Browse Month: December 2019

Promoting Sustainability: How Baling Wire Can Help

In the modern climate, running a sustainable enterprise has several benefits. Your customers may make decisions based on their environmental impact, your variable costs may be more volatile if you use unsustainable and finite materials or practices, or you may want to do your part to combat global warming. With climate change awareness only looking to increase in the upcoming years, looking towards implementing sustainable practices now may pay dividends in later years. But just how can baling wire promote sustainability?

Use in the Recycling Industry

One of the most common uses of baling wire is in the recycling industry. Baling has great usage in waste reduction and management, and in many cases, it can be more environmentally friendly than waste compactors. Balers can compact different types of recyclable materials in a way that minimizes their volume and hence maximizes the value recyclers obtain by reducing storage costs. Balers can complement existing waste management systems and increase the efficiency of your recycling operation.

Balers are ideal for recycling operations that revolve around reusing materials, as opposed to applying recycling processes that do not require the materials to retain their form. Cardboard boxes are a prime example of how balers are preferable to compactors. If you deal with cardboard regularly, compacting it with a compactor can often affect the durability of the cardboard and morph it out of shape.

Even if the flutes are not affected, this can be less sustainable as the cardboard can only be reused if it has been shredded, mixed with water and chemicals and then mixed with new wood pulp and processed into new cardboard. The electricity required for these processes, as well as the chemicals, still takes a toll on the environment. It requires fewer steps just to reuse the boxes. It is only possible to compact the boxes that will enable them to be reused, such as baling. This is true for any other materials that need to retain their form to be reused without many recycling processes being applied.

Even if the materials that are being baled are not designated for re-use, baling waste can speed up the waste disposal process. This is good for the environment, as a quicker turnaround at recycling plants means more waste can be recycled and turned into renewable electricity.

Wire vs. Twine

Baling wire is sometimes replaced by baling twine, but on farms, this is a mistake. Baling wire can be better for the environment simply because even after it has been used for its original purpose it has an incredible potential for reuse. Many farmers don’t go anywhere without baling wire, as baling wire and pliers can be incredibly handy for quick fixes. From repairing chain link fences to holding up old mufflers, baling wire has too many uses to mention.

Baling wire can also be more sustainable than baling twine due to its high strength. One of the tenets of the sustainability movement is to reduce, and a set yard of baling wire has the strength of countless yards of twine, meaning you won’t have to replace it either. This means if you’re using twine, you may want to consider switching to wire to reduce the amount of baling material you need.

Why is the Gauge of Your Baling Wire Important?

It is very important to buy high-quality baling wire, but even the highest quality wire will let you down if you choose a gauge that is not fit for your requirements. Without an experienced engineer on your roster, you may find it difficult to predict the correct gauge for your job. To understand why the gauge of your baling wire is important, you need to understand a few things about gauge in general.

What does the gauge mean?

The gauge has been a measurement of wire thickness for many years now, and the corresponding gauge numbers were originally based on how many times a rod was pulled through a draw plate to make it thinner. The original rod was pulled through 0 times; hence, a gauge of 0 is the thickest standard wire gauge you can get. This is why thicker gauges are represented by lower gauge numbers, which may originally seem counterproductive.

Is a thicker gauge always stronger?

A higher gauge is preferable when strength is needed for a job, but it isn’t always the only indicator of strength. Some baling wire, for example, galvanized annealed wire, has a higher tensile strength than wire that has not been treated in the same way. Tensile strength dictates how much tension the wire can withstand, which is typically provided by pressure exerted by the commodities that are baled together tightly.

What does weak baling wire mean for my job?

If baling wire does not have the requisite strength to keep your commodities in bales, it can break. This means that if you have ordered a set amount of baling wire but have misjudged the gauge, you may find that you may not be able to use any of the other wire as it is not matched to your requirements. This can be incredibly frustrating and can cost you time as well as money, so try to avoid this when possible.

So why not buy thicker wire, just in case?

If you are in any doubt about the gauge, you may be tempted to go for the thicker wire. This can save you from purchasing too much weak wire that you are unable to use, but if you can check, you probably should. That is because wire with a lower gauge is more expensive to buy, as well as ship (as the product is heavier as well). Consistently buying wire that is much stronger than you require is not economical.

Is there anything else that will affect the required gauge?

Some baling machines can only use certain gauges, so you need to first decide what gauge you actually require, and then find the closest gauge to that which your machine can use. A vertical baler will typically use higher gauges than an auto tie baler. Gauge required also varies based on the material that you want to bale, with foam typically requiring the lowest gauge and cardboard or newspaper requiring higher gauges.

If you have any more questions about the importance of baling wire gauge, contact Baling Wire Direct.