Archive for November, 2012

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Intelli-Cut Paper Cutting Sticks FAQ

Posted by: Office Zone on November 29th, 2012

Intelli-Cut Stack Paper CutterWe recently had a customer that was trying to track down some cutting sticks (found here) for their Intelli-Cut stack paper cutter (found here). What was odd is they seemed to be burning through these things quickly. A cutting stick, which is a type of plastic stick that the cutting blade touches when completing a cut, typically last a long time before it even needs to be rotated let alone replaced. After asking a few questions, I figured out what they were doing.

It ends up the customer didn’t realize that a cutting stick can be rotated. In fact, they didn’t realize this, but a cutting stick can be rotated a total of eight times. This is because the stack paper cutters are designed not to cut into the middle of the stick, but off to the side. This allows you to rotate the stick four times and then turn the cutting stick around and use it four more times. This means a single cutting stick should easily be able to last for months without needing to be changed.

Here is a diagram showing where the blade typically rests in the cutting stick:

Stack Paper Cutter Cutting Stick Rotation Diagram

As you can see from the diagram, you can get a lot of use out of a cutting stick. Changing cutting sticks on Intelli-Cut, Triumph and Dahle stack cutters is very easy. The Intelli-Cut and Triumph stack cutters have a hole on the side of the cutter where you simply pull out the stick and insert a new one. This makes removal, replacement and rotation extremely easy..

So how do you know when your cutting stick needs to be rotated? As a stack cutter makes repeated cuts, the blade rests in the cutting stick. This is designed to protect the blade, maintain a sharp edge and to cut through all the sheets of paper. When a cutting stick begins to be worn, you will often notice that the last page or two will not cut all the way through.

Stack paper cutters are amazing machines. They can be used to cut down stacks of paper, card stock and much more. Some can cut up to as much as 3″ of paper in a single pass. At Office Zone, we have a lot of experience with stack paper cutters, cutting sticks and paper cutter maintenance. Please feel free to call us at 1-800-543-5454. You can find our entire selection of stack paper cutters here.

We are also able to perform repairs and find replacement parts for Dahle, Intelli-Cut, Triumph, Standard and Martin Yale stack cutters. This includes replacement blades, electronics, safety guards and much more. You can contact our service department by calling 1-800-543-5454 x129 or by filling out this form.

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Minipack Galaxy – One of the Best Values in a Shrink Wrap Machine

Posted by: Office Zone on November 27th, 2012

Minipack Galaxy Shrink Wrap MachineIf you are a startup business, a small business or simply need an economical way to package your products for retail sale, the Minipack Galaxy (found here) is by far one of the best shrink wrap machines you can buy for the money. Shrink wrap machines package products using clear thermo shrink film that looks great! Customers won’t know the different between your products packaged on the Galaxy versus an industrial machine that costs 10 times as much. It is a highly professional system. Here are a few reasons why I recommend the Minipack Galaxy over the competition.

  • Value – Let’s face it. We all have a limited amount of money and are often expected to squeeze blood from a turnip. When you’re given a limited amount of money for a complete shrink wrap system, but are expected to buy a superb piece of expensive equipment, I recommend the Minipack galaxy.
  • Sealing Area – The Minipack Galaxy offers a sealing area that is 14″ wide by 17 ½” long by 8″ high. This is more than enough sealing area to package DVDs, CDs, Blu-rays, software boxes, chocolates, soap and even some pizzas. It is ample room for most retail packaging needs.
  • L-Bar – This machine uses an L-bar sealer to seal film around a product in a single pass. When using centerfold shrink film, the bottom (where the product is inserted) and the right side (connected to the roll of film) are open. The L shape of the sealing bar seals both open sides simultaneously.
  • Integrated Tunnel – The Minipack Galaxy is a very compact system considering what it does. It uses an integrated shrink tunnel that is actually part of the sealing area. This means while the shrink film is being sealed around a product, the thermo shrink film is being shrunk around the item. This all-in-one process takes just seconds to complete. The Galaxy is rated to package about 300 pieces an hour.
  • Film Compatibility – The Galaxy can be used with both PVC and Polyolefin film (found here). Just be aware that the Galaxy’s film dispenser has a roll diameter limitation of 10″. The tunnel shrinks both PVC and Polyolefin centerfold shrink film without a problem.
  • Fine Tuned Adjustments – The control panel on the Minipack Galaxy allows the operator to adjust the sealing time, temperature of the integrated tunnel and the amount of time hot hair is blown onto the film. These adjustments make this machine highly versatile for a variety of packaging applications.
  • Mobility – The Galaxy sits on casters, making it easy for just about anyone to move around. This is especially nice when freeing up floor space after a packaging job.
  • Build Quality – Let’s face it, many of the shrink wrap machines are assembled using the cheapest parts available to save cost. The Galaxy is made using superb materials and craftsmanship in Italy. The design works flawlessly and it is literally designed to hold up for years with proper care.

