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Laminator problems...or is it me?!

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Hardware' started by ChiknNutz, May 17, 2007.

  1. ChiknNutz

    ChiknNutz Major Contributor

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    I have a DingTec BU-1600C IIZ 60” width laminator and have been pretty successful in using it for almost 2 years now. Recently, I've been having issues with it producing wrinkles. These kinds start as waves and then move transversely across (usually from left to right) as the laminate is entering the primary roller, which then ends up as wrinkles in the finished product. I can usually get one good print of several feet and then it slowly gets worse as I go.

    I've tried numerous things to help, but then only sure-fire way of getting it to work is to NOT have the laminate unwind from the supply roll at all, but we cut off the size of laminate we need and use the laminator to kinda "mount" the laminate to the print. Definitely NOT the most time-conserving way to go, but seems to be the only way we can keep from butchering prints.

    Based on this, I have to assume that the supply roll holder is NOT truly parallel to the main laminator roller. I assume this due to how the laminate acts over some length of laminating...the LH part of the laminate seems to stay taut, whereas the RH side starts to get loose...causing these wrinkles.

    I've done my best to align everything as good as possible, but wonder where I might be going awry here?

    Aside from simply getting a better laminator, I am looking for some suggestions as I'm kinda at a loss here as to what the problem is. I know some on here have this exact laminator and ask for your experience with this machine. I've also spoken with PCSS (the local distributor) and they offered some guidance on setup and such, but it's not helping so far.

    I am open to suggestions on more robust laminators as I have considered adding another one anyway...one for mounting and one for laminating. I need 54" minimum. My employee said he used one that used spring tension on the rollers. Mine simply uses the weight of the roller to apply pressure, nothing more, nothing less.

    Thanks in advance!


    http://www.pacificcoastsignsupply.com/catalog/Laminating_Equipment.htm
     
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  2. player

    player Major Contributor

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    The tension on each side of the laminate roll can affect the wave thing.

    Does the roll have tension on both ends or just one? Look for play in that mechanism at either end.

    Also try tensioning it by hand on either side and see if you can get rid of them that way.

    I have to hold the roll on the right side sometimes, letting it slip through my hands but still providing resistance.

    P
     
  3. iSign

    iSign Major Contributor

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    Kahului, Maui
    do you set it up perfectly centered on the rollers?
    I've heard this can be related to problems such as you describe due to an intentional design of crowning in the rollers. When I have 36" material in my 63" laminator, it's well off to one side, but still works because almost none of it crosses that center crown... but on larger rolls... if the crown is not centered to the lam... it does what you describe.

    You can measure if the space between the rollers is equal by tightening them down to just loose enough to slip a handfull of sheets of paper between them. Pick 2 points 54" apart... centered to the roller length... and see if you fit 10 sheets of paper on one side (whatever number fits is fine) ...and check and see if the same or a close number fits the other side. mine varies by 7 sheets, which is not good... but i got through the job that caused me to measure & have been too busy to get further into learning how to correct it... but you sound like you have a pretty great need to resolve this, so maybe these thoughts will help
     
  4. player

    player Major Contributor

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    Good tip with the paper...I will check mine.

    P
     
  5. Replicator

    Replicator Major Contributor

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    Also if the laminate roll itself is damaged on the ends

    this can cause a bind if even for a split second

    which will then have the lam running through off kilter !
     
  6. ChicagoGraphics

    ChicagoGraphics Major Contributor

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    We have a 65" GBC laminator, and had the same problem your having, what caused ours to get wrinkles was the kraft paper we were using was to thin. We started to use 50lb. kraft paper and never had that problem again.
    Hope this helps you
     
  7. flat rock stan

    flat rock stan Member

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    Jeez! I just had the dingtek delivered because everyone liked them last month. Lol!! I guess you have the problem using different laminates. Maybe bad product or good stuff gone bad? The distributor was out this week to “teach” me how to laminate with mine and we burned a trash can full of product with wrinkles just getting the roll in and lined up. Being new I don’t know if that is normal. All the time he was showing me how to use it I was thinking about the Big Squeegee! Good luck and come see me when you are in town!
    Stan
    www.autowindowtinting.com
     
  8. ChiknNutz

    ChiknNutz Major Contributor

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    I forget the weight of the paper, but it is plenty thick...probably 30# to 50# I'd guess...maybe heavier I don't really know.

    On mine, there's no way to really check the adjustment of the roller, as each side is adjusted by a threaded knob. The way I was shown and have been doing it is to allow the full weight of the top roller rest on the bottom on...so there is no tension left on either adjustment knob....hence no space between the rollers at all.

    It's gotta have something to do with the relationship between the top laminate roll holder and the main roller. We tried having max tension to little tension on the laminate roll holder...all the way to removing the collars that hold the laminate roll to allow it to free-wheel. Even though I've found that some tension is usually needed, the free-wheel time showed the most promise, but still wasn't good enough.

    Also, seeing as how mine is a pretty low-end machine, I doubt it has any intentional crown in the rollers, though I was told to try and carefully center everything. I did, but to no avail...yet.

    Again, I'd like to hear what brands and models you all have used that you like. I know what features I'd like to see with my next one, but also would like to hear experience from users too. As far as I can tell, I've got no need for a heated laminator, but maybe I don't know what I'm missing either ;-)
     
  9. Jackpine

    Jackpine Major Contributor

    Try the Big Squeegee!
     
  10. ChiknNutz

    ChiknNutz Major Contributor

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    I've got a couple of them, but not big enough for full-size prints.
     
  11. player

    player Major Contributor

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    I have one that is simular. Cheap brackets holding the rolls.

    Put the roll on and see if you can rock it back and forth. If so, the brackets need to be stronger. I did a temp fix with wood and clamps 2 years ago.

    I also put screws in to keep the rolls from lifting, and added delrin as a brake for tension.

    P
     
  12. creative

    creative Member

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    Mar 18, 2007
    if nothing else works, simply replace the rollers, check the tension of the motor belt and figure new settings for pressure, we had that problem before.
     
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