What if the same automated heat shrink wrapping used for neatly packaging a new board game, a box of breath mints, and countless other consumer items could be combined with corrosion protection for industrial metals packaging? Cortec has opened the door to that possibility with a new custom version of VpCI-126 Shrink Film for automated heat seal or heat shrink tunnels.
The standard shrink wrap concept
VpCI-126 Shrink Film is typically used for heavy-duty packaging of industrial equipment and assets being prepared for shipping or storage. Vapor phase Corrosion Inhibitors (VpCI) in the film form a protective molecular layer on metal surfaces inside the package to protect the metals from rusting. Standard VpCI-126 Shrink Film is designed to hold up against wear and tear in industrial export or layup conditions.
It is therefore bulky and must be applied manually. On the other end of the shrink film packaging spectrum, consumer goods that undergo automatic heat shrinking are packaged in very delicate films and typically do not require corrosion protection. Somewhere in between these two extremes are smaller industrial components made of metal that could benefit from both corrosion protection and automated packaging.
Overcoming shrink wrap obstacles
Such was the case for a company trying to package industrial equipment oil filters in their automated heat seal tunnel. The filters required corrosion protection because of their metal casing – especially since some would be shipped overseas to Southeast Asia. However, the generic VCI (Vapor Corrosion Inhibitor) film they were using was constantly causing problems because it would not seal correctly. The VCI bags kept opening up, forcing the customer to frequently rerun the filters through the heat seal tunnel and throw away a huge amount of plastic waste.
Since normal VpCI-126 Shrink Film would have been too bulky to run through the automated heat-seal line, Cortec produced a custom version of VpCI-126 Shrink Film tubing that was compatible with the automatic equipment. The trial run went beautifully—the bags remained sealed and the customer did not have to stop the packaging equipment until there were no more oil filters to bag. The film sealed quickly and easily, with the option of shrink-wrapping if desired. As a result of the successful trial, the customer decided to adopt VpCI-126 Shrink Film for all of its VCI film packaging needs.
Step forward for metal packaging
Cortec’s customization of VpCI-126 Shrink Film for heat shrink and heat seal tunnels is an exciting advance in the field of metal packaging. Combining the benefit of corrosion inhibiting film with automated heat tunnels streamlines the packaging and quality assurance process so end users can receive metal parts ready-to-use in compact packages without even having to worry about corrosion. What seemed like an insurmountable obstacle of adapting standard VpCI-126 Shrink Film to automated heat seal tunnels suddenly became a reality thanks to Cortec’s vision and determination to tackle the problem.