Posts Tagged ‘Banner American’

Types of EZ-LAM Roll Laminators (aka EasyLam)

Thursday, January 10th, 2013

EZ-LAM Roll Laminators by Laminators SpecialtiesIf you’re in search of a high-quality roll laminator (found here) for your school or business, you may really enjoy using an EZ-LAM. These laminators, made by Laminators Specialties, have been around for well over a decade in one form or another. With several different versions of the EZ-LAM, which model should you consider using? I will cover all three models in this article.

To begin with, EZ-LAM used to be called EasyLam. Why the name change? EasyLam was the name of the laminators when they were produced by Banner American. After the company went out of business, Laminators Specialities took over the business and changed EasyLam to EZ-LAM. The quality is still the same and they are essentially the same laminator as they used to be. These laminators are all available with options that allow you to customize them.

When Laminators Specialities took over, they did drop a few of the EasyLam models including the EasyLam Green and the EasyLam II. Luckily we are still able to provide roll lamination film (found here) for all of the discontinued EasyLam roll laminators.

The three EZ-LAM roll laminators that survived the transition to new ownership are some of the best models available. These are the EZ-LAM School Budget, EZ-LAM Budget Pro and the standard EZ-LAM. Here is a little bit of information about the three:

  • EZ-LAM School Budget (found here) – This laminator is designed for low to medium-volume use in a school environment. Most schools are on a tight budget, but still need to laminate signs and banners. The EZ-LAM School Budget was designed just for this situation. While it isn’t terribly fast (3.5 feet per minute) and it only handles film up to 3 mils thick, it gets the job done right. This laminator can be used on many tables and desks and is very easy to set up and operate.
  • EZ-LAM Budget Pro (found here) – The EZ-LAM Budget Pro is a beefed up version of the School Budget. It includes the ability to mount material up to 3/16″ thick and is great entry-level machine for use in a print shop or copy center. It also has the ability to use all mil thicknesses of film including 10 mil.
  • EZ-LAM 27″ Laminator (found here) – This is the time-tested classic that has been around for years. It is used in businesses, copy centers, print shops and other organizations around the world. It can be used with film up to 3 mils thick and includes two rolls of 1.5 mil film. It can be used with larger core rolls of film using optional core adapters. It can also be built with features like cooling fans, a foot switch, side slitters and more.

All three of these laminators are solid products. The build quality is excellent. Unlike many manufacturers out there, Laminators Specialties uses steel side plates that are computer machined ensuring consistency in quality. We have had several of these machines out on our showroom floor and I have had the opportunity to use them myself. They are very easy to use and the quality of the laminated items is excellent. Feel free to call us at 1-800-658-8788 with any of your roll laminator questions. You can find our entire lineup of roll laminators here.

Laminators Made in the USA

Tuesday, August 28th, 2012

Roll Laminators Made in the USAIf you are shopping around for a pouch or roll laminator, you probably want something that is of a high quality. While this isn’t necessarily always the case, laminators made in the USA (found here) tend to be some of the better machines out there. So if you want an American-made laminator, what brand should you consider using? When our customers ask me that question, I almost always reference one company in particular.

My favorite “Made in the USA” laminator company used to be Banner American. They used to make some of the best laminators in the industry until about a year ago when the company went under. Unfortunately Banner American is no more. Another company, thankfully, purchased banner American’s facilities and manufacturing plant. Banner American now lives on under the name Laminators Specialties Inc. This company still makes most of the same models that Banner American used to make, some with a few small improvements.

The parts used in the manufacturing process are still extremely high quality and their pouch and roll laminators are still made in the USA. My personal favorite pouch laminator, the PL12A, is still available as the Laminator Specialties PL12A. The EZ-Lam, Mighty-Lam and Value-Lam line of laminators are also all still available.

