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  1. #1
    Human Powered Eastspur's Avatar
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    Where to get plastic milk crates?

    Can you get these for cheap somewhere or do people just usually steal them from behind grocery stores or something?

  2. #2
    Fat Guy Rolling dcrowell's Avatar
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    Sometimes dollar-store type places have them for sale.
    Car-Free IT Geek
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  3. #3
    Senior Member
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    You might inquire at the store. When I was young and stupid, a store manager caught me appropriating one. Lesson learned: I'd rather ask permission than beg forgiveness.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eastspur View Post
    Can you get these for cheap somewhere or do people just usually steal them from behind grocery stores or something?
    You can steal them of course, but if you go to a smaller place, you may not have to. A few years ago the deposit on a crate was $1. If you insist on a "genuine" one, go around to any smaller mom-and-pop place on a weekday morning and ask if you can just buy one off them for a couple or three dollars.

    ...however....

    The milk crates that stores use now are not much better than what you can buy for a buck at Wal-Mart or Target anyway. The fantastically-strong milk-crates of years ago were made of thick injection-molded nylon, and are no longer made. I work at a grocery store and I'll tell you--there are no more nylon ones in circulation, they're gone. They disappeared years ago, they were all stolen within a few months of when manufacturing stopped. You're perfectly free to ask for them at whatever store you go to, but no store will have any. You'll only find the old nylon crates at yard sales now.

    The ones they use now are HDPE (basically the same kind of plastic that gallon milk jugs are made out of) and are a lot cheaper and flimsier.

    ...-and furthermore....

    Soon even the HDPE crates will be gone.
    The US milk industry is moving to stackable milk jugs, that are more compact and need no crating at all.
    http://tech.blorge.com/Structure:%20...er-cubic-foot/
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  5. #5
    aka Phil Jungels Wanderer's Avatar
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    Second hand stores. Usually a dollar or less.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Billy Bones's Avatar
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    Cheap, but nothing beats a propitious find. These things (and a lot else besides) are part of the modern infrastructural landscape, escaping from 'captivity' of milk trucks' incarceration. Stay keen in observation and ready to pounce on opportunity. . . .or buy 'em.

    I adore the legal 'nasty-gram' that's printed on the sides of some crates.
    AUDENTIS FORTUNA IUUAT
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  7. #7
    Older than dirt CCrew's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doug5150 View Post
    Soon even the HDPE crates will be gone.
    The US milk industry is moving to stackable milk jugs, that are more compact and need no crating at all.
    http://tech.blorge.com/Structure:%20...er-cubic-foot/
    ~
    Yeah, Costco here is selling their milk like that. I can't get used to the $%*&^% things.

  8. #8
    Perineal Pressurized dobber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doug5150 View Post
    The fantastically-strong milk-crates of years ago were made of thick injection-molded nylon, and are no longer made. I work at a grocery store and I'll tell you--there are no more nylon ones in circulation, they're gone.
    I've got some nice galvanized steel ones from the mid 70's

  9. #9
    Senior Member Milice's Avatar
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    Don't get cought with one from your local Dairy. We have a rather large dairy in town and I think the employee's get a bounus for turning people in who have them. My nephew reminds me about my shelves made out of them everytime he gets near my basement or shed.
    If it looks like the $3000 bikes but costs less than a decent helmet, it probably isn't a wise investment.


    http://keith-crossreference.blogspot.com/

  10. #10
    Senior Member kdgrills's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eastspur View Post
    Can you get these for cheap somewhere or do people just usually steal them from behind grocery stores or something?
    Most people steal 'em.

    I'm a programmer / designer for plastic injection mold builder, we've built several crate tools
    in the past few years. There was an article about theft in one of trade papers a while back:

    http://www.plasticsnews.com/blog/200...e_bandits.html

    "The story says U.S. dairies lose about $80 million annually to milk crate theft, and that one company in California has hired a private detective to track down lost crates. The story's sources blame the problem on recyclers in China."

    I think I have some video of some tools running production, if I can find them I'll post a link.
    There kinda' cool to see running, if you're into mechanical things.

  11. #11
    Tony V
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eastspur View Post
    Can you get these for cheap somewhere or do people just usually steal them from behind grocery stores or something?
    How many do you want? I've got a milk run here in Sydney Australia.(he he)

  12. #12
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    Not from the USA, so I'm curious... a milk crate is related to cycling in what way?

    What's it for??

    .

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pocko View Post
    Not from the USA, so I'm curious... a milk crate is related to cycling in what way?

    What's it for??

    .
    In the USA, bicycles are usually sold marketed as either toys or sports equiptment. Thus by default they lack utility features like panniers or baskets for carrying cargo. These items can be difficult or expensive to purchase since they're less common, so people attach milk crates to the bicycle as a makeshift solution.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Bill Kapaun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pocko View Post
    Not from the USA, so I'm curious... a milk crate is related to cycling in what way?

    What's it for??

    .
    Somewhat similar to this-

    Attached to the rack and used to carry "stuff".

  15. #15
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    ^ Those would be great to store my bike parts and stuff... and stackable too... and I can peek and know which crate has the item I'm looking for!

    I must have a look and see we have over there... milk crates, aye... who would've thought...

  16. #16
    your god hates me Bob Ross's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eastspur View Post
    Can you get these for cheap somewhere or do people just usually steal them from behind grocery stores or something?

    There is nothing in the world more uncool than actually paying for plastic milk crates. Nothing. You must steal them from behind a grocery store. Period.

  17. #17
    CAT4 joe_5700's Avatar
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    I have 4 of the "real" type milkcrates. I however did not steal them myself. I did not recognize the dairy as even being local so I accepted them (4) as a gift from a friend. The crates you can buy in the store are about 10% of the quality of a real milk crate. I use them as saw horses, a stool, go kart or scooter stand a make shift step ladder you name it. I'll probably end up handing them down to my son. The reason why these things disappear is their quality and 1001 uses.

  18. #18
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    I have seen them with "thou shall not steal" emblazoned on them.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eastspur View Post
    Can you get these for cheap somewhere or do people just usually steal them from behind grocery stores or something?
    I purchased mine from the following source:

    http://www.containerstore.com/browse...2&PRODID=60136

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Bones View Post
    I adore the legal 'nasty-gram' that's printed on the sides of some crates.
    First thing I did was sandpaper off the embossed legal notices.
    Then spray painted it black to match my frame.
    And drilled holes to bolt my lights on.
    I doubt they want it back anymore...

  21. #21
    Senior Member BengeBoy's Avatar
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    If you steal my milk crates, can I steal your bike?

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by BengeBoy View Post
    If you steal my milk crates, can I steal your bike?
    Only if I leave it out overnight in the alleyway behind the dairy and you can carry it off without being seen.

  23. #23
    Senior Member dmac49's Avatar
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    If you see a milk truck you may just be surprised if you ask the driver real nice. Hell if you live close I'll give you a couple. What color do you want ?
    The democracy will cease to exist when you take away from those who are willing to work and give to those who would not.
    Thomas Jefferson

  24. #24
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    Look at office supply stores for the plastic file crates, sometimes you can find heavy duty ones that are plenty sturdy and lighter than a milk crate

  25. #25
    Conquer Cancer rider Boudicca's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by enine View Post
    Look at office supply stores for the plastic file crates, sometimes you can find heavy duty ones that are plenty sturdy and lighter than a milk crate
    +1

    Mine is full of bike gear right now.
    Zero gallons to the mile

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