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Laminating issues...

Discussion in 'Installation Equipment & Techniques' started by SolitaryT, Mar 26, 2013.

  1. SolitaryT

    SolitaryT Member

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    Here's one for the best minds, or maybe the simplest minds... either way, apparently, not MY mind.

    I have an Arctic Titan 165 laminator. Typically, I'll run 3M 8508 on it, laminating to IJ40C. However, with most laminates, and ESPECIALLY with the 3M, every time I run anything through it, there's a line that shows up and inevitably falls in the print. What I can deduce is that when the laminate sits for too long, the point of separation where the backing goes up to it's own roll and the laminate continues over the roller and onto the prints, that point of separation is a little rough, and it winds up being a long, slightly noticable (abhorrently noticable to myself) line across the print. It can usually be fixed by simply running a squeegee down it and popping it as a bubble. It's annoying. I'm wondering if it's a laminate thing, a laminator thing, or an operator error (I've been doing this for a decade, but that doesn't make me an expert). Anyone have any tips or run into this before?
     
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  2. JBusch260

    JBusch260 Active Member

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    I've gotten that quite a bit with 8519, really any 3M product. Even with other laminates, it always happens with varying visibility. I've never really been too concerned with it, as popping it works (in worst circumstances). A little heat will work it out also.
     
  3. SolitaryT

    SolitaryT Member

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    Breaks my heart that I have to use 3M, but I live in a very isolated part of the world where our customers all have iPhones and swear that 3M is God's preferred vinyl. I'll try heat. It's not super noticable, but my inner perfectionist hates that it exists at all.
     
  4. MikePro

    MikePro Major Contributor

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    buckling of the print as it feeds through the rollers?
    when I laminate long runs, I actually put on a pair of white gloves and "wax-on, wax-off" motion from center-out to keep the material perfectly flat.... otherwise, if left unattended, I sometimes get buckling if my feed is slightly off-center from the crown of the rollers.

    dialing-up the tension of the print feed, and/or keeping it at least higher than the laminate feed, also seems to do the trick but I am uncertain if this is an option on your laminator.
     
  5. JBusch260

    JBusch260 Active Member

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    Use the heat after you laminate and apply. I made the mistake of using heat on my laminator and totally destroyed a print because of how it reacted with the adhesive. Oops, amateur mistake and a lesson learned.

    One thing I do also, is I will lead extra material through first so that the break line gets applied to something that gets trimmed away. Run the print consistently through with no breaks and you should be seam/break/whatever free. Good luck!
     
  6. tbullo

    tbullo Superunknown

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    If it happens only at the start ( first foot ) its just that separation point. I just run it a little before placing the print in the machine. You can usally see it when you start running the machine.
     
  7. SolitaryT

    SolitaryT Member

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    Maybe I'll try a new laminate. Do you guys know if this issue is more common with 3M over other brands? I really liked the Avery we got from Fellers as a sample. My options are limited (Ketchikan freakin Alaska). I wish I could buy you all a beer, a cup of coffee, or whatever other beverage you'd consider cordial.
     
  8. JBusch260

    JBusch260 Active Member

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    I use 3M and Oraguard mostly.. also Wypet dry erase, and a variety of others depending on the job requirements. You're going to have a line where it stops. Some are more noticeable than others, but I think 3M is a little softer of a material than Oracal's. It will stretch easier, so being tight and not moving consistently will make that happen. You can always try lifting up the wheel and seeing if relieving the pressure in between runs will help, but if the adhesive is exposed to air for very long, you're going to be able to see it.

    Maybe some day I'll catch that beer!
     
  9. SIGNTIME

    SIGNTIME Active Member

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    i get it with oracal but it has never caused a bubble just a line in the the laminate but it is actually just the only spot without silvering when it comes through the other side ... i normally run 7 or 8 inches before i start laminating if the machine has been sitting for more then an hour webbed.
     
  10. SightLine

    SightLine Very Active Member

    It does happen more visibly with 3M laminates that we run on our exact same laminator. It's a line where the laminator has stopped allowing the adhesive in one spot to wet out more. Essentially it is a thin tiny hump in the adhesive. The only way to prevent it is to feel some scrap before the actual print and do not let the machine stop while laminating.

    Oracal and some other brands have a firmer or thinner adhesive and it will not happen as fast or as noticeable but it will happen with any if the machine is stopped long enough with the roller down. Same as you and others, run a fingernail or squeegee across the line to get rid of the worst of it....
     
  11. j35a

    j35a New Member

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    Do you have any cuts or slices in the laminator roll?
    We've had issues with this in the past. Had to buy a new roller replacement.

    Otherwise, have noticed this sometimes when the roll of lam is nearing the end.
    Imprints from where the lam ends and is taped to the roll, coming through.
     
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