Archive for the ‘Shrink Wrap / Packaging’ Category

AIE I-Bar Shrink Wrap Machine Review

Thursday, June 3rd, 2010

AIE I-Bar Shrink Wrap Machine With GunSo you want to package your own soap, DVDs, fruit baskets, chocolates or boxes. No matter what it is you want to package, an AIE i-bar shrink-wrap sealer may be just what you need. I have hands-on experience with several AIE shrink-wrap systems and will be reviewing the AIE-20XXX series machines. This includes the AIE-2013I, AIE-2018I, AIE-2024I and AIE-2032I shrink-wrap systems found here.

To start with, all four of these models are essentially the same machine. The only difference is the length of the cutting bar. If you think you may be on the edge of being too big for one model, simply move to the next larger size. The larger systems can still use smaller rolls of film and can still be used to package smaller objects. The price difference between sizes isn’t much and it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

One of my favorite things about the AIE-20XXX series I-bar shrink-wrap machines is the fact that they come with the sealer / cutter, a heat gun and a starter roll of shrink wrap film. For the price, you get everything you need to get up and running. I wish more manufacturers would do this.

The machine itself comes assembled right out of the box. Just pull it out and set it on a table. The film is extremely easy to feed on this machine. Simply put the roll on the bearing rollers and insert the film separator into the open end of the centerfold film. You’re now ready to start.

The build quality on the AIE I-bar shrink wrap systems is extremely high, which is usually the case with AIE products. I decided to shrink wrap a couple of Star Wars DVDs to test out the machine. I put the DVDs in the film, made a few cuts with the cutting arm and then ran the heat gun over the film. The film contracted and after a few seconds the DVDs looked like they would on a store shelf.

One nice thing about I-bar sealers, sometimes called straight-bar sealers, is that there aren’t as many height restrictions as you would have with a higher-end commercial L-bar system. It is easy to make cuts around odd-sized and odd-shaped objects thanks to the versatility of the heated cutting blade.

The AIE system, although it was new, created very little smoke. Dirty blades can tend to create more smoke, but the AIE was notably cleaner than I am used to. I would guess that it would take the average operator about one minute to completely package a DVD. This isn’t bad, but it still doesn’t compare to the higher-end L-bar systems. The AIE I-bar system is rated for low to medium-volume use.

In conclusion, I would highly recommend the AIE I-bar system as one of the best I-bar shrink wrappers I have used. If you are in the market, you should seriously considering getting this machine. You will find our AIE I-bar shrink wrap machine here.

Have you used this particular model or do you have questions? Post your comments here!

Replacement Shrink Wrap Sealing Blades, Wire, Pads and Parts

Friday, May 28th, 2010

Replacement Shrink Wrap Parts, Wire, Tape, PadsSo you have a shrink wrap machine that isn’t working the way it used to? Symptoms of a worn out shrink wrap machine include excessive burs after cutting the film, excessive smoke, inability to seal the entire length of the film and much more. The good news is that replacing the sealing wire, pads or Teflon tape can often fix the problem.

At ABC Office we have a Service Department that can get you replacement parts for AIE, Minipack, Traco, Rochman, Aline, GHL Packaging and many other shrink wrap brands.

Changing the wire, pad, springs and tape can be done by just about anyone and doesn’t require any special training or tools. Many of our AIE replacement parts can be ordered online here, but most shrink-wrap parts must be ordered directly from our Service Department.

The price for replacement parts is far less than the cost to replace an entire machine. Do you need replacement shrink wrap parts, or need to find out the pricing and availability on parts for your machine? Our service department can be reached by calling us at 800-658-8788.

Keep your shrink wrap machine happy and running another several years!

Heat Shrink Tunnels vs Heat Guns

Thursday, May 6th, 2010

There are several different types of shrink-wrap machines in existence today. Regardless of whether you are using an L-bar shrink wrapper or a straight-bar system, both machines will eventually require a heat source to shrink down the film. There are two ways of doing this. One method is done by using a heat shrink tunnel and the other is done by using a heat gun. Both machines have their pros and cons. Here is a breakdown on the two different methods.

Heat Shrink GunsHeat Shrink Guns – A heat gun looks very similar to a hair drier, but produces several times more heat. Many heat guns have the capability of being turned up to produce 1,000+ degrees of heat. A hair drier doesn’t even come close to that. I do, however, get people that ask if they can use their hair drier to shrink the film. I usually tell them, “If your hair drier is capable of burning off your hair, it ‘may’ work.” I say that in jest.

