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The History of Tape Dispensers

In the early 1920s, an engineer working for the company that would become 3M named Richard Drew observed automotive painters struggling to create clean lines on two-tone paint jobs. In response, he created an adhesive tape that held securely but also pulled off cleanly. It debuted around 1925. Then in 1930, Drew and 3M changed the base film, creating a cellulose tape. Later, they also created the transparent version of Scotch tape that we are familiar with today. Accordingly, 3M introduced the tape dispenser around 1939. It featured the now-iconic snail-shaped design and a serrated edge to easily break the tape off. Today, tape dispensers are a common household and office item. There are even special versions used specifically for packaging tape.

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