Banding Tools 101: What Are They and Why You Should Care

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MMH1107_EqpRptPalletScretchWrap-3When you need to move heavy objects, secure valuables, or you’re working in tight spaces, you need to use special tools. Sometimes, you need to be able to strap something together or secure it while you move it. And while you could just use machines, like forklifts, to do the job, you can’t always be sure that everything will make it to its destination intact. Here’s where banding tools come into play.

For Tight Areas

A banding tool is a device used to tighten metal (or composite material) bands or straps. Essentially, it’s a form of tightener. Yes, it’s a simple concept, but a valuable one. Companies like ISOStainless make banding tools for all types of materials.

One instance where these tools are especially useful is in tight areas. When you’re trying to tighten down something with only a 1/4 inch clearance, you’re just not going to get in there with your hands. You need leverage. That’s what a banding tool can give you. It’s basically an extension of your own body that multiplies the force needed to secure items.

In some instances, a “tight space” might just be a space where you can physically get into to, but you have no leverage and no way to tighten the straps.

For Heavy Objects

When you need to move heavy objects, you don’t want them falling all over the place in the back of a trailer. This is another area where banding tools can be handy. With stainless steel or some other kind of metal banding, it’s near-impossible to hand-tighten the straps to the necessary specifications for transportation.

If you’re working in an industry that’s highly regulated, it might prevent you from doing your job properly. If you’re just an individual trying to move something from one location to another, it might mean the difference between making it there with everything in one piece vs. calling in an insurance claim for damaged property.

For Securing Items

Once a steel band or strap is tightened, it’s often sealed to itself. For example, a steel strap is typically sealed with a seal and notch joint. However, it can also be sealed with a seal and crimp, seal-less joint, or even welded. The banding tool provides the correct tension, of course, for all of this to take place.

This seal becomes especially important when you need to secure items for long-term storage. Since long-term storage presumably requires absolute positioning of property for safety or liability reasons, you just can’t take the risk that hand-tightening poses.

In fact, many high-grade steel bands simply can’t be secured with a “hand tight” application. In other words, you absolutely must have steel banding equipment to bring the straps together so that they can be either temporarily or permanently sealed.

If you’re using a banding tool in a commercial environment to secure a lot of things, you might want to use an automatic tool rather than a manual crimping one. This is both for logistics and for increased accuracy and efficacy.

William Lux is a construction manager. He loves sharing his ideas about specific tools by writing for construction blogs.

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