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Automatic Labeling Machines: The Ultimate FAQ Guide

An automatic labeling machine is a machine that will apply labels on different items such as boxes or containers.

We shall look at the parts, how it operates, maintenance practices, and the different types available.

What Are The Components Of An Automatic Labeling Machine?

automatic labelling machine

automatic labelling machine

Different parts are working together to make an automatic labeling machine functional.

Some of the parts you will find in these machines include the following:

Labeling Head

This part of the automatic labeling machine assists in placing labels on the different containers or packages.

Besides, the labeling heat comprises several parts such as the drive rollers and label sensors.

Label Sensor

This component of the machine will identify gaps existing between the label names.

Besides, it will assist in controlling the labeling framework to begin name stop successions.

The label sensor contains capacitive sensors and in some models, electromechanical switches.

Also, you need to change them when you are changing the stock names.

Drive Roller

This part of the automatic labeling machine works a lot in the machine.

The drive rollers pull the backing webs consistently and will start and stop with every marking group.

The different types of drive rollers may be in relation to how you drive and stop it.

Tray Or Plate

This part will take the products you are labeling into the automatic labeling machine for the labeling process.

Besides, the plates or trays are located on the upper portion of the automatic labeling machine and it easily accessible.

Also, it is made of durable stainless steel which is easy to handle, maintain and repels a wide variety of elements.

Controls

Since this machine operates automatically, it will contain several controls that will enable you to operate the machine.

This is opposite to manual labeling machines which need operators to fully control the machine at all points in the production process.

Besides, you need to understand these different control systems and what impact they have on the capacity.

Also, you can control an automatic labeling machine using different switches, and in specific examples, you can control parameters via a touchscreen system.

This means you need to understand which parts will perform which tasks.

Furthermore, you can refer to the user manual to assist you to understand the automatic labeling machine in depth.

Chassis

An automatic labeling machine has several parts, therefore, it needs a strong frame that will hold all these parts together.

It has a strong base structure that gives the whole system its specific shape or configuration.

The chassis ensures all parts are held in place within the whole system and in the correct order to ensure effective labeling processes.

Besides, the chassis is made of durable stainless steel since it is strong and resistant to corrosion.

Power Unit

This part of the machine supplies electric power to the whole system thus, aiding in the labeling process.

Conveyor System

This system will assist you to move labels and labeling containers through the machine from one area to another.

For instance, it will take bottles from the holding area to the labeling station, and then to the packaging station.

Motor System

These parts of the machine need electricity to operate.

The motor will aid the automatic labeling machine to function by converting electrical power to mechanical power.

Besides, the limitations and configurations of the engine are different from one model of an automatic labeling machine to another.

Ensure you take notice of the motor when purchasing an automatic labeling machine.

This is because it will help the machine to operate meaningfully.

Touch Screen Panel

This part has a programmable logic controller [PLC] and human-machine interface [HMI] that assists you to easily operate the machine.

The touchscreen panel allows you to access the various control systems within the automatic labeling machine.

Besides, all this happens via a central control system.

Furthermore, you can make precise control input via the touchscreen panel to accomplish an effective labeling process.

Dancer’s Arms

This is the part of the automatic labeling machine that allows the labeling process to happen smoothly.

It helps to maintain the tension of the label throughout the automatic labeling process.

This ensures that the machine does not overfeed the label which would lead to errors.

Discharge Plates

When printing or placing different labels using the automatic labeling machine, errors might happen,

The discharge plates have units that will identify and inhibit label offsets.

Strip Plates

This part of the automatic labeling machine will remove the backing paper from the label you are using.

The web of the label will sharply break on the strip plates in a consistent manner.

Web Unwinding Reel

This is the part of the machine where you will place the label rolls that the machine will use when applying labels.

If you are working with large label rolls, you need to power the web unwinding reel that will assist with the unwinding process.

How Does Automatic Labeling Machine Work?

There are different types of automatic labeling machines in the market, but they all operate via the same principles.

Here are the basic operational steps that the automatic labeling machines use:

Preparation Phase

In this phase, you will inspect the automatic labeling machine and make sure all parts are operating suitably.

Also, ensure you have all the relevant raw materials for the labeling process.

Feeding Phase

This stage involves feeding the hopper with the containers.

Also, the automatic labeling machine may employ vibratory units to direct the containers to the conveyor system.

The conveyor unit will relay the containers to the labeling station once it receives them from the hopper.

