When 2 become 1: introducing Domino’s innovative Tube Coding Module for Domino lasers

  • By Jon Hall
  • June 26, 2018
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What if you could code onto both sides of the crimp on tube packaging at the same time, using just one laser? Domino has created the technology to make it happen. It makes tube coding easier, faster, potentially cheaper and - in summary - smarter than ever before.

From toothpaste to tomato purée, squeeze tubes are big business when it comes to consumer packaging. In fact, the tube packaging market size is estimated to grow from $6.65 Billion in 2016 to $9.30 Billion in 2021. The well-known, yet often underappreciated humble squeeze tube is used for everything from eye drops to glue; from shoe polish to shampoo. But nowhere is tube packaging used more prevalently than the cosmetics sector, which accounts for 65% of the world’s tube production.

Make no mistake: this type of packaging is popular. But it’s a medium that presents unique coding and marking challenges.

Domino CO2 lasers are uniquely capable of printing on squeezable tubes at a high rate of speed

Printing codes onto squeeze tubes isn’t easy

Like all other types of consumer packaging, squeeze tubes are required to carry certain codes or marks such as lot number, expiration date, serialization codes and eye marks - the latter of which were at the center of an old, fake toothpaste tube-based conspiracy theory

One thing this conspiracy theory did get right is about the general trend in the packaging industry to code more production-related data about the product right on the packaging for all to see. This data at times is coded onto the crimp at the reverse end of the tube. On squeeze tubes - especially travel-sized options - space is at a premium, so special care must be taken when coding onto squeeze tubes.

To tackle the space issue, some manufacturers choose to code on both sides of the crimp. Traditionally, this required the use of two separate laser coders on the production line. Now, new innovation from Domino is here to change that - making dual-side tube coding more efficient and cost-effective than ever before.

What do these various codes do?

Now if you're in the packaging industry, or if you're a toothpaste manufacturer, we're not about to tell you anything you don't know, so feel free to skip ahead. Instead, this section is purely for inquisitive minds that may just want to know. 

 

Mockup of Domino Printing's use of mirrors for laser etching on two sides of a squeeze tube

Introducing Domino’s Tube Coding Module

Domino’s Tube Coding Module allows you to code onto both sides of the crimp simultaneously - with a single laser etcher. Naturally, using using a single laser instead of two means decreased capital spend up front. This means it's cost-effective, fast and an elegant way to double the amount of data you can add to tube packaging - regardless of the type of code that you wish to place on your packaging. Whether you want barcodes, best before dates or promotional codes placed on your squeeze tubes - it's all possible with Domino laser etchers.

Meet the Domino Tube Coding Module

How does this all work? Our tube coding module is an external module that attaches to the scan head of a Domino laser coder. Two mirrors deflect the laser beam exiting the scanner’s lens to allow you to code simultaneously on both sides of the crimp. The module also features a viewing window for production line workers in addition to a connection for fume extraction. As with all Domino North America products - safety is our highest priority - and all the safety features you should demand and comply to are adhered to with this laser setup. Safe, ingeniously simple, cost-mitigating and highly effective.

The Tube Coding Module is even extendable so that two or more tubes can be coded.

Of course let’s not forget the benefits of coding with lasers. Code quality and readability is high, with vector fonts instead of dot fonts for maximum freedom. In addition, the code has high permanence with zero worry about wipe away issues. And laser is capable of handling variable data at speed from one tube to the next. A precise application for coding onto the tube crimp.

Domino Tube Coding Module

Want to know more?

Domino’s tube coding module potentially brings more speed, flexibility and freedom to dual-side tube coding. If you would like to know more about how it can enhance your squeeze tube coding operations, please get in touch.

You may also be interested in:

>> What are the best technologies for coding onto flexible packaging?

>> Keeping your staff safe when coding with lasers

>> How laser technology can simplify resealable and easy-open packaging production

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