Hand Stretch Film & Machine Stretch Wrap – What’s The Difference?

What Is Stretch Film?

Stretch film (also commonly known as stretch wrap) is a very stretchy thin plastic sheet material used to wrap around products, boxes, and pallets. Elastic recovery, or rather the “stretch-ability” of stretch film, allows the film to contain the items it is wrapped around tightly.

The higher the percentage of elastic recovery, the better the film will contain the items. The purpose of stretch film is to palletize products by properly and safely containing them during shipping.

Hand Stretch Film

Hand stretch film was specifically made for wrapping to be done by implementing human labor. Commonly referred to only as “hand film,” this type of stretch film cannot be used on a stretch wrap machine. It’s made specifically for use with a stretch wrap dispenser (pictured below).

Hand Held Stretch Wrapper - Two Handed

Manual stretch film can wrap many different types of products and stacks of goods on pallets. This type of film is a good choice if you are wrapping under 50 pallets per day.

Machine Stretch Film

Machine stretch film is made to be used on a stretch wrapping machine. Machine stretch wrap is faster to apply than hand stretch, has a lower cost than hand film, is safer, and boasts better load containment.

Machine Stretch film

Machine Stretch filmNow, while machine stretch film has a lot of benefits, the use of machine stretch film does require a stretch wrapping machine. A stretch wrapper can be a significant investment, and your budget may prevent you from purchasing a stretch wrapper, in which case you may have to use hand stretch films.

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