Checkin printers and labels

I’m looking for a replacement for my Zebra printers and checkin labels. These printers have the tear bar on the top of the label as it exits the printer. The tears are not smooth and the sticky of the labels is getting on the roller and jamming up the printers. The labels are 3x2 direct thermal with perf. Other than these jams, these Zebras are fast - no complaints. I’ve tried other labels, but no success. Our frustration during checkin is mounting.

Who has a good option I could try?

Pam Matthews

One word: Cutters. A Zebra with cutter option is your best bet in my experience. Virtually all of the issues with incorrectly-torn labels and “goo” fade away and check-in is bliss. Unfortunately you can’t buy the cutter option for a Zebra after the fact… it must be ordered with that option. GX420d with cutter is practically an industry standard.

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Yep. Zebras with auto cutters here too. I think you’ll have this problem with any printer that doesn’t have the cutter.

We honestly looked into Zebra and one other high-end label printer. Tried the other one out (I think it was GoDex…), and it was huge and actually didn’t even have the tear bar at first. They sent it later. I agree. It was awful. We ended up using Brother QL700’s, and they’ve worked great! You can generally find them (I think 750 is the latest model) for around $50-$60, so at that price you can afford to replace them a little more often than the others at $300 a pop (they’re not heavy duty, so expect around 2 years out of them).

Thanks guys! I have the Zebra GX420d now. I wish I could add cutters to them!!!

Favorite shopping spot to buy the Zebra with cutter?

We buy our Zebras from Significantly lower prices (at least on the ZD500 models we buy) than even sketchy internet sites. And they cater to churches.

Cutters are your best friend. We have a mixture of GX420d’s and GK420d’s with cutters and they are great. We just invested in a couple ZD500s but only have a couple weeks of experience with them. I buy our Zebra printers from CDW-G, but you have to make sure that the cutters are included when they quote them out. I couldn’t find anymore GK420d’s with cutters and went with the GX420d’s instead.
For us, purchasing label printers without a cutter is not even an option. And we have had Zebra’s now for almost a decade and never have had a cause for complaint.

We have Brothers with auto cutters.

Hi Pam, we have been using the Godex DT4 with cutter from a vendor we have been using for quite some time. They’re $388 with cutter. I saw another post about issues with the Godex, and I agree they do require routine maintenance. I use 50% alcohol with a micro-fiber cloth and clean the rollers of “sticky” at least twice a month. I’ve been thinking about switching to Brother but it sounds like a lot of folks like the Zebra GK/GX 4xx models.
At any rate, you may get some more mileage if you clean the rollers on the ones with built up adhesive from the labels.

Hey Phillip, what model Brother Label Printers with cutter are you using?

We have the Brother QL-550 and it is not in production anymore. It comes with the cutter. We had to replace the blade once in a few years and the blades are cheap and easy to replace.

Thanks Philip. I will research the newer models.

You are most welcome.

We use Dymo 450 Turbo and Dymo labels. Prints faster than regular 450, printer is around $100. Very reliable.

Thanks everyone – for your response about the checkin printers. I’ve ordered a Zebra with cutter to see if it eliminates my/our frustration.

We just the Brother wireless with self cutter. Love them.

Hi Kathy, thanks for responding about the brother wireless with cutter. One of my campuses needs to move assisted check in outside their kids building due to a very narrow hallway which gets crowded very quickly during check-in. I’ve actually priced the Brother Wireless models with/without cutter and they look good. Thanks for your feedback.

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