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The Nameplate FAQ page covers common questions in the following areas.
The Holiday season is a popular time to remember a loved one who has passed in the last year. One way to do this is with aluminum Holiday ornaments. This year's design features a snowflake design. Brilliant transparent red tint over layers of brushed and spun aluminum create a beautiful scene with movement and illusion. Further accent is achieved with enamel white snowflakes, resulting in an elegant showpiece. The back of the ornament has silver metallic which captures glimmer and shine of candles and lights from the tree. Simply lovely.
How are you remembering loved ones this year?
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Common questions when looking at label and nameplate options are how much is this going to cost and how quick can I get parts? Standard decorating costs apply no matter what direction is taken and is dependent on your design needs. We'll work with you to find the most economical way to make your brand speak and stand out. Timing for your samples and first production is set based on proof approval and availability of tooling. If you do not have time to allow a custom tool build or need to keep your initial investment at a minimum, consider reviewing available stock dies.
Aluminum flat blank and 3D formed edge stock dies are available for use if standard shapes (circle, oval, square or rectangle) can be used and no emboss or deboss operation is required. Provide your artwork and confirm decoration needed and we're all set to review pricing so you can place your production order. Stock dies are cost effective, with additional benefit of the tool being ready for production. A minimal modification fee may be required for the tool to prepare it for your unique design. Tolerances of ±.005" to shape and ±.015" for graphic location should be allowed. If a stock die is not feasible, a custom tool will be required.
Aluminum stock dies combine well with just about any decorating process to produce the look and design that your brand needs. From basic lithography and screen printing of a logo to complex layering of mechanical finishes or textures, your options are not limited.
Production ready tooling is onhand - no build schedule required
Cost effective - little to no tooling expense required
Design friendly - customize with your logo and text using standard decorating processes
Now that you have reviewed the basics of stock die tooling, where will you use it? Let us help!
When you submit a purchase order for aluminum nameplates, plastic labels or decorative trim there is a timeline specified, typically with delivery or dock date noted. Two common questions asked relate to the logistics of purchase orders deals, particularly with ship date and tracking parts once they have left our production facility. Here are answers.
Each order or release is processed through Customer Service and subject to standard lead time of 4 weeks from receipt unless there is an exception for proof approval, tool build or other questions on the order line. The plant reviews the requirements with the processing needed and sets a ship date. Once the production schedule has been set, each spot buy order that is received will have a confirmation sent via email showing the destination address, purchase order number, part number, quantity, piece price and ship date. If you need to make any changes to the order, our Customer Service Representatives will work with you to revise accordingly and advise new ship dates.
Customers who place several orders or who have blanket orders can request to have a report sent showing open orders with confirmation of release number, part number, quantity and ship schedules. This type of report comes from Customer Service and is set up according to your needs.
Each shipment is processed to leave the production facility with a pack slip to enable your receiving area to reconcile incoming product with your purchase order. Routing instructions should be called out on your purchase order, including confirmation of common carrier account numbers or contact information for freight trucking companies. Transit times are dictated by the shipping method and carrier. Refer to your order confirmation ship date to calculate delivery date. When you need the tracking number, contact your Customer Service Representative and a copy of the pack slip showing the shipping information can be sent to you or if necessary a request for proof of delivery can be requested with the carrier.
When it comes down to it, processing your purchase order for aluminum name plates, plastic labels and decorative trim involves good communication. Your satisfaction is a priority. Keeping in mind lead times and ensuring appropriate information is included with your order helps to keep things moving to meet your schedules.
Have any more questions regarding order processing? Let's talk!
When selecting a nameplate supplier some expectations go without saying. One of these is that the product is built with quality and to the specifications that the OEM customer dictates. There shouldn't be cause for concern in the best practices of the manufacturer. This article provides an overview of ISO/TS16949.
What is ISO/TS16949?
ISO/TS 16949 is a process based approach based on improving effectiveness of a quality management system, providing the linkage between the individual processes and that quality management system. It is a set of requirements originally defined for automotive OEMs in North America and Europe which includes all the ISO 9001 global standards. The focus of these requirements is on continual improvement to prevent defects as well as reduce variation and waste with expectation of fulfilling customer specific requirements. These requirements set the foundation for standardization across the supply chain and set an outline for best practices for quality management systems. In order to obtain TS16949 registration, a company needs to demonstrate that it has a Quality Management System in place which centers on continual improvement of manufacturing processes.
What does it mean for our customers that Northern Engraving has TS16949 registration?
Customers in any industry share in benefits of Northern Engraving obtaining and retaining registration. This is because the actions taken to improve efficiencies and productivity for automotive OEMs become standard processes and procedures which are in place for all manufacturing jobs. Some of these benefits are:
● Improved product quality● Understanding of customer quality requirements● Customer satisfaction by meeting or exceeding expectations
How often do you go through re-certification?
Routine audits are performed to confirm that the documented processes are reflected in day to day operations. Audits by the Registrar are annually and re-registration audits are every 3 years.
Where can I find information specific to Northern Engraving's Registration?
A copy of the current Quality Policy as well as plant-specific registration certificates can be found on our website.
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Piece price is a sensitive topic for any purchase order line item. If you are looking for ways to improve your nameplate and label pricing, check out these suggestions for creative ways to submit your purchase orders.
