Archive for the ‘Shrink Wrap / Packaging’ Category

Using a Heat Sealer? Don’t Forget to Congeal the Seal

Friday, July 29th, 2016
Add the congeal step to your heat sealing process.

Sealer Sales KF-520H / KF-525H 20″ Impulse Hand Sealer

 

If you use an impulse heat sealer, you may not have even considered the importance of the congealing, or cooling step. Sealer Sales, one of the leading manufacturers of heat sealers, recently reminded us of the importance of congealing a seal. What exactly does this mean? Congeal means to cool under pressure.

If you are using a hand or foot sealer, then your model is officially classified as a manual sealer. This basically means that you should add the congeal step (also sometimes referred to as a dwell step) to your sealing process. This will make certain a secure and proper seal.

So, how do you do this? You can simply hold the sealing jaw down for a couple of seconds after the timer light has gone off to set the seal. This added step guarantees a proper seal. This will also help your sealer cool down before the next seal begins. The benefit to you with this added step is extended longevity of the heat-sealing elements.

With auto sealers, the manufacturer recommends the congeal (cooling) setting to be lengthened to at least two times greater than the heat setting time. This will give the seal ample opportunity to set and cool under pressure. It will also allow the heating element to properly cool down as well. Again, allowing the sealer to cool down this way will add longevity to all of the heat-sealing parts.

Be sure to contact ABC Office with any of your heat sealer questions. We also sell replacement parts for most heat sealer models.

KF-150 Series Hand Heat Sealers Review

Tuesday, April 5th, 2016
Sealer Sales Model KF-150PS 6

Sealer Sales KF-150 Series 6″ Portable Heat Sealers

 

The Sealer Sales KF-150 Series of portable sealers are the top-selling heat sealers on the market today. Why so? Because they provide an efficient way to seal small, irregular or even extra long bags and packages.

At ABC Office, we sell three different versions of the model KF-150 series portable sealers.

The Sealer Sales model KF-150PS is a six-inch poly heat sealer with a 1/16″ or 1.5 mm wide seal. This hand sealer is ideal for sealing polyethylene and polypropylene up to six mil thick. The upper jaw is covered with a PTFE cloth and holds the metal sealing bar. The bottom jaw holds the resilient silicone rubber. A five to 15 minute warm up time is required. This enables the sealer to warm up to the correct temperature for optimum performance.

The Sealer Sales model KF-150CST is also a six-inch direct heat sealer equipped with a 5/8” or 15mm wide seal. This model is best suited for sealing coated aluminum foil, cellophane, Kraft paper, and other thick packaging materials. The temperature switch may be set to one of two temperature settings: 215°F and 350°F.

The KF-150CSTA heat sealer is the same as the model KF-150CST, except it is equipped with an adjustable temperature controller. This gives you a much wider range of temperature settings that let you seal greater variety of packaging materials. All three models are constructed of heavy-duty high impact, ABS thermal plastic casting.

The Sealer Sales KF-150 Series hand sealers may be upgraded with an optional feature: a pedal and clamp set (PC-Set). This lets you basically convert the sealer into a foot sealer. Be sure to contact ABC Office at 1-800-658-8788 to order your hand heat sealer today.

 

Sealer Sales KF-150CST Portable Direct Heat Sealer Video Demo

The Best Heat Sealer for Home Food Storage

Thursday, March 17th, 2016
PTFE Coated Direct Heat Sealer

Sealer Sales KF-150CST Heat Sealer

We often have customers ask us to recommend the best hand-held heat sealer for home food storage packaging. The model we first recommend, depending on customer needs, is the Sealer Sales KF-150CST Heat Sealer.

The KF-150CST is one of our best-selling units because of its affordably lower price and its ability to heat seal a wide variety of packaging materials. You can safely package your freeze-dried food in almost any bag, such as Mylar, cellophane, coated aluminum foil, Kraft paper, poly bags, and other materials.

KF-150CST at about the 7:00 minute mark to see this heat sealer in action.

The KF-150CST heat sealer is highly durable and provides a 5/8″ (15mm) thick seal. The sealers jaws are six inches wide — wide enough for most home food storage packaging needs. This model is PTFE coated and is classified as a direct heat sealer. It is made of high-impact ABC thermal plastic so it will last for years to come.

Be sure to contact ABC Office for more details about the Sealer Sales KF-150CST Direct Heat Sealer. We are happy to heat seal test any of your samples and send them back for inspection. Be sure to contact ABC Office today.

