In the industry, Cold Laminating Film is often referred to as over-laminating film. For our discussion as well as for the layman, we will refer to it as just laminating film; this covers both hot and cold films. For this section, we will discuss cold or pressure sensitive laminating films only. These are often referred to as PSA films. A cold laminating film is comprised of a base film layer, and adhesive and a release liner. There are a variety of base films: vinyl, polyester (PET), and polypropylene (OPP) are the most common. Base films are too numerous to list them all. The PSA (pressure sensitive adhesive) may be an aqueous acrylic, solvent acrylic or even rubber based adhesive. Each company has their own standardized adhesive depending on the application. Finally, the last component is the release liner. Release liners vary from a 40lb glassine up to a 1.0 mil polyester liner. All are coated on one side with silicon to allow the laminate to be separated from the liner with ease.
The width of a specific laminating film can vary due to the width of the base films master roll width. Most PSA films are available in a wide gamut of widths, thickness and finishes. Most of the widths have been standardized by the industries needs. Standard sizes available from 25" up to 61" wide rolls, with standard lengths of 150' and 300'.
For the best results, it is highly recommended to use a wide format laminating machine to in conjunction with your PSA films. The laminator in question should have a release take-up mechanism to remove the release liner as the laminating film is being applied to the printed material. Using a laminator will improve your output as well as speed up the entire process as well as eliminate many production headaches. We highly recommend the Seal brand laminators, which we delve into later in this guide.