Frequently Asked Questions about Nameplates
General Nameplate, Label and Badge FAQ
Q) What factors need to be considered when designing a nameplate?
A) Many factors need to be considered when designing a nameplate including:
•Objective: Consider your brand image.
•Graphics: Determine what graphics are to be include on the nameplate.
•Shape & size: Consider what the overall dimensions and silhouette are for the nameplate.
•Colors: Determine what colors are to be used in your nameplate design.
•Appearance: Consider visibility and overall effect you would like to achieve.
•Environment: Provide a listing of product specifications or environmental requirements to be met.
•Attachment: Review options for attaching your nameplate to your product.
•Cost: Make informed choices that meet your needs and fit your budget with our help.
Q) How soon can I get a quote?
A) Quotations are typically available in three to five days. This may vary slightly depending on the complexity of the part. We understand there are cases where we need to rush a quotation - we will do our utmost to meet those requests.
Q) What is your lead time?
A) Our normal lead time is four to six weeks for new orders and four weeks for repeat orders. This may vary depending on complexity of part, availability of materials and work load. We understand there are cases where we need to rush an order - we will do our utmost to meet those requests.
Q) How do I specify color?
A) Colors are custom matched to PMS colors and your custom color chips. We use color spectrophotometers and MacBeth color booths for control of color. A slideshow with helpful hints has been compiled as well.
Q) Can I see a sample of my part?
A) Yes. If you require a prototype, we will include the cost in our quotation. A .pdf proof of your file can be supplied at no charge for your approval before production quantities are built.
Q) Is there a minimum order requirement?
A) No. We process orders ranging from 25 pieces to millions of pieces. A minimum lot charge based on the complexity of the job is applied to small orders.
Q) Do you have standard pricing?
A) The products we manufacture are customized to customer specifications, we do not have a standard pricing schedule.
Q) What are my payment options?
A) Our domestic credit terms are net 30 with an established account. International accounts are typically set up as Cash in Advance. Credit Applications can be requested from your customer service representative. We also accept Visa, Master Card and American Express.
Q) How do you protect my parts during shipping?
A) Parts can be supplied with a protective mask for removal during assembly or by final customer. Special pack can also be developed to meet your needs.
Artwork Submission FAQ
See our Artwork Submission Page for more details.
Q) What type of artwork do you require?
A) For best results and to minimize delays with your order, send electronic vector based files - include a color printout of your art for reference. Four color process orders require high resolution (350-400 pixels per inch) Photoshop (PSD) documents.
Q) What is a vector based file?
A) Vector graphics are made up of paths rather than dots. They can be scaled to a larger size and not lose any image quality. Selective areas can be used for separation without the need to redraw the image.
Vector file types are: EPS, AI CDR
*TIFF, GIF, JPEG, BMP, PDF and Word document files are not acceptable formats. They are not normally editable for printing. They are useful when sent as a reference or for quoting purposes.
Q) How do I submit artwork?
A) Artwork can be submitted via email to your customer service representative. File sizes larger than 10MB can be submitted to our FTP upon request.
Metal Substrate FAQ
Q) What type of metal can I use for my nameplate?
) Most nameplates are manufactured on aluminum due to the cost and versatility of the substrate. Nameplates are also offered on steel and brass to meet your needs.
Q) What are your standard metals used in nameplates?
A) Standard metal substrates and thicknesses available are:
|.012" - .060"
|Stainless Steel 304
|.018" - .032"
|Stainless Steel 430
|.018" - .032"
Q) What type of aluminum is available?
A) Not all types and temper are available in all thicknesses and sizes of aluminum. Standards types of aluminum are 1100, 3003, 1050, 8014 and 5657.
Plastic Substrate FAQ
Q) What material do you recommend for attachment to a curved surface?
A) A thin polyester substrate is suggested for nameplates applied to products with a slightly contoured surface.
Q) What are your standard polycarbonate materials?
A) Standard polycarbonate (Lexan®) materials available are:
|.007" - .060"
|.005" - .030"
|.010" - .020"
Q) What are your standard polyester materials?
A) Standard polyester (Melinex®, Mylar®) materials available are:
|.003" - .007"
|.002" - .008"
|.002" - .008"
|.002" - .005"
Q) What are your standard vinyl materials?
A) Standard vinyl materials available are:
|.010" - .020"
|.010" - .020"
back to top
Metal Process FAQ
Q) How are graphics printed on metal?
A) We offer traditional offset lithography and screen printing on metal. The two processes can often be interchanged. However, offset lithography is required for halftones and fine detail. Screen printing is needed when applying textures, selective gloss levels or resists.
Q) What product testing requirements do you meet?
A) Depending on the end application and testing requirements, we choose a topcoat to meet your needs. Protective topcoats allow nameplates to withstand the sometimes harsh environmental extremes that they may be exposed to.