These are some of Laminators Specialties USA-made laminators that I highly recommend:

  • PL12A Pouch Laminator (found here) – This laminator is by far one of the most popular we offer and is a customer favorite (not to mention one of my favorites). This thing handles most sizes of pouches (up to 12 1/4″ wide), film up to 10 mils thick and it has independent motor and heat switches. It is just a solid machine all around.
  • PL4A Pouch Laminator (found here) – This is identical to the PL12A but with a 3 ¾” laminating width. This laminator is ideal for daily ID card production, laminating business card and other small card laminating needs.
  • Easy-Lam School Budget (found here) – This is one of the most affordable 27″ roll laminators available. I’m not aware of any models that cost less. While it doesn’t have the speed or the mil thickness capacity of other high-end machines, it can still be used to laminating posters / signs and can still handle 1.5 and 3 mil rolls of film. It is an excellent value for what you get.
  • Easy-Lam 27″ Roll Laminator (found here) – This is a well-rounded 27″ laminator that is excellent for use in a school or a copy shop. It can handle 1.5 and 3 mil film and is a little more robust and fast than the School Budget laminator. As is the case with all Laminators Specialties laminators, this is made in the USA.
  • ValueLam 4500HC Roll LaminatorMightyLam 2700HC Laminator (found here) – This is one of the most robust 27″ laminators available. It can be used for daily laminating and can use film up to 10 mils thick. It can even be used for mounting up to ¼” thick. This laminator is easy to use, is made in the USA and produces crystal clear results.
  • ValueLam 4500HC Wide Format Laminator (found here) – If you need a wide format laminator, up to 45″ wide, the American-made ValueLam 4500HC is a great option. This machine is robust, can be used for mounting up to ½” thick, uses a variety of film and can be used for laminating signs, banners and much more. A four-roller version of this is also available here.

So there you have some of the best machines offered by Laminators Specialties. You won’t be disappointed with the USA quality or with the versatility of these products. If you have additional questions about Laminators Specialties laminators (formerly Banner American), please don’t hesitate to call and speak with one of our experts at 1-800-658-8788.

Banner American Pouch and Roll Laminator Alternatives

Friday, March 23rd, 2012

Banner American PL12a Pouch Laminator AlternativesIn case you haven’t heard, the iconic manufacturer of pouch and roll laminators, Banner American, recently went out of business. While you can still find a few of their laminators here and there (lingering stock), people are now wondering which laminators are good alternatives. Banner laminators were probably some of the best on the market. Luckily there are some great alternatives out there.

Banner American was easily one of my favorite laminator manufacturers. They made laminators like the PL12A, Pl4A, PL100, Easy Lam and many other laminators. Their products were mostly made in America and lasted literally for years. I remember us having a PL12A out on our showroom for 5+ years without issue. We used it to laminate samples, test pouches, shoot video demos, for demonstrations and more. I know of customers who had their PL laminators for over a decade.

I would like to produce a list of some Banner American laminators and their ideal alternatives. These pouch and roll laminators should perform on an equal level to the old Banner American laminators.

  • Banner American MightyLam-2700HC AlternativeBanner American PL4A Alternative – The best replacement for this laminator is the Akiles Pro-Lam 100 (found here). This laminator is still 4″ wide and is still perfect for quickly laminating ID badges.
  • Banner American PL12A Alternative – An ideal replacement for this laminator is the Akiles ProLam 320 (found here). This laminator is just ¼” wider than the PL12A and features a very similar build quality.
  • Banner American PL135 Alternative – A great 13″ wide alternative to this laminator is the Akiles iLam 340 (found here). This laminator accepts most pouches and is just as good.
  • Banner American PL135-4 Alternative – A good replacement to the PL135-4 is the Akiles ProLam Plus 330 (found here). This laminator has a comparable 13″ width and in my opinion is a better laminator.
  • Banner American Easy Lam Alternative – A comparable laminator to the classic Banner American Easy Lam is the Tamerica TCC2700 (found here). This laminator accepts the same film as the Easy Lam while producing similar results.
  • Banner American Easy Lam II Alternative – A great replacement to this iconic roll laminator is the GBC Ultima 65 (found here). It is still a 27″ roll laminator and can still be used in schools to laminate posters, signs, banners and more.
  • Banner American MightyLam 2700HC Alternative – The standard MightyLam 2700 and newer MightyLam 2700 were both classics. A great alternative to this classic is the GBC Pinnacle 27″ roll laminator (found here). It has about the same build quality and duty cycle. Another good alternative is the Ledco Professor 27″ Laminator.
  • Banner American ValueLam 4500HC Alternative – This laminator was one of Banner American’s heaviest-duty models. It could be used for laminating, mounting and more.  There are a couple of laminators that compare, although they are a bit more of an investment. The first is the Pro-Lam PL-244WF and the second is the MRL 42 Roll Laminator.

