Freight Classes determine the rate at which any item will be shipped. Regulated by the NMFTA (National Motor Freight Traffic Association) in their publication -- the NMFC (National Motor Freight Classification Tariff) -- freight classes are measured on a scale from the lowest rate, "50" -- to the highest -- "500."
You want to know where you stand, according to the NMFC, before setting your shipping rates. Obtaining the correct freight class for your items is important to avoid reclassification during the shipping process, saving you the financial loss associated with such occurrences.
The official NMFC publication can be purchased here, from its official source. It is a comprehensive tool for anyone, from quote providers to carriers. However, what a shipper must be most attuned to is simply the structure being employed by the NMFC: this much is easily understood.
The NMFC uses four characteristics to determine the transportability of the goods in question:
2. Handling -- i.e. (special care required?)
3. Density (average determined by the NMFC)
4. Liability (i.e. fragility)
These characteristics are the only determining factors when we provide you with your shipping class.
So, when shipping, be sure to package your items in accordance with these four characteristics. Your freight class is relevant to stowability and ease of handling -- the impact of these characteristics on your freight class can be minimized by carefully packaging your goods.
Also, improved packaging may help sustain the integrity of the goods throughout the handling process, reducing liability in the shipping process, and thus your freight class.
As construction on this page continues, I will be adding a freight class table to help solidify your expectations before approaching FreightClasses.net to receive your own freight quotes. FreightClasses.net is unlike many other freight classification providers, in so far as many providers are also carriers, requiring you to ship with them in order to receive their shipping quotes. FreightClasses.net requires no such contract; our goal is to provide you with accurate and reliable freight quotes, and information to educate you on that process, that's it.