This is a detailed video demonstration of the Minipack Galaxy in use:

If you have additional questions, please feel free to contact one of our Shrink Wrap Specialists at 1-800-543-5454. They can help answer questions in a clear and timely manner. You can find our entire selection of shrink wrap machines here. If you need replacement parts or accessories, feel free to contact our Service Department at 1-800-543-5454 x129. Thanks for reading!

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Polyolefin vs PVC Shrink Film. Which is Best?

Posted by: Office Zone on November 26th, 2012

Centerfold Thermo Shrink Wrap FilmIf you’re shopping around for shrink film for your machine, you have probably come across two different times of film, PVC and Polyolefin (found here). Both of these film types are readily available and are used for packaging a variety of products. So which of these two types of film are best? Should you go with PVC or Polyolefin shrink film?

Before you decide on a film type, be aware that most shrink wrap machines (I-Bar and L-Bar) can use either type of thermo shrinkable film (film that shrinks with heat). That means if you would like to try both out and see which you prefer, you can try one out and then the other without having to buy a new machine. There are a few limitations you should be aware of.

Many shrink wrap machines have a diameter limitation based on the diameter of the centerfold shrink wrap film being used. Almost all shrink wrap machines can handle a PVC shrink film roll because the length is usually around 500 feet long. The Polyolefin film rolls range in length from 2,600 to 4,300 feet in length, making the diameter fairly large. Most I-bar sealers can handle any roll of centerfold Polyolefin film, but not all L-bar shrink wrap systems can.

Here are some of the pros and cons of both types of shrink wrap film.

Polyolefin Centerfold Thermo Shrink Wrap FilmPolyolefin Film (found here) – Polyolefin shrink wrap film has quickly become one of the most popular used today. A few years ago PVC was still king, but Polyolefin has risen to the top for many reasons. Here are just a few that you should be aware of:

  • Polyolefin film is more environmentally friendly than PVC and is easier to recycle.
  • Polyolefin is typically more durable than PVC film because it has more stretch and give.
  • This film is better than PVC for bundling multiple items together.
  • Unlike PVC film, Polyolefin doesn’t give off nearly as much odor or smoke during the shrink wrap process.
  • When you break it down per square foot of film, Polyolefin is actually less expensive. While the rolls cost more, you get a lot more film for the price.
  • It doesn’t gum up the cutting wire in shrink wrap machines as much as PVC.
  • It is safe for direct contact with food.
  • It is more difficult to puncture or tear Polyolefin film than PVC film.
  • Polyolefin film can be used to package just about anything from DVDs and music to fruit baskets and soap.
  • Doesn’t lose integrity or appearance with age.
  • Provides a professional appearance for retail display purposes.

PVC Film (found here) – PVC film used to be the most popular film used. It is still very popular today for packaging individual items for retail sale. Here are a few things you may like to know about PVC film:

  • Still a great method for packaging  items such as DVDs, CDs, boxes and software.
  • Very common and readily available.
  • Compatible with all heat tunnels and heat guns.
  • Can be used with any I-bar sealer or L-bar shrink system.
  • Easier for a customer to open up than Polyolefin film (this could be a plus or minus).

Both types of film are available in different thicknesses. In the United States this is known as the gauge. The higher the gauge number, the thicker the film. Film thicknesses usually range from 60 gauge up to 100 gauge. Outside the United States shrink film is measured in microns.

