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How long can you laminate a print?

Discussion in 'Digital Printing' started by VinylLabs.com, Aug 17, 2011.

  1. VinylLabs.com

    VinylLabs.com Member

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    I've never laminated anything (I have my prints outsourced) but I am (still) looking at upgrading to a printer/laminator.

    I was just wondering, suppose I wanted to start printing up some patterns on a roll of vinyl for wraps, how long could I print before laminating? Is it possible to print around 10 yards of material then have it laminated? or is shorter runs recommended?
     
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  2. omgsideburns

    omgsideburns Very Active Member

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    laminating ten yards won't be an issue if you put it in straight. i'm sure a lot of guys on here print then lam entire rolls.
     
  3. MikePro

    MikePro Major Contributor

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    i just got done laminating 4 entire 150' rolls of print for a current project i'm working on. not hard to get it square, and even harder to drift so much that you're print becomes ruined... if you take you're time.

    anything under 20' I do via hinge-method and use my laminator as a giant squeegee. Over that, i'll web my laminate and go roll2roll lamination.
     
  4. Kyle Blue

    Kyle Blue Member

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    omgsideburns has it right. As long as your straight, you can laminate as long as you want.
     
  5. ucmj22

    ucmj22 Very Active Member

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    even if your not perfectly straight, if to tighten the $#!t out of the feed roll, it will correct itself. we laminate 50yd on a regular basis and have done full rolls
     
  6. VinylLabs.com

    VinylLabs.com Member

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    cool, thanks!

    I was thinking of printing up some wrap material, like digital camo and the like. (I know that material exists, just different colors)
     
  7. elbandito57

    elbandito57 New Member

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    making sure laminate is square

    Hey there, just saw this post. Has anybody got any tips to making sure the print is square in the laminator? I've done a few runs and have managed to keep everything in but it was more luck than judgement! I see somebody recommends to tighten the feed roll, does that definitely work if you see the job is running out?

    Thanks in advance!
     
  8. MikePro

    MikePro Major Contributor

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    i find long-runs easier to laminate.
    I go through rolls and rolls of print/lam at once for large projects.
    Gotten so good at it, I can laminate an entire 54" x 50yd roll and only "drift" <.25", if at all.
     
  9. MikePro

    MikePro Major Contributor

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    i tighten the feed roller, hold my print with two hands by the edges and feed into laminator... keeping constant pressure against the media, but not too much that I pull more off the roll, as I have someone else crank down my rollers.
     
  10. ChicagoGraphics

    ChicagoGraphics Major Contributor

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    I have laminated full rolls of 165 feet many of times never went crooked on me. The key is to start off with a streight edge and your good to go.
     
  11. gabagoo

    gabagoo Major Contributor

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    I primarily hinge with the laminator as most runs are not to long but a 20' hinge? how do you do that?
     
  12. Charlie J

    Charlie J Very Active Member

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    I'd like to see how some of you guys do it. I've got a Royal Sovereign and I can hardly ever seem to make it run straight.
     
  13. SignStudent

    SignStudent Member

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    Wow I thought I was the only one who did that haha. Now I see two people on here already that do. It's so convenient being able to switch quickly between different sizes and types of laminate. Must have a long table to do something that large though!
     
  14. Custom_Grafx

    Custom_Grafx Very Active Member

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    Also a RS user here.

    Did around 25-30 metres the other day with only around 15mm drift from start to finish. I managed to bring it back a little by applying more tension with my hands on one side. It's a very gradual process, but possible it seems to re-align. I am not a pro in this re-aligning step yet, but I think should be ok after doing it a few more times.

    Many jobs for me are no big deal though, as many are within 5-10 metres, and I can lam pretty straight start to finish without being too fussy at all really.

    Does your RS have a feeder and a take up at the back or does it just hit the floor when it comes out?
     
  15. MikePro

    MikePro Major Contributor

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    LOL, I WISH! i meant @ 54" x <20', i'll have a 54" hinge.

    At that point I just use my tightly-wound laminate/print rolls as my square, by butting them up against the rollers as I crank it down with just enought room to peel the backing off the laminate.
     
  16. MikePro

    MikePro Major Contributor

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    got a 5'x14' table, but i'll only unroll <6' of my print to make sure my laminate is square while taping my hinge (less chance of contaminating print to dust/etc, the better). I also use my plotter to measure how much laminate i'm taking off the roll, and even to cut it down from 54" to whatever width i'm going to need.
     
  17. Salmoneye

    Salmoneye Very Active Member

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    I have what is supposed to be a cheapo 60" laminator. I was never taught how to use it just watched a video on youtube. It doesn't have a powered take up for the finished job so I have someone roll it on a tube on a folding table behind the unit. I am careful to use the alignment marks/rulers on the feed table when starting. So far I have not managed to ruin a single print. Stick it in, get it going, crank up the speed and watch it run. Granted my runs are rarely over 40' and in that 40' I can get the feed off .25".
     
  18. MikePro

    MikePro Major Contributor

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    do you have a take-up for the backing paper from the laminate? When I start a long-run, i let about 5' of laminated print come out and then loosely pull it over the top of the machine and tuck into the backing paper take-up.
    friction takes care of the rest! just make sure its feeding square off the get-go, as it gets harder to correct with the more print that gets wrapped in backing paper.
     
  19. laserman70

    laserman70 Very Active Member

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    I would pay someone to come show us how here. Hate our dam lam machine. we obviously are doing something wrong. its an enduralam BU-1700. Ill pay come come help please. lol
     
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