‘Although adhesive U space label strips are only a tiny component in the manufacture of these specialist control cabinets, they still need to do the job! By changing the label substrate and testing a new adhesive we were able to create a high performing U strip label to match the quality of the cabinets ’
Our customer, Usystems Ltd, have been designing and manufacturing specialist computer and server cabinets for the data and telecoms industry since 2003. Their multi award-winning products, which boast cutting edge design and high quality, are used by high profile corporations worldwide.
The Customer’s Challenge
Our customer was experiencing problems with label adhesion on U strips used to indicate the U space (sometimes known as rack unit or RU) on the inside of their IT cabinets. Although a seemingly minor issue in their manufacturing process, it was enough to cause them delays and irritation.
The issue came to a head when they needed some more U space labels; the non-standard label substrate material had a long lead time with a poor delivery performance which meant that they could run out of label strips and have no guarantee of quick delivery.
On investigation our technical team found that the adhesive U space label strip stock that the customer was using was over 12 months old; they ascertained that the adhesive had deteriorated over that time period which was causing the labels to fail.
The team went on to investigate whether the customer’s chosen label material was having any impact on the poor performance. It transpired that whilst the material was not to blame, it was a non-standard substrate; the team felt that it would be worth testing some other label materials which might do the job equally well but be easier to source.
We tested a polypropylene label material with a glassine backing with two different adhesives; a permanent adhesive and a rubber hot melt adhesive. The pressure sensitive hot melt adhesive is characterised by the fact that it is not fully set and remains permanently tacky; this allows for superior adhesion even when the adhesive cools down.
What we delivered
Having personally delivered the trial U strips to our customer within a few days, they were able to quickly test which label strip performed the best.
Fortuitously, the more standard label substrate performed equally, or better, than their previous material so we were able to meet their deadline without the need to source another label material.
In addition, we able to agree a schedule of orders with the customer so that they do not need to store an oversupply of labels and risk the adhesive going off again.
The impact on the customer’s business
By working with our technical team to understand the issues, we were able to deliver the best U space label to meet our customer’s requirement exactly, and in a timescale to suit them. They specifically benefited from:
- An equivalent quality label substrate that was easier to source thus eliminating any future problems of label supply
- An up-graded adhesive that improved the U space label performance and reduced any issues through the manufacturing operation
- An assurance that they would not run out of U strips again and would have better control of their label stocks.
If you need U space label strips or any type of customised adhesive labels for your job please contact us to talk through your requirements.