In conclusion, I have to say that my preference is Polyolefin film. I don’t consider PVC film to be bad, but I do consider Polyolefin to be better. The only downside is that Polyolefin film comes in larger diameters that may not be compatible with your system.

At Office Zone, we have years of experience with both shrink wrap machines and film. Please feel free to call us at 1-800-543-5454 with questions about film or machines. You can find our entire selection of film here and shrink wrap machines here.

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Reviewed: Compack 5800 Shrink Wrap Machine

Posted by: Office Zone on November 21st, 2012

Compack 5800 Shrink Wrap MachineIf you’re shopping around for a shrink wrap machine that can be used to package a wide range of products, boxes, music, videos and mother material, the Compack 5800 shrink wrap machine (found here) is a great option. This commercial-grade machine has been around for years and is an Office Zone recommended products thanks to a great track record. So is this machine a good fit for you and your business? I will explain why this may be the shrink wrap machine for you in this article.

To begin with, the Compack 5800 is what’s known as a shrink wrap system or an L-bar sealer with tunnel. It is designed to be used with centerfold shrink film (PVC or Polyolefin) and is a very simple system to use. From start to finish, it takes just a matter of seconds to seal plastic around your product and for the tunnel to shrink the film.

Here are just a few reasons why this is such a good machine:

Compact Design – Many shrink wrap systems involve separate heat tunnels, conveyor belt systems and a wide range of hardware. The Compack 5800 is very compact and requires little floor space. It can package 8 to 10 products a minute while measuring in at 53″ L x 34″ W x 52″ H.

Film Roll Dispensor – This machine uses centerfold rolls of shrink film. Centerfold film consists of PVC or Polyolefin film that has been folded over once and rolled up. The Compack 5800 holds this film and makes it easy to pull the film out and insert a product. It even has a film opener that keeps a pocket open for easy product insertion.

Perf Wheels – Small perf wheels poke tiny holes into the shrink film as it is being dispersed. This allows air to quickly leave the packaging while shrinking, preventing holes from forming during the shrink process.

L-Bar Sealer – The integrated L-bar on this machine seals all open ends of the film, fully encapsulating the item being shrink wrapped. This is much faster than I-bar sealers and is excellent for packaging several items a minute.

Magnetic Lockdown – A magnetic lockdown keeps the sealing bar and hood held down during the entire shrink wrapping process, freeing up your hands to begin working on the next item. Once the process is complete, the magnet will let go of the hood and it will open back up on its own.

Integrated Heat Tunnel – The integrated heat tunnel allows the Compack 5800 to seal and shrink a product at the same time. This also means you won’t have to deal with a separate heat tunnel hanging off the side of the machine. This is a very fast and seamless process.

Freestanding Design w/ Casters – There is no need to have a counter or table to use this machine. It comes in a freestanding design and sits on casters. It is very easy to wheel around and position.

Adjustable Heat, Sealing & Fan – The Compack 5800 allows the operator to adjust the heat temperature, the sealing time and the amount of time the fan blows hot air on the product. These features make it possible to shrink wrap delicate products such as soap and chocolate and allows the Compack 5800 to be used with a wide variety of shrink wrap film.

Items of Note – Be aware that this is a 220 volt 20 amp single phase machine. You will need to have a power source available to accommodate these power requirements.

Here is a video demonstration of the Compack 5800 in use:

As mentioned earlier, this is one of the most popular shrink wrap machines we offer. It is extremely versatile, has impressive sealing dimensions and has a great track record with our customers. Having used it myself, I can vouch for its quality and excellent results. Please don’t hesitate to call us at 1-800-543-5454 with any questions. You can find our entire selection of shrink wrap machines here.

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Which Shrink Wrap Gauge Thickness is Best?

Posted by: Office Zone on November 20th, 2012

Shrink Wrap Machines & FilmIf you have a shrink wrap machine and are shopping around for film (found here), you may be wondering which gauge thickness you should be using. For that matter, you may also be wondering what type of film you should use. I will cover all of the various gauges of film in this article and will make some recommendations based on what you are packaging. Just remember, once you have the basics down shopping for shrink film isn’t too difficult.

