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.