How To Select A Pad Print Ink

Key Considerations to Keep In Mind

How to Select a Pad Print Ink:

Have you ever wondered how to choose or select a pad print ink? This is a common question in pad print decoration. After all, selecting the optimal ink for your unique application is one of the most important factors in ensuring durable, repeatable decoration.

Ink selection dictates a large number of other factors. Such as:

– what color/opaqueness will be achievable

– what kinds of additional treatments or additives may be required

– and at what speed parts can be printed at




Key Considerations

Both your performance and delivery requirements will play a key role in pinpointing the best possible ink for your unique application.




PERFORMANCE Considerations: Pad Print Ink Selection

Start with performance requirements. The first step in selecting a pad print ink is to identify a supplier who can pinpoint the best possible ink for your unique project.

To do this effectively, your supplier must conduct a deep dive into understanding your unique decorating needs. Your pad print ink supplier should have a solid understanding of the performance attributes of varied inks and substrate properties. Additionally, your supplier should completely understand the unique performance requirements of your application.

Your ink partner will walk you through your options as they relate to your specific performance requirements. They will consider factors such as durability, adhesion, chemical resistance, sterilization process, and more.

Remember, your ink partner will need to advise you on ink considerations specific to your