The gauge of shrink film is the thickness. Unlike electrical wire, where the lower the gauge the thicker the wire, shrink film gets thicker the higher the gauge number is. If you are familiar with mil thickness, which is a thousandth of an inch, the conversion to shrink film gauge is very simple. One mil of film (0.001″) is the same thickness as 100-gauge shrink film. The thickness of film you use will depend greatly on the type of film you are using.

Types of Film:

  • Polyolefin Shrink Wrap FilmPolyolefin (found here) – Polyolefin film is a food grade shrink wrap film that is commonly used for packaging music, videos, food and more. It is growing in popularity due to its stretchy properties and extreme durability. This film has a similar consistency to saran wrap. It emits less smoke and odor than other types of shrink film.
  • PVC (found here) – This film has a stiffer feel than Polyolefin film and used to be the most common type of shrink film used. It is still usually the cheapest and is excellent for packaging boxes, CDs, DVDs and other material. This film is not food safe.

Common Shrink Film Gauges:

  • 60 Gauge – This is the most common and popular thickness for Polyolefin shrink film. This is an excellent thickness for packaging movies, CDs, boxes and other single items. If you need to package multiple items together, depending on their weight, you may want to go with a slightly thicker film for additional support.
  • 75 Gauge – This is the most common thickness for PVC shrink film. It is more than adequate for packaging individual items. If you are bundling multiple movies, boxes or other material together, you may want to go with a 100 gauge film.
  • 100 Gauge – While you can buy film thicker than 100 gauge, this is by far the most common thickness for bundling multiple items together. You can buy both Polyolefin and PVC shrink film in 100 gauge. Rarely will you ever need Polyolefin in a 100 gauge thickness.

Most shrink wrap machines can easily handle 60, 75 or 100 gauge films. I have never had an issue with a heat gun or a heat tunnel getting all thicknesses of film to properly contract and wrap around the item being packaged. You can buy both PVC and Polyolefin in centerfold shrink film rolls or in pre-cut shrink bags.

At Office Zone we have years of experience with shrink wrap machines and film. Please feel free to contact us at 1-800-543-5454 with any questions. You can find our entire selection of shrink wrap machines here.

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Waiting Room & Office Lobby Furniture Options

Posted by: Office Zone on November 19th, 2012

If you are in the process of trying to furnish a waiting room or office lobby in a doctor’s office or other location, we have a lot of great furniture options you may want to consider using. I would like to highlight some of our most poplar waiting room and office lobby furniture and provide you with some links to products that may help you with your furnishing needs. Please keep in mind that our entire selection of furniture is made of high quality materials with much of it being made in the USA.

Not only do we offer a great selection of high-quality waiting room and office lobby furniture, but our products are available to you at guaranteed low prices. Over the past several years, we have added a great selection of products including magazine racks, brochure holders, chart holders and more. Here is a list of our current waiting room & office lobby favorites:

