One of the recent trends in the world of heat shrink tubing is the use of heat shrink processing machines instead of the traditional heat gun. But which is the best method and which tools and accessories should be on your shopping list?

Unfortunately, the situation isn’t as simple as one method besting the other. Heat shrink machines and heat guns have their benefits, depending on where you are and what you plan to do.

Let’s take a closer look:

  • Rise of the machines

So why are so many people investing in heat shrink processing machines? Well for one: a heat shrink oven or processing machine can reduce shrinking time by up to 80%; saving you time, effort and money.

Instead of the classic two-hand approach of tubing in one hand and heat gun in the other, slide your heat shrink tubing into the heat shrink processor for a matter of seconds and the job is done. There isn’t a need to wriggle the cable from side to side in a bid to evenly spread the heat around the entire thing; the machine ensures that the heat is distributed evenly around the entire surface of the tubing creating a better seal.

These machines have a number of applications in the military, aerospace and cable assembly industries, specifically in workshops and large manufacturing facilities, because they increase productivity and safety. Better yet, their increased efficiency means they’re better for the environment too.

  • Way of the gun

So heat shrink ovens are great and there’s no more need for heat guns, right? Wrong!

For portability, heat shrink guns are still number one. If your role involves working in the field, a heat shrink machine would be cumbersome and logistically problematic, while a heat shrink gun can easily be taken anywhere you need to apply some heat. That’s a massive benefit for electricians and engineers who need to take their show on the road.

Roofers, in particular, rely on heat shrink guns since it isn’t feasible to lug a heat shrink machine up a ladder or onto the side of a house.

It’s really all about context. If you’re still packing a heat gun at your workshop or factory, there is a time and cost effective alternative waiting for you in the form of a heat shrink processing machine. 


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