Roll Laminators

Category : Laminators

Now we will discuss roll laminators.

Roll laminators operate with 2 rolls of film of various thicknesses and widths. They are generally used to encapsulate wide format material such as posters, signs, maps and large plans.

The thickness of the film chosen will depend on the intended use of the article. For example maps and plans are often laminated in thinner film (sometimes as thin as 38 micron) because the document can be rolled up and easily transported into the field.

Remember roll laminators are available in a range of widths. The laminating width chosen depends on the size of the document you need to laminate.

For example posters are often 800 mm in length therefore they need to be laminated with a 800 mm wide laminating roll. Narrow widths, (as narrow as 330 mm) is often used for continuous laminating of volumes of documents such as certificates and the like.

So how do they work? Effectively the machine carries two spindles on which the rolls of laminating film is slipped on to. Each roll of film is wrapped around an inner core; the core size required will depend on the model of the laminator. Some cores are 58 mm in diameter whilst others are 25 mm. One of the rolls is mounted at the top and the second roll located below. The material is positioned between the two rolls of film which is then heated as it passes through the roll laminator and is pressed as the document exists the machine so that the film bonds together, sealing the document.

Many machines such as the Emseal Compact series have optional cutting knives to separate each item. The laminated documents are usually then trimmed with a wide format trimmer such as the Roll@Blade 160 to produce neat, even edges.

Pouch Laminators

Category : Laminators

In this blog we will investigate the office pouch laminator. This type of laminating is very popular as it takes up very little bench space and they are simple to use and with very little fuss. So how does pouch laminating work?

Laminating pouches comprise of two sheets of thin PVC each coated on the inside with a special resin. The two sheets are joined at one end which is known as the leading edge. Laminating film is available in a variety of thicknesses known as micron.

The most common micron or thickness of film is either 80 or 100 micron. The thickest lamination film is 250 micron which is generally used for its rigidity. Thick lamination is often used to protect product identifiers or price tags which are often mounted on spikes inside delicatessen displays.

So how do you use a pouch laminator? It really is very easy but you need to take care and be aware of a few important requirements.

Easy to use pouch laminators come in A3 down to ID card laminating.

Pouch laminators are very easy to use but they do vary in quality of manufacture. Well manufactured machines are well worth the initial outlay as they are built to last and quick and easy to use..

Open your pouch the slip your subject matter evenly in between the two sheets of film butting the document up flush against the sealed end.

Note: This is a very important step because if you leave a gap between the leading edge, the pouch will curl up inside your laminator and get wrapped around the rollers. This is a very common mistake.

Feed the enclosed document into the machine.

Note It is vitally important that you take care to feed the leading edge (the sealed edge) into the laminator first (hence the term leading edge). If the open end is fed into the laminator, the resin inside the pouch will melt onto the rollers and you have a real mess on your hands. It will be necessary to call in a technician to remove and chemically clean the roller.

Of course switch on your laminator, then set it to the correct temperature and to the roller speed recommended for the thickness of pouch that you are using (this information is usually advised on the machine.

The Process: Once the enclosed document is fed into the machine (as previously advised from the leading edge), a series of rollers feed the enclosed document over either (depending on the model) heated elements known as hot shoe or heated rollers (known as hot roll) which melts the resin. Two pressure rollers then press the two sheets of film firmly together encapsulating the document.

As briefly touched on previously; some laminating machines have heated rollers whilst others have hot shoe to melt the resin.

There are a number of budget laminators on the market. Many of them are simply unreliable and a waste of money. Like most things in life: you generally get what you pay for.

If you use the laminator infrequently but you need it to work when you need it to work, AND you want a good finish I recommend the Peach 330PD.

Inexpensive pouch laminators usually have 4 rollers in total. They comprise of two feeder rollers which guide the document over a heat plate and two pressure rollers to seal the document. Commercial grade 4 roller laminator such as the GHQ 320 Auto is a very popular machine in print shops and the like.

Pouch laminators vary in size and features. Generally 6 roller pouch laminators (particularly hot roll type) are more expensive than 4 roller laminators, but of course there is always the exception to the rule. There are some terrible cheapies on the market too, which are slow and unreliable. The reason many people who laminate regularly choose a 6 roll (hot roll) laminator is because they are generally much faster and give a better finish. Whether it is a 4 or 6 roll laminator, hot roll laminators in particular give a superior finish and are capable of encapsulating and enhancing sensitive materials such as photographs.

What to Look for when Buying a Pouch Laminator

  1. Price! Generally stay away from very cheap machines; you will most likely be throwing your money away. Remember as Benjamin Franklin once said “The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten!” How wise was Ben!
  2. For home use a 4 roll heat plate or hot shoe is more than adequate.
  3. For office use or to laminate high volumes I highly recommend a 6 hot roll machine as they are quick, give more even heat distribution which produces great looking documents.
  4. Check to see the machine has a reverse button in the event of laminating jams.
  5. Adjustable motor speed is a great feature. If the product you want to laminate is relatively thick you will need to slow down the speed so the film will adhere sufficiently.
  6. Memory settings are very convenient when you are laminating high volumes of various size and thicknesses.
  7. How fast the machine takes to heat up.
  8. Does the machine have a digital display?
  9. Stand-by mode is a very convenient feature so the machine will not need to be turned on and off all day.

Types of Laminators

Category : Laminators

Whether you want to laminate tiny ID cards or huge posters, you will need the right equipment.

Laminating not only protects your documents but enhances the colours. That’s why certificates, presentations, signs, photos menus, price lists take on a polished appeal.

A3 laminators are the most popular choice in pouch laminators as you can laminate documents as small as ID cards, A4 up to A3 documents. Less common are A2 pouch laminators such as the GMP Lamiart 470 LSI, so they are available but they come with an A2 price tag!

For wide format documents such as plans, posters or maps you will need a continuous roll laminator.

Pouch and roll methods of laminating are often confused so we will explain the differences in our blogs relating to Roll Laminators and Pouch Laminators.