Pad Printing Tip: Avoiding Voids and Pinholes

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Have you ever experienced a small smudge or void in the middle of a pad printed image and are unsure of what caused it? Surprisingly the culprit is most likely the transfer pad, or more specifically, the location of the image on the pad. The transfer pad assumes two basic shapes, the “cone” and the “V”. All designs are derived from these two.

The transfer pad functions by creating a rolling effect when under compression. This rolling effect creates angles between the pad shape and the part surface.

Larger angles are more desirable than shallower angles as they result in “pushing” air out, reducing if not eliminating pin holes. Flat angles cause the pad to “trap” air. For this reason it is a desired practice to place the tip (cone) or apex (V) of the pad to the side of the image and not in it. The tip and apex represent flat spots on the pad. Positioning either in the middle of the image can cause smudging or pinholes. Please contact your sales representative for a more detailed explanation of the proper use and application of transfer pad shapes and sizes.