3 Ways to Roll a Returnable Packaging Edge
There are many types of laminates in the returnable packaging market. If you are packaging parts with Class-A surfaces, or parts can’t have any scratching or marring, you will need some kind of laminate on your dividers. Some of the most used laminates are Spuntex, Tyvek, and Evolon. Some of the new laminates that hit the market recently are Suede Microfiber, and Brushed Nylon.
These new laminates give an even higher level of protection for the parts being shipped, however there is one big problem that arises – the top edge of the dividers. You can have the best laminate inside the dividers but the potential of scratching the parts during the load/unloading process is high. When plastic is cut to make the divider panels, it can leave a very sharp edge. Not only can this damage the parts but can also scratch the hand of the packaging associate – it can be a real “cuticle killer” when you reach into the cell to grab the part.
What steps can be taken to make the top edge soft and smooth?
1.) Panels can be folded in half with the laminate on the outside. This gives a nice edge. The problem is you are using double the material and the plastic tends to bow making your cells a little smaller.
2.) Laminates can be sewn to the top edge of the divider. This can be a very expensive solution. It does give a nice soft smooth edge, and for some applications this can be a good thing. A problem that seems to come up is the lip the laminate gives on the top edge. When it’s sewn there are extra laminate next to the stitch. Parts can have the potential to getting caught on the lip.
3.) The final and best solution is the rolled laminate over the top edge. There are not too many places that know how to do this process, or have the equipment to make this type of edge. This type of edge the laminate is continued from inside the cell over the top edge and into the next cell. No lip to catch your parts, no bowing of the cells, and the price isn’t much more than just a standard lamination. There are only a couple packaging suppliers that know this process. Our sponsor Amatech is one of the companies that offers the rolled edge process.
If you have any questions about the rolled edge or where you can get this made, feel free to leave a comment.
Our next post will go into more detail on the types of laminate and what the benefits for each type.
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