Labeling Phase

In several scenarios, the label you are using has the correct information printed on them before entering the automatic labeling machine.

Furthermore, you can feed labels that have been pre-cut to the suitable size for your application.

Besides, this will depend on the plan of the automatic labeling machine.

Also, the containers you are feeding to the machine and the labels you are applying move in synchrony.

This synchrony ensures that the machine accurately places the labels on the containers and that this happens to all containers.

In-feed systems will ensure there is the correct spacing between the containers as you label them.

Also, the peel plates operate by breaking the film web from the backing paper of the labels you are applying.

The labels will continue moving to the labeling station in a straight line and the application depends on the shape of the containers.

Automatic labeling machines will apply the labels on the containers in pre-determined surface locations.

Furthermore, automatic labeling machines appropriately applies the labels accurately with the assistance of sensors.

Release Phase

Once the automatic labeling machine approves the quality of the label placement, it will move to the next production stage.

Besides, the machine will reject containers that fail to meet the quality standards and remove them from the production line.

These include no labels on containers, poor label placement, etc.

Why Invest In Multi-function Labeling Machine?

A multi-function automatic labeling machine is a machine that can apply labels on different surface areas of containers.

For instance, it may place labels on the sides, corners, bottom, and top part of a container.

Multi function labeling machine

multifunction labeling machine

Here are some reasons why a multi-function automatic labeling machine is a good investment:

Handle Different Containers

A multi-function automatic labeling machine allows you to place different kinds of labels on different containers.

This means you can place labels on different container configurations as per the customer’s requirements.

For instance, they can handle round, oval and square containers.

Place Different Labels

This machine can allow you to place different types of labels on the different parts of the containers.

Increase Your Production

Since the multi-function automatic labeling machine can place labels on various parts of containers, you will increase your production.

This will translate to increase sales and profit margins.

Also, they operate at high speeds and are durable yet easy to operate.

Minimal Changeover

The machine can handle the label placement procedure without needing tool changeover.

This feature makes the machine save time during the production process.

Are There Limitations Of Using Automatic Labeling Machine?

Automatic labeling machines are advantageous in several areas, but they also have limitations.

Some of these include:

High Initial Setup Cost

Using an automatic labeling machine in your production line will cost you more than using manual versions.

This means you will spend a lot of money purchasing and installing the machine making it ready for production.

Power Consumption

Since automatic labeling machines are large, they need a lot of power for them to function efficiently.

Training

Automatic labeling machines are easy to use but you need to train your staff beforehand.

This is to ensure they understand how to troubleshoot and operate the machine effectively.

Type Of Containers

If you are using standard automatic labeling machines, it means they can apply labels on certain types of containers.

For instance, they may be suitable for placing labels on round bottles only.

Furthermore, others may require you to conduct changeovers to accommodate for other kinds of containers, which is time-consuming.

However, a multi-function automatic labeling machine can help you combat this issue.

Work Area

These machines require a lot of space for installation and function.

Which Types Of Automatic Labeling Machines Are Available?

There are several types of automatic labeling machines in the market that can help you attain certain labeling processes.

Examples of these machines include the following:

Double Side Sticker Labeling Machine

This is a labeling machine that can apply labels on both the front and back sides of different bottles, containers, etc.

Depending on the product size and labels, it can attain labeling speeds of up to 120 labels per minute.

Also, it can handle oval, square, or flat containers.

double side sticker labelling machine

double side sticker labeling machine

Some unique features of a double side sticker labeling machine include:

  1. It is simple to adjust the height of the label application
  2. The machine provides user-friendly changes on label placement
  3. It contains one pot on line speed adjustment control
  4. Also, it can make an overlapping, full, or partial label placement
  5. It can operate with online inkjet units and contact coding systems
  6. Self-protection against any voltage fluctuations

Point Wrap-around Labeling Machine

This is an automatic labeling machine that is especially suited to place labels on round bottles.

The conveying container system operates in synchrony with sponge wheels that can change its speed.

This means you can optionally set the distance between the conveying containers.

Furthermore, the round position of products is reciprocating and this means it can place labels on the exact position on the bottles.

Point Wrap around labeling machine

point wrap around labelling machine

The point wrap-around automatic labeling machine has a stable base enabling it to attain high labeling speeds while being stable.

Also, it can have a control technology system that allows you to alter the production settings for your application via a touchscreen panel.

Furthermore, the machine has a precision value of +/- 0.5 mm with labeling speeds of up to 150 pieces per minute.

