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Decorating & Printing Services  
 
 

Glossary

 
 
 

 


Heat Transfer
Hot Stamping
Pad Printing

Pressure Sensitive Labeling
Screen Printing


WHAT IS PAD PRINTING?
Pad printing is a wet process where ink is transferred to the part to be decorated through the use of an etched plate (cliché) and a flexible silicone pad. The etched plate contains the image to be printed and ink is flooded into this etch, the silicone pad is then compressed onto this etch and the ink is transferred to the pad. Pad printing is a wet process where ink is transferred to the part to be decorated through the use of an etched plate (cliché) and a flexible silicone pad. The pad is then compressed onto the part and the ink is again transferred to the part. Because of the unique characteristics of silicone, the ink can be transferred in a crisp precise manner with no distortion. This process, because of the flexibility of the silicone pad, is especially useful in printing parts with irregular or uneven shapes. It is also useful in printing small, fine text or image onto a part because the flexibility of the pad conforms to the shape of the print while maintaining the sharp detail of the image to be printed. The biggest advantage to pad printing verses silk screening is the variety of three dimensional shapes that can be printed with this process.


WHAT IS SCREEN PRINTING?
Screen printing is also a wet process where a rubber squeegee is used to force ink through an etched silk screen onto the part. This process is ideal for printing on flat, cylindrical and oval shapes. Because the ink is being squeezed through the screen mesh we can control the amount of ink that is transferred onto the part. This allows us to achieve the maximum amount of ink transfer which assures a bright, rich image.

Screen printing is also a wet process where a rubber squeegee is used to force ink through an etched silk screen onto the part.

Several different types of ink are available which can be used to produce certain desired results on a printed part. For instance, a UV type of ink can be used where you are trying to print a full panel of fine text that you find on many of the back panels of cosmetic containers. Since this ink remains wet until it is cured under a UV lamp, it insures that it will not dry out in the screen which results in skips or voids in the text. You can also use high gloss ink which, when used, provides a bright, vibrant, high opacity finish on the part. You can also use metal pigmented ink which when used provides a metallic (silver, bronze or gold) finish to the print. This is often used to provide that “special” look to the part. The biggest advantage to screen printing verses pad printing is the amount of ink that can be transferred to the part which results in a bright, vivid image.


HOT STAMPING
Hot stamping as opposed to pad printing and silk screening is a dry printing process. A metallic or color pigmented foil is passed between a heated plate (die) and the part. The heated plate is then lowered onto the part and the foil is forced onto the part and through pressure is transferred to the part forming a permanent bond. Although the majority of hot stamping applications are used on flat surfaces, the process can also be used on round or contoured surfaces through the use of contoured dies or specially designed roll hot stamping equipment.

Hot stamping as opposed to pad printing and silk screening is a dry printing process.

The biggest advantage to hot stamping is the bright metallic look that can be obtained through the use of special foils. The cosmetic and beauty aide business like this process because it provides that special upscale look to their packaging. The hot stamping process is also cost effective averaging about the same cost per pass as pad printing or silk screening.


WHAT IS HEAT TRANSFER?
Like hot stamping, heat transferring is also a dry printing process. Decals or transfers are made on multi-color silk screen or gravure machines. The images are printed on a clear carrier and rolled onto a fiber core. This roll is then mounted onto a hot stamping machines which is equipped with an attachment that enables the hot stamping machine to sense a special mark on the image carrier and position the image over the part. It is then trapped under a heated die as in the hot stamp process and transferred onto the part.

Like hot stamping, heat transferring is also a dry printing process. Decals or transfers are made on multi-color silk screen or gravure machines.

The biggest advantage to heat transfer is that multi-color images can be placed on a part in one pass, reducing the labor cost associated with multi-color printing. Because of the cost associated with making the transfers, this process is usually reserved for higher volume applications. This process can be used on the same substrates that can be hot stamped.


WHAT IS PRESSURE SENSITIVE LABELING?
As the name suggests, labels are produced on rolls and an adhesive is applied to the back of the label. The label roll is then mounted on a machine that applies this label to the part. The machines used are specifically designed to apply different types of labels.

Pressure sensitive labeling applications

Some machines apply full wrap labels to a round bottle or jar. Some machines have the same function except that they register the label to the bottle seam. Some machines apply labels to oval bottles and jars. The application process is basically the same with a specific mechanical handling system designed to the type of bottle or jar to be labeled.

 

Mystic Assembly & Decorating Co., Inc.  |  19 Vincent Circle  |  Ivyland, PA 18974  |  (215) 957-0280  |  Fax (215) 956-0139  |  info@mysticassembly.com

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