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on June 16, 2016
I bought this because it had a wider scope of what could be laminated than most of the other laminators out there, especially in this price point. I was especially excited because I was planning on using it to laminate file folders. I didn’t end up using it for that purpose, because I had a hard time finding the pockets that size in a price I liked, but it worked well for what I needed it to. That being said, it really doesn't have any of the nicer features that others do. I wish it had a better way to load the sheets into the laminator. It was kind of difficult to get them in there level-ish and straight-ish. I found that the best way to do it was to use a large book (I used an I Spy book) to lay your project on and slowly push it toward the opening evenly so it went through more straight than just trying to feed it in on your own.

If you found this review helpful, I would very much appreciate you giving me a "thumbs up". And if you have any questions, I'd be more than willing to answer them to the best of my ability!
127 people found this helpful
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on August 10, 2016
WARNING! The laminator does NOT have a 13" wide laminating area as stated. The max width is approximately 12.5".

Update: After reading my review, the company automatically issued me me a partial refund and replaced my laminator with a professional model that does have true 13" wide laminating abilities. With that part, I am well pleased.

I am, however, very dissapointed to see that, even weeks later, the item description has not been updated to show to true laminating width of 12.5". The company is absolutely aware that the listing info is not correct. They have had the time and ability to email me 3-4 times asking if I will update my review, but they have failed to update their listing.

While the laminator does work fine, I cannot, in good conscience, rate it higher than 3 stars when I know the item is not as it is described and anyone that orders 13" paper or laminating supplies will not be able to use it and may my be able to get a refund for it.
101 people found this helpful
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on October 16, 2016
Love this machine for the price, I sent most of my items through twice to be sure it was totally sealed but in the machines defense I scanned about 200 business card sized pouches typically 3 at a time so I believe that was error on my part due to being impatient. The machine heats up quickly and documents take about 30 seconds or less each. The machine gets fairly hot so make sure it is able to get a lot of air, I used the box to raise it off my laminant desk, I was afraid it might cause minor melting on the surface. It also gets a slight burning smell but very mild. Well worth the price. I'm very happy with it and would recommend this item to anyone I know looking to buy a lamination machine. Also very happy it can accommodate up to a 13" wide sheet of paper.

Update, I have been able to use the machine a few more times and love it, I was confident that I only had to run each sheet 1 time. Also they have the absolute best customer service and will gladly rectify any problems you have, even if they are minor. You can't go wrong buying this product or from this seller.
24 people found this helpful
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on May 27, 2017
WOW! This product is amazing! I am a middle school teacher. I have used this to create learning centers. I could not be more pleased with the quality of the sheets that I have laminated. So far, I have laminated over 6000 sheets for grades 7-8, and this machine is still working strong! About 99.9% of the sheets have come through with no bubbles or wrinkles, and those that do have problems were the result of human error, not problems with this machine. I bought this machine because of its ability to laminate larger documents than most laminators within its price range. I would also recommend that you purchase Apache laminating film to ensure the best results. So far, I have only used Apache film and the 3 mil thickness. I could not recommend this laminator more highly-buy it if you're a teacher!
22 people found this helpful
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on July 5, 2017
The original machine I got must have been defective. It broke during my second use. I was outside the return window and left a review here...which the company saw. They sent me a replacement!!!

This new one has been on for two hours, I have laminate at least 50 pages, and so far it's great!!! Hot enough to seal the first time through, love that it's wide so I can laminate file folders or scrapbook paper.

I was shocked that they sent me a replacement. I can tell already that this one will be great. The last one must have just been a fluke.

Side note...I only purchase the apache laminating pouches now. They work just as well as the expensive brands for a fraction of the cost!
18 people found this helpful
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on May 19, 2017
Got job done, quickly heat up and ready to use in less than a minute, did try with 5 mil films (I did not even known it came with 20-5 mil films) and also try with 3 mil film I bought separate from Walmart. It did what it supposed. I could not be happier than this.
In my project I want my cards to stand my little one's hands, I did laminate the card twice with 5 mil, or triple with 3 mil and it works.
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12 people found this helpful
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on September 10, 2016
Possibly the best 20 bucks I've spent gearing up for my new classroom. I hate having to wait to get things laminated and I use a lot of pass arounds so I thought I would give this little laminator a try. It is fantastic. Heats in 3 minutes and as long as you don't try to race through a huge stack of stuff, it does an absolutely perfect job. I think 5 mil bags are a bit thick for classroom stuff so I will likely buy 3 mil next time, but their bags are also high quality, super clear and easy to work with. Best results with feeding one, waiting perhaps 30 seconds to a minute and feeding the next with the 5 mil bags. Give it time to recover. I haven't had to wait with the 3mil bags and standard papers. Love it that it can handle the wider stuff too as maps and things need the bigger format. Great product, super value.
11 people found this helpful
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on January 7, 2016
Takes some bit of getting used too. I bought it to do foil stamping, but the laminator itself works just fine. Just had to figure out best way to do the foil stamping.

Spoke with their customer service about how the laminator was for foil stamping and gave a few pointers on potential improvement.

Here is what I did through trial and error to get the foil stamp to work really well.

1. Was using 80lb cardstock since that is the thickest paper Kinkos printers can use. I tried both coated and uncoated cardstock. Coated seemed to work a bit better, but once I had my technique down, uncoated seemed to do just as well.

2. I did NOT use a sheet of paper over the foil. Many tutorials show using a sheet of thin printer paper to help push down the foil and keep it in place. I found that it prevented some of the temperature to come through and saw way less foil adhering to the ink. SO I did the foil straight on top of my cardstock. In some instances I did use a small piece of scotch tape, but I found it was a completely fresh, clean, unwrinkled sheet of foil, that the tape wasn't really necessary.

3. As a precaution, I still use a microfiber cloth on my cardstock to wipe off particles and a small wipe on the non-metallic side of my foil. This helps prevent "hickies" or small areas where the foil doesn't stick to the ink because of dust.

4. I carefully place both the cardstock and foil into the laminator. Once it grabs the paper and foil, I use the palm of my hand to gently press the foil to the card right at the lip of the laminator to prevent bubbling areas.

5. I run the whole piece twice through the laminator going the same direction I first put it through. I found that it helps prevent any flacking on the edges of the ink and helps with any parts the foil didn't stick down (if there was no dust).

6. I left my foil cool a little bit and slowly peel it off, keeping it angled very closely to the paper.

You might still get a few small areas where the foil doesn't stick, but I found that this technique gives me the best results. Some colors stick easier than others. I did find that the greens where a bit harder to stick, I haven't tried blue, but I would think the same think mostly because blue ink in printing is really sticky and thinking blue foil might have some similar properties.
6 people found this helpful
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on May 20, 2016
It worked... efficient. However, white fog remained, even after running 5mil pouch through twice. I cannot use this machine, as it is art and needs to be clear.

ETA- after stating my review, I was very diligently contacted by Apache..they took care of this issue for me. I would like to say, the AL13 is great for average projects at home, school etc.. very light weight, efficient, gets the job done.. I do not recommend it to preserve photographs or art, as I imagine you would want it to be crystal clear. Instead, please check out the professional model laminator (model AL18P) from Apache if you want a crisp lamination, as it will laminate crystal clear (and super fast too).
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16 people found this helpful
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on July 4, 2017
As a preschool teacher I typically go through laminators like no tomorrow. They tend to jam up and break easily on me. But NOT this one! This one never jams, heats up quickly, and everything I laminate comes out perfect. Worth every penny!
7 people found this helpful
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