How to Buy the Correct Thermal Transfer Ribbons to Suit your Business?
If you are not sure what Thermal Transfer Ribbon to buy for your business then you have came to the right place! In this concise report we will hopefully provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision.
Businesses use Thermal Transfer Ribbons to print on their Thermal Transfer Printers like the Zebra ZD400 Series which provide the business with long lasting prints ideal for barcoding, folder and shelf labelling, warehouse labelling and any other type of labelling which need to last at least 7 years. Common industries that use Wax/Resin Ribbons include Healthcare for record keeping, barcoding for businesses and Paint labelling for chemical resistance. Unlike direct thermal labels used in the freight industry, using Wax/Resin Thermal Transfer ribbons will allow the labels not fade under sunlight which is one of the key reasons to use this.
There are a few things to considering when buying Thermal Transfer Ribbons for your printer and below will give you a step by step guide in the selection process.
What Thermal Transfer Ribbon Width should I buy?
Printing ribbons come in a variety of widths to suit certain Thermal Transfer Printers as some printers have a limited printing width compared to others. The most common printing width for Zebra Thermal Transfer printers is the 110mm. Zebra Thermal Transfer Printer like the ZD421 can print up to 110mm width and can hold any width up to 110mm. Now if you have a desktop Thermal Transfer Printer that can print up to a width of 110mm it doesn’t mean you need to buy that width for the Thermal Transfer Ribbon as it would depend on the width of the label you are printing on. For example if your label has a width of 60mm then you will only require a Thermal Transfer Ribbon of 60mm and any more would be a waste. Ribbon widths range from 30mm to 110mm, but please note that the 110mm width is the most common as it can print any label width up to 110mm.
What Thermal Transfer Ribbon Length should I buy?
Printing ribbons come in a variety of lengths to suit certain Thermal Transfer Printers as some printers can only hold up to a certain length and buying a length longer what the printer can hold will cause a cannot fit issue. The most common desktop Thermal Transfer Printer like the Zebra GK420T, GX420T, ZD420T, ZD421 can use lengths 70m or 74m but nothing more as longer ribbons would not fit in those printers. If you have an industrial Thermal Transfer Printer then you may use a longer Ribbon like 300m or 450m which are quite common. If in doubt google the specs of your printer and look closely at the “Media Consumption” section and it should advise you what is the max length to buy for your printer.
What Type of Ribbon should I buy, Wax, Wax/Resin or Resin?
Printing ribbons come in a variety of types to suit certain applications, ranges from Wax to Wax/Resin to Resin. Wax is the cheapest and least durable, Wax/Resin is moderately durable and Resin is the most expensive and most durable. So what to buy will depend on your application and below we have given you a guide:
Wax Ribbon: least expensive and works in some applications. Must be printed on paper labels and suitable for environments with little or no exposure to chemicals or abrasion. This suit simple label printing for barcoding, office folder labelling and warehouse shelf labelling.
Wax/Resin Ribbon: this combination ribbon is reasonably priced and works most applications. This ribbon can be printing on both paper labels and plastic labels making it more versatile. The mix of Wax and Resin also make it tougher and more durable providing good abrasion and chemical resistance. This will make office labels, barcoding and warehouse labelling tougher and more durable.
Resin Ribbon: most expensive and provide great print quality and durability. Generally used in certain industries there the environment is highly exposed to chemicals, temperature fluctuations and outdoor environments.
We at Awesome Pack recommend the Wax/Resin Ribbon for most businesses who use a Thermal Transfer Printer as it is suitable for general office use and warehouse use including printing barcodes. If you have a desktop Thermal Transfer Printer like the Zebra GX420T or ZD420T then our 110mm x 70mm will work perfectly and the 110mm width will give you the flexibility of printing any label width up to 110mm and no need to change ribbons for different widths. For larger industrial Thermal Transfer Printers then our 110mm x 300m and 110mm x 450m may be suitable.
Hopefully after reading our Thermal Transfer Ribbons Guide you will have a better idea on what ribbon to buy for your printer and what type of thermal transfer ribbon best suit your industry.
Always helping you on your eCommerce journey,
Bill Li | Founder | Awesome Pack
8/72-76 Fenton St, Huntingdale VIC 3166
Ph: 1300 816 800