Flat Surface Labeling Machine

This type of automatic labeling machine is suited for placing labels on the flat surfaces of various kinds of products.

Also, it will accurately apply the labels forming no folds or wrinkles.

flat surface labeling machine

flat surface labelling machine

Some of the features of a flat surface automatic labeling machine include:

  1. It allows for an easy tool-free changeover
  2. Rolling wheels on the machine allow it to press on the products and enable the labels to stick firmly
  3. To make the container feeding happen equidistantly, you can integrate page or bottle separation systems
  4. The main motor unit employed is either servo or stepping motor
  5. It allows you to include independent and close components in front or use them together with the recent production line

Pressure Sensitive Labelling Machine

This type of automatic labeling machine applies pressure-sensitive levels on different surfaces of products.

A pressure-sensitive label has non-reactive adhesives that form a bond on the surface once you place pressure on it.

It is suitable for industries that use round bottles such as pharmaceuticals, chemicals, personal care, petroleum, cosmetics, etc.

pressure sensitive labelling machine

Pressure sensitive labelling machine

Some features you may find include:

  1. Hot stamp printers that allow you to attain a clear and correct print information
  2. Available in customizable options than can label different bottles like square bottles, top labels, or two sides
  3. Automatic sensors that allow for automatic troubleshooting and also displays information
  4. Touchscreen control system when you can input and change lot number stamping, length of labels, transport speed, etc.

Square Bottle Labeling Machine

This type of automatic labeling machine will apply different labels on squared containers.

Some of the main features you will find on square automatic bottle labeling machines include the following:

  1. The machine can attain accuracy levels of +/- 1 mm
  2. It allows you to conduct easy tool-free changeover
  3. The construction material is durable and high-quality 304 stainless steel
  4. It produces low levels of noise
  5. It can label between 20 and 200 pieces per minute
  6. Besides, you can easily integrate it with other support equipment
  7. Safety mechanisms like sensors will trigger an alarm if the machine experiences issues that need immediate attention
  8. Sensors will detect if bottles are present before applying labels, thus lowering wastage

square bottle labelling machine

square bottle labelling machine

Vertical Labeling Machine

This type of automatic labeling machine is favorable for placing labels on round bottles that are in a standing position.

Vertical automatic labeling machines are specialized for labeling various types of round containers.

Furthermore, it contains container separation devices that apply synchro sponge wheels with stepless adjustments.

This allows you to set a specific distance between every container at will.

It has rolling wheels that press on the containers and enable the labels to stick firmly on the surface.

verticle labeling machine

vertical labeling machine

The servo motor enables you to achieve a quick and steady labeling process.

It allows for easy collection of products after the labeling process.

Besides, you can attain a steady feeling mechanism and large buffer by adopting a turntable feed track system before labeling.

Horizontal Labeling Machine

This type of automatic labeling machine is suitable for labeling ampoules and oral liquid containers or bottles.

Some of the features of a horizontal automatic labeling machine include:

  1. Suitable for labeling different types of round containers
  2. It allows you to select pipelining with fore-and-aft sectors
  3. Besides, it will roll and press the containers with wheels thus making the label stick formally on them
  4. An optional back segment allows you to conveniently gather, tidy, and pack the final container
  5. Twin transport tracks with the upper track labeling bottles while the lower track transports the container pallets
  6. A safety system that will sound an alarm when you run out of labels or containers
  7. The failure rate of this machine is below one ten thousandths
  8. The bottle separation system enables accurate separation between bottles

horizontal labeling machine

horizontal labeling machine

Multi Surface Labeling Machine

This version of the automatic labeling machine is suitable for placing different kinds of labels on various shaped containers.

For instance, it can apply labels on three sides of the same container.

The multi-surface automatic labeling machine is a single system allowing you to place labels on two sides and flat surfaces concurrently.

Since the bottles stand within the conveyor system during transportation, you can integrate other support systems like filling machines.

multi surface labeling machine

multi surface labeling machine

The machine has an accuracy of less than 5 mm due to its elaborate and advanced design and electrical systems.

Sensors sound an alarm when the machine has no labels or containers, thereby allowing you to achieve a failure rate below one ten thousandths.

Paste Labeling Machine

This machine will apply labels on different products after applying paste substances on them.

