Posts Tagged ‘L-Bar Sealers’

Best Way to Package Chocolates

Monday, October 24th, 2011

Chocolate Packaging Shrink Wrap MachineWhether you are making your own chocolates or need a way to package boxes of chocolates, you are probably going to need some sort of retail packaging. While there are several ways you can package chocolates, one of the most popular methods is by using shrink wrap. Which kind of shrink wrap machine is best for packaging chocolates and is there any risk of the chocolates melting? I will answer these questions and more in this article.

Having been in the packaging industry for over a decade know, I have seen people package everything from pizzas and baskets to soap and books. Another popular item is chocolates. This involves chocolates in a box or unboxed. There are a couple of different approaches you can take to shrink wrapping chocolate. These involve I-bar sealers and L-bar sealers. The machine you use depends on the volume you will be packaging. Here area  few benefits of both:

I-Bar Sealers – I-bar sealers (aka straight bar sealers) involve a single cutting bar. This bar is pulled down to cut film around an object, usually requiring 2 passes. These systems can be used with shrink bags, but are typically used with centerfold shrink film. Simply insert your chocolate bar or box, cut the film around the package and sealing the film using a heat gun. These machines are ideal for a few dozen to a few hundred packages a day.

Here is a video demo of an I-bar sealer in use:

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L-Bar Sealers – L-bar sealers use an L shaped sealing bar that completely seals chocolate in film in a single pass. These types of sealers can be used in conjunction with a heat gun or a heat tunnel. Many modern L-bar sealers incorporate a built-in heat tunnel that seals and shrinks the film in a single pass. These machines are ideal for a few hundred to a few thousand packages per day. Some of the higher-end machines can package tens of thousands a day.

Here is a video demo of an L-bar sealer in use:

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Which type of film should you use?
There are two primary types of shrink wrap film used in packaging. One is PVC and the other is Polyolefin. The only film that is safe for use with food is Polyolefin. This means if you are packaging chocolate, you should use Polyolefin film (aka Poly film). This is especially important if the film will be directly touching the chocolate.

Will the chocolates melt? Many people thing that since heat is used in the shrink wrap process that it will melt the chocolate. This is usually not the case. L-bar sealers, using an integrated or built-in heat tunnel will rarely if ever cause the chocolate to melt. The heat process takes just seconds and is too little time to do any damage.

I-bar sealers, which use a heat gun, do run a higher risk of melting the chocolate. While it rarely ever happens, chocolate can begin to melt if the heat gun is left on any one spot for too long. It is my observation that I-bar sealers (with heat gun) will only melt the chocolate if human error is involved. If the gun is left on any one spot for too long, it will usually damage the shrink wrap as well. Heat guns take just seconds to shrink film, so you really shouldn’t run into any issues, especially if the chocolates are in a box.

At ABC office we have sold hundreds of machines to people packaging chocolates and they always end up happy with the end results. If you do have questions, or have unique chocolate packaging needs, please feel free to speak with one of our packaging specialists at 1-800-658-8788. You can find our entire selection of shrink wrap machines here and shrink wrap film here.

Can You Package T-Shirts With A Shrink Wrap Machine?

Tuesday, July 20th, 2010

T-Shirt and Clothing Shrink Wrap SealerI had a customer ask me today if you can package t-shirts and polo shirts using a shrink wrap machine. The answer to this question is yes. There are a few things you will need to know ahead of making a shrink wrap machine purchase, but they can be used to easily package all types of fabric. Here are some helpful tips.

To begin with, most people packaging shirts and clothing don’t need the shrink wrap machine to shrink the film, they only need it to cut and seal the clothing in plastic for retail sale and shipping purposes. If this is all you need to do, you really don’t need a complete shrink wrap machine (with heat tunnel or heat gun). All you really need is an L-bar or I-bar sealer.

The most important factor to take into consideration before purchasing a sealer is to ensure that the sealing dimensions will fully encapsulate the clothing. Luckily clothing is very pliable and easy to fold in a way that it will probably work with most machines. If you use a machine to fold the clothing, you will definitely need a sealer that fits the folded clothing’s dimensions in order to save time.

