Strapping machines and strapping tools are available in a variety of styles, so it can be difficult to determine exactly what your company needs. Here’s an overview of the different types of strapping equipment and the key factors to consider when purchasing.
Strapping equipment is used to strap cases or products to keep them secured during storage and shipment. The machines and tools help to increase efficiency, reduce damage, and improve workplace safety. They range in price, speed, and quality depending on the type of machine.
Manual Handheld Strapping Tool
This type of tool is an inexpensive completely manual tool for securing boxes and pallets with plastic strapping. The user must wrap, feed, pull, and tighten the strapping. This process can often take several minutes to apply one strap.
Battery Powered Handheld Strapping Tool
An electric handheld tool requires less labor than a manual tool. They are extremely portable and lightweight with most tools weighing less than 10 pounds.
Semi-Automatic Strapping Machine
Tabletop strapping machines are portable and easily justifiable if you are strapping more than 50 boxes per day. They require an operator to feed the strap, and then the machine does the tensioning.
Arch Strapping Machine
Arch strapping machines are less reliant on an operator than a tabletop machine. They are typically used in higher volume operations. The size of the cartons being strapped will help guide your choice of which size arch you need.
Automatic Strapping Machine
For very high volume operations, automatic strapping machines can be a huge time and money saver. These machines strap, seal, and cut automatically within seconds. They also offer a lot of customizations to fully automate the process with conveyors.
Your requirements will direct the type of strapping machine or tool you need. To find the right equipment, you have to be clear about your needs. These typically stem from the following:
Volume of Boxes
The amount of boxes you will be strapping per day has a huge effect on which type of machine or tool you should purchase. Do you have high volumes that justify a strapping machine, or is the number of boxes low enough that a tool will do the job? Typically if you’re strapping less than 50 pallets or boxes a day, a handheld tool will be sufficient, but you could still see labor savings by implementing a more automated option.
If you’re looking at a strapping machine, taking into consideration the amount of space you have for strapping can rule out some options. Since the machines can range in size from small tabletop units to extremely large fully automated setups, knowing where the machine will be placed in your environment is extremely important when assessing options.
Strapping Material You Use
The type of strapping material you use or want to use will also affect what type of equipment will be best for you. If you use steel strapping, you'll need a machine or tool that is specifically made to handle steel. It's also important to verify the equipment you choose can handle the length, width, and gauge of strapping you choose to use.
Depending on your industry and products, a specialized machine may be required. Food or medical products often need stainless steel machines. Large or irregular products may require customized equipment.