Project Description

Freight Class Calculator Based On Density

Weight and cubic volume play a key factor in U.S. domestic carrier freight charges. To instantly get freight density and (density product) freight class, simply type in your shipment’s total weight and dimensions (including pallets).

This freight density class calculator is a guideline for the range of commodities classified as “density products”. Products requiring special handling, stowing or liability requirements will have a different class. To confirm classes, contact NMFTA.

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Freight Class Factors: Density, Stowability, Handling, and Liability

Freight density class is mainly determined by density in the National Motor Freight Association (NMFTA) freight classification system. The other three factors are stowability, handling and liability – which take into account when special care is required.

Stowability

  • Some items cannot be loaded together.
  • Hazardous materials must be shipped in a particular way.
  • Excessive weight, length or protrusions can make freight impossible to load with other freight.
  • The absence of load-bearing surfaces can make freight impossible to stack.
  • For any of these instances, a stow-ability classification applies.

Handling

  • Most freight is loaded with mechanical equipment and poses no handling difficulties, but some freight – due to weight, shape, fragility or hazardous properties – requires special attention.
  • For any of these instances, a handling classification applies, based on the degree of difficulty with loading or carrying.

Liability

  • Some freight is more susceptible to theft.
  • Some freight is fragile, perishable, or susceptible to damaging adjacent freight – including cargo prone to spontaneous combustion or explosion.
  • Liability classified commodities falls into several freight classes, depending upon density.

Other Freight Class Essentials

  • Freight class makes a big difference to freight costs. For instance, a shipment weighing one hundredweight that would cost $25 in class 50, would cost double that in class 125, and ten times that in class 500.
  • Adjusting weight can lead to big freight savings by adding enough weight to slip into the next PCF range. That’s because heavier weight classes cost less per pound.
  • Reducing dimensions can also lead to big freight savings. Check out common pallet and box sizes, and try to use the smallest suitable box and pallet size.

Check out other free Freightos shipping tools, including: glossary of common freight terms, HS Code lookup, explanation of incoterms, and both general and Amazon FBA-specific freight rate calculators.

  • Using the wrong freight class can cause problems: like extra freight costs, freight claim complications, and carrier re-billings (extra costs, potential shipment delays, invoice discrepancies).
  • The following table is a general guide, listing common commodities in each of the 18 classes. The pounds per cubic feet (PCF) ranges are correct for density products.
FREIGHT CLASS  EXAMPLES OF COMMODITIES PCF RANGE   
50 Gravel. Sheetrock. Common building bricks. Flour, cornmeal. 50+
55 Terrazzo/concrete tiles, bricks, cement, mortar, hardwood flooring. 35-50
60 Machinery in crates. School crayons in boxes. Paperback books. 30-35
65 Bottled beverages. Books in boxes. Wood/cement roofing tile. 22.5-30
70 Metal castings. Car carriers, luggage racks. Food items. Automobile engines. 15-22.5
77.5 Tires. Bathroom fixtures.  T-shirts/clothing >12lbs PCF. 13.5-15
85 Prepared food. Cotton/synthetic cloth fibre, bales, rolls. 12-13.5
92.5 Electric toothbrushes. Computers, etc (value up to $5/lb). Refrigerators. 10.5-12
100 Used household goods. Boat/car seat, hood, etc covers. Wine cases, caskets. 9-10.5
110 Paintings of low value. Cabinets. Framed artwork. Table saws. 8-9
125 Wooden furniture. Small household appliances. 7-8
150 Clothing. Auto sheet metal parts. Computers, etc (value up to $10/lb). 6-7
175 Fish Tanks, aquariums. Clothing. Couches, stuffed furniture. 5-6
200 Ground/polished optical lenses. Packaged mattresses. 4-5
250 Bamboo furniture. Plasma televisions. Computers, etc (value up to $25/lb). 3-4
300 Stuffed animals. Wood cabinets, tables, chairs. 2-3
400 Bags of potato chips or popcorn. Deer antlers. 1-2
500 Acid solutions containing dissolved silver, gold, palladium. Ping pong balls. < 1
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