Pad Printing Garment Tags Process
A pad printing machine utilizes a silicone print pad to pick up printing ink from an etched plate (cliché) and transfer it to the part. Unlike screen printing or heat transfer for garment labels, pad printing lays down a thin layer of ink, effectively embedding the print into the garment fibers leaving the print soft to the touch.
The etched plate is mounted onto the pad printing machine. The ink cup (filled with ink) slides over the plate, leaving ink only in the etched area and removes (“doctors”) the ink from the rest of the plate. Next, the print pad is pressed onto the etch, picking up the ink. The pad then moves over the part and is pressed onto the garment.