Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Magnetic Label Holders for Metal Storage Equipment, System No. 1


Metal shelves are widely used for storing jars containing specimens preserved in fluid. This label system allows the shelf labels to be moved easily to allow for growth and expansion.


Fred E. Lohrer
Archbold Biological Station
Box 2057
Lake Placid, FL 33852 USA
Tel: (813) 465-2571
Fax: (813) 699-1927

Photograph: Reed Bowman

Publication: 1992


Clear, plastic tube label holders with adhesive strips are modified for use on metal storage equipment with strips of rubberized magnets (Fig. 1). Strips can be cut from this thin flexible magnetic material and adhered to the plastic label holders. The label holders and sheet magnet can easily be cut to required length with scissors or a paper cutter.

Figure 1. Clear plastic label holder adhered to magnetic strip in use on shelving unit.

Paper labels in large type can be computer generated (18pt, 24pt, 30pt or larger), printed with a laser-jet printer and slipped into the label holders. Using the thick paper label stock supplied with the label holders provides enough bulk inside the label holders to keep the thin, printed labels securely in place. It is efficient first to prepare the label holders with magnetic strip and paper insert at their full length before trimming them for the printed labels.

The result is a magnetic label that can be read at a distance and moved as the collection is rearranged. These magnetic label holders are useful wherever steel shelves or steel cabinets are used except in collections accessible to the general public where the temptation to rearrange or remove the label holders might be great.

Materials Tools Supplies

  • Plastic tube label holders, clear with adhesive strip
  • Paper cutter or scissors
  • Rubberized magnetic strips


Large(4in, 6in, 10in square) temporary labels or signs for file drawers can be made by attaching labels prepared with a lettering machine or large sheets of paper prepared with the computer, to a square sheet magnet. Alternatively, one can write directly on the sheet magnet with the felt tip marker. 

Adapted From

F.E. Lohrer. 1990. Magnetic label holders for metal shelves. Herpetological Review, 21(2):35.

Translate »