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The importance of pre-stretch

Pre-stretch mechanisms are an important component of pallet wrapping systems and are used to stretch the stretch film before it is applied to the pallet. This allows for more consistent and efficient wrapping, which in turn helps to reduce film waste and improve the stability of the wrapped pallet. Many major manufacturers of pallet wrapping systems, such as Wulftec and Lantech, include pre-stretch mechanisms in their systems as a standard feature.

The pre-stretch mechanism works by stretching the film before it is wrapped around the pallet. This is done using a set of rollers that rotate at different speeds, with the film being pulled through the rollers at a faster rate than it is applied to the pallet. This stretching of the film results in a thinner and more consistent layer of film on the pallet, which provides better stability and protection for the packaged goods.

One of the main benefits of a pre-stretch mechanism is that it can reduce the amount of film used. By stretching the film before it is applied, the film becomes thinner and more consistent, allowing for a tighter and more effective wrap. This can lead to a significant reduction in film usage, which can help to lower costs and increase profitability.

Another benefit of pre-stretch is that it can improve the stability of the wrapped pallet. The tighter and more consistent wrap provided by a pre-stretched film can help to reduce movement and shifting of the packaged goods, which can lead to damage during storage and transportation. This improved stability can also make it easier to handle and move the pallet, which can improve your overall efficiency.

Another advantage with modern pre-stretch mechanisms is that it can be adjustable. The pre-stretch ratio can be adjusted depending on the type of product, the weight of the pallet, and the wrapping conditions. This allows for more versatile wrapping, which can help to protect the packaged goods from damage during storage and transportation.

In summary, pre-stretch is an essential component of pallet wrapping systems that can provide many benefits. It can reduce film usage, improve the stability of the wrapped pallet, and improve the safety of the wrapping process. Many leading manufacturers of pallet wrapping systems include pre-stretch systems in their machines as a standard feature. With this technology, it is possible to achieve a more efficient, cost-effective and versatile pallet wrapping process. As the technology advances and more versatile pre-stretch designs are developed, we can expect even more advanced and efficient pallet wrapping systems in the future.

It is likely that your own machines pre-stretch mechanism is underperforming and with some tweaks an SWS technician could dial in your prestretch settings and make adjustments that can save you big money long term. Contact us if you think your machines are underperforming and we will gladly do an evaluation!

Mike Costello
Equipment Specialist
Over 30 years of packaging experience. Joined the SWS team in 2015.