaining contents of the spray foam and it is finally ready to be taped shut:
While the total time I spent boxing this up was less than an hour, it took me most of the day to get it to the point where I could tape it shut. The base layer of foam delayed things the most. I had to wait for that to fully cure in order to handle the weight of the engine.
Next time I will stick with cardboard and maybe start using more peanuts.