Stretch film and shrink wrap are a commonly used packaging materials used in industry (particularly in the manufacturing sector) to secure items to a pallet or crate. Industrial stretch film and shrink wrap provide important protection of goods and binds them to a pallet or crate for safe transportation or storage by keeping the items tightly bound and protected from the elements. Most stretch film and shrink wrap is composed of polyethylene and PVC. By wrapping many layers of these materials to an object to be placed on a pallet, they offer secure holding. The film/wrap can be wrapped automatically or semi-automatically using specialised machinery or it can be wrapped manually. The stretch film is pliable, thin and sticks to itself, so there is no hassle in trying to knot, glue or staple it closed. But because they are used in industry, the sheets of stretch film and shrink wrap used with machinery are much longer and wider, and depending on the size of the goods to be wrapped, the sometimes require specialised machinery to get it around the object and the pallet. They can be ordered according to the manufacturers/suppliers sizes in mm or yards.
Stretch film and shrink wrap come in a variety of colours to help organise items under a particular color. A lot of users of these packaging materials will use the black film or wrap to totally conceal the items that that they are wrapping. They can also be specially ordered to have a company logo and contact details on them.
Because of the fragility of some of the objects that the film or wrap has to secure and protect, there are many varieties of stretch film available, suitable for the protective requirements of the goods to wrapped. For example, there are anti-flammable, non-toxic, environmentally friendly, water and moisture proof and anti-tear varieties. Some stretch films and shrink wraps have some or all of these qualities. There are films/wraps that can be wrapped and secured by hand, and there are those that are to be used with specialised pallet wrapping material. They also come in a variety of lengths.
Not only is this material used in the transportation of objects and goods, it is also widely used to protect them in storage facilities such as warehouses. That is why there are the anti-flammable and water-proof varieties.
Stretch Film :
One of the advantages of using stretch film is that it is not a very expensive protective material (compared to boxes) and can be used on all kinds of materials. It can be used on machinery, chemicals and furniture.
One of the disadvantages to using stretch film is that it can cause the wrapped items to collapse under the tight exterior pressure of the film as it works much like a rubber band by tightly containing the items it has wrapped. But, the more tightly stretched it is, the less chances of it coming loose and allowing the secured items to move about in their wrapping.
Stretch film is different from shrink film in that shrink film is first wrapped loosely around the items and then tightened by shrinking it with the use of heat. Stretch film does exactly that, it stretches to wrap around objects tightly and does not require heat to secure it. Like stretch film, shrink wrap is pliable, thin and sticks to itself, so there is no hassle in trying to knot, glue or staple it closed. It works much like the kitchen variety. This should be not be confused with the kitchen variety of shrink wrap film used to cover food.
Much like the stretch film, shrink wrap can also cause the wrapped items to collapse under the surface pressure of the wrap. If you are concerned about applying heat to your items when sealing the shrink wrap, note that if you have secured it properly, the shrink wrap will protect your items from the elements, so there is little chance of them being destroyed by the heat applied to secure the wrapping.
For manual users, the stretch film is advisable to the shrink wrap as there is no heat required to secure your items.
By qimono from Pixabay