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Thread: pressure sensitive labels

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2002

    Question pressure sensitive labels

    Fellow Brewers:

    We are labeling our bottles after they come off a six head Meheen machine. We do a post crowning rinse of the bottles with water, then blow off the excess with air. The bottles then pass through a pressure sensitive label machine. Problem is, we can't find a good adhesive stock that will stick to the cold wet glass. As you can imagine,the problem is very frustrating. Lately we've had to resort to pre-labeling the bottles, but that has put a strain on our labor. Has any one out there had good success with labeling cold, wet bottles? If so, what adhesive are you using? Any help would be GREATLY welcomed!!
    Last edited by bierwiz; 12-16-2002 at 09:08 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    San Carlos, CA, USA
    I have the same problem... Please let know if you come up with a solution...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2002

    Lightbulb pressure sensitive labels

    contact Rob Creighton(sp?), He has done a lot of work with that exact problem and solved ours. He should have a profile on here. He had a label and adhesive that was disigned just for the craft market that cold labeled.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Toronto, Canada
    The Criteria for a good beer label is:

    Applies on a cold wet bottle without sliding off or 'swimming' and going on crooked.

    Stays on in an ice water bath.

    Comes off when soaked in hot caustic. (for reusable bottles)

    Relatively inexpensive unit cost./ Can be printed affordably in smaller quantities.

    Unfortunately, pressure sensitive labels meet none of these needs.

    The only upsides to ps labels are that they can be applied on a low speed, stopping and starting bottling line, with minimal changeover and cleanup time. (glue labellers, get gummed up when they stop too long and need to be washed before restarting. They also require cleanup at the end of the day)
    PS Labels can also be made to almost any shape and design, without requiring any changeover parts for different shapes.

    That said, ps labels are also more than 10x more expensive than paper (>6c vs <0.5c for paper). It is possible to get on a gang printing run for paper labels, and affordably print smaller quantities.

    At 5c per bottle difference (plus untold grief and extra labour), it doesn't take too long to come up with $7,000 to buy a glue labeller.

    As an interim suggestion. If you are pre labelling anyway, why don't you find a local micro that has a glue labeller, and pay them to pre label for you. If you paid them 2c per bottle, you would still be ahead. You could also go in together on glass purchases, and perhaps get better volume discounts by full ordering truckloads.

    Having had experience with ps labels, I would not reccommend them.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Kenilworth, UK
    I have to agree with the above post. If you use self adhesive labels, learn to accept pre labeling. We label our cold and wet bottles with two 1950's era World Tandem labelers without much of a problem. Its pretty cheap too. If you are mechanically minded, you can find these things out on the lawn of many large breweries, and fix them up. It will save you alot of money over the long term. We have our label costs down to about 0.12 cents a CASE. That is half a penny each. The glue is practically free, you use so little of it. The big cost is the pain of keeping the machines running. But if you have someone who can do things like rebuild a car, then they are a piece of cake.

    Aaron Taubman
    Millstream Brewing Co

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