How Useful is a Label Rewinder?

A label rewinder machine can save a lot of time when printing thermal labels — but just how much time? Whether it’s for a Zebra, TSC, SATO or any other Thermal Label Printer, using a Labelmate Label Rewinder or a Datamax Label Rewinder can be extremely useful and we find out why with a little experiment below.

Experiment

The goal of this experiment is to find out how much time is saved with a label rewinder compared to doing it manually by hand.

  1. We will print 50 labels with each rewinding method.
  2. The three label rewinding methods are:
    1. Using a Label Rewinder while the thermal label printer prints 50 labels.
    2. Rolling it onto a cardboard label core while the thermal label printer prints labels.
    3. Folding the labels into a fan-folded position after printing labels. We chose not to fold it as it prints because we wanted to see how manageable it would be from method #2 (which ends up being chaotic).
  3. Time each method to calculate how much time is saved.

Equipment

The equipment used in this experiment is the Labelmate Mini-Cat MC-11 Label Rewinder and TSC TTP-247 Label Printer.

Results

From printing to completion the results are as follows:

Hand Folding while Printing*: 72.13 Seconds
Hand Rolling: 64.04 Seconds
Hand Folding after Printing: 50.13 Seconds
Label Rewinder: 38.13 Seconds

*it takes about 22 seconds to print 50 labels meaning if we had attempted to fold the labels as it printed, we would add an additional 22 seconds to hand folding the labels.

Conclusion

In short, using a Label Rewinder is the best choice if you want to save time, money, and energy.

Attempting to rewind it by hand as it comes out of the printer ends up being chaotic if you’re not fast enough and the end result is a loose roll of labels compared to the Label Rewinder where you get a nicely tight roll of labels.

Attempting to rewind (or fold) the labels after printing is a lot less chaotic but is less efficient since it’s not being done until after printing has finished. Using a Label Rewinder as it prints is like killing two birds with one stone.

Using the same experiment, if we had printed 500 labels then it would have taken close to 11 minutes for hand rolling, 9.3 minutes for hand folding, and only 6.3 with label rewinders. With these results, using a label rewinder is superior and worth the cost in the long run to avoid additional labor and time.