Lamination is the process of manufacturing a material in multiple layers, so that the composite material achieves improved strength, stability, sound insulation, appearance, or other properties from the use of the differing materials, such as plastic. A laminate is a permanently assembled object created using heat, pressure, welding, or adhesives.
While there are laminates for different materials like glass, wood or textile, consumer laminators typically laminate paper.
For this purpose, there are 3 types of laminators:
- pouch: Uses a lamination pouch that is usually sealed on one side. The inside of the lamination pouch is coated with a heat-activated film that adheres to the product being laminated as it runs through the laminator.
- heated roll: Uses heated rollers to melt glue extruded onto lamination film. This film is in turn applied to a substrate such as paper or card using pressure rollers.
- cold roll: Uses a plastic film which is coated with an adhesive and glossy backing which does not adhere to the glue. When the glossy backing is removed, the adhesive is exposed, which then sticks directly onto the item which needs to be laminated.