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Lamination which is usually the last step in printed graphics is often dreadful and problematic. This can be prevented or corrected if you know your way around the laminator, making the lamination process easy. Here are some problems encountered during the lamination process and their solutions.

 The film not sticking properly

This is a problem common with digital print and is mainly caused by the composition of the ink and its interaction with the adhesive. It is more difficult for inks with denser coverage to stick. 


  • No film is universal, and they react differently to different stocks, inks, and machines. The right film was selected for the job.
  • The machine should be put on early to ensure even distribution of heat. 
  • Before laminating, ensure the ink is properly dried. 

Presence of bubbles under the film

Bubbling is caused by several factors and there is no single fix to correct this problem. Some fixes that be tried are:

  • Feed the print slowly into the machine.
  • Ensure the ink is dry before feeding it into the machine.
  • The machine shouldn’t be left idle for long to prevent hot spots. You can also reduce the temperature slightly and speed up lamination.

Orange peel or wrinkles 

The presence of wrinkles or waves is mostly caused by high temperatures. Some remedies to this are:

  • The recommended temperature for the film in use should be maintained.
  • Use the recommended speed or increase the laminating speed in a case where there is no recommended speed.
  • Orange peel sometimes occurs when the prints have solvent residues. A film best suited for this situation should be used. 


this occurs when the laminated document won’t lie flat. Slight curling isn’t unusual and gentle smoothing can resolve that. In a situation where that doesn’t work, try:

  • Avoid the use of the same tension for the bottom and top films.
  • The same film should be used on both sides of the laminator.
  • Preheat the laminator to ensure uniform distribution of temperature before laminating.

Presence of spot or marks on the lamented document

This occurs when something is stuck on the roll or there was a feeding issue. This can be rectified by:

  • The rolls should be properly cleaned to ensure there is no film, adhesive, or paper sticking on it. 
  • The print should be fed parallel to the roll to prevent infeed waves. 

The film wrapping around the rolls 

This is a problem common to lighter films and is usually caused by static electricity. Running the laminator in reverse so the wrapped film gets pulled back is a quick fix to this. To prevent this:

  • Run the lamination process in a continuous feed. This boosts the weight of the film which helps hold them away from the roll.
  • Always ground your laminating machine.
  • Ensure you leave a few inches of film between each sheet.


Laminator machines are expected to suffer some minor and common issues which affect booklet makers. However, knowing how to identify and correct them makes it less troubling.

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