  • Wall Mounted Magazine RacksWall Mounted Magazine Racks (found here) – At Office Zone we offer an excellent selection of wall-mounted magazine racks. We have found that our wall-mounted magazine racks are particularly popular because they put reading literature and paitents’ fingertips and make great use of often-wasted wall space. Our selection includes wood, wire and plastic magazine racks. We have found that our wooden and plastic (PETG Plastic) racks are the most popular and common for a waiting room setting due to their durability.
  • Tabletop Brochure HoldersTabletop Brochure Holders (found here) – Our countertop brochure holders are very popular in doctors’ offices, clinics and hospitals because they provide a great place to display important medical brochures and literature. These brochure holders are mobile, easy to deploy and are made from high-quality materials. Many come in multi pocket configurations and can be used to hold a wide variety of brochures and pamphlets. These are designed to make literature easy to view and access.
  • Office Lobby & Waiting Room TablesLobby & Office Tables (found here ) – Every waiting room or lobby needs a good table for holding magazines or simply as a place to put a purse or other material. These office lobby tables look great and some even include magazine pockets! Many of these tables can be used in the middle of a room, next to a chair or against a wall. Choose from a variety of configurations and a wide range of wood stain color choices.  These tables are easy to clean and are durable enough to be used on a daily basis.
  • Lobby & Waiting Room SeatingLobby Seating (found here) – Our lobby and waiting room seating is designed to look great, be easy to clean and hold up well with daily use. Our great selection includes padded benches, individual chairs, linked sled chairs and even bariatric chairs.  Most chairs come in several different wood stains and fabric color / pattern options. These can be used against a wall, next to each other or out in the open. These chairs look great in person. You won’t be disappointed.
  • Wood Coat & Hat RacksWooden Hat & Coat Racks (found here ) – Everybody needs a good place to put their hat or coat right? Why settle for something complicated when you can buy one of our Wooden Mallet coat or hat racks? These racks are made from wood and bolt right onto the wall for convenient. These provide a huge convenience to patients and customers. Our selection includes models with brass hooks, wooden pegs, shelves and much more. Mounting hardware is included and they are very easy to install.
  • Wood Glove & Tissue Box HoldersGlove & Tissue Box Holders (found here) – What would a doctor’s office or hospital be without latex gloves and tissue boxes for runny noses? We offer a great selection of wooden box holders for placing on a table or mounting directly to a wall. Our selection of boxes includes single, double, triple or larger designs.

If you don’t see what you’re looking for in this list of products, give us a call at 1-800-543-5454. We offer a great selection of other office furniture including chart holders, x-ray holders, desk seating and more.

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All About Centerfold Shrink Film Rolls – PVC & Polyolefin

Posted by: Office Zone on November 16th, 2012

Centerfold Shrink Wrap FilmIf you’re looking for an economical way to package products for retail sale, you may want to consider using a shrink wrap machine (found here) that uses centerfold shrink film rolls (found here). Centerfold shrink film provides a fast, affordable and effective way to package products. There are several factors involved in choosing a roll of film for packaging. This article will cover all aspects of shrink packaging in an effort to help you make a more educated decision when shopping around.

Before you start packaging anything, you’re going to need a machine. At Office Zone, we offer a great selection of I-bar sealers and shrink wrap systems. Once you have a machine, you will need to read the owner’s manual and determine what the maximum width of film is, maximum diameter and types of film it can handle. If you can’t find that information, please call us at 1-800-543-5454 and we can help you figure that out.

Here are a few things you will need to know:

  • Centerfold Shrink FilmFilm Types – Centerfold shrink film comes in two different formats; these are PVC and Polyolefin. Most shrink wrap machines can use either PVC or Polyolefin film.
  • PVC Film – PVC film has been around for years and used to consist of the bulk majority of packaging. It is commonly seen in packaging for DVDs, CDs, software packaging and other retail packaging. PVC film has a crinkly feel to it and is less flexible than Polyolefin film. PVC film is not approved for direct contact use with food. PVC film is typically cheaper than Polyolefin film.
  • Polyolefin Film – Polyolefin film is growing in popularity for many reasons. To begin with, it is stretchier and has more give to it than PVC film. As a result, Polyolefin film (aka Poly film) doesn’t break or tear as easily. It is also approved for use with food.
    Determining Film Size – When packaging a product, there are several things you will need to take into account. While the width of the product is important, you will also need to take into account the height of a product. If you have a box that is 10″ wide and 4″ tall, you will need at minimum a roll of film that is 16″ wide to accommodate the height. How is this calculated? Take the width of the film, plus the height and add 2″. The formula looks like this (Width + Height + 2″).
  • Width – If you have a shrink wrap machine that handles film up to 24″ wide, you will be able to use any rolls 24″ or smaller. This is nice to know and may affect the machine you purchase. If you only need a 10″ width, but may see a need for something bigger in the future, I recommend you get a machine with a slightly longer sealing width in order to be prepared for future jobs.
  • Diameter – A centerfold roll of film consists of a sheet of film that has been folded in half and rolled up. This means a 24″ wide roll of centerfold film is actually a 48″ sheet that has been folded in half. Different shrink film supplies come in different lengths. PVC film often comes in 500 foot lengths, but Polyolefin film often comes in rolls as large as 4,000+ feet long. Just be sure your machine has ample room to accommodate the diameter of the roll.
  • Thickness – Shrink wrap film thickness is measured in gauge rather than mils (mils is used with lamination film). The higher the gauge number, the thicker the film. The most popular PVC film gauge is 75 and the most popular Polyolefin gauge is 60.