Shrink wrap machines and sealers use two different types of film for packaging purposes. These two types of film are PVC and Polyolefin. PVC film has almost a cellophane feel to it where polyolefin has more of a saran wrap feel to it. The type of film depends on your preference (and budget).

If you find a good deal on a shrink wrap machine that has a heat tunnel built into it, don’t worry. Most shrink wrap machines with tunnels can have the tunnel portion turned off so that it only seals.

With regards to the customer I was speaking with about packaging t-shirts and polo shirts, he was interested in these two machines:

The Minipack Prima is an L-bar sealer only, where the Minipack Galaxy includes a built in heat tunnel. I told the customer that Minipack machines allow the operator to turn off the heat.

Still have questions about packaging fabric and clothing? Speak with one of our packaging specialists at 1-800-658-8788.

You can find our entire selection of fabric shrink wrap sealers here. You can find all our shrink wrap machines here.

Packaging Playing Cards? Consider Using A Shrink Wrap Machine.

Monday, July 12th, 2010

I-Bar Shrink Wrap Sealers / MachinesSo you’re packaging playing cards for retail sale, for use in a casino or for promotions. What is the best way to do this? You may want to consider using a shrink wrap machine. Shrink wrap is a fast and effective way to package playing cards. There are a few different ways to do this.

The two ways people package playing cards is by using an I-bar or an L-bar sealer with a heat tunnel or heat gun. The method you use will depend entirely on the amount of decks you would like to package. As a general rule, I-bar sealers are designed for lower volumes and L-bar sealers are for higher volumes of packaging.

  • I-bar sealers can be used to package several dozen to a few hundred decks a day. The speed really depends on the operator. A total of two passes of the sealing bar are required to completely seal in the deck of cards. A heat gun is then used to shrink the film. The entire process takes about 30 seconds to a minute. Be aware that I-bar sealers are sometimes called straight-bar sealers.
  • L-bar sealers can be used to package several hundred to potentially several thousand decks a day, depending on the model. Only one pass of the sealing bar is required. Heat tunnels are general used with L-bar sealers, with many L-bar machines including built-in heat tunnels. The entire process usually takes a few seconds.

Again, take into consideration how many decks of cards you wan to package now and in the future. If you expect your packaging volume to increase, you may want to invest your money in an L-bar machine. This will save you money in the long run.

You can find our entire selection of I-bar shrink wrap machines here and our entire selection of L-bar shrink wrap machines here. Still have questions about packaging your decks of cards? Call us at 1-800-658-8788 or leave you question in a comment.

Best Machine for Shrink Wrapping CDs, DVDs and Video Games

Thursday, June 24th, 2010

I-Bar Shrink Wrap Machine for CDs, DVDs and Video GamesSo you want to shrink wrap CDs, DVDs or video games but don’t know where to start? You’re in luck. We offer several options for packaging and shrink wrapping DVDs and CDs. You have two options for doing this.

The first option is the all-popular I-bar system and the other is the L-bar system. The shrink wrap machine you use will depend entirely on how many you would like to package per day. Shrink wrap protects, presents and provides a tamper-proof way to sell products.

The I-bar shrink wrap system, sometimes called a straight-bar system, is the most common and popular method used for packaging CDs, DVDs and video games. This may be for re-packaging video games for “used” sales or for packaging an independent artist’s CD.

I-bar shrink wrap machines use centerfold shrink film, which is very affordable. Once encased in plastic, a heat gun is used to shrink the film. This can be used to package anywhere from a dozen to a few hundred items per day. The entire process can take 20 seconds to a few minutes, depending on the skill of the operator and the size of the item being packaged.

Minipack Galaxy Shrink Wrapper for DVD, CD and Video Game PackagingHere are two good I-bar sealers for packaging CDs, DVDs and Video Games:

L-bar shrink wrap machines are faster than I-bar systems. They use an “L” shaped sealing bar that completely encloses a CD, DVD or video game in plastic in one single pass. Many have a built-in heat tunnel. The entire process takes a few seconds. These can be used to package hundreds of disks a day. Little manual effort is needed.

Here are two good L-bar sealers for packaging CDs, DVDs and Video Games:

You can find our entire selection of shrink wrap machines here. Good luck packaging your CDs, DVDs and video games!

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