What is heat stamping?

Posted August 2, 2010

Heat stamping or hot stamping is a process in which an engraved image mold or hot stamping die is heated then forced down against a product with a colored marking foil sandwiched in between. The area where the die cast mold meets the product is where the ink from the foil is left behind.

Hot stamping can be used to mark a multitude of different materials, most commonly plastic and wood. The most attractive aspect of hot stamping is that it is a dry process, so there is no need to worry about mixing inks. The first step of the process is to have a die or a mold created from one of these basic materials: magnesium, copper, brass, or hardened steel. Next, the die is added to a heat plate and then loaded with a roll of hot stamping foil. The foil and die are then pressed against the product, leaving a permanent imprint.

When a product is marked with a properly formulated foil, it can withstand very harsh conditions and be very long lasting. When using a metal die on a plastic part, you can actually brand the product at the same time. If the color should fade or wear off, the branded image will remain.

Example

In this process, a metal foil is melted onto a container’s plastic surface, leaving a metallic impression of your logo or artwork on the bottle. Typically, a gold foil is used, giving the package a shiny golden design. Often containers are both silk-screened and hot stamped, providing a general package design enhanced by a golden or metallic gleam.

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