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Shrink Wrapping 101

Shrink wrapping is the process of adding a crystal clear tamper proof layer of poly to your packaging while protecting the enclosed products from moisture and dust. Shrink wrapping is used in numerous industries including manufacturing and retail at the store level environments. 

We carry a variety of shrink wrapping equipment as well as the full line of equipment Sealer Sales offers for shrink wrapping. We work with start-up to medium sized companies and depending upon your application and production level, we have a few solutions.

Shrink wrapping a product offers:

  • A protective barrier from dust, moisture, fingerprints, etc
  • Provides products with a professional and factory fresh appearance
  • Bundles products together if selling multiple items as a set

What is Shrink Wrapping?

Shrink wrap is a plastic film that you can wrap around any object.  Heat is then applied to the surface (via heat gun or shrink tunnel), which causes the plastic to shrink. As it shrinks, it conforms to the shape of your object and seals itself.

How to Choose a Shrink Wrapping Machine?

We carry a full line of shrink wrapping systems (I-Bar, L-Bar sealers, heat guns and shrink tunnels) to help you with your shrink wrapping needs.  When it comes to choosing the right machine, there's a few easy questions to answer to help us identify which machine will work best for your application.

  • What are you packaging? Will this be a retail or industrial application?
  • What are the dimensions of your package - length x width x height?
  • What is the weight of your package?
  • What is the speed you need? Think of how many packages you will need to process per day.
  • What type of shrink film, PVC or Polyolefin, will be used?
  • What gauge of shrink film?

The types of shrink film are Polyolefin, PVC, and Bundling Film. 

  • The Polyolefin is a high gloss, tough, flexible, puncture and tear resistant, direct food contact film. It conforms to weird shaped and heavier items.
  • PVC films are a lower cost and still offer clarity and sparkle, but is subject to rips and tears.
  • Shrink Bundling films are generally thicker and used to hold together cases of water and soda. We currently do not handle this type of film.

How to determine the right film size?

  • Measure the width and height of your product and add 5-10% to the measurement.  This provides you with your minimum shrink bag width.
  • Measure the length and height of your product and add 5-10% to the measurement. This provides you with your minimum shrink bag length.
  • For shrink film (usually sold as centerfold film), take the smallest figure of the two to determine the shrink film size needed.
  • If the size you needs is not available, a larger size can be used because some shrink films can shrink up to 40% in all directions

These measurements will help you determine what type and size shrink wrap machine is needed.

We carry a wide variety of machines from the starter units to more automatic systems.  Contact our office for more information: (770) 554-1187 or [email protected]

Table-Top I-Bar Shrink Wrapping 

An I-Bar sealer is designed to first cut the width of the film to size, then the operator turns the product 90 degrees and seals it again using centerfold shrink film.  Our table top I-Bar sealers are easy to use and ideal for retail environment like book stores, pawn shops, and department stores. Once you seal your package closed using an sealer, you will need either a heat gun or shrink tunnel in order to complete the shrink wrapping process.

Table-Top L-Bar Shrink Wrapping

An L-Bar sealer is designed with two sealing sides which allow you to seal and cut centerfold shrink film in one step.  Our table top L-Bar sealers are easy to use.  The L-bar sealers are ideal for small production runs. Once you seal your package closed using an sealer, you will need either a heat gun or shrink tunnel in order to complete the shrink wrapping process.

Combo Shrink Wrapping Units

Our combo shrink wrapping units allow you to seal and shrink with one machine.  This is ideal for smaller foot print locations which cannot accommodate larger units.  Our combo units will tend to be a little slower than our other free-standing L-bar sealers.  Please note most of our larger machines will require 220v.  The Sealer Sales SS-48ST unit is a combo unit that is offered in 110v voltage for smaller facilities that do not have 220v available.  Please note that 220v for shrink tunnels is preferred as this will allow the machine to be more productive and efficient.

Free-Standing Semi-Automatic L-Bar Machines

Our free-standing L-Bar Combo machines will be the most efficient and quickest way to shrink wrap.  We recommend these machines for heavier duty applications.  Our free standing machines are equipped with a dual magnet hold down which removes operator error when correct seal and cool times are selected.  A power discharge conveyor will push the product into the shrink tunnel once sealing process is completed.

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