What is Stretch film / Stretch wrap ?
Stretch film or Stretch wrap is an underrated tool that we use every day. It is a plastic film that is exceptionally stretchable and is used to wrap around items. It is used to protect many everyday goods from food to paint containers.
This highly stretchable plastic film is made from Linear low-density polyethylene. Its property of elastic recovery keeps the items tightly bound. It comes in a variety of widths and thicknesses that are suitable for a variety of uses.
It is used to wrap products and secure them in place. It tends to help in reducing product loss, discouraging load tampering, and even in reducing worker injuries.
Their key features are as follows:
Stretch film applies a uniform and relatively high holding force.
Stretch film provides proper protection from dust and damage.
Stretch film is transparent enough that they allow customers and shippers to identify the product while also keeping it clean.
Stretch film is very economical.
How it is made:
There exist two basic methods of manufacturing Stretch films. They are as follows:
Blown film- It is created by forcing molten resin through a circular die. It leads to the creation of a tube that is blown about 30 feet high. The bubble thus produced is then made flat and then cut into strips that create rolls of flat film when rolled. Film manufactured this way is generally robust, hazy and produces noise when unwound for application.
Cast Film- In this method, the film is created by sending the molten resin through a large extruder. That forces a thin layer of film over a large drum that is cooled. The cooled layer of plastic that results is then cut and rolled into rolls of stretch film. The film made by this method is generally tear-resistant and quiet on the application but tends to bear limited puncture resistance.
Methods of Application of Stretch film:
There are two primary methods of applying stretch film to a load, by hand, and by machine. Hand Stretch Film rolls are lighter and shorter in comparison. They are more comfortable for users to manage. Machine stretch film, on the other hand, is used by machines, as the name suggests.
Hand wrap Stretch film- It requires an operator to apply and remove it from the load while unloading. The tension with which it applied is dependent on the operator. It’s typically used for low volume applications.
Machine Wrap Stretch Film- It is used along with a stretch film machine that applies the film to a load using parameters set by the machine’s operator. The parameters ensure that the packaging is wrapped in the same way every time.
Benefits of stretch films:
They are cost compelling- Stretch film and the equipment required to use it is way cheaper than its alternatives. It is essential as many stocks can be saved due to this factor.
Provides superior protection- They keep the products free of moisture, dust, and dirt. It reduces shipping damages and keeps it minimal. It also reduces the possibility of theft and pilferage.
It is efficient- This method allows for items to be easily scanned through optics. It is easy to wrap, and hence, it increases the efficiency and productivity of workers.
It is recyclable- This is relatively green as it can be recycled in most cases.
It can be used in a variety of places. From palletizing tires and boxes to wrapping buckets of paint and other liquids, it can be used to unitize reels, wrap canned beverages, rocks, electronics, bind wood, bundle picture frames.
In essence, this product is convenient and has many benefits. It is very versatile and can be used in a variety of ways. It is a severely underrated product that helps a lot of businesses every day.