UltraGrip vs Regular Laminate Films

What is UltraGrip film? Why do I need it?

It's hard to get laminate film to stick to digital prints!

Thanks to the composition of toner, digital prints are notoriously hard to laminate. Toner is typically a mixture of wax, silicone and oil, and incredibly hard to stick to. So even after you let prints sit for 12 hours for any fuser oil to dissipate, laminating over digital print is literally like trying to stick oil to water (or vice versa!). It's almost impossible, except that UltraGrip adhesive exists.

Basically UltraGrip is just extra-sticky laminate film.

Compared to the adhesive found on regular laminate film, UltraGrip adhesive is an entirely different adhesive altogether. Its chemical makeup means that it's specially designed to bond to digital prints.

In fact, it bonds so well, that when you try to remove it sometimes, this may happen.

Most times it won't be evident as soon as you laminate that your film and toner/ink aren't playing nice.

Sometimes it will peel right away, but if you want to be sure we recommend doing a pull test a few hours after laminating.

  • Choose a sheet or section of your print that has the most difficult print (high toner coverage)
  • Use a knife/blade to make a small 'X' cut through the laminate only, and start peeling the film away.

You should be able to clearly see the color and shapes of the toner on the laminate that has been pulled away.

But if it destroys the sheet (like the GIF higher up on the page), you haven't done anything wrong either!
If that isn't the case, and only the film comes away from the print in your pull test, there may be a few issues at play:

  • Curing - was the print allowed to cure before you laminated it? Offset prints should rest at least 24 hours, and digital prints 12 hours, before laminating.
  • Laminate film - maybe try UltraGrip? 😉
  • Temperature - you may be using too low a temperature, and the adhesive isn't melting enough to stick to the film
  • Speed - you may be running it too fast and the adhesive isn't getting a chance to melt in time
  • Pressure - you may need to increase your pressure so that the film adheres to the print properly.
Although UltraGrip is more expensive than regular laminate film, it's well worth it when you can guarantee customer satisfaction with your laminate job. It saves you the worry of your printed piece getting halfway around the world for the final customer to notice it peeling! And because the only difference is the adhesive, you can still get all your usual films and finishes - from POLYpro Gloss and Matte, all the way to your specialty SOFTpro laminate films!

Give us a call if you're having issues laminating your prints. We're always happy to help!
Understanding the differences between laminate film types
Which laminate film is best for your application?