User login

Finished Business

(July 2011) posted on Thu Jul 07, 2011

More than 40 sources of laminators to protect and perfect print jobs.

click an image below to view slideshow

Laminators and their requisite laminate media serve to not only increase the lifespan of your shop’s printed masterpieces, but they can also add to a graphic’s aesthetics. Yes, some clients change out their graphics so rapidly that longevity is not an issue, but laminating can be critical to graphics that are subject to ongoing abuse or even just normal wear and tear. Meanwhile, other graphics can benefit immensely from the addition of a texture or perhaps a glossy or matte finish that enhances the look of the artwork. And, of course, by charging for the increased lifespan and the visual enhancements of the output you can substantially increase your profit margin for individual projects.

To help you find that fountain of youth for your productions, we’ve assembled the following roster of more than 40 companies producing laminators that use pressure-sensitive and thermal films (hot, low-temp, and heat-activated), as well as those that utilize liquid laminates, to protect, encapsulate, and mount wide-format graphics.

This list offers a sampling of laminators from each company; we did not list every laminator model from each company (visit their websites for a complete equipment roster). Note: Looking for laminates? We provided more than 70 sources for laminates in our January issue, “Laminates: Enhancing the Print,” pg 28 (and online, at; keystroke “enhancing the print” into the search engine).

Advanced Greig Laminators
AGL’s 82-in. Compadre is a heat-assisted cold laminator that comes with a multi-media addition: It offers optional built-in video training and music. With top-headed rollers, the Compadre can hit top speeds of 15 ft/min. It features a rotary dial with pre-set gap adjustments from 1/16- to 1 in., auto-grip core chucks for tool-free material changeovers, and pneumatic controls to raise and lower the roller nips. With the optional Zune upgrade, users can view how-to videos on the machine itself, and also add music of their choice (the machine also connects to the AGL website to download updates, as well as new techniques and instructions).

The company also offers the 62-in. Encore series of entry-level machines for pressure-sensitive and heat-activated films. The series includes the NH, a cold laminator optimal for direct-to-vinyl; the SH, with a single top-heated roller for one-sided thermal films and pressure-sensitive overlams; the higher-performance DHR, which builds upon the SH; and the advanced Maxim model.