Anyone who has worked in an office or attended public school has surely encountered many different laminated documents. This protective covering is used to enhance the lifespan as well as appearance of items such as certificates, reports, safety instructions, signage and posters, photographs, ID and business cards, and more.
In today’s market, many different types of lamination machines are available, ranging from huge industrial variants to small and inexpensive desktop versions. Industrial laminators can accommodate a wide array of document sizes and temperature settings, and often come with multiple sets of rollers for achieving a flawless finish even when conditions are more demanding.
Laminating Machine Configurations:
Broadly speaking, laminating machines come with three types of configurations.
Film laminators: In these machines, the process of lamination involves using two layers of a laminating film. The items to be laminated are fed into the machine after placing them on the bottom layer of the film. As the items are passed through, a separate top layer gets automatically aligned and pressed down by the hot rollers. These laminating machines are extremely flexible, and are used extensively in large-scale production environments.
Pouch laminators: If you are looking for a desktop-type laminating machine for your office or school, this is the most common option for you. While using these machines, it must be heated to optimal temperature before feeding any document manually. Here, the documents are placed inside a wallet lined with adhesive or a clear plastic pouch, which is pressed together under the machine’s hot rollers.
Cold laminators: These machines are non-heating versions used specifically for handling documents that are sensitive to high temperatures. These machines only use pressure to seal an adhesive film or plastic around the material to be laminated. Though these machines are cheaper compared to others, the pouches required for cold lamination are considerably more expensive.
How do they work?
Typically, in the most common scenario, laminator machines apply a thin plastic cover to different types of documents using a combination of pressure, heat, and an internal roller mechanism.
In most of the advanced pouch laminators, a special type of extruded adhesive is used to pre-coat the plastic cover. As the pouch gets heated under the rollers of the machines, this helps create a strong bonding between the two sides of the pouch across the back and front surfaces.
While using some of the high-end laminators, you will be able to adjust settings for feed-through speeds and temperature. This can make the lamination process more effective and efficient when dealing with larger work pieces or heavier duty pouches. Moreover, some machines may even be equipped with special sensors that can detect misfeeds, and can automatically reverse-feed misaligned documents.
As laminators perform their pressing and heating functions, their rollers may lose some heat that gets directly transferred into the document pouch and the cardboard carrier. This is why a short time gap is required between documents. However, most of the modern-day laminators don’t cause any significant delay between feeds because they heat up very quickly.
If you are looking to purchase a laminator for your specific requirements, please contact us at RENZ Australia. We have an impressive range of laminating machines designed for all types of applications.