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International Standards

ISO 3037

Introducing ISO 3037 - Industrial Physics

ISO 3037 is an international ISO test method to follow when you’re compression testing corrugated fibreboard to determine its edge crush resistance. 

You’ll find that the crush resistance compression test is often referred to as crush testing. Whatever you call it - we make a range of devices and accessories to support your inspections to many different international standards.  

What is edge crush testing?

Edge crush testing is a common method for testing the peak load that materials like paper, board and corrugated cardboard can cope with. Also known as ECT it’s a handy technique to determine the overall strength and durability of corrugated packaging. 

The ISO 3037 compression testing

To carry out a compression test to ISO 3037 standards, first you place a rectangular sample of corrugated fibreboard between the platens of a crush tester device. The sample is then subjected to an increasing compressive force until failure occurs. You can work out the crush test resistance from the maximum force sustained by the test piece. 

You’ll find a variety of methods to determine edge crush resistance used in different parts of the world. There are four main groups of edge crush resistance and these are defined by the following types of test samples that are used:  

  • Test piece samples without any special treatment or modification, like ISO 3037 
  • Test piece samples with edges clamped to prevent edge effects, like TAPPI T 839 
  • Test piece samples with waxed edges to prevent edge effect influence, like ISO 13821 
  • Reduced size test piece samples to induce a failure away from the edges, like JIS Z 0403-2. 

ISO 3037 crush testing common terms 

There’s a couple of terms within ISO 3037 that describe compression test failures that are distinct from pure compression. 

Buckling: when the mid-part of the sample moves substantially out of the vertical plane creating a “C” type shape 

Tipping: when the load drops off because the sample leans or falls over during the crush test. 

The ISO 3037 compression test approach

The crush test sample is placed between the platens of the crush tester machine. If necessary you can support it with a guide block to prevent it from tipping over.  

The compression test starts as the crush tester applies force until the test sample fails. A compression test failure can be identified by a maximum in the load-deflection curve, which often corresponds to visual compression in the body - or curling of the edges - of the sample.  

The recording of your ISO 3037 results - the maximum force developed up to the moment when instant failure occurs - should be to the nearest 1N. Repeat the ISO 3037 crush test several times so you achieve at least 10 valid results. 

ISO 3037 compression testing apparatus

To carry out an ISO 3037 test successfully you’ll need:  

  • A fixed-platen compression testing machine 
  • A cutting device, such as a high-speed table saw or Billerud-type cutter 
  • Two rectangular, smooth-finished guide blocks to support the test piece and keep it perpendicular to the platen surfaces 

What’s covered within the ISO 3037 standard document?

The ISO 3037 compression test documents include the following sections:  

  • Scope of the document and the principle of the method 
  • Guidance on sampling and preparation and conditioning of compression testing samples  
  • The apparatus to use 
  • The crush test procedure to follow   
  • How to calculate and express your compression test results.  

ISO 3037 testing devices 

So, how can Industrial Physics improve your ISO 3037 testing? 

Crush Tester 17-56 

Our crush test compression tester was designed as a robust, easy-to-use instrument. The 17-56 crush tester is suitable for a wide variety of samples, including corrugated board, tubes, corrugated paper and plastics.  

The special sample holders extend the instrument's possibilities. Its accuracy is achieved with a precision load cell, which is even accurate at low force values. 

Compressing our knowledge to support you

Industrial Physics has been making devices and accessories to support crush testing for many years. We like to share the insight we’ve gained with our customers.  

For tips on making the most of your crush testing, check out our guide to maximizing crush and compression testing. Maybe follow this up with our FAQ article that delves into what edge crush testing is all about. We’ve also got a wealth of information about corrugated and its various testing methods in our exclusive report, ‘Your guide to quality corrugated’. 

If you’d like to find out more about edge crush testing or any other crush or compression tests, get in touch. 

Your global test and inspection partner for ISO 3037