While it is extremely sad to see a valued manufacturer like Banner American go, it is nice to know that there are some high-quality alternatives out there. I have personally used laminators from Tamerica, GBC, Ledco and Akiles and can vouch for the fact that you will be just as happy with them as you would have been with the Banner American alternative.

We also carry a great selection of other laminating machines that you may want to consider using. You can find our entire selection of pouch laminators here and roll laminators here. If you need additional help finding a Banner American alternative, please feel free to call us at 1-800-658-8788.

Overview of the Banner Easy-Lam 27″ Roll Laminator

Wednesday, December 14th, 2011

Banner American Easy-Lam 27" Roll LaminatorIf you need to laminate posters, signs and banners that fall within a 27″ width, you probably need to use a thermal roll laminator like the Banner Easy-Lam 27″ (found here). This laminator has been around for well over a decade and has a good track record with customers. I have used this laminator several times myself and this is my review.

While the American-Made Banner Easy-Lam roll laminator has undergone a few aesthetic changes over the years, it still remains true to what the laminator was originally designed for, an affordable “budget” laminator for schools, copy shops and other businesses. This laminator has an effective laminating width of 27″, which is one of the most popular sizes used today.

Made in the USA, the overall build quality is exceptional. It features higher-than-normal quality electronic components, which includes the motor, switches and wiring. This becomes evident when removing the side protective shell. This laminator also features a durable metal frame as well as a metal shelf, metal mandrels and much more. This is far better than your typical “foreign-made” machines. It even comes with 2 free rolls of 25″ x 100’ 1.5mil film, which is a great deal.

The Banner Easy-Lam is very easy to set up. A toggle switch lets you adjust the laminator between 1.5 mil (0.0015″ gauge) and 3 mil (0.003″ gauge) film. It also features a built-in LED temperature readout that keeps the operator in the know. There really isn’t much “fine tuning” involved in getting this laminator up and running. It only takes about 15 minutes to get up to full operational temperature.

As mentioned earlier, the Easy-Lam is designed for use with 27″ wide film that has a 1″ diameter core. While it can be used with 27″ film, it can also use 25″, 12″ and other smaller width film. Loading the film, unlike many roll laminators is easy. Simply place a mandrel through the top roll, one through the bottom roll, and insert the mandrels back into the machine. The film can then be wound around the heat shoes and tension bars.

While thermal roll laminators can get blazingly hot, the Banner Easy-Lam is designed with safety in mind and even includes an attached safety shield, which keeps the hottest parts covered. While it does still get hot, it is far safer to use than many comparable machines.

The laminator itself measures in at 20″(50.8cm) L x 35″(88.9cm) W x 16″ (40.6cm) H and weighs 68 pounds unboxed. While it isn’t going to win any races, it still operates at a reasonably fast speed of 4.5 feet per minute. It can be plugged into a standard 120volt (60Hz) outlet and draws 1800 watts at its peak. A 200-volt version, however, is available for the same price.

