Posts Tagged ‘Ultrasonic Clam Shell Sealers’

Best Types of Clam Shell Sealers

Wednesday, August 14th, 2013

Direct Heat Clam Shell SealerHave you ever purchased something at a store and it was sealed in a thick plastic shell? This is what’s known as clam shell packaging. It is packaging that opens and closes like a clam with three open sides. Scissors are often used to open this kind of packaging (or a little muscle). Years ago staplers were used to seal this type of packaging, but today most people use clam shell sealers (found here). So what is a clam shell sealer and what types are available? I’ll explain more in this article.

As mentioned earlier, years ago staples where commonly used to keep clam shell packaging closed. The downside to this is that the staples would eventually begin to rust and oxidize, making the packaging look awful. There was also the safety issue. Staples can puncture skin and potentially cause a minor injury. For this reason, most people have abandoned staples as a method for closing clam shell packaging.

Clam shell sealers, often called packaging spot welders, actually cause the top and bottom half of the clam shell packaging to melt together. This is usually done in a couple of spots on the opening side of the packaging. The sides are often left alone, although they can be sealed as well if the clam shell packaging is large. Clam shell sealers also don’t require any supplies, such as staples, to operate. Clam shell sealers range in size depending on the volume of packaging. Some are fairly automated where others are handheld.

There are two main types of technology used in clam shell sealers. The model you use will depend on several factors. Here are the types you have to choose from:

Direct Heat Clam Shell Sealer – These sealers are very popular and very common because they are so affordable. These sealers use constant heat to melt the plastic together. The concept is very simple and straightforward. They use clamping jaws and look much like a set of high-tech pliers. Some of these have a variable temperature dial where others simply have a high or low setting. Direct heat sealers are designed to work with most types of packaging including those made from OPS, PSP, PVC and EPS materials.

The KF-772DH (found here) is a great example of a direct heat clam shell sealer. It has two heated jaws that can be used to tight spot weld plastic in a 4mm x 10mm spot. This particular unit is a dual temperature model with the high temperature at 350 F and the low at 250 F. It looks a lot like a pair of pliers and it is extremely easy to maneuver. The handles are insulated, keeping them nice and cool during use.

Here’s a video demo of the KF-772DH in action:

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OnPak Ultrasonic Clam Shell SealerUltrasonic Clam Shell Sealer – If you’re concerned about safety, or you want to speed up packaging operations, you may want to consider an ultrasonic clam shell sealer. These sealers use ultrasonic vibration technology to melt and weld the plastic together rather than direct heat. As a result, there is no need to worry about being burned. These sealers are also extremely quick to use and operate. These sealers also remain remarkably clean and efficient with continued use. These sealers will work with PSP, OPS, HIPS, PPF, PP and A-PET. Some will even work with PVC clam shell packaging (verify this before purchasing a machine).

The OnPak Ultrasonic clam shell sealer (found here) is a great example of an ultrasonic unit that has PVC sealing capabilities. It works a lot like a small handheld stapler and produces a seal that measures in at 3mm x 6mm. Because it is ultrasonic, no warm up time is required.

Here’s a video demo of the OnPak in action:

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Using a handheld clam shell sealer is a great way for you to affordably package your own products. The process is very simple and very little training is required to operate one of these machines. This can allow you to package products from the convenience of your own home or a desk / table. Most of these machines weigh very little. In my experience, the direct heat sealers weigh a little more than the ultrasonic sealers.

We have decades of experience handling and dealing with packaging products and supplies. If you’re having trouble settling on a machine, or if you simply need some advice or a few answers, please feel free to give us a call at 1-800-658-8788. You can find our entire selection of clam shell sealers here.

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