If you still have questions about centerfold shrink film, or if you just need a little help selecting the right product, please feel free to give us a call at 1-800-543-54543.

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Which Wire Binding Hole Pattern is Best – 2:1 or 3:1 Pitch?

Posted by: Office Zone on November 15th, 2012

Wire Binding MachinesIf you are shopping for a wire binding machine (found here), you may have come across two or perhaps even three different hole patterns. While wire binding looks great, it can often be difficult to settle on any one wire hole pattern. So which pitch (aka hole pattern) is best? This article will cover all hole patterns and their benefits.

The three hole patterns used in wire binding are referred to as 2:1 pitch, 3:1 pitch and 19-ring. The most common wire binding hole pattern used today is 3:1 pitch. The pitch is the hole pattern, specifically the amount of holes per inch. A 2:1 pitch machine punches two holes per inch and a 3:1 pitch machine punches three holes per inch. A 19-ring hole pattern, often called Spiral-O, consists of 19 total holes along the 11″ side of a sheet of paper.  You can find all our wire binding supplies here.

3:1 Pitch Wire Hole Pattern3:1 Pitch Wire – The 3:1 pitch hole pattern is the most common hole pattern used today for many reasons. To begin with, it has a very tight look because there are three holes per inch of paper. It ends up being about 32 to 33 holes along the 11″ side of a sheet of paper. They can be used to bind up to 9/16″ of paper, which is about 120 sheets. This is very popular for reports and presentations.

2:1 Pitch Wire Hole Pattern2:1 Pitch Wire – The 2:1 pitch isn’t as popular as 3:1, but is very poplar with people that need to bind over 9/16″ of paper. The 2:1 hole pattern can bind documents up to 1 ¼” thick. This style of wire binding machine punches two holes per inch and has a wider look than the 3:1 pitch wire.

19-Ring Spiral-O Wire Hole Pattern19-Ring Wire – The 19-ring Spiral-O pattern was developed to take advantage of existing comb binding machines that used the same hole pattern. The idea was to market a wire supply that could be used with a comb-binding machine. All you would need to purchase would be a separate wire closer to complete the process. A 19-ring pattern looks very similar to a 2:1 pitch pattern. This type of wire binding is not very common.

So what do you do if you like both 2:1 and 3:1 wire bound documents? What you have to do is use a combination binding machine (found here). These are machines that are built with a 2:1 and a 3:1 pitch wire punch. This allows them to punch paper in either hole pattern and is a very useful machine. Our most popular combination wire binding machine is the Akiles DuoMac (found here).

When shopping around for entry-level to mid-level wire binding machines, I recommend keeping an eye open for Intelli-Bind and Akiles. When shopping around for high-volume machines, I recommend Akiles and Renz. You can find our entire selection of wire binding machines here.

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Best Bag & Heat Sealers for Your Business

Posted by: Office Zone on November 14th, 2012

Handheld Bag & Heat SealersIf you are packaging products in a bag, the fastest and most efficient way to complete the packaging process is to use a bag sealer, often referred to as a heat sealer (found here). These machines use heat to seal the open end of a bag shut. Bag sealers are used to package everything from beef jerky to nuts and bolts. These plastic bags provide a sanitary and tamper proof way to present products for retail sale. So with dozens of machines available, which is the best one to use? This article will cover several types of bag sealers.