This is a video demo of the Banner Easy-Lam 27″ roll laminator:

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What can I say? The Banner Easy-Lam 27″ roll laminator (found here) is a solid machine and I personally recommend it for light to medium-volume use. A slightly upgraded version, known as the Banner Easy-Lam II 27″ (found here) is also available. It is great for schools, copy shops and any business that needs to laminate signs, banners, posters or even several small things at the same time like business cards, menus, letter-size paper and more.

You can find our entire selection of thermal roll laminators here. Please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-658-8788 with any questions. Have a great day!

PL12A Pouch Laminator Video Demo

Monday, October 10th, 2011

PL12A Thermal Pouch LaminatorIf you need to laminate business cards, photos, cards, signs and other material, one machine that you should consider is the PL12A pouch laminator from Banner American. This compact thermal laminator is now well over a decade old, yet continues to be one of the best selling laminators in the USA. If you’re teetering on which machine you should purchase, you may want to check out or PL12A video demo.

Before I show you the video, I would just like to explain why I personally like this laminator so much. To begin with, it looks great. It has a certain industrial look to it that sets it apart from the competition. There’s also the long history. This laminator has been around for well over 11 years, being one of the first pouch laminators I remember using when I first got into the office equipment industry.

The PL12A utilizes 4 rollers when laminating material. There are two rollers in the front, a heating element and two in the back. The combination of 4 rollers, versus cheaper 2 roller laminators, produces far superior results. Four rollers help iron out wrinkles, better distribute heat and eliminate the need to run a pouch through twice.

This laminator has been designed from the ground up to be long lasting. This becomes abundantly clear when you notice that it has a separate heat and motor button. Many laminators require that the heat and motor be run simultaneously. The PL12A will let you keep the heat on and the rollers off, which helps preserve the motor. This also allows you to immediately begin laminating without having to wait for it to warm up.

The Banner American PL12A also features an adjustable temperature control, located underneath the machine. This allows you to accurately and professionally laminate stuff using 3, 5, 7 or 10 mil thick pouches.

This is a video demo of the PL12A in action:

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In conclusion I believe that this heavy-duty laminator is the perfect choice for most businesses, copy centers, schools and other organizations. I know of customers who are still using their PL12A well over 5 years after purchasing it. It is designed to last.

You can find the Banner American PL12A pouch laminating machine here and our entire selection of pouch laminators here.

Banner American Easy-Lam II 27″ Roll Laminator Review

Wednesday, June 1st, 2011

Banner American Easy-Lam II 27" Roll LaminatorWhen a school, church or business is shopping around for a roll laminator, the Banner American Easy-Lam II 27″ roll laminator is usually at the top of the list. That is because the Easy Lam is affordable, easy to use and can be used to laminate posters, signs, banners and other material. This is my review.

I have personally used the Easy-Lam II. At first glance, it is a little intimidating. The machine itself is fairly large, measuring in at 48″ L x 40″ W x 26″ H. Don’t be too worried though. After familiarizing myself with the machine it is actually pretty easy to set up and use.

I believe the Easy-Lam II finds its stride when laminating multiple smaller documents. It can easily laminate posters, don’t get me wrong, but it can also be used to laminate multiple 8 ½” x 11″ documents at a time. This was especially beneficial for me when I was laminating large volumes of business cards.

Not only does the Easy-Lam II laminate documents, but it can also be used to mount material up to ¼” thick. This means you can easily mount photos, posters, signs and other material onto ¼” foam core board without any problems.

It warms up pretty fast. After plugging it in, it took about 15 minutes to be fully warmed up. This isn’t bad for a roll laminator. A built-in thermometer lets you know exactly what the temperature is. This is especially nice when trying to get the temperature just right for the film you are using. The thermometer, combined with an adjustable heat control, makes getting the “right” temperature very easy.

One of the most feared processes of owning a roll laminator is changing the film. Many people dread doing it. I have personally changed the film on this laminator and I have to say that it wasn’t bad. It was easy to place the film on the mandrels and wind it through the laminator. The Easy-Lam II uses a drop-down idler bar that makes it exceptionally easy to load new laminating film.