Some of its features include:

  1. It achieves four times more efficient than manual versions
  2. When it detects the absence of products or labels, it sounds an alarm to limit wastage of resources
  3. Material construction is durable stainless steel with anodic treatment from aluminum alloy
  4. It is easy to clean since you can disconnect the components easily
  5. Open frame unit allows you as the operator to change the components with ease
  6. Easy control systems with a programmable logic controller and human-machine interface
  7. A step motor enables you to operate the machine for long hours
  8. Sensors will enhance the final quality while minimizing any loss or damage

paste labeling machine

paste labeling machine

Cylinder Labeling Machine

This is an automatic labeling machine that applies labels on cylindrical containers.

Some of its features include:

  1. Stepper driven technique on the labeling systems enables you to consistently achieve stable torque as it operates
  2. It allows you to integrate optional features like hot stamping date coders that will embed information like manufacture date, expiry date, lot number, etc.
  3. Touchscreen panel with programmable logic controller allows you to easily set the labeling parameters from a central station
  4. Container spacing systems enable you to feed and stably apply labels on the cylindrical containers fully or partially

cylinder labelling machine

cylinder labeling machine

How Does Automatic Labeling Machine Compare To Manual Labeling Machine?

These two machines compare in the following areas:

Staff

Automatic labeling machines allow you to conduct the labeling process with minimal supervision, unlike manual labeling machines.

This means you need more workers with the manual version to achieve the desired output.

Cost

Automatic labeling machines cost more than manual versions.

This is because they have several components and features that allow them to operate independently.

automatic labeling machine

automtic labeling machine

Operating Time

If you would like to operate 24/7, you are better off with automatic labeling machines.

Manual machines can only operate as long as you have workers available.

This means your production is limited as opposed to automatic labeling machines.

Production Capacity

Since automatic labeling machines can operate 24/7, it allows you to attain a higher production capacity.

The production capacity of manual machines depends on the availability of workers.

Support Equipment

It is simple to integrate other support equipment with an automatic labeling machine.

This allows you to improve your production capacity.

Maintenance

Manual machines have fewer and simpler components thus simple to maintain and repair than the automatic version.

Sensors

Automatic labeling machines have sensors that ensure safety during operation and minimize wastage of resources.

manual labeling machine

manual labeling machine

Controls

Automatic labeling machines have touchscreen panels with PLC and HMI enabling you to adjust the labeling parameters on the fly.

Which Types Of Techniques Do Automatic Labeling Machines Use?

These include:

Dry Labeling

This is a method of applying a label on products that you can later peel off.

Pressure Labeling

This technique entails applying pressure on pressure-sensitive labels to stick on containers.

It requires no water, solvent, or heat to activate the adhesive.

Shrink Labeling

In this technique, you will heat-wrap the label around the whole container as it takes the shape of the container.

The material for the shrink label is either polyester or plastic film.

Molding Labeling

In this method, you will insert pre-printed labels in a mold before you begin the molding process.

Thermal Labeling

This technique needs the application of heat to create an image or words on the surface of a product.

What Should You Consider When Choosing Automatic Labeling Machine?

These include:

Budget

This is ultimately the main decider when you want to purchase an automatic labeling machine.

Besides, automatic labeling machines come in a variety of price ranges.

Workspace

The available space you have in your industry determines which machine you should purchase.

For instance, you cannot purchase a large machine if you have a small workspace.

Material Construction

The machine needs to be sturdy and durable, hence, select machines that are made from durable stainless steel construction.

User-friendly

Make sure you can operate the machine easily with minimal training.

Quality Standards

Ensure the automatic labeling machine complies with a set of international, national, and regional standards.

This ensures you are on the right side of the law.

Hopper Capacity

Depending on your production, select a machine that has sufficient hopper capacity that will not require frequent refills.

Upgrades

If you are planning to expand your production, ensure the machine can handle that upgrade.

Support Equipment

Choose an automatic labeling machine that you can easily integrate into the production line to operate with other equipment.

How Can You Increase Efficiency Of Automatic Labeling Machine?

Ensure you perform a regular inspection on all parts to ensure they are working well.

Repair and or replace all broken or faulty parts before you proceed with any labeling processes.

Lubricate all moving components to minimize friction which leads to wear and tear.

Clean the machine regularly to eliminate glue, labels, etc.

Can You Use Removable And Permanent Labels In Automatic Labeling Machine?

Yes, automatic labeling machines can apply removable and permanent labels to containers.

Removable labels are labels that you can peel off from the container and reuse later on.

Permanent labels are labels that stick permanently on the containers.

How Should You Conduct Factory Acceptance Test (FAT) For Automatic Labeling Machine?

