To get started quickly, not all configuration needs to be completed prior to using Crate Pro 6. However, the more you configure the program, the more accurate and easy it is to use.
Most of the videos in the solution articles are hosted on the Crate Pro Channel on YouTube. Individual Playlists have been created to help you locate the videos for your release. Be sure to subscribe to the channel to be notified of new videos. Your recommended playlist is
Using You Tube: If you prefer to understand how to design crates first, get comfortable, then configure and learn additional features as you go along. Don't get hung up setting everything up at once. However, without setting up your baseline settings you are likely to need to make many manual changes in the Design that you would not normally need to do.
To get started with crate design: Two steps are recommended to help you very quickly understand and use the crate design process.
1> Look and select some crate style templates that are most closely constructed as you would prefer. Style Templates show how the pieces of the crate go together. The crate style template you select does not dictate the materials you would use. Example: Look at PLYWOOD Style Templates if you are designing a plywood sheathed crate and LUMBER Style Templates if your crate is strictly lumber. There are many other filters to help narrow down the best style templates for you. To help clarify how to chose your Style Templates, watch Video *5 and video 6. Video A> will then help you understand the basics of creating a new crate design
2> Set up your common groupings of materials you will use to build your crates. Default groupings are part of the Preferences but you will change your add your own material groups. Video *7
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A > Basic Design Creation: Whether you've configured your settings, or not, this short video will go over the steps to create a crate design and print cut lists. If you prefer to read the article: Creating a New Design
B > Basics of Design: Adding Packing Materials. Crate Pro 6 can automatically calculate your Wrapping, Padding and Floater Decks because you have supplied one dimension and it can determine the others to add these materials. Crate Pro 6 also offers 5 Material Groups you can create just for Packing. Everything else that applies directly to this design that can't be calculated by the program, can be added in this section (such as blocking & bracing, labels, etc..) If you prefer to read the article: Adding Packing Materials
1> Inventory Clean Up: Set materials you use to design crates, rename existing materials to match how you want it to appear on the cut lists, deactivate default materials that you do not use, add new materials that are not already in the database. This is not a required step to use Crate Pro 6, however by "cleaning up" of the Inventory lists it makes it much faster to update your material costs when they change and helps ensure that staff is less likely to select materials you don't use when designing the crates.
2> Inventory - Entering your purchasing unit of measure (Tracking Level): When purchasing your materials you may purchase them in various units of measure. Depending on the materials it could be by each, by the box, by the sheet, by the square foot or cubic foot., etc.. This video shows you how to specify and enter your costs based on your preferred purchasing unit of measure
3> Inventory - Updating your costs quickly: Each time you purchase additional materials, those cost for those materials could change. If its only a few items its easy to navigate to the items and enter the updated costs, but if you purchase a large number of different items at one time, it can be time consuming to update your costs. This video will show you the fastest way to update your pricing by seeing the items in a list view that you can quickly go down and update.
4> Markup in Designs versus markups for Projects: Releases starting with 1712nn also allow you to add items directly from your Inventory with their own markup over cost, than the material markup for material used in a crate, pallet or skid design.
*5> Identifying your Style Templates; This video explains the categorization for crate templates to more easily help you find the best template to start with. The style templates are based on the construction methodology of the crate / skid / pallet and NOT the materials being used. This video applies to release 3045 to 4138 but notes have been added for the to this video. Users on current releases can stop the video at the 3:35 minute mark because a new style filter with images is included in release 1712nn and current in Preferences > Styles tab with the option to filter styles based on your construction preferences. An updated video coming. Here is a cheat sheet to see the style designation : click here
6 - Setting Preferred Style Templates Once you've decided on some templates that you'll use, this explains how to set them as Preferred for easy selection when you create a new design.
* 7 - Setting Up Material Groupings & Rules: This video applies to all releases 3032 and later. Set up common default groupings of materials you want Crate Pro to use to design your crate jobs. No matter the defaults you set here, in the actual design, you can swap any material for another.