While the Easy-Lam II can use film up to 27″ wide, it can also be used with smaller rolls of film as well. It can be used with laminating film ranging from 1.5 mils up to 3 mils thick.

Banner American Easy-Lam II Roll Laminator Video Demo

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This laminator also features:

  • Reverse motor switch
  • Safety shield
  • Teflon coated heat shoes
  • Silicone laminating rollers
  • Heavy-duty DC motor
  • Adjustable feed table guide

The build quality on this laminator seems to be right where it should be. We had an Easy-Lam II roll laminator on our showroom floor for several years and it always worked every time we used it just like the day we unboxed it.

This laminator, however, is not a high-volume machine. It is probably best used for low to medium-volume projects. The motor, while tough, runs at a speed of 5.5’ per minute. I recommend this laminator for school use, church use, copy center use and low-volume business use.

You can find the Banner American Easy-Lam II 27″ roll laminator here and our entire selection of roll laminators here. You can find our great selection of affordable roll laminating film here.

Slick Deals On Pouch Laminators

Friday, January 14th, 2011

Slick Deals on Pouch LaminatorsAre you in the market for a pouch laminator and are looking for a slick deal? We have a few models that may meet your need for an excellent price. While these laminators may not be the best for industrial jobs, they are excellent for home and small business laminating.

Our least expensive pouch laminator, the Intelli-Lam IL200 from Intelli-Zone, is back in stock. This laminator has been hot, and for under $50 you really can’t go wrong. The IL200 can be used to laminate documents up to 9” wide, making it perfect for laminating letter-size documents and smaller.

Other popular “bargain” laminators include machines from SircleLam, Fellowes and Banner American. All three of these brands are well established and have developed a great reputation with our customers.

Top 5 best deals on pouch laminators:

  1. Intelli-Lam IL200 Pouch Laminator
  2. SircleLam HQ-230 Pouch Laminator
  3. Fellowes EXL 45-2 Pouch Laminator
  4. SircleLam HQ-330 Pouch Laminator
  5. Banner American QuikFinish PL100 Pouch Laminator

These laminators are all available to you for under $100. They have proven to be reliable machines and should help you protect, preserve and enhance a wide variety of documents. You can find our entire selection of pouch laminators here.

Introducing The New MightyLam 2700HC Roll Laminator

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

Banner American MightLam 2700HC Roll LaminatorWe are excited to announce the addition of a new roll laminator to our site. This new roll laminator is the MightyLam 2700HC from Banner American. Here are a few details about this new addition.

To begin with, the MightyLam 2700HC is a 27″ wide laminator capable of being used to laminate posters, signs, maps and other wide material. It can also be used to laminate several smaller items, including up to three 8 ½ x 11″ sheets of paper at once.

This laminator has the ability to mount pictures onto foam board and handle material up to ¼” thick, which is pretty impressive for a laminator in this price range. It also can be used for hot thermal or cold pressure sensitive laminating.

The control panel is feature rich, including an LED readout, an adjustable temperature control, built in slitters and much more. The 2700HC also includes the ability to use laminating film up to 10 mils thick.

Overall this American-made roll laminator has a great selection of features for the price. You can stop by and check out the new MightyLam 2700HC roll laminator here.

Banner American MightyLam 2700 27″ Roll Laminator Review

Tuesday, January 4th, 2011

Banner American MightyLam 2700 Roll LaminatorWhether you need to laminate a map or a poster, you’re probably going to need a roll laminator. If your laminating jobs fall within a 27″ width, you may want to consider using the Banner American MightyLam 2700 roll laminator. I have had several opportunities to use this machine and this is my review.

Banner American manufactures a wide variety of laminators, including both pouch and roll laminators. While the Banner American line of EasyLam roll laminators are a huge hit with our customers, they are better suited for low-volume use. A great upgrade from the EasyLam is the MightyLam, which is great for medium-volume laminating.