Many customers have standard bracket quantity pricing established for spot buy order purposes with typical expectations that higher quantities show better pricing. Generally, so long as your complete delivery can be scheduled within 30 days, quantities can be combined for price breaks. This is subject to review with each order.
If you need to spread your purchase order quantity over multiple deliveries, you may benefit from placing blanket or consignment orders. A blanket order can be set up with standard box counts for regular releases with agreed upon terms for reconciliation at the end of the purchase order period. This type of pricing requires quotation and understanding of the time period and overall quantity that is needed.
The more detail and insight that you can provide into your production timing and quantity needs, the more we can help identify opportunities for savings. Your satisfaction is the goal and communication is the key.
Are there other opportunities to review with your order habits? Let's talk!
Submitting your purchase order for production quantity of nameplates, labels and trim means that a good faith contract has been agreed upon based on a quoted price for a specific quantity and design of your parts. The goal is to meet your delivery date with quality parts. Communication between customer and supplier is key to ensure everyone is on the same page. When questions come up, you should expect timely response and resolution.
Two common questions relating to processing purchase orders deals with production lead time and availability to expedite. Here are answers.
Standard production lead time for repeat order is 4 weeks from receipt of your purchase order. This timing can be affected if tools are being built or revised, if there is need for a visual proof approval before production is ran, or if there is a question on order line information such as part number revision or pricing discrepancy. Certain manufacturing or assembly processes may also affect the lead time.
Keeping the lead time in mind when you place your order or release ensures your nameplates and labels are scheduled to keep your operations running. Questions on your purchase order will be communicated to you by Customer Service.
Each purchase order and release received is placed into a production calendar based on the manufacturing processes needed to produce parts. When the need arises to exepedite every effort is made to review the schedule including reviewing for opportunities to hire overtime. When this happens, your Customer Service Representative will communicate with you and the production floor and advise timing improvement with costs involved.
One of my favorite sets of parts is this wireless remote control aluminum trim. It is such a sleek design and demands to be touched. There are two components to this set - the round insert decorated with spun aluminum accented with dimensional embossed function buttons and the formed aluminum trim with bright wiped over edges, decorated with high gloss texture pattern on low gloss black background. The two pieces fit together for a premium look with subtle detail.
Form dies need to take into consideration the skirt length and bend radius. Dimensional print/CAD files are generally needed to fully understand and determine the tooling required.
• Minimum skirt length of .040" • Maximum skirt length of .200"• Minimum bend radius of .040"
A form die requires further discussion and understanding for the attachment to the end product. Depending on which attachment is used, there may be requirement for additional adhesive or assembly operations in the tooling process.
Now that you see possibility to design functionality into the shape and form of decorative aluminum trim, how will you use this? We can help!
Piercing is a tooling operation which creates openings in the decorated aluminum for backlit graphics, LED lights, buttons or other mechanisms to be functional. Another reason to include a pierce operation into your nameplate design is to allow the label to be used as a decorative hang tag and draw attention to your brand. Yet another need for piercing is to enable attachment with rivets or screws in lieu of adhesive or needing a carrier to snap into the product housing.
Pierce operations can be found in tooling across the industrial world. Appliance trim, home electronics, point of purchase promotions, packaging accessories, sporting equipment, and vehicle instrumentation panels all use pierced and decorated aluminum in some fashion.
Take a stroll through these twenty totally awesome pierced aluminum nameplates. Enjoy!
What do you do when you have an existing product with branding and decoration but need to change the decoration for a special run? Do you have to start from scratch with the aluminum trim design? Certainly not! This is actually a common need to differentiate between product lines without breaking the bank in the process.
One of the benefits of building a hard tool for your aluminum trim is that you can have more than one decoration specified for your product lines. Assign a unique part number for ordering and inventory purposes to keep the different designs in order. Artwork only changes keep costs low and give you the ability to capitalize on your original tooling investment.
This set of aluminum appliance panels are great examples. Existing production tooling allows the OEM to use common mechanical functions for both washer and dryer housings. Updated graphic files with the addition of familiar pink ribbon for breast cancer awareness ties in with the limited edition theme. Custom color development to match the molded control knobs further pulls the design together, resulting in an attractive facelift to support a cause.
Is your decorative branding in need of a facelift? Let us help!
Many electronic products have a molded plastic housing with pad printed graphics which doesn't always provide a premium look or feel to the product. To be sure that your product and brand image gets the attention it deserves, one option is to enhance the design with brushed aluminum trim.
Brushed aluminum is a popular background finish for decorative trim in any market including medical equipment, boat and marine, telecommunications and automotive. It provides a clean and finished look with opportunity to decorate with transparent, opaque or metallic graphics to further draw attention to a logo or text. Brushed aluminum combines with other mechanical finishes to achieve visual depth and movement, increasing perceived value for the product. It can be formed to take on the contour of product housing. This is exactly what happens with the example below.
Subtle champagne gold transparent tint is used over brushed aluminum for a warm tone. Simple black and gold graphics are printed to showcase the product name along with taglines and labels for indicator lights. Pierced holes provide space for LED lights and power buttons. The part also is formed to take on the contour and bend of the product. Selective pressure sensitive adhesive secures the aluminum trim to the housing without disrupting functionality of the lights or buttons. The end result is a premium look for high end medical monitoring equipment.
Now that you are aware of how brushed aluminum can provide a premium look for your product housing, how will you use this? Let us review with you!
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