Heat guns are manually held and manually aimed to shrink the film. It usually requires a couple of passes. When shrinking film around a box, it is usually necessary to flip the box over to shrink the other side. A skilled heat gun operator can complete the entire shrinking process in 10-30 seconds, depending on the size of the product being packaged.

Heat guns are ideal for low to medium-volume use. They are perfect if you are packaging a few dozen items per day, but if you will be packaging hundreds (or more) a day, you will probably want to upgrade to a heat tunnel. You can find our popular HotShot heat gun here.

Heat Shrink TunnelsHeat Shrink Tunnels – Heat shrink tunnels are used for medium to high-volume packaging. Volume output can range from hundreds to thousands of products, depending on the machine. While many shrink-wrap systems now incorporate a built-in heat tunnel, many modern systems still use a separate heat tunnel.

Heat tunnels require a lot less manual interaction than a heat gun and can shrink film around an entire package in one single pass. The entire process can be completed in just a few seconds, depending on the machine and tunnel being used.

Once a product enters the heat tunnel, hot air is blown around the entire package. Because the air is so evenly distributed, and so quick, heat tunnels can often be used to package heat-sensitive products. You can find our selection of heat shrink tunnels here.

Still have questions about using heat shrink tunnels and guns? Post a comment here and I will answer your question. Have a great day!

Best All-Around Shrink Wrap Machines

Tuesday, February 2nd, 2010

We often get asked which shrink wrap machine is best for daily packaging of a variety of different products. This may involved CDs, soap, chocolate, software and more. I have a couple of great options.

There are two primary types of shrink wrap machines. The first type is an I-bar (straight bar) and the second is an L-bar. The machine you get will depend on your preference and the volume you are packaging.

An I-bar sealer has a single cutting bar that cuts and seals the film. Because it only cuts one side at a time, it usually requires two passes to completely encapsulate a product. Why only two passes?

Assuming you are using centerfold shrink wrap film, the folded side is already sealed leaving three open sides.

Every time an I-bar sealer is used, not only does it cut the film for your package, but it also seals one side of the film for the next package. This leaves a total of two open sides for each consecutive package.  A heat gun is typically used to shrink the film.

An L-bar sealer has two cutting and sealing bars, in the shape of an L. As previously described with the I-bar sealer, the film usually only has two open sizes, which means an L-bar sealer will completely encapsulate a packaging in one pass. Many L-bar sealers come with a heat tunnel, although a heat gun may be used.

We have two recommended I-bar and two recommended L-bar sealers for your daily packaging needs. These are as follows:

Top I-Bar Sealers

Top L-Bar Sealers

You can see our entire selection of shrink wrap machines and equipment here.

Minipack Galaxy & Galileo Shrink Wrap Machines Reviewed

Thursday, January 21st, 2010

It’s amazing how many people are now reigning in once outsourced packaging operations to in-house. Why is this? A huge part of it is because it isn’t difficult for a business to package their own products. It is also a great way to save money during a recession.

Shrink wrap machines have become smaller, easier to use and far more affordable. Minipack has been on the forefront of this revolution. Two of their most popular machines are the Minipack Galaxy and Galileo machines. You can find them here.

The Galaxy and the Galileo shrink wrap machines replaced the Mini-Plus and the Mini-Mini shrink wrap machines. The Galaxy and Galileo are essentially the same machine, but with different chamber dimensions. Both the Galaxy and Galileo are available in different setups. These have been broken down into systems. The system you use depends entirely on what you need.

Both of these machines have an integrated heat tunnel. This means that when the hood is brought down, it will cut the film around the package and shrink it in one single pass. This is very quick and very convenient. Packaging a DVD, software box, pizza or soap bar can be done in just a few seconds. You can use these to package food by using polyolefin film.

The Galaxy and Galileo are very easy to use and set up. There is no special training required. Maintenance is also easy.

Both of these machines are very efficient and emit very little odor. This is especially nice when being used in poorly ventilated rooms. These machines can use both PVC and Polyolefin film. You can learn more about the two different types of film by going here.

We have had customers ask if the heat will damage products. While there may be some heat-sensitive products you will not want to package, we have had customers send in chocolate samples for testing and haven’t had a problem with the heat melting anything.

If you are interested in the Minipack Galaxy or Galileo, send a sample into us and we will test it out on these machines. We can then send the sample back to you for your approval.