A Factory Assessment Test entails inspecting all components to ensure they meet the manufacturing standards.

Here are steps you will conduct when performing a FAT for automatic labeling machines:

  • Ensure you adequately plan on how you will perform the FAT
  • Afterward, review the plan you made to review all the specifications of the automatic labeling machine
  • Here, you will compare the specifications of the machine to the specifications of the customer
  • Ensure you inspect the workmanship of the automatic labeling machine before it leaves the factory
  • Test all components of the automatic labeling machine to ensure they are working properly
  • Also, check the software and hardware versions and ensure you are using the latest one

How Does A Fully Automatic Labeling Machine Compare To Semi-automatic Labeling Machine?

Fully automatic machines are more expensive than semi-automatic versions.

Semi-automatic versions require human assistance to operate efficiently while fully automatic versions operate independently.

fully automatic labeling achine

fully automatic labeling machine

The production capacity of fully automatic versions is higher than that of semi-automatic versions.

Fully automatic versions have more technology than semi-automatic versions.

semi automatic labeling machine

semi automatic labeling machine

Where Can You Use Automatic Labelling Machine?

These include the following industries:

  • Food and beverage industries
  • Pharmaceutical industries
  • Chemical industries
  • Cosmetic industries
  • Agricultural industries
  • Hardware industries

Do All Automatic Labeling Machines Have Printing Capability?

There are automatic labeling machines that have printing machines while others lack them.

However, you can add the printing machine to automatic labeling machines to enable it to have a printing capability.

How Can You Troubleshoot Automatic Labeling Machine?

Here are some tips on how to solve issues that may happen with the automatic labeling machine:

  • Labels not aligning

Solve this issue by lowering the amount of adhesive you are using.

Also, you can properly adjust the automatic labeling machine.

  • Linear tears

The labels may tear making them unusable.

Ensure you calibrate the machine as per the manufacturer’s instructions.

Repair or replace the peel tip and fasten loose points within the machine.

  • Labels fail to stick

This may be due to low tension of the labels or poor mounting of the label applicator.

Ensure the adhesives are in the correct amount.

  • Malfunctions

After long usage, the machine may fail.

Ensure you conduct regular cleaning practices and dust off when you are not using the machine.

  • Machine not detecting clear labels

This occurs when the machine does not decipher the presence of gaps between the labels.

Ensure you recalibrate the automatic labeling machine.

Also, print back timing marks at the back of liners to assist in solving this issue.

  • Labels curling

Solve this by using stronger adhesives, dry containers, or changing the compression levels.

Which Quality Standards Should Automatic Labeling Machine Comply With?

These include:

  • cGMP [current good manufacturing practices]
  • CE mark of quality
  • RoHS [restriction of hazardous substances]
  • ISO certification
  • FDA [food and drug administration]
  • SS AISI 304 compliance

Can You Integrate Automatic Labeling Machine In Production Line?

Yes, you can use an automatic labeling machine with other machines in the production line.

This will streamline your entire production ad save you time.

Some of the machines you can integrate with automatic labeling machines include:

  • Filling machines
  • Counting machines
  • Packaging machines
  • Capping machines
  • Unscrambling machines

How Do You Make User Requirement Specifications For Automatic Labeling Machine?

User Requirement Specifications are factors you should consider when you are buying an automatic labeling machine.

To make the URS, you need the following specifications:

  • Approvals
  • Introduction
  • Overviews
  • Process descriptions
  • Design needs
  • Safety needs
  • Testing and delivery
  • Qualification needs
  • Abbreviations

How Does Handheld Labeling Machine Compare To Automatic Labeling Machine?

Automatic labeling machines have a high production capacity than handheld labeling machines.

Also, with handheld labeling machines, you need an operator for them to function.

Handled labeling machines are cheaper than automatic labeling machines.

The accuracy and efficiency of automatic labeling machines are higher than that of handheld labeling machines.

Handheld labeling machines are suitable for small-scale labeling processes while automatic labeling machines are suitable for large production runs.

handheld labeling machine

handheld labeling machine

Automatic labeling machines are large and occupy more space for installation and operation.

However, handheld labeling machines are small allowing you to operate them while holding them in your hands.

More Resources:

Bottle Label Applicator

Double Side Sticker Labeling Machine

Manual Bottle Labeling Machine

Square Bottle Label Applicator

Semi-automatic Bottle Labeling Machine

Tabletop Bottle Labeling Machine

For all your automatic labelling machines, contact SaintyCo now.

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