Ribbon Types Resources
Label printers and barcode printers have three different types of
ribbons that can be used. These can be categorized into wax ribbons,
wax/resin ribbons, and resin ribbons. Each type of ribbon have their
strengths and weaknesses and is dependent on the user's type of
application. Below is a description of each type of ribbon.
- Wax Ribbons:
These ribbons are the lowest cost and are typically used when long term
durability is NOT an issue. Thus, wax ribbons are typically used for
shipping labels, pricing labels, or other indoor applications. They are
best for printing on coated or uncoated paper tags and labels.
- Wax/Resin Ribbons:
These ribbons have a higher cost than wax ribbons, but are less
expensive to resin ribbons. The imprint is more resistant to scratching
and smearing and can resist mild chemicals. Since the durability is
stronger than wax, but weaker than resin, these ribbons are suitable
for short-term outdoor uses and are best for printing on coated paper,
coated tags and films such as Kimdura.
- Resin Ribbons: These ribbons have the highest cost, but have
the highest durability of the three ribbon types. They are mostly used
for outdoor applications or if the media requires handling in extreme
conditions (continuous physical contact, harsh heat, etc.). They are
resistant to most chemicals and are best for printing on synthetics
materials such as polyester, polymide, etc.