While you can probably break it down into more than just three categories, I have found that most people put bag sealers into these four categories:

  1. Handheld Bag Sealers (found here) – These are the most common types of bag sealers that we offer due in part to the low cost and the portability factor. These sealers come in an I-bar configuration and in a clamp design. You can usually choose from several sealing lengths, depending on the bag you are sealing, and different sealing widths. AIE and Traco manufacture our most popular units. Longer bag sealers can be used to seal smaller bags. Some handheld bag sealers include built in cutters for trimming off excess plastic.
  2. Foot Operated Bag SealerFoot Operated Heat Sealers (found here) – These sealers allow for hands free operation, which means the operator can hold the bag with both hands while sealing them shut. These sealers don’t cost a lot more than a handheld sealer, yet make it possible to seal a lot more bags. AIE manufactures our most popular foot operated heat sealers although SealerSales makes a really cool adapter that makes it possible to turn your clamping handheld sealer into a cheap foot sealer.
  3. Automated Bag Sealers (found here) – These are the kinds of sealers that a lot of preppers and food storage companies use to bags shut. These machines usually have very specific settings based on the type of bag being sealed and usually include a foot pedal that activates an electric sealing clamp. These machines are ideal for industrial-level bag sealing.
  4. Continuous Band Bag SealerContinuous Band Bag Sealers (found here) – Continuous band bag sealers make it possible to seal a lot of bags shut in a short amount of time. Simply feed your bag into the band sealer and it will pull it through a heating element that seals the bag shut. These types of machines are excellent for commercial bag sealing and are used by companies and factories for retail packaging of food and other items.

Types of Seals – A few things to keep in mind is the sealing length, width and type. The sealing length is determined by the total length of the heating element. As mentioned earlier, longer sealing lengths can be used to seal smaller bags or multiple bags shut. The sealing width ranges from 2mm up to 10mm+.  The seal is usually just a flat line although some sealers create a textured, honeycomb or crosshatch pattern.

Types of Materials – Our heat sealers and bag sealers can be used to seal and package products in a variety of plastic bags. THis includes Polyethelene, Polypropylene, PVC, Foil and Surlyn, Mylar, Padded Mailers and Bubble Pack.

You can find our entire selection of bag sealers, shrink wrap machines and other packaging products here. Feel free to call us at 1-800-543-5454 with any questions you may have regarding heat and bag sealers.

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How do Self Sharpening Paper Cutters Work?

Posted by: Office Zone on November 12th, 2012

Self Sharpening Paper CuttersIf you have ever shopped around for a paper cutter (found here), you may have seen the terminology “self sharpening blade” touted as a selling feature. This sounds almost too good to be true, right? How can a paper cutter blade possibly be self-sharpening? Is this a gimmick or is it the real deal? I would like to answer a few of these questions and more in this article.

The first thing you should know is that the term self-sharpening is almost entirely coined by the rotary paper cutting business. Rotary paper cutters are those trimmers that have the round pizza cutter-like blade that rolls across the paper. Rotary cutters come in all shapes and sizes. Some have blades that rest into a plastic strip (typically cheaper cutters) and then there are those that slide against a metal base blade.

The cutters that slide against the metal base blade are known as a self-sharpening cutter. The idea is that the rotary cutting wheel is positioned in such a way that it rubs against the base blade in such a way that it is constantly sharpening the rotary cutting wheel. This means as you are cutting your paper or photos, you are also simultaneously sharpening the cutting wheel. Here is a picture showing what I am talking about:

Self Sharpening Paper Cutting Blade

So is this “self-sharpening” system real or is it simply a gimmick? I can attest to the fact that a self-sharpening cutter will hold its edge longer than those rotary cutters that simply roll along a plastic strip. Will a self-sharpening blade eventually dull? Yes, it will eventually dull with time. While the self-sharpening system isn’t magic, it does accomplish what the engineers set out to do. It does in fact extend the life of the blade and maintain an edge for a longer period of time.

Some guillotine cutters, especially those from Dahle, also claim to be self-sharpening. As the arm blade slides against the base, it rubs against a base blade much like a pair of scissors. This friction action acts like a knife on a whetstone, which helps keep the blade sharp. This also helps the guillotine maintain a decent edge over a long period of time.

When it comes to rotary paper cutters and trimmers, I find Rotatrim, Akiles, Dahle and Foster Keencut to be great cutters that utilize high quality blades that are designed to hold up with continued use. These cutters (found here) are excellent for photography use, scrapbooking use, copy shop use and more.

If you are looking for a decent rotary paper cutter or a guillotine, please feel free to give us a call at 1-800-543-5454. We would love to help you out!