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DYMO LabelManager 150
What a fascinating invention! Why didn't I know about this when I was 7? I would have taken great pleasure in labelling everything I could see! My Mum, Dad, TOys, Cat....
So much fun!But aside from that, this device actually has a very sensible purpose. It enables you to print labels of varying colours and backgrounds depending on the cartridge you insert. The labels can be used for almost any purpose, such as:
* Labelling cabling which is especially useful in the world of IT (where I work) as in a server/switch room you may have thousands of cables all connected to switches but no way of identifying which device each cable is for, simply wrap the label around each lead.
* Labelling shelving can help you keep your shelving units more organised and tidy. Just stick the labels along the front of the shelves
* Putting labels on equipment, such as a persons name, or a machine number
* Labelling plugs where you have many plugs plugged into sockets but are unsure which plug is for which machine.
* Safety warnings, for example you could print a label that says DO NOT USE and stick it to a faulty piece of equipment
* Printing plant labels to stick on those little plant stick things you can buy to save you writing on them and not being able to understand your writing at a later date!
As you can see, the uses for this machine are positively endless ranging from the sensible to the not so sensible. Someone who I work with, who shall remain nameless, took it upon himself to label all his possessions with his name! Looked quite ridiculous to be honest, but gave us all a good laugh.Actually I would like to print one of these off and stick it to my girlfriends head when she is asleep and see how long it takes in the morning for her to realise its there... you never know, she might even go to work with it still on there!..... evil aren't I!
Anyway, back to the product.
The LabelManager 150 is quite small for the type of device it is, as some can be quite cumbersome. I find this ideal as I can take it out with me when I am walking around the site labelling cabling or switches and its as light as a feather, similar I guess to those fancy devices the electric man carries when he comes to read your meter. At the same time it is also ideal to be desk based as it takes up very little room and is portable so if its in the way you can just move it a bit.
Assisting with the portability the DYMO LabelManager 150 gives you the choice of running it using mains power when you are office based or in an area for a while that has power sockets available. ALternatively you can choose to run the device on battery power. If you are interested it takes 5 x AA batteries.
Cartridges and Output
The labels that this machine outputs are in ribbon form if you know what I mean. The actual size of your output depends on the type of cassette you put in. Cassettes are available in widths of 1/4" (6mm), 3/8" (9mm), or 1.2" (12mm). You can get them in a range of colours. i.e. black on white, blue on white, black on clear etc. Another advantage of this machine is that you don't have to just print one label at a time. If you want more than one label of the same thing you can print up to 16 at one time. The length of the label is determined by the amount of text that you wish to place on one line, but you can manually adjust this if you want a slightly longer label. You can choose from sizes between 40mm and 400mm. The minimum size you can have is 40mm. I.e. if you choose to print a label containing just one character the output would still be 40mm long (although you can just trim this up with a pair of scissors - mind your fingers). Once your output has come out there is a little slicer button on the side which you just push to cut it off cleanly.
So how do you do it?
Right, you've decided what you want your label to say, now you just need to print it. First turn the device on and then just type in what you want on the keypad and press print. Thats it. There are a few buttons on the front that allow you to change the text size and type. You can also add frames to your labels and there are six types of frame to choose from. Thats it. If you don't like the colour just change to a different cassette, and if you don't like the output mess around changing the font styles or border.
This device cost us £80 when we bought it.
Also published on Ciao under my username TheHairyGodmother
We squabble bitterly over the Dymo 150 Label Manager at work; there's only one between three floors of offices and it's guarded jealously by the facilities manager who now locks it in a drawer. However, I am in possession of this precious jewel today because our team paid for the most recent roll of tape.
It's a nice looking machine with a curvy navy blue exterior and silver trim, a red button to switch on and off and a scissor button to cut the tape as it curls out. Not only is it light enough to carry around labelling things, but the four little rubber feet prevent it from sliding around on the desk. Labelling stuff with this is a far cry from the 80's version where you had to literally force it to indent the letters and numbers on the tape; now you input your label on a qwerty keypad, choose your font, font size, underline, insert all the usual symbols.... On top of this it carries borders, pictures, smileys, arrows and a variety of less likely skull and crossbones icons. You then print your label (as many copies as you like) and it slides straight out to be cut off using the scissor button.
The labels have amazing sticking power and instead of breaking nails and teeth trying to pick the end, you simply bend the label vertically and slip the backing paper off in two little halves like an elastoplast.
You can even use the Enter key to make a label over two lines, although this will obviously shrink the writing to get the two lines onto the same width of tape. It gets even more advanced with extra features such as language. There are seven different print styles and you can produce horizontal or vertical labels. Although I rarely make vertical labels, this is useful for printing numbers for contents lists inside ring binders.
In terms of intuitive use, I'd rate this far higher than most mobile phones. The instruction book is long since lost, but I've never had to ask anyone how it works. Much like an old-skool Nokia, everything is where you expect it to be and adequate for the purpose. This is one of those great bits of kit where you fully accept the limitations and instead of getting frustrated, you're pleased with what it can do. If you wanted super fancy labels with colours and 400dpi graphics, you'd use the computer. If you want a quick and easy way of labelling a drawer or a folder, a little black and white sticky backed label fits the bill.
What's not so great about it? Well.... The amount of space it leaves at the beginning and end of each label is a bit of a waste of tape. Also, the rolls of tape (despite their high price) have occasionally been faulty. It should be a simple matter of loading it by taking out the old cartridge and just clicking the new one into place, but sometimes you get one where the carbon tape on the back comes out along with the label, or worse still gets screwed up inside the machine, jams it and has to be unblocked.
It wasn't cheap when it was initially purchased (probably why we only have one) but I've noticed that you can pick it up for less than £30 on eBay now, complete with case. Irritatingly, the initial outlay is not the last of the costs as it takes an excessive amount of batteries, needing five AA alongside a £4.00 roll of tape.
I've looked at the newer versions which followed this, but got the same feeling I get when using a scientific calculator for really basic sums. The features on these seemed overwhelmingly advanced and just too over the top for the purpose. Also, I don't like the shape, size and design of the more recent models, which are longer and bulkier to accommodate those extra features.
Things I've used our Dymo for:
Relabelling MyDog's collar when he moved house.
Labelling names onto waterproof jackets
Writing insults to stick on people
Putting my name onto books
Labelling drawers, files and other office stuff (supposedly the 'correct' use)
A whole lot of uneccessary stuff such as labelling the dymo itself with the the word "Dymo".
Really, the only limit is your imagination. However twisted that might be....