What’s the Difference Between the Three PP1519 Shrink Wrap Systems?

Wednesday, November 4th, 2015
by Morgan Cloward
Preferred Pack PP1519EC Semi-Automatic Shrinkwrap System

The Preferred Pack PP1519EC Semi-Automatic Shrinkwrap System

 

Customers often ask what’s the difference between the Preferred Pack PP1519EC, PP1519ECM and PP1519ECMC Shrink Wrap systems. The answer is simply: As you move up in price, the more automated the system becomes.

The Preferred Pack PP1519EC Semi-Automatic Shrinkwrap System makes professional packaging efficient and simple. This model has an ample sealing area of 15″ W x 19″ L. The system 1519EC is the ideal selection for packaging a wide variety of packages and products. Our customers use them to wrap pizzas, medicine vials, DVDs, software boxes, chocolates, stacks of archived invoices and more. This version of the PP1519EC series requires the operator to hold down the sealing bar during the cutting process. The heat shrink tunnel quickly shrinks film down around products, providing a clean, tight and professional seal. This model has been rated for wrapping six to eight packages per minute.

The Preferred Pack PP1519ECM Semi-Automatic Shrinkwrap System features a magnet hold down function on the L-bar cutter. This helps speed up the shrink wrapping process and prevents worker fatigue. This particular model can process between 8 to 12 packages per minute.

The Preferred Pack PP1519ECMC Semi-Automatic Shrinkwrap model has a magnet hold down feature on the L-bar cutter and powered discharge conveyor – thus even further speeding up the packaging process. This model can wrap at least 12 packages per minute.

Be sure to call ABC Office at 1-800-658-8788 for more details about the Preferred Pack PP1519EC, PP1519ECM and PP1519ECMC Shrink Wrap systems.

Sealer Sales Spotlights Dealer ABC Office

Friday, May 9th, 2014

Sealer Sales

Recently, Sealer Sales, the manufacturer of quality packaging equipment, published a distributor highlight about ABC Office on their corporate blog.

Sealer Sales is well known in the industry as a manufacturer of hand and large heat sealers, shrink wrap machines, shrink wrap film, I-bar sealers and other heat sealing machines. SealerSales is one of the largest manufacturers of shrink wrap and packaging equipment.

At ABC Office we sell hundreds of different machines and a wide variety of supplies from SealerSales. We have listed dozens of their products on our website and are still adding more. Their impressive lineup of products are both affordable and high quality. Our Service Department can also help with parts, repairs and support of SealerSales equipment. Be sure to contact ABC Office about SealerSales packaging equipment and supplies today!

Why we recommend the AIE I-Bar Shrink Wrap System with Heat Gun

Friday, February 28th, 2014

The I-Bar Shrink Wrap System by AIE ranges in models measuring from 13 to 40 inches in length.

The AIE I-Bar Shrink Wrap System features sturdy, metal construction.

We speak with dozens of customers each month who are looking for the best shrink wrap machine for their money. They want to be sure the machine they order will do the job the right way the first time, and they want a model that will last. They also need to know if the machine they order has supplies and replacement parts readily available.

Quite often, we recommend the I-Bar Shrink Wrap System with Heat Gun from AIE (American International Electric Inc.). This unit will handle most low to medium volume business shrink wrap needs. If you need a machine that can tackle high-volume production requirements, then we highly suggest a L-bar sealer with inclusive tunnel.

The I-Bar Shrink Wrap System by AIE ranges in models measuring from 13 to 40 inches in length. If you do not know what I-bar length is best for you, a general rule of thumb is to measure the largest item you plan to shrink wrap. Add its width to the height and add two inches. This method is a pretty safe bet when selecting the shrink wrap model that will fit your needs.

When you uncrate the AIE I-Bar Shrink Wrap System you will notice its sturdy, metal construction. This ensures years of consistent machine operation and use. Parts are fairly simple to access and replace such as the cutting wire. It also includes a handy pop-up heat gun rest/holder that prevents possible injuries or damaged materials due to a misplaced hot heat gun nozzle. AIE is a leading manufacturer of quality shrink wrap and sealing equipment. Their products are manufactured in ISO-9001 certified facilities.

The AIE I-Bar Shrink Wrap System Professionally shrink wraps boxes, packages archived items, food and other products for just pennies each. The unit has a simple three-step operation process with no warm-up time required. The shrink wrap process lets you enhance the appearance and value of your products by protecting it against dirt, dust, moisture, handling and pilfering.

