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2-2 Bags, Bales, Bundles, Films, and Wraps

2-2.1 Use

Bags, bales, bundles, films, and wraps are acceptable for mailing certain easy loads and average loads. The contents in these containers should be compressed when possible. The Postal Service does not accept such containers for the mailing of difficult loads.

2-2.2 Paper Bags and Wraps

2-2.2.1 Easy Load up to 5 Pounds

A paper bag or paper wrap is acceptable. The paper must be of at least 50-pound basis weight - the strength of a regular large grocery sack. The contents must be immune from impact or pressure damage. The combining (layering) of several sheets that add up to or exceed a 50-pound basis weight is not acceptable.

2-2.2.2 Easy or Average Load up to 20 Pounds

A reinforced bag or a bag of at least 70-pound basis weight is acceptable. A nonreinforced loose-fill padded bag is not acceptable as an exterior container unless the exterior layer is of at least 60-pound basis weight.

2-2.3 Plastic Bags and Films

2-2.3.1 Plastic Bags

A plastic bag - polyethylene or equivalent - used as a mailing container for an easy load must be stretchable, must resist puncturing, must be relatively leak-proof, and must have the following strength requirements:

• For up to 5 pounds, at least 2 mils thick.

• For up to 10 pounds, at least 4 mils thick.

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2-2.3.2 Plastic Films

Heat-shrinkable plastic film - copolymer, irradiated polyethylene, or linear low-density polyolefin - used to form an outer mailing container must meet the following requirements, based on load type and weight restriction:

• For an easy load of up to 5 pounds, at least 3/4 mil thick.

• For an average load of up to 5 pounds, at least 1-1/4 mils thick.

2-2.4 Cloth Bags

For an easy load or an average load of up to 10 pounds, a cloth bag is acceptable if its seams are as strong as the basic material forming the bag.

2-2.5 Bales and Bundles

If it is within postal weight limits, a bale or bundle - a large bound or wrapped package of flat materials - is acceptable if it is adequately compressed and reinforced to contain the contents.

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