Glossary of Terms
Polyethylene Shrink Film
Polyethylene Shrink Film is a bundling film used in shrink-wrapping applications. Polyethylene is economical, provides good clarity, and is available in different thicknesses. It is our standard recommendation of film to use with Autopack machines.
Polyolefin Shrink Film
Print film is a type of packaging film used with automatic shrink bundler machines for applications that require repetitive printing on the print film material for marketing and branding products. It is used with a printed film registration device.
An unstable product is an unsteady item that can easily fall over due to its shape or size, such as being top-heavy or too tall and narrow. This is where shrink wrap bundling can help.
What is a Bullseye Enclosure?
A Bullseye Enclosure is the round opening of the film on each side of a shrink-wrapped product. An example would be the openings on the sides of a wrapped case of water. The “Bullseye” forms as the heated shrink wrap conforms to the shape of the bundled product, leaving openings that resemble a target.
What is a Drop Packer?
A Drop Packer is primarily used for packing beer bottles. Products are conveyed in lanes to a staging area where the product goes from the conveyor to thin metal rails and is then shifted to the side where the product slides through guiding fingers into a cardboard box prefilled with dividers.
What does Full Enclosure mean?
What is an RSC case?
An RSC or Regular Slotted Container is made from corrugated cardboard and is known as a Knock Down Case. An RSC has 4 flaps on the top and bottom that meet in the center face of the box and are sealed to create a case.
What is a Wraparound Case?
A wraparound case starts as a blank sheet of cardboard. It is then wrapped around the product to form the case and is sealed. It offers more protection than a tray or shrink-wrapping.
A Cold Bar is a bar that is not powered. A cold bar is coated with Teflon and sponge to prevent wear, and withstand the hot Seal Bar Knife coming down and cutting the film. Many find replacing the cold bar assembly easier than replacing the Teflon and sponge roll due to the time it takes to scrape off the material.
Web of Film
Web of Film is a term used to describe the shrink film that has yet to have product sealed inside of it. During the automatic shrink-wrapping process, products are pushed through the web of film passing under the Seal Bar. Or the web of film is passed through the dancer bars off of the roll.
Dancer Bars are articulating rollers that ‘dance’ back and forth, keeping tension on the shrink film as it passes through the web of film. Depending on the number of rolls of film a shrink bundling machine uses, there can be multiple dancer bars. For reference, diagrams on how to thread the web of film through the dancer bars are typically mounted on the frame next to the film rollers.
Once product has been pushed through the web of film and sealed by the seal bar, it goes into the Heat Tunnel. The heat tunnel uses heated air flow to shrink film around the product as the conveyor pushes it through the tunnel. The product then leaves the heat tunnel with some plasticity left in the film. Then cooling fans bring the film to a stable and firm form.
Heater Element for Heat Tunnel
Similar to base board heating elements, Heater Elements for Heat Tunnels have fins that force the heat into the tunnel creating an oven environment for the shrink-wrapping process. Typically, multiple heater elements are used in the heat tunnel.
Heater Element for Seal Bar
Centered in the Seal Bar assembly is a heater element that heats the Seal Bar Knife so it can cut and seal the shrink wrap. Unlike the heater element of a heat shrink tunnel, the heater element for the seal bar does not have fins.
Corrugated Cardboard is a general term used to describe a containerboard made up of multiple grooved or rigid layers, sandwiched between a flat inner and outer layer. Its’ stability makes it a widely used packaging material.
A Tray starts out as a ‘board blank’ before it is formed into a tray with a bottom, side walls, and open top. A tray packer device is used in conjunction with a packaging bundler to form the tray, as products are moved onto the board blank. The product allows the final forming of the tray as it is squeezed with pressure triggered glue. Tray packaging is ideal for retail shelf stocking and cardboard recycling.
A Board Blank is a generic term for a flat cardboard that is used with an automatic shrink bundler to form a container. During the process the board blank is folded then glued to form a tray, carton, or wraparound case. Board blanks are used to feed the magazine on shrink bundling machines, or can be purchased as ‘pop-ups’ when assembling by hand.
A Dead-Plate is a transitional plate typically made from stainless steel or UHMW (wear resistant plastic), that allows products to move more smoothly from one conveyor to another. As a live conveyor moves, and the dead-plate remains still, it creates an easier transition to the next conveyor.
A Live Conveyor is a powered mechanism used in shrink bundling systems to push and transfer products. Product are collated on the conveyor before being pushed off, which allows for more efficient feeding of the product during packaging.
A Seal Bar is the assembly of a shrink bundler machine that comes down over the shrink film, then cuts and seals it. It is made up of a seal bar knife and heat element to seal the film prior before it goes through the heat shrink tunnel.
Seal Bar Knife
A Seal Bar Knife is part of the seal bar assembly in a shrink bundler machine that cuts, heats and seals the shrink film. The Seal Bar Knife moves up and down as the product passes through the sheet of shrink film and into the heat shrink tunnel for the products’ final shrink wrapping.