It could get a little confusing sometimes. Is it possible to cut laminating pouches or not? If you also have this question in mind, trust me to give answers in this article. You will also find other tips to help with how you laminate.
Before we find out if you can cut laminating pouches, let’s see what laminating pouches are and their primary applications. Sometimes taken as Laminating sheets, Laminating pouch is basically a piece of a laminate film with a pre-sealed edge on one of its sides.
The sealed edge connects it to another laminate piece in a way that it creates a pouch or a pocket. Laminating pouches are pretty different from the usual laminating sheets that are used to laminate one side of a material or document.
When you are laminating with a laminating pouch, you don’t need to put the document under the sheet before sealing up; all you have to do is to slide the document straight inside the pouch. In essence, laminating pouches provide complete coverage for both sides of the object.
These pouches come in variants of cold and thermal pouches. The cold pouches are self-dealing, meaning they do not require heat to seal up. You can use these kinds of pouches with laminators that have cold settings.
On the other hand, thermal pouches can only be sealed when they come in contact with heat. The laminators that you can use with thermal pouches are called heated pouch laminators or hot laminators.
Laminator pouches, most especially the hot variants, provide more protection than the regular laminating sheets. The pouch creates a rigid all-around barrier, making it suitable for protecting documents like ID cards, photos, multi-use documents, menus, etc.
Laminator pouches will give the page 360-degree protection; therefore, the front and back sides be protected. It is just like doubling the firmness of a document, making it more resistant to tears and bends, thereby extending the life span.
Is It Possible to Cut Laminating Pouches?
Before I go-ahead to provide an answer to this, why do you need to cut laminating pouches? Sometimes, the objects you want to laminate could be a different size from that of the laminating pouch you will be using.
In such cases, you will have to cut the laminating pouches to get the exact sizes of the documents or objects you intend to laminate. So Yes, it is very possible to cut laminating pouches.
However, when you are cutting the laminating pouch should be a more significant consideration. It could be before or after laminating. Basically, there are different ways to know if you should cut the pouch before or after laminating. I will mention some of these ways later in the article.
For most people, they choose to cut laminating pouches after laminating. The reasons for this are numerous. Firstly, it will help save a lot of time, mainly if you are laminating many objects.
You wouldn’t have the luxury of time to place the small objects in the laminator one after the other when you can laminate them in groups and cut them afterward. If you want to save time, I will advise you to cut after laminating.
Also, it could be a little dangerous to cut your laminating pouch before laminating. The truth is that when you cut your pouches before laminating and feed them into the laminator, there is a greater chance of them getting jammed in the laminator.
Even with this, some situations will require you to cut the pouches before laminating. The main issue is “How do you know when?” In the subsequent subheading, I will cite a few instances when you should cut before laminating or laminate before cutting.
How Do You Know when to cut a Laminating Pouch?
Should you cut before laminating or laminate before cutting? Well, it solely depends on the item you want to laminate, the type of laminate, and the kind of finish you want. Let’s check out a few instances.
Is the Seal Important?
In most cases, the seal is necessary on all parts of the laminate. If this is the case, it is advisable to cut the materials and the laminating pouches first, before feeding them into the laminator.
When you do it this way, you will get a secure seal around the whole edge of the object instead of cutting after laminating, which could bring the laminate off the object. If laminate before cutting around the material, it may also leave the edges of the material unprotected, making it vulnerable.
Do You want a Plastic Border around it?
There are other instances when people prefer leaving the edges of the material without a border of laminate. Though this could put your document at risk but you might also choose it. If this is the case, you can laminate it with the pouch and cut it later.
However, check the heat setting and make sure it is correct for the material as you laminate. When the heat setting is moderate, it will ensure that the laminate bonds correctly to the document, thereby reducing the risk of pulling off.
How many are you producing?
I have mentioned this earlier, but I think it’s better to emphasize more on it more. If you are producing or laminating batches of smaller products, it is ideal to laminate all at once before cutting. This will help save time and materials.
No one would love to spend hours by cutting tiny pieces of laminating pouches and setting them one by one in the laminator; trust me, you’d be wasting more materials than you can ever imagine.
Another thing you have to watch out for is the operating temperature of the laminating machine. Please ensure it is hot enough before you start laminating; else the pouch won’t stick to the object well and may remove when you cut.
From this article, you can tell that it is 100% possible to cut laminating pouches. However, it would help if you only cut when the size of the object you are laminating or have laminated is different from the size of the pouch itself.
It is a lot easier when you laminate before cutting, but some people prefer cutting the pouches before laminating. Whichever one you choose, go ahead with it. However, it would help if you remembered that cutting the pouches before laminating might get them jammed in the laminator, especially when the sizes are too small.
When a laminator gets jammed, the first thing to do is stop the process, then turn the rollers in the reverse direction, such that the films come back to the entry.