Expand Your T-Shirt Business With Pad Printing

Pad Printing | Sep 11, 2012

Grow your t-shirt business by adding pad printing!

You started with screen printing, added dye sublimation and heat transfer and perhaps embroidery, but what do you do with the odd shapes, peculiar surfaces and textured objects? Rather than turn down those jobs, bring on pad printing!

Whether it is a dimpled surface like a golf ball, a delicate item like a Christmas ball, stainless steel or plastic, pad printing can personalize it with logos, names or numbers. Pad printing is just about the only way you can print on almost any object, in any color and in any language. Pad printing is the solution for printing items that just can't be done effectively through any other method and, if you are looking for a way to expand your business, the 990 Series Pad Printing System is an excellent option.

What the heck is pad printing?

Pad printing is a process that is exactly like it sounds. A silicon pad is used to pick up a thin layer of ink from an image in the printing plate (also called a cliché). The pad then conforms to the shape of the object being printed and transfers the inked image. Originally, Swiss watchmakers used pad printing to print delicate watch dials. The main aspect of pad printing that really sells the technology is being able to print on irregular shapes and small sensitive products quite quickly and inexpensively. While screen printing's advantage is that it can lay down a heavy layer of ink over a large area on a flat surface, pad printing's advantage is being able to print textured surfaces as well as inside areas not otherwise possible to get to with a screen printing. You can print on a golf ball, a contact lens, a narrow channel such as a screwdriver handle or the inside of an extruded part that would be nearly impossible to make a screen small enough to get down into the print area. Because the ink has extremely good opacity, and the image depth is quite shallow, pad printing is able to produce extremely fine detail.

Why add pad printing?

The biggest reason to add pad printing to your t-shirt printing business or embroidery shop is diversification. Not only do you have an opportunity to attract new clients by offering pad printing service, the same customers you currently sell your decorating services to are also looking to buy pad printed products. By expanding your product offering, to include clocks, calculators, golf balls, stress balls and countless other products, you can capture even more of their personalization business. Your customers are used to purchasing ad specialty products, pad printing gives them more to choose from and provides them with a one-stop shopping solution. By bringing pad printing in house and doing the job yourself, you can control the cost, the quantity and the lead-time while capturing more profit than subbing it out.

A big incentive for many savvy decorators to add pad printing is the ability to control quality and turn- around time. Satisfying your customer in a timely fashion with the quantity and quality they expect is crucial. If you sub out the work, and it does not meet the quality or timeline you and your customer expect, it is a poor reflection on you even though you didn't do the work yourself. A customer who pad prints with the 990 Series in Havre Montana says, "You have to practically send away to Egypt to get product and it takes forever." We’ve heard countless stories over the years of decorators losing a customer because the printed product they subbed out showed up after the date of the event. The Montana printer adds that he can take care of his customers better by doing the job himself, "service is what I can give them." And service is what keeps a customer happy and coming back time after time.

Everywhere you look there are names and logos on every sort of product. With pad printing allowing you to get a message on those products, and the virtually untapped market and profits to be had in the short to medium run pad print market, your only limit is your imagination. Most of you are ambitious and creative entrepreneurs and our Montana customer is a great example as he enthusiastically exclaims, "Imagination, let it run. The sky is the limit!" Pad printing? Bring it on!

Contact us today or call 800-601-6240 to learn more!