Stretch Wrapping Machines Ideal for Tall and/or Light Loads

Whether it’s the size of the warehouse, the volume of pallet loads, the structure of the load, the staffing levels of the company, each stretch wrapping application has unique qualities and challenges.

rotary-arm-for-roof-tiles-wrappingIn this post, we want to discuss two common challenges in the stretch wrapping realm: tall and/or light loads. There are certain features and stretch wrapping machines that work best with this type of application.

Let’s take a look with some help from our stretch wrapper video library:

1. Add extra height

When you’re talking about tall loads, the most obvious option needed is extra height. The film carriage – no matter the model – needs to be able to apply the film right to the very top of the pallet load. This is especially true for light loads that may require extra stretch film banding on the top to provide necessary support to the overall load.

In the application featured in this video, a Phoenix semi-automatic stretch wrapper (PLP-2150) wraps an oversized pallet of empty 2-liter bottles stacked roughly 10 feet high. The stretch wrapping machine has extra height to accommodate the tall pallet and our largest-in-class turntable easily holds the pallet.

For more on this video, click here.

2. Keep it on the ground

A tall load has a greater risk of falling over than a standard height pallet. When the product is also light, this is even a greater concern. Limiting the movement of the pallets around the warehouse during the packaging process should be a consideration. We’ve pulled three examples to show several different ways to achieve this goal.

A popular choice for tall, light loads is our rotary arm stretch wrappers (available as semi-automatic or automatic).

In this first video, we had a customer with high production, tall and unstable loads, and limited warehouse space. We customized a solution for all three challenges. With limited space, multiple stretch wrappers were not an option, so instead we designed a single semi-automatic rotary arm wrapper that can wrap three loads one after another. As you see in the video, the machine and film carriage are mounted on a swivel base and an operator moves the wrapper from position to position. With the rotary arm design with extra height, the pallet load is stationary while the rotary arm does all the wrapping work.

Our second video showcases a wall-mounted frame model of our semi-automatic rotary arm stretch wrap machine. The pallet load – whether it’s tall, light, unstable, or some combination thereof – remains on the ground during the entire wrapping process greatly decreasing the possibility of toppling over.

Our final example is from a high volume distribution center and features three in-line automatic stretch wrap machines with the rotary arm. This set-up enables three pallet loads of different height, weight and product to be wrapped at the same time. Without a turntable or conveyors, the pallets are stable and can be moved around three at a time with a specialized forklift.

For more on this video, click here.

3. Ensure stability during the wrap cycle

Instability comes with the territory for tall, light loads. A pallet of PET bottles could topple over with a strong puff of air from the HVAC system! Or, more appropriately, the movement of a high-speed stretch wrapper could cause a light load to shift during a wrap cycle.

When this is a challenge, we suggest integrating a top platen to stabilize a load during the wrapping process. When a pallet is placed on a turntable or centered on a conveyor, the top platen is lowered down onto the load. The pallet load is then snugly sandwiched in place for the duration of wrapping cycle.

For more on this video, click here.

4. Get the film tension right

When it comes to light loads, oftentimes a “light touch” with the stretch wrap is needed. For example, check out this video where our rotary ring stretch wrapper tackles a tall pallet of PET bottles that could be crushed if the film tension was too high.

Our rotary ring stretch wrapper (which has optional conveyors as shown in the video or pallets can be wrapped from the warehouse floor if stability is a concern) has the finesse to apply enough tension to secure the load, but not too much as to crush the empty bottles. In the video, watch as the film carriage turns the corners, you’ll notice a slight billowing of the stretch wrap – that’s the light touch desired in this specialized application.

For more on this video, click here.

Final Thoughts

We hope you consider a Phoenix stretch wrapper; we pride ourselves on helping our clients find the right packaging solution. Whether you have tall loads, light loads, unstable loads, or some other challenge, we’d love to work with you to find the right stretch wrap machine for your needs. We love customizing our pallet wrapping machines to suit the challenges of our customers. Contact us today and let’s start a conversation!


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