Q) Do you offer brushed aluminum?
A) Yes. Aluminum can be brushed overall or selectively allowing bright graphics. Other mechanical finishes available include spin, engine turn and engine stripe.
Q) Do diamond cut nameplates meet my test requirements?
A) The diamond cut area of a nameplate is raw aluminum. Therefore, this process is not a good fit for some products such as exterior applications. Alternative options are available to add movement and sharp detail.
Plastic Process FAQ
Q) How are graphics printed on plastic?
A) We offer offset lithography, screen printing and digital printing on plastic substrates. We recommend the appropriate printing process based on your needs. For example, backlit and deadfront areas require screen printing while halftones and process color utilize lithography or digital printing.
Q) Do you offer in-mold decoration?
A) Yes. We offer in-mold decoration which combines injection molding and a screen printed overlay. The molded display is decorated with printing sealed between film and resin. Overlay decoration can combine LCD display areas whether colored or clear, LED areas including light diffusing treatment, text and graphics.
Q) How do you verify backlit color?
A) Providing us with two fixtures or cans allows us to place your master on one as reference against the production piece for a visual comparison or for a computer reading using a spectrophotometer.
Q) Do you offer laminated protective caps?
A) Yes. Digitally printed or lithographed jobs are most often manufactured with a protective cap. A .001" cap is laminated in a clear, matte or velvet finish.
Metal Tooling FAQ
Q) What options do I have for embossing my logo in aluminum?
A) We offer etch emboss and cut emboss tools. Etch emboss tools are a more cost effective option with an emboss height of .006". The depth of emboss for a cut emboss tool is dependent on the thickness of the substrate and ranges from .012"-.032".
Q) What is a rolled edge?
A) Rolling the outside edge of a nameplate turns the edge down so the silver edge is minimized.
Q) How can I hide the raw edge of aluminum on my nameplate?
A) There are several options available for hiding the exposed silver edge of a nameplate. We will work with you defining a solution that meets your needs in the most cost effective manner available.
Q) Do you offer nameplate prototype tooling?
A) Yes. Depending on the complexity of your part and your needs (visual review or fit and function) we have several options ranging from hand filing to prototype tooling to pre-production tooling.
Q) What is your standard nameplate tool timing on metal?
A) Standard tooling lead time is four to five weeks for blanking dies and five to six weeks for emboss tools. This may vary depending on complexity of part, availability of materials and work load. We understand there are cases where we need to rush an order - we will do our utmost to meet those requests.
Q) Do you offer stock dies for metal substrates?
A) Yes. Stock dies are a cost effective option for your nameplate. We can recommend options available to you. Stock die selection is subject to change so it's always best to confirm with us before finalizing your print.
Plastic Tooling FAQ
Q) What tolerances do you hold in tooling for plastic nameplates?
A) Most plastic nameplate jobs are manufactured with steel rule dies. Hard tooling is available for more complex forms and tighter tolerances. Standard tooling tolerances are:
Q) Do you offer prototype tooling?
A) Yes. Depending on the complexity of the part, we offer prototype parts via:
| •plotter cutting
•steel rule die
•hard tools (mating components)
Q) What is your standard nameplate tool timing on plastic?
A) Standard tooling lead time is three to four weeks for steel rule dies and four to six weeks for hard tools. This may vary depending on complexity of part, availability of materials and work load. We understand there are cases where we need to rush an order - we will do our utmost to meet those requests.
Q) Do you offer stock dies for plastic substrates?
A) We suggest plotter cutting for low volume jobs as an alternative to stock dies. This is a cost effective option since tooling is not required. Plotter cutting is best suited to substrates .010" or less in thickness.
Q) What type of adhesive do I need for my nameplate?
A) Adhesive recommendations are made based on the type of substrate the nameplate is applied to and the specs the bond needs to meet. We can help with recommendations providing technical data sheets and testing as needed.
Q) Do you offer 3M™ adhesives?
A) Yes. We also offer Necal adhesives as cost effective alternative to 3M™ adhesives. You make the choice. We can provide you with suggested alternatives and technical data sheets to support our recommendations.
Q) Can I have a selective adhesive on my nameplate?
A) Yes. Selective adhesive can be applied through screen printing or as an assembled die cut piece. Screen printed adhesives are applied in a very thin layer and allow tighter control of tolerance. Die cut adhesives is appropriate for thicker adhesives and foam adhesives.
Q) Can you supply parts with a tab for assistance in removal of the adhesive liner?
A) Yes. There are several tab options available depending on your needs. We will work with you recommending solutions to assist you in assembly of your nameplate to your product.
Q) Do you offer assembly?
A) Yes. Examples of typical assembly operations include:
•assembly to a molded backplate