All About Laminators

   Pouch Laminators


Pouch laminators, as opposed to roll laminators, seal the document in a pouch or bag rather than attaching them to the laminating film. Thus these machines are used when the document is to be protected and preserved, rather than being altered by the process.

This sort of laminator requires the use of pre-packaged pouches or bags. These consist of two pieces of laminate joined together in bag form, with an open side to slide the document in; on the inside of the pouch, along the open side, is a layer of adhesive. Documents to be laminated must be smaller than the inside of the pouch: a narrow strip of plastic - at least 3/16" - must be visible on all sides, or else the pouch will come apart.

See also Laminator Vocabulary and Basic Principles

Further, a carrier must be used to transport the pouch through the mechanism. This is more or less an envelope which contains the pouch and the document: its purpose is to absorb excess adhesive and prevent it from getting on to the rollers and gumming them up. It comes from the film suppliers!

The mechanism of a pouch laminator is quite simple: rollers fore and aft, a throat through which the carrier goes and where the heat is applied, and rollers. Pressure is supplied by the rollers, thus applying the heat to the adhesive portion of the pouch, as well as pulling the whole package through the mechanism.

The pouches to be used vary in film thickness and in adhesive layer thickness. Typical thicknesses are 3, 5, 7 or 10 1/1000's of an inch; the adhesive thickness is included in this. The thicker the laminate the stiffer the pouch: for id-badges 10-mil pouches are best. As well, pouches are limited in length for the most part; for a 12" pouch laminator, the longest pouch available is 18".

See also Laminator Purchase Checklist

As always, consult your supplier for these and all other details.

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