The MightyLam 2700 is a 27″ wide roll laminator that uses 1″ core laminating rolls. It is designed to be used throughout the day and is capable of handling laminating film up to 10 mils thick, which is pretty impressive for a roll laminator in this price range. It can even be used to mount and laminate material up to ¼” thick.

You can see the recommended temperature settings for the mil thickness in this diagram.

Banner American MightyLam 2700 Roll Laminator Temperature Settings

One thing I really like about the MightyLam is that it is a fairly open and easy-to-access laminator. This is a huge benefit when it comes to removing old rolls and feeding new film through the machine. Film changes are very easy on the MightyLam 2700.

The control panel on the MightyLam 2700 is very easy to operate. The left side of the machine features a couple of digital displays that give you the temperature and a small dial on the left allows you to adjust the temperature.

The right side of the machine features a “ready” light, a temperature switch, a motor switch and a fan switch. I personally like to have all the switches separated like this as it gives the operator more control and saves energy. Unlike many comparable laminators, the motor doesn’t have to be running while the laminator warms up.

The MightyLam 2700 uses heat shoes to heat up the laminating film. These shoes can get very hot, so a safety shield has been put in place. While most modern laminators feature safety shields, the shield on the MightyLam 2700 fully encompasses the hottest components.

A feed tray, located on the front of the machine, provides ample support for wide documents being fed in. A side guide makes it possible to properly align material and is ideal for repeated laminating jobs.

You can get the MightyLam 2700 in a 120 or a 240 volt version, depending on where you are at and your building’s power requirements. It weighs 200 pounds shipped, so be sure you have a workstation capable of supporting this weight.

Overall I really like the MightyLam 2700. It is a customer favorite and I consider it to be a solid laminator for medium-volume jobs.

You can find the Banner American MightyLam 2700 roll laminator here and our entire selection of thermal roll laminators here. Do you have questions or need service on your roll laminator? Call us at 1-800-658-8788.

Banner American PL135-4 Pouch Laminator Review

Tuesday, August 10th, 2010

Banner American PL135-4 Pouch LaminatorAre you in need of a reliable pouch laminator that has a little extra width to it? One model you may want to consider looking at is the Banner American PL135-4 pouch laminator (found here). We have one of these on our showroom floor and I have had a chance to play around with it. This is my review.

Laminators are nice machines to have on hand. They can be used to protect and preserve a variety of documents, signs, photographs and other material. Banner American has been manufacturing laminators for well over a decade and have established themselves as a leader in laminating machines.

The PL135-4 has been around since before I started working at ABC Office over 10 years ago and continues to be one of the most popular laminators we sell. The PL135-4 is very similar to the standard PL135, but features two additional rollers for a total of four rollers. For those of you unfamiliar with pouch laminators, the more rollers you have the better.

The rollers help to ensure better heat distribution and apply even pressure over the surface over the lamination film. This produces cleaner, clearer and blemish-free results.

One huge plus this laminator has is the 13.5-inch throat that accepts a variety of material. I personally like the wider mouth, even for 8 ½ x 11 paper, because it prevents jams and makes it easier to position material. The PL135-4 also has two porches, one on the front and one on the back. These porches are essentially extended feed and exit surfaces that make feeding pouches easier.

The PL135-4 features the ability to keep the laminator warmed up without having the motor running. This is done by using two separate switches. One turns on the heat and the other turns on the motor. Having this ability helps to extend the life of the motor.

The laminator itself looks great. The black design and modern layout really fit in well with existing office furniture. It is light enough and safe enough to be used on almost any table or desktop.

This laminator doesn’t have to be used with just larger pouches. It can also be used to laminate multiple smaller pouches at once. I have used this laminator to laminate business cards. I simply used a larger carrier and placed several smaller pouches inside.

Overall the built quality is great. I would recommend this laminator for low to medium-volume use.

You can find the Banner American PL135-4 pouch laminator here. You can find our entire selection of pouch laminators here.

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