Pad printing is a printing method of transferring a 2D image onto a 3D object.  This printing process is easy and ideal for printing on difficult to print products. This includes oddly shaped items with concave and rigid surfaces.  As a result, this process has become very popular.  The concept of pad printing has remained the same over many years. However, the technology behind the printing process has improved.  This has enabled printing companies to get higher quality prints and high output yield.  While the pad printing process has remained relatively the same over the years, Boston Industrial Solutions has worked hard to innovate the printing equipment. These pad printing machines enable users to produce higher quality results in a shorter amount of time.  Along with the equipment here are the pad printing consumables you’ll need for your pad printing operation. Click here to learn more about pad printing on polymers.

Pad Printing Ink

Pad printing ink is the most important pad printing consumable. This is because, you cannot print without the ink. The type of pad printing ink that is best for your application depends on the substrate you are printing on.  We have formulated pad printing inks for printing on materials such as glass, ceramics, wood, metals, plastics, silicone, nitrile, latex, and more. The main concerns for customers buying pad printing ink are:

  • whether or not the adhesion will be strong enough to the substrate
  • whether or not the ink color will match the exact shades of the company’s branding.

Luckily, Boston Industrial Solutions, Inc. will provide adhesion testing on your products using your samples and do an exact color matching – for free! Our goal is to address all your pain points related to inks. This makes your job easy and you can focus on printing your products. Your success, is our success.

Additional Resources:

Browse pad printing ink consumable: Natron Pad Printing Inks

Services: Custom color matching, ink mixing, and adhesion testing

Learn More: All about pad printing ink

Pad printing machines

Pad Printing Ink Hardener

Hardeners are also known as pad printing ink cross-linkers or catalysts. This is another pad printing consumables you may or may not need for your project. Hardeners  are added to the printing ink to increase chemical and abrasion resistance. In addition, they also increase the inks durability once cured. Not all printing inks require hardeners. Some inks are 1-part (component) while others are 2-componet inks. With 2 component inks, you must add hardeners. Note, there are some inks that are both one or two components. E.g. the ST Series, NxT series and EK series. Also, hardeners are designed to be used with specific ink series just like solvents. The LG catalyst works with the Natron SE pad printing silicone inks. The i-240x works with MG Series ink for glass. The i-300x works with all the other ink series.

When printing on rubber using NxT or ST series, we recommend 2 – 3% of inks weight. When printing on hard non-flexible substrates we recommend a minimum of 10% and a Maximum of 25%.

Pad Printing Ink Solvent

What is a pad printing ink solvent? Pad printing ink solvent is an ink additive for breaking up resin and pigments and acts as a carrier for transferring ink from the silicone pad printing pad to the substrate. The solvent is added to the ink based on weight. Different colors use different ratios due to pigmentation. The common solvent ratio is 5 – 25% of the inks weight. Additionally different solvents have different evaporation rate depending on the application. This is a discussion for another article.

Our Natron™ pad printing inks are designed to be mixed with solvents before printing. While all our inks use similar solvents, different solvents are designed for use with certain ink series. For instance, TRM Solvent should be used with only the SE series ink for silicone, while the TSM Solvent can be used with the EK, MG, TP series ink. Our ink experts test and recommend the solvent best suited for your application and production environment.

Additional Resources:

Browse: Pad Printing Solvents

Pad Printing Plates

Pad printing plates hold your desired artwork. They are a key pad printing consumable. There are several types of pad printing plates. These are laser pad printing plates and photo polymer or photo-etched pad printing plates. Photo-polymer pad printing plates are further dived into alcohol wash out plates and water wash plates. Laser plates are divided into Co2 laser plates and Yag laser plates. All in all, these plates do the same thing.

Boston Industrial Solutions, Inc. offers a wide variety of printing plates. Each of these plates are suitable for different applications and printing environments. Our pad printing plates offerings can withstand 10,000 and 1 million impressions.
Lastly, ask about our in-house plate making services. Additionally, we offer computer-to-plate laser plate makers.

Learn more about the Volta™ M2150S 2-Color Pad Printer

Pad Printing Ink Cups, Rings, and doctor blades.

Another critical pad printing consumables are pad printing ink cups, rings, and doctor blades. The pad printing cups are filled with ink, while the rings and doctor blades flood and scrape the excess ink from the image. The doctor blades work with open ink well machines while the rings work with closed cup machines. We offer both double sided and single sided ceramic rings. Boston Industrial Solutions has the widest ring offering at the best possible pricing. We offer both carbide ceramic rings and zirconia ceramic rings. These materials are ink resistant and reduce ink waste and lowering the overall cost of pad printing consumables.

Silicone Pad Printing Pads

Pad printing pads are also known as tampon printing pads. These pads pick up the ink from the pad printing plates and transfer it to the substrate/ object. Printing pads are vital to the pad printing process. They come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, durometers, and materials. The shape and type of substrate and size of artwork determines the type of pad, shape, and hardness. To get a perfect print, we need the correct pad printing ink, and pad printing plate. This combination will yield crisp, high-resolution images with perfect adhesion resistance.

The Turn key Solution from Boston Industrial Solutions

Boston Industrial Solutions, Inc. offer turn-key solutions for pad printing consumables. These include including ink, plates, pad printing equipment, fixtures, and more.
We offer the best pad printing inks, solvents, hardeners, plates, pads, ink cups and rings. We work hard to simplify the buying by offering a one-stop shop for all pad printing needs.Additionally we offer 24/7 global technical support. Onsite training and technical support is also available to all our customers. We understand the importance of printing production up-time.

We also have a dedicated lab for printing. Our industrial engineers will also suggest the effective and efficient production layout for your operations. Boston Industrial Solutions, Inc. is proud to offer all of the supplies, technical support, and additional services and supplies. This type of service has led us to establish and maintain a leading position in the specialty and industrial printing applications.

Lastly, Pad printing is the perfect solution for apparel label printing as well. Not sure what tagless printing is? Learn more about our neck label printing options.