Braintree Printing, one of the top digital printing and offset printing companies in the Northeast, recently expanded its bindery department with the purchase of an ATS-MS 420-30 banding machine from Wexler Packaging Products of Pennsylvania. Banding technology replaces traditional shrink wrapping by using strips of paper or plastic film to wrap stacks of printed materials. Massachusetts-based Braintree Printing said the new banding machine, manufactured by ATS-Tanner Group of Switzerland, has reduced energy usage, packaging waste, and packaging costs.
"At Braintree Printing, we’re always looking for ways to conserve energy during production,” said bindery manager Steve Hawes. The company regularly evaluates equipment and seeks green alternatives. “Our shrink wrap machine operates non-stop during the work week,” said Hawes. “It uses a lot of energy to maintain the 130 degrees in the shrink tunnel.”
Hawes and Braintree Printing owner Jim Corliss attended Graph Expo 2012 in Chicago in search of a more energy-efficient alternative. They found their answer in Wexler’s line of banding equipment. Hawes was impressed with the ATS banding machine’s compact size and speed and ability to switch easily from plastic to paper packaging.
Hawes said shrink film prices have increased 20% over the last two years. “With banding, we use less than 10% of the plastic required for shrink wrap jobs and unlike our large shrink wrap machine, the Wexler bander requires no wasteful warm-up time. Once it’s turned on, it’s ready to go.”
Wexler sales representative Kristyn Shaner installed the ATS banding machine at Braintree Printing in November. She said the machine, which sits on a wheeled dispenser stand, can be activated by push button, foot pedal, or sensor. A loop of paper or plastic band is then formed and drawn tight around product bundles, heat sealed, and cut. Up to 22 bundles can be banded per minute. The impulse heat seal uses energy only during the sealing process. “When we’re not banding products, we shut the machine off,” Hawes said.
A recent Braintree Printing video demonstrates the product size versatility of the new ATS banding machine. The products being banded in the video are 5.5” x 8.5” coupons, 12” x 9” perfect bound books and 3” x 4” tickets. The machine can band any product that fits within the 16.5" opening.