What is Shrink Wrapping?
Shrink wraps are made up of polymer plastic which tightly covers any object on the application of heat. A shrink machine is used to apply heat to these wraps. These are light in weight and can be used to wrap any material. The heavier versions of these wraps are used for industrial purposes. They are used to cover large equipment, large construction scaffoldings such as those used in the construction of bridges and buildings, helicopters, and other big vehicles. Shrink wraps are also used for storage purposes.
Heat Application to Shrink Wrap
Any item is wrapped using these films using a roll designed for shrink wrapping. Once the film surrounds the object, a heat gun, oven, or a shrink tunnel is used to shrink the film tightly around the object.
Heat Gun – A heat gun is a device that emanates heat. This heat is in the form of a stream of hot air. The device itself resembles a hairdryer and operates at high temperatures.
Oven – It is basically a thermally insulated chamber. An oven is similar to that used at your home for the purpose of heating, baking, or drying. It works on the same principles on which your home oven works.
Shrink Tunnel – A shrink tunnel is a heated tunnel mounted over or around a conveyor belt. The film is then passed through to create the intended result.
Shrink wraps are used to shrink in one (unidirectional) or two (bidirectional) directions. While being manufactured, these films are heated and then cooled to achieve a stretched position. They remain so until they are applied to an item and reheated. This way, the film shrinks back to its original form and covers the object tightly.
Apart from the functional use, shrink wrapping has the added benefit of adding an aesthetic look to the products its applied to. Shrink wrap also serves as a tamper-proof packaging for items like CD’s, DVD’s, stationary, games and computer software.
Shrink Film Technology
As technology continues to evolve and the quality of the shrink films produced is progressing as well. The newer generation films are much better in terms of shrink capability, the ability to seal, optics, toughness, and slip. These characteristics make shrink films the most sought-after packing material across industrial sectors. They are used in a number of areas including production, distribution and even construction.