Selecting the Right Ribbon | Diagraph's Blog
Create Config
Edit Name Description Configiration Type Type

Featured Posts

  • Avoid Labeling Mistakes by Removing Plant Air Posted 7 months ago
    All-electric label applicators revolutionize the packaging industry by eliminating the reliance on plant air, providing precise applicator control for consistent and accurate label placement and ensuring secure label control for various label sizes.
  • Is training production line workers creating a challenge? No problem!  Posted 7 years ago
    Companies rely on engineers or technicians to keep production lines up and running. These job functions are essential to hitting production targets, so it is key that their skill level on equipment is proficient. When making the decision to replace this equipment, the amount of time and money that will have to be invested in training your labor is a major deciding factor.
  • How do I get labels to stick in hot and humid environments? Posted 4 years ago
    Something to be aware of when considering using labeling for product identification in a hot or humid environment is that labels are sensitive to temperature, making facility environment temperature a determining factor in choosing what label material to use on a product.  
  • Superior labeling power source — pneumatic air/electric labeling Posted 7 years ago
    Which is a superior labeling power source — pneumatic air or electric? There is a great debate in the packaging technology industry around the core driver.
  • How Push-Mode Piezo Print Technology Saves Significant Costs in Packaging Compliance Posted 3 years ago
    Every package printed with a noncompliant mark is a package you can’t ship, costing your company time and money. Improving print technology can help improve packaging compliance. Diagraph’s industrial inkjet printing technology was built specifically to improve print quality and production line uptime for manufacturing environments.
Read More »

Diagraph's Blog


Diagraphs Blog covers the latest in coding and labeling products

Selecting the Right Ribbon

Selecting the Right Ribbon

The packaging of your product is extremely important, it is a first impression and we all know how important those are. There is a whole science when it comes to packaging, from the way that the consumers place the packaging in their minds to the appeal that the packaging has on their emotions. As manufacturers we want the packaging to look good, but sometimes that extra shine that the film supplier said would enhance your packaging throws a curveball when it comes to printing important information such as lot numbers, date codes or even pricing.


For example, at Diagraph we sometimes hear from customers that say “your ribbon was working fine until it just stopped working halfway through the roll. What happened with the last 300’ of ribbon?” The reason is usually simple. The ribbon formula has not changed. However, that new batch of film that you received from your film supplier may contain a bit more Silicone or Teflon to prevent the film from sticking on the roll or to make the appearance a tad bit shinier. These are instances when you want to inquire about the foil formula with your supplier.


The good news is that you have options. In fact, Diagraph offers many different formulations of Norwood ribbon to allow us to offer solutions for most films. The coating and chemical make-up of the film is what drives the ribbon formulation. We offer wax, wax/resin, and resin ribbons and within each of these 3 categories we offer a number of formulas and colors. If you have a new film or want to know what formulation will be the best option for your film, our Norwood Ribbon experts offer free film testing.


As if that wasn’t enough complexity for a simple 5 digit code, there is also the print head type that will determine which formula will work. Thermal transfer has 3 different print head technologies: true, flat and near. The most common of the 3 are near and flat and they are defined by the angle that the print head has relative to the actual substrate. Different formulas of ribbon are designed for the different print head technologies. A near edge ribbon cannot be expected to work on a flat edge printer and vice versa.


So next time that the film supplier calls and says “We just got this new coating in and it will make your packaging sparkle and shine” ask for a sample of that film to be sent over to Diagraph to see if that “sparkle and shine” is something that can keep your thermal code sticking. We can help you proactively address any issues to ensure that you have the right ribbon for your new foil.


At Diagraph, we are dedicated to solving your coding and labeling challenges. Diagraph has been assisting customers for over 120 years by improving production line efficiencies with simple, reliable and cost-effective coding and labeling solutions. Contact us to learn more about the Norwood ribbon line. Visit us at or contact us at 800.722.1125.

Comments are closed.