Shrink sleeve packaging involves use of plastic material referred to as a shrink film, which contracts when exposed to heat and holds onto the container. The applicator also batches products together for easier handling.
Operation of the Shrink Sleeve Machine
The basic operation starts with a blank container being directed into the machine by a conveyor system. A specific dimensions channel is installed to align the bottles. The sleeves move from a rotating spool in a roll such that they are continuously applied.
As the bottles enter the machine, the labels are removed from the roll and formed to a tube by the mandrel; precise details are printed on the labels, which are then cut into specific dimensions and positioned on the container by a shooting mechanism. The bottles will then go through a heated chamber or tunnel where the heat causes the sleeve to shrink tightly on to the container. The conveyor then directs the product to the outside.
Advantages of Using the Shrink Sleeve Machine in Industry
- Increased production; large quantities of containers are labeled therefore matching production demands and increasing profitability of the company.
- Computerized calibration enhances the quality of the product making them more appealing to the customers.
- The machines are made with strong stainless steel, which makes them robust and wear resistant.
- Complex automation allows various types of products to be labeled using this machine. Packages of different sizes can be used on these machines.
- Electronic sizing and product flow translates to less wear and tear of the machine thus reducing the overall maintenance costs.
- Ability to modify the existing programs leads to a reduction in change over time while shifting from one product to another therefore greater output is achieved.
Types and Applications of Shrink Sleeve Applicator
Various types of shrink sleeve applicators exist depending on their performances.
- High output applicators are more complex and usually installed in a fixed position. Their construction is also more complex incorporating conveyor motors, side belts, feeder motors and logic controllers.
- Lower output systems have a simpler architecture and are lighter in construction.
- Flexible and portable shrink sleevers; they are movable from one production area to another.
Applications of the shrink sleeving machine include;
- In the food and beverage production industry, airtight seals are important as well as tamper proof seals. The sleeve applicator is therefore critical for this purpose.
- Sealing of pharmaceutical products for protection and safety;
- Sealing of detergents, cleaning agents and soaps to protect from contact with moisture;
Shrink sleeve application is the process of applying printed polythene sleeve on a container of product. A sleeve applicator machine is used in this process. An unlabeled container goes into the machine on a conveyor belt, the sleeve is positioned, which then goes through a heated chamber, causing the sleeve to shrink and hold firmly on to the container.
Various advantages of the automatic shrink sleeve applicator machine include low maintenance, higher production output, improved product quality and flexibility in operation of the machine.
Products labeled using this type of machine include the food and beverages, pharmaceutical products and cleaning detergents.
This article is written by Arjun Rao – CEO of Multi Pack Machinery Company.