What is Hot Stamping?

Hot stamping is a process in which an engraved image, hot stamping die or type, is heated then forced down against a part with a marking foil sandwiched in between. The area where the die meets the part, is where the ink from the foil is left behind, thus giving a clear beautiful print. Hot stamping can be used to mark or print different materials, the most common being plastics, wood, glass etc. We have sold machines for Marking wire insulation, pencils, paper, wooden handles, glasses, cosmetic packings etc. The best part about hot stamping is that it's a dry process. There is no need to worry about mixing inks. You simply attach a die to the heated plate, load a roll of hot stamping foil, pop a part in the fixtur and you are ready to start your printing endeavour. Hot stamping is a very permanent process. When a part is marked with a properly formulated foil, it can withstand some very harsh conditions. When using a metal die on a plastic part, you can actually brand the part at the same time. So, if the color should fade or wear off, the branded image will remain. You have different options when it comes to the hot stamping die itself. First, there are metal dies which come in these basic materials, magnesium, copper, brass and hardened steel. Then there are silicone rubber dies, which have varying durometer's or degrees of hardness. The most important aspect of creating a hot stamping die is the artwork.its very critical to have good artwork.either in the camera ready from or a digital file that the engraver can work with.

Metal Dies

  • Magnesium dies are commonly used for hot stampimg on plastic, leather, cardboard, paper and wood. Magnesium is relatively soft and the best choice for short runs and low cost.

  • Copper lands here between brass and magnesium. Copper wears better than magnesium,but are not etched as deeply. good for hot stampimg, embossing and branding plastic, wood and leather with fine detail. Can be mounted onto a riser blockif required.

  • Brass has greater durability than magnesium but also costs a little more.Engraved brass offers durability and the engraving depth can be controlled to suit the application. Excellent for hot stamping fine detail on plastic. Deeply engraved brass is the good choice wood branding wood and leather. Can be shaped to fit contoured substrates.

  • Hardened steel is the most durable material pretty much indestructible under normal conditions. With this durability comes a larger price tag as well. But, if you have a job that you are pretty certain will last long or if you have operators that tend to damage dies than the higher cost of steel can be well worth the time and energy to replace the lower durability dies. Hardened tool steel is the most durable material and is a good choice for long production runs.

Etched Polymer Plate

The polymer plate is the easiest way to make a hot stamp die because it does not need any chemicals to make the etched die. Only use printed negative film and the UV exposing unit, you can make the polymer die easily by yourself in your room. The finished die can last thousands of times foil printing. We can provide the polymer plate for you to order.


As it is mentioned before, silicone rubber dies come in varying degrees of hardness. The durometers can range from 40 to 95 with the lowest number depicting the softest rubber. Because the rubber is not regid, like the metal dies. They will conform much better to parts that are not perfectly flat. With rubber you have to be somewhat careful what durometer you choose. The softer rubber works fine for larger graphice that cover a lot of area, but if you are trying to do very detailed work you will want a harder rubber for a nice and crisp stamp.


One of the most important pieces to the hot stamping process is supporting the part you plan to mark. The hot stamping process itself requires a great deal of pressure. We normally use as a guideline, 500 psi for every square inch of marked area. With this in mind you can see were the pressure can add up quickly. When you are putting that much pressure down on the part, you need to be certain that the area you plan on marking can be well supported it clearly means that you need a good fixture.

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