Hot stamping is a dry process that applies a foil or multi-colored foil image by using a hot die and a sheet of stamping foil or film. Hot stamping uses either a single-colored foil to apply a shiny metallic print or a pre-printed heat transfer to apply multiple colors at one time.
Quick links to Hot Stamping Information
Applications of Hot Stamping
Industries that utilize the part marking process of hot stamping include:
- Cable and Electrical
Items that use foil stamping in one form or another include:
- HVAC Systems
- Control Panels
- Greeting Card and Book Covers
- Award Ribbons
- Phone Cards
- Poker Chips
Process of Hot Stamping
Hot stamping is a thermal bonding process and achieves permanent adherence between the surface material and the foil. The resulting image can withstand some harsh conditions while remaining legible, making it an ideal process for the purposes of product identification. The marking tools used include a die, or sculpted metal design, which is used in the process of hot-stamping and is typically made from metals such as copper, brass, or steel. The die is heated and then pressed down on a piece of foil above the material being stamped. The heat causes the foil to adhere to the material’s surface in the pattern or image of the die. The three major types of hot stamping are vertical stamping, roll-on, and peripheral decorating. Vertical stamping applies stamp foil or heat transfers to a flat area or up to 90 degrees of a cylindrical area. Roll-on hot stamping works best for flat, large-area surfaces. Peripheral decorating, in comparison, is used to decorate the perimeter of a part, up to 360 degrees.
Benefits of Using Hot Stamping
Hot stamping is clean, fast, and dry and uses no inks or solvents, allowing it to be recognized as a sustainable and environmentally friendly procedure. Furthermore, no knowledge of chemicals is required, as there are none used in the marking process. There are no gases or fumes emitted from the labeling or stamping, and apart from the heat required to heat up the die and power the stamping press, there is little energy consumed by stamping.
Factors to Consider When Using Hot Stamping
The quality of the stamped image depends on a number of factors, including the heat of the die and the length of time the stamp is used for, as well as the amount of pressure applied all affect the image. Material compatibility also needs to be considered. The process of hot stamping cannot be used with some materials that cannot maintain their properties under the heat and pressure of a stamping die. Other materials may be resistant to adhering to the foil stamp, so hot stamping would be ineffective. It is important to adequately support the material being marked; hot stamping requires a great amount of pressure, and the consistency with which it is applied to a surface will affect the quality of the finished product.