The AIE I-Bar Shrink Wrap System includes: bar sealer, timer, heat gun, heat gun holder, film rack, a free 500-foot roll of centerfold PVC 75 gauge shrink film, outlet plug and spare parts kit. Be sure to order your I-bar shrink wrap system from ABC Office today: an excellent model for the money.

 

Best Equipment for Retail Packaging

Friday, January 10th, 2014

Shrink Wrap Packaging EquipmentI speak with people every day who are looking for the best piece of equipment to use for packaging their product for retail sale purposes. While there are some tools out there that can be used for “general purpose” packaging, most packaging tools are designed for very specific projects. I would like to cover a few popular pieces of equipment that can be used for your own in-house packaging.

At ABC Office, we over over a dozen different types of machines that can be used for packaging. In fact, you can find our entire selection of packaging machines here. We carry gravity drop sealers, band sealers, carton sealers, sleeve wrappers and more. For the sake of time, and keep this article from going on over 20 pages, I am limiting this to the top four most popular categories.

Shrink Wrap (found here) – Shrink wrap is the most popular method of packaging products for retail sale purposes. Shrink wrap machines use special thermoplastic film that literally shrinks down when heat is applied. The process is pretty cool and the thin layer of plastic provides protection, makes items tamper proof and can be used for bundling. We offer three different types of shrink wrap machines:

  • I-Bar Sealers (found here) – Our I-Bar sealers are the most popular tool we offer. They are ideal for low to medium volume packaging needs and they are extremely affordable. The I-bar contains a single element that uses impulses of electricity to seal off the film. When used with centerfold shrink film, the I-bar has to be pulled down to seal all opened sides (usually involves two passes). Most I-bar sealers include a heat gun that is then manually used to shrink down the film.
  • L-Bar Sealers (found here) – These tools are similar to the I-bar but have an “L” shaped impulse sealing blade. This doubles the speed at which you can package products. L-bar sealers can be used with a heat gun or with a shrink tunnel, depending on the speed you need to package products.
  • Shrink Wrap Systems (found here) – These systems usually feature an L-bar sealing blade integrated with a heat tunnel dome. The result is a machine that can cut shrink film around a product and shrink the film down all at the same time. This improves efficiency and speed. This type of system is ideal for medium to high-volume packaging needs.


Bag Heat SealersHeat Sealers (found here)
– Heat sealers, often called bag sealers, are designed to seal the open end of a plastic bag. This includes a variety of plastic films including cellophane, mylar, poly film and much more. Depending on the sealer, they can be used with a variety of thicknesses of plastic. These sealers also come in different sealing lengths and widths. They are used for packaging food, tools, powders, liquids and more. Heat sealers are broken down into two categories:

  • Impulse – Impulse bag sealers are designed for speed and can be used with thinner plastic. They use a sealing element that only heats up when it is sealing a bag. It is quick to cool down and very safe to handle.
  • Direct Heat – These sealers, sometimes called constant heat sealers, use a heating element that needs to warm up and remains hot. They are typically a little less money than impulse sealers and they can be used with thicker plastic.

Vacuum SealersVacuum Sealers (found here) – Vacuum sealers are used to provide an air-tight seal, typically for packaging food or sterile medical instruments. Thanks to an airtight seal, vacuum sealers can be used to dramatically extend the life of food and are excellent for preventing contaminants. We offer two different types of vacuum sealers:

  • Chamber Vacuum Sealers (found here) – Chamber vacuum sealers are extremely popular for packaging food and they are ideal for industrial / commercial level packaging needs. You simply insert your item into the vacuum bag, insert it into the chamber and let the machine do the rest. The chamber sealer will remove all the air inside the chamber, seal the bag and return the atmosphere inside the chamber back to normal. The results are long lasting and professional.
  • External Vacuum Sealers (found here) – External sealers seal products outside the machine. Once an item is placed in the back, the open end is inserted into the machine. The external sealer will then remove the air inside the bag and then seal the bag shut. We offer several different types of external sealers including channel sealers (much like a Foodsaver) and industrial external sealers that use nozzles for removing air.

Clamshell SealersClamshell Sealers (found here) – Have you ever purchased a toy, tools or other items encased in a hard plastic shell? This packaging is referred to as clam shell packaging. In the past this clam shell was held shut by staples. Today clam shell sealers are used to keep this packaging closed. This prevents injuries, rust and is an affordable alternative to staples. The clam shell sealer uses heat (or ultrasonic waves) to melt the plastic together.

