One of the most important parts of any manufacturing job is shipping. The parcel’s contents must be properly packed if it is to arrive at its destination in the same condition it left the plant. This also means that it must be in sturdy packaging that is securely sealed. There is nothing worse than a box arriving at its destination torn open with the contents sticking out.
In addition to sturdy boxes, it is important that the right tape be used. The three points that are important in choosing a tape are adhesion, strength and ease of use. Today’s production company has a choice, so it is not difficult to pick the type that works best with the type of container used.
When choosing a packing tape the questions to be asked are: Is it adhesive? Is it strong? Is it easy to use? If the tape chosen passes all these questions then you can be sure your package will arrive at its destination in the same shape as it left the manufacturing plant.
Poly-Tapes are the most commonly used tape in the industry for sealing cardboard boxes. They come in 6, 8 and 12 in. rolls and are either applied by hand or with an automatic box-sealing machine. The most common widths used for sealing cardboard boxes are 2 to 3 inches wide.
It is the fiberglass strands in poly-tapes that secure cardboard boxes from suffering damage when roughly handed and the grade of the tape that determines the weight it will hold. This ranges from general purpose of 100 pounds up to heavier required hold situations of 380 pounds. Another important point is that this tape will hold up in extreme changes in temperature and humidity.
Poly-tapes also offer the opportunity for the manufacturer to use different types of printing on the tape to advertise their company. This can be a one-color design or a combination of colors. In either case, it is an excellent way of advertising that is spread as the package speeds across the country.
Kraft Paper Tapes
Kraft Paper Tapes are gummed on one side and are constructed of re-cycled paper. Built for heavy shipping, it is reinforced with fiberglass threads which add both strength and an extra texture appearance. It is also available in crisscrossed filament reinforcement if extra strength is needed. This tape is available in both brown and white colors with brown being the most commonly used.
The advantage of Kraft Paper Tape is that only one layer is required to sufficiently seal the container. A box sealed with this tape can be stored in extreme heat or cold and/or humidity. Like Poly-Tapes, Kraft Paper Tape is an excellent location to put advertising for a company.
Water Activated or Gummed Tapes
Water activated or gummed tapes make a secure bond on corrugated cartons and are not affected by extreme cold or extreme hot temperatures. As with Kraft Paper Tapes, it is available with embedded fiberglass and water is required to activate its adhesion to a package.
Manufacturers state that this type of tape “aggressively bonds to corrugated cartons, even in dusty or dirty environments”. Suggestions for use include Economy (1-20 lbs.), Medium (1-25 lbs.), Heavy Duty (1-50 lbs.) and Extra Heavy (1-75 lbs.).
The main disadvantage of this type of tape is that it requires water to activate the adhesive required for bonding. Most large manufacturers have some type of automatic machine that performs this step in the sealing operation.
The purpose of good sealing tapes in the manufacturing process is to be sure a package arrives at its destination in the same condition as it left the manufacturing plant. This can be accomplished when a tape is selected that has a proven record in this area.