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What are Roll Laminators?

Shannon Kietzman
Shannon Kietzman

Roll laminators are used for a variety of projects and can enhance any business. A roll laminator is a type of wide format laminator that allows large items, such as posters and maps, to be laminated.

Roll laminators can perform either hot or cold laminating, or both. There is a difference between the hot and cold laminating widths on all laminators. For instance, the heaters do not run the full width of the roller on some machines. Although this doesn't seem important at first, it can present a problem if the printer produces items that are larger than what the laminator can cover.


The roll diameter also has a maximum width, determined by the largest diameter of the supply roll of laminating film the laminator will carry. This may be important depending on the type of laminating to be done with the machine. If a continuous feed is required, a larger roll diameter is necessary.

The highest temperature at which the machine can be set also varies among machines. There are usually two temperature readings on the control panel, indicating the actual temperature and the set temperature. Both readings are important, since different temperatures can be necessary for different projects. This is largely dependent upon the material to be laminated. Some roll laminators, particularly smaller models, may only have one temperature setting.

A roll laminator also has a maximum thickness. Some laminators can only handle material that is the thickness of paper, while others might be able to laminate items as thick as poster board or even thicker. The largest thickness commonly found is up to two inches (about 5.09 centimeters).

Safety is also of concern with roll laminators. These machines deal with high heat. Therefore, it is important to ensure the unit is safe. Generally, there are red buttons located on the top of each side of the laminator that can be used if the machine needs to be stopped immediately.

The roller on a roll laminator is helpful for larger jobs. No matter the size, however, a roll laminator helps ensure the project does not bubble in the middle. It also provides greater control over the laminating process and generally results in more complete lamination when compared to other methods.

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