We are also able to offer live video demonstrations of these machines through the Internet. If you are interested in having one of these machines demonstrated for you, simply one of these forms:

For answers to additional shrink wrap questions, feel free to call one of our shrink wrap experts at 1-800-658-8788.

ABC Office Awarded “Focus on the Future Award” by Minipack

Monday, December 7th, 2009

https://www.abcoffice.com/minipack.htm

We have been selling shrink-wrap machines, vacuum sealers and other packaging products made by Minipack for years now. Minipack’s products have proven time after time to be reliable, useful and easy to use. We (ABC Office) are proud to announce that we have been awarded the “Focus on the Future Award” by Minipack in their graphic division. This award was given to us for our consistent sales and dedication.

Minipack is one of the world’s leading manufacturers of shrink-wrap machines, vacuum sealers and other packaging equipment. We have found Minipack products to be reliable and made from high-quality components. Minipack has been around since 1976 and is headquartered in Italy.

One of our most popular Minipack lines is the Galaxy and Galileo, which are all-in-one shrink-wrap machines. They cut the film and shrink it at the same time. Our customers, especially small businesses, love these machines for packaging and selling their products. Our Minipack vacuum sealers are also growing in popularity, such as the MVS 31 and 45, for packaging food for resale.

We are proud of our partnership with Minipack and look forward to many more successful years selling their line of products. You can see our entire selection of Minipack packaging products here.

ABC Office Makes Government Office Equipment Purchases Easier!

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

At ABC Office, we are always looking for new and better ways to make our site easier to navigate and use. Federal, state and local governments are valued customers here at ABC Office, and in an effort to make government purchases faster and more convenient, we now have a newly re-designed government resources index available.

This index covers a wide range of topics  including GSA pricing, purchase orders, I.M.P.A.C. Cards, SmartPay Cards and more. We also offer the government the option of receiving three different official quotes for bidding purposes. We are more than happy to accommodate any of our customers and can provide any quotes, paperwork or other documentation required prior to making a purchase.

Also be aware that ABC Office has its own service department, which means we can fully service our equipment and can offer service contracts with machine purchases. You can visit our newly re-designed government resources page by clicking here.

Top Seven Best Shrink Wrap Machines

Friday, May 22nd, 2009

Finding the best shrink wrap machine may seem complex and time consuming. Not to worry. We have compiled a list of the best shrink-wrap machines available online. This list has been compiled, in part, thanks to our customers. Our list contains I-bar machines, L-bar machines and complete systems with heat tunnels and heat guns.

This list doesn’t just take into account popularity, but durability and long-term performance. Don’t forget your shrink film!

Top 7 Best Shrink Wrap Machines:


1.   Compack 5800 Shrink Wrap Machine

2.    Minipack Galaxy Shrink Wrap Machine

3.   Deluxe Super Sealer with Heat Gun

4.   Minipack Galileo Shrink Wrapper

5.   AIE I-Bar Sealer with Heat Gun

6.   Minipack FM77 Digit Shrink Wrap System

7.   Standard Super Sealer with Heat Gun

Should you choose PVC or Polyolefin shrink film?

Friday, October 10th, 2008

There are two types of shrink wrap film typically used with shrink wrap machines. These are PVC and Polyolefin shrink wrap. Both are very popular, but both have several differences that you will want to be aware of before purchasing shrink wrap supplies.Shrink Wrap Machines

You may be most familiar with PVC shrink wrap film. This is because most DVDs, CDs and software boxes are packaged with PVC film. PVC film is typically a little less expensive than Polyolefin.

PVC film is more brittle, making it easier to break open. This is nice for opening packaging, but is a disadvantage if you are shrink wrapping multiple products together. Why would that be? This is because the brittle properties of the PVC film could cause packaging of multiple items to rupture more easily than Polyolefin.

PVC film emits an odor that some people may not appreciate. It is recommended to use PVC film in a well-ventilated room. PVC film is not safe to use with food.

Polyolefin film is growing in popularity, especially because it is safe to use with food. The stretchy properties of Polyolefin film also make it ideal for group packaging of products. Polyolefin emits little to no odor.Shrink Wrap Film

Both types of film can be used with most shrink wrap machines, whether they be I-bar or L-bar systems. Both heat shrink guns and heat tunnels can shrink these types of film.

At ABC Office we sell both types of film in various lengths and thicknesses. Take a look at our selection of shrink wrap film here.

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