I hope this has helped answer a few of your packaging questions. Because this is such a huge topic, you may still have additional questions. Please feel free to call us at 1-800-658-8788 or post your question as a comment. We have decades of experience with these machines and would love to help you out.

Three Affordable Heat Guns for Your Shrink Wrap Film

Friday, September 13th, 2013

Shrink Wrap Heat GunsShrink wrap film, by design, shrinks down when put in direct contact with heat. Many shrink wrap machines are used in conjunction with heat tunnels and integrated hoods, but one of the most popular tools for applying heat continues to be the heat gun (found here). There are a lot of misconceptions about these tools. I would like to clarify what makes a heat gun and recommend a few you may want to use.

As mentioned earlier, shrink film contracts when applied to heat. This is designed to produce a tight, clear and smooth surface for packaging purposes. You have probably dealt with shrink film when opening a DVD, CD or other packaging. While there is a lot of different types of shrink film out there, two are used above all others. These are:

  1. PVC Film (found here) – This type of film is clear, common and cheap. It is extremely popular, universally compatible with pretty much all shrink wrap machines and is excellent for packaging boxes, CDs, DVDs and much more. This type of film has been around a long time. It should be noted that it is not food safe and it is more brittle than Polyolefin film.
  2. Polyolefin Film (found here) – This film is also clear and shrinks much like PVC film. The difference being that it is FDA approved for direct contact with film. Polyolefin film also has much stretchier properties to it when compared to PVC film. While it used to be more expensive per square foot than PVC, the cost has really come down over the years. Polyolefin, unlike PVC film, little to no odors and smoke.

Heat guns can be used to shrink down either one of these types of film without any problem. They can be used with centerfold rolls of film, bags, sheets and much more. One question I get frequently asked is, “Is a heat gun the same thing as a hair dryer?” The quick and simple answer to this is a definite “NO.” A heat gun is many times hotter than a hair dryer, even on the low setting. A heat gun would literally singe the hair off your head.

Heat guns shouldn’t be intimidating though. They are designed to be safe to use including insulated handles that will stay cool during use. You just need to use a little common sense when operating one. At ABC Office we currently offer three different models of heat guns. I would like to cover these three.

  • HG-1-CY Heat GunSealerSales HG-1-CY (found here) – This is one of the least expensive heat guns available on the internet. This gun is lightweight, has a dual temperature setting (high and low) and includes a kickstand that allows it to sit on end when not in use. At just 1 pound 10 ounces, this heat gun isn’t going to tire you out with continued use. It can be used with most types of shrink film including PVC, POF, PET and PP film. You really can’t go wrong with this heat gun, especially for the price.
  • SealerSales HG-1 (found here) – If you like the HG-1CY, but need some added temperature, consider going with the HG-1. This heat gun is just a few more dollars, but can go all the way up to 1,100 degrees for use with film that needs a little more heat. This heat gun also works with most film and is extremely easy to use. The design allows it to easily sit on its end without the need of a fold-out kickstand.
  • Traco Hot Shot (found here) – This heat gun is one of the most popular used today and has been around for over a decade. It features a variable temperature control that goes all the way up to 1100 degrees Fahrenheit.  This gun comes with Traco’s lineup of I-bar sealers by default, but it can be purchased by itself as a replacement or for use with other I-bar sealers, heat sealers and L-bar sealers.

Hopefully this list helps you out. At ABC Office we also offer a great selection of shrink wrap machines (found here). If you still have questions, please give us a call at 1-800-658-8788. We have over 30 years of experience and would love to help you out.

Video Demos of Shrink Wrap Machines w/ Integrated Tunnels

Friday, August 30th, 2013

Minipack FM760 Shrink Wrap MachineYears ago if you wanted to shrink wrap a product you had to use an L-bar sealer and a heat tunnel. While the results were very professional, the equipment itself took up a lot of room. Over the years the tunnel and the sealer have been combined to become an integrated shrink wrap system (found here). I have used several of these machines myself and am very impressed by the clever use of space. I would like to talk about a few of these machines and show you several videos to help you get a better idea of just how they work.

Shrink wrap systems (L-bar sealers w/ integrated tunnels) are remarkably easy to use. Regardless of the brand or model, the design is usually very similar. These machines usually consist of a film holder (on the right of the machine) that dispenses centerfold film. The machine usually has a film separator that creates a pocket where a product can be inserted.

Once inside the film, the product is moved over to the sealing area where a clear hood (with built in L-bar sealer) is pulled down. In one quick process, the film is cut and hot air is circulated around the film, shrinking it down. The process generally takes just a few seconds. I have seen these machines rated for 5-6 cycles per minute up to 10-15. The speed depends on the design of the machine.

Most of these shrink wrap systems allow the operator to adjust things such as the sealing time, chamber air time and the chamber air temperature. These settings allow the use of PVC film, Polyolefin film and can be adjusted to accommodate the packaging of temperature sensitive products such as chocolates.

As of this article, one of the most affordable “system” machines is the TP-48ST shrink wrap machine (found here). Here is a video demo of the machine in use:

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Another very popular system is the Compack 5800 (found here), which has been around for years. It is ideal for use with small or larger products.  This is a video demo of the Compack 5800 in use:

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If you were a fan of the Minpack Galaxy or Minipack Galileo, you’ll be interested to hear that it has been replaced by the Minipack FM760 (found here). This particular unit is made from stainless steel and is excellent for packaging food or other items. Here is a video demo of the FM760 in use:

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The above three videos feature our most popular shrink wrap systems. Larger units are available. The biggest differences between shrink wrap systems will be the size of the sealing area and the height of the sealing hood. Be aware that sometimes these machines can be fitted with taller sealing hoods, so please feel free to give us a call at 1-800-658-8788 with any questions. You can find our entire selection of shrink wrap machines here.

KF-772DH Clam Shell Sealer Review

Thursday, August 29th, 2013

KF-772DH Clam Shell Packaging SealerClam shell packaging is one of the most common and reliable ways to package a variety of products. Clam shell packaging itself is usually rectangular in shape, although it can be more form fitting to better accommodate the product being packaged. Clam shell sealers (found here) are used to quickly seal clam shell packaging shut. The KF-772DH (found here) is one model you may want to consider using. This is my review.

Clam shell packaging has been around for years. Years ago it was almost always fastened shut using a stapler. It was found, however, that staples would eventually runs (looking bad) and that the staples could be easily pried open and products removed. There was also the issue of staples pricking fingers when packaging was opened. These are all reasons clam shell sealers came into being.

So how exactly does a clam shell sealer work? It’s actually fairly simple. Clam shell packaging opens up like a clam (hence the name). To keep the mouth of the clam shell packaging shut, it has to be sealed. Clam shell sealers use heat, or other methods, to melt the two halves together, sealing them shut. This is often referred to as plastic welding. Usually the packaging is sealed on the front and sometimes on the sides as well.

One advantage to a clam shell sealer is that there are no supplies involved, such as staples. Also, the packaging is very difficult to tamper with. If you have ever purchased something sealed with a clam shell sealer, you have probably had to use scissors to cut the plastic in order to access the contents. While a little annoying open, it is very secure and professional.

The KF-772DH is a direct heat (aka constant heat) clam shell sealer. This means it uses heat to literally melt the clam shell packaging. It comes equipped with a switch that can be toggled from low (250F / 120C) to high (350F / 175C). This allows the KF-772DH to be easily used with packaging made from OPS, PSP, PVS and EPC plastic cases.  The sealing process really only takes a few seconds.

Here is a video demo of the KF-772DH in use:

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While the sealing jaws on the KF-772DH do get very hot, the handles are insulated and cool to touch. Within the handle is a spring that returns the jaws to an open position after being used. A hook can be used to keep the handles in the closed position when the clam shell hand sealer isn’t being used. It works a lot like a handheld hole punch. It only weighs 10 ounces, so it is really easy to use repeatedly.

The weld produced by the KF-772DH is rectangular in shape. It measures in at 4mm x 10mm in size. This weld is extremely secure and from what I’ve seen it is just as secure and professional as what you would find with any other direct heat hand sealer.

While a lot has been put into this design to prevent injury, the operator should still try and keep their hands away from the jaw. I recommend you wait at least 30 minutes to ensure everything is properly cooled down before handling the serrated sealing jaws. A lot of the safety with this sealer involves some basic common sense.

I hope this review helps answer some of your questions. If you need some additional information, please feel free to give us a call at 1-800-658-8788. We can help answer your questions, take orders, provide replacement parts and much more. You can find the KF-772DH clam shell sealer here and our entire selection of clam shell sealers here.

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