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Pouch Laminating & Roll Laminator FAQ


Pouch Laminators       Pouch Laminators       Pouch Laminators       Roll Laminators       Roll Laminators       Roll Laminators

Roll Laminators

We have compiled a list of the most common laminator questions from our customers and have put them in this useful pouch laminating & roll laminator FAQ. If you are trying to learn more about laminators, or are in the initial stages of looking for a laminator, this FAQ is perfect for you. Feel free to read through this. Give us a call at 1-800-658-8788 for more information on laminators.


Laminator FAQ  |  Pouch Laminator FAQ  |  Roll Laminator FAQ

Should I use a roll or pouch laminator?

It really depends on the size of the document you are laminating and the volume you need to laminate. Traditionally it was assumed that pouch laminators were used for small documents and roll laminators were used for large documents. This still holds true to a certain point, but volume also plays a big role. You can still laminate small documents on a roll laminator, but just a lot more at a time. If you will only be laminating a few small items on occasion, you might as well use a pouch laminator and save yourself the film. Also be aware that a roll laminator will take up a lot more space than a pouch laminator. The methods used between the two machines are different, but the end result looks the same.

Why would I need a reverse button in my laminator?

If for any reason your pouch or roll laminator gets jammed, the reverse function is excellent for backing out documents for re-adjustment or clearing jams. This is especially nice when loading film rolls on a roll laminator. It is not uncommon to accidentally feed a document through a pouch laminator crooked, in which case the reverse function is a life saver.

What is the temperature control for?

Temperature control is nice for adjusting the heat to accommodate various thicknesses and styles of lamination film. Different mil thicknesses and types of lamination film melt at different temperatures. Many laminators come with presets, but many higher-end laminators come with a fully variable temperature control.

What is the speed control for?

Speed control is another way to help control the quality of the laminated product. Some films, in conjunction with temperature control, need the speed to be adjusted for optimal quality.

Which mil thickness is best to use?

The mil thickness used depends entirely on what you will be laminating and how rigid you want the end result to be. If you are laminating cardstock, thicker film may not be required. If you are laminating 20# paper, you may want some film that is a little thicker. The most common lamination film thickness purchased is 5mil.

What does it mean if the film is cloudy?

If the lamination film is cloudy, you are running your laminator too cold and need to increase the temperature. The cloudiness is un-melted film.

What does it mean if the film has ripples?

If the film is rippling, your laminator is running too hot. Turn down the laminator temperature and you should eliminate the ripples.

What does it mean if the film has bubbles?

If the film has bubbles, the laminator is running too hot. If the laminator is too hot, the film can boil and bubble. Turn down the laminator and you should eliminate the problem.

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Pouch Laminator FAQ

Can I use my pouch laminator to mount photographs to foam core / board?

Some laminators can be used to mount photographs to foam core board, but the laminator has to be designed to do that. Most laminators cannot mount photographs. The Big Mouth pouch laminator is an example of a laminator capable of doing this.

How wide a laminator should I purchase?

It depends on the size of the item you will be laminating. If you are laminating an 8 ? x 11-inch sheet of paper, you will probably want a minimum of 12 inches in a laminator. Why? It is nice to have additional clearance in case the lamination sheet goes in a little crooked. A little extra width goes a long way in preventing jams.

How many rollers does a pouch laminator use?

Most laminators have either two, four or six rollers. Lower-end and entry-level laminators have two rollers. Medium and high-volume laminators often have four rollers. High-end photography laminators will often have six rollers. The more rollers, the better the end result.

Which is the best pouch laminator?

There really is no one single brand of pouch laminator that can be deemed the best. This is because of the many variables that come into play when purchasing a pouch laminator. The two best-selling pouch laminators are the PL-4A and PL-12A pouch laminators from Banner American.

Do I have to use a carrier?

It is recommended to always use a carrier, even if the laminator says you do not have to use one. Carriers not only provide rigidity to the item being laminated (preventing jams), but also keep hot glue from gumming up the rollers. In short, a carrier will extend the life of your laminator.

How long does it take a pouch laminator to warm up?

This depends on the laminator, but most pouch laminators are ready to run within 10 minutes. Many are capable of being ready after just two minutes.

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Roll Laminator FAQ

Can I use my roll laminator to mount photographs to foam core / board?

Many roll laminators can be used to mount photographs, posters, maps and more. Be sure to check the specifications of the laminator to see if it is capable of mounting. Another good indicator is the maximum thickness. If the maximum thickness of the laminator is ?-inch or more, chances are pretty good that the laminator can be used for mounting.

How is the film loaded into the laminator?

Most thermal roll laminators use two rolls of lamination film. One roll goes on top and the other on bottom. The two rolls of film are loaded onto mandrels. The diameter of the core depends on the laminator. The top and bottom roll are usually wrapped around a few bars and fed through the machine. Be sure the rolls are not on backwards as it could gum up your machine. You can see film loaded onto a roll laminator here.

Why would I want cooling fans in my roll laminator?

Cooling fans help cool down the hot lamination film as it leaves the laminator. This helps solidify the hot lamination glue and cuts down on curving and warped film.

How is the lamination film separated from the laminator?

Some roll laminators come with a built in slitter that can cut off the film. Most laminators, however, will require the use of scissors or a Zippy cutter to detach the finished product.

Which is the best roll laminator?

There is no "best laminator" label that can be put on any one laminator. The laminator you use or purchase depends on many factors, such as volume, size, film type and more. Banner American and Ledco both make laminators that are very popular with our customers.

How long does it take a roll laminator to warm up?

This depends on the laminator, but most roll laminators will be fully warmed up and ready to go within 15-20 minutes, with many warming up much sooner than that.

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