Types of Strapping

Strapping is used to secure pallets or large items into bundles. The most commonly used strapping types are polypropylene, polyester and steel. Each one has its strengths and weaknesses, so it is important to ensure you select the right strapping for your requirements.

Polypropylene (PP) Strap

Available in rolls for both hand and machine applications and is used
for light to medium strapping applications.

  • Least initial tightness after joint is made and highest
    relaxation over time.
  • Lowest tensile strength and abrasion resistance of the
    three strap types.
  • Hand strap has a variety of uses ranging from small warehouse applications through to horticulture packing sheds. Hand strap is fastened together using hand tools with buckles and seals.
  • Machine strap is used in many warehouse and packing applications, such as large food processing units and magazine and newspaper distributors where high volume and speed is required. Machine strap is used in bot semi-automatic and fully automatic strapping machines that rely on heat sealing to make the join.

Steel Strap

Commonly found in regular duty (standard) and high tensile
(super) grades. High tensile grade is used to bear extremely heavy
loads and withstand extreme shocks.

  • Naturally highly durable.
  • Suitable for the strapping of heavy loads such as timber,
    bricks, steel, etc.
  • Used with a hand tensioner and a sealer with metal seals. Seal-less tools can also be used. For heavy duty applications there are pneumatic tools available.
  • Steel strap comes in two packaging formats:

Ribbon Wound: Each layer is wound directly over the one below so that the width of the strapping is the width of the coil. Comes in flat coils. Suitable for small to
medium users who require a manageable roll weight for portability.

Rope Wound: Strapping is oscillated uniformly and tightly across the width of the
coil. The width of the strap is smaller than the width of the coil. Suitable for high
volume users as it requires less coil changes. Also known as oscillating, spiral or mill

Polyester (PET) Strap

Specially developed to provide an extremely tough and strong
alternative to steel strap for securing medium and heavy-duty loads.

  • Good alternative to steel for applications that require high tensile
    strength, high-retained tension and elongation.
  • Offers higher recovery characteristics and stays tighter than
    polypropylene strap on packs that shrink or become compressed.

Water and UV resistant. Preferred strapping material for products stored outside.

  • Lighter than steel for improved productivity.
  • Has no sharp edges, so product damage is minimised and there is less risk of injury while tensioning or cutting the strap.
  • Will not rust and stain packaging when exposed to moisture.
  • Performs well under shock loading, such as when a pallet is dropped during handling or in transit. This is because polyester strap can absorb the sudden forces exerted.
  • Low creep properties, which means that the strap tension will not "relax". Packs can therefore be moved safely even after extended periods of storage or transport.
  • Has slight elasticity and so maintains strap tension by contracting with the pack in the event of pack settlement. Steel straps may become loose if the pack configuration changes, creating a potential hazard when handling large or heavy materials.
  • Used with a hand tensioner and a sealer that uses serrated seals. Friction welders can also be employed, which do not require the use of seals. These are available in a battery-operated format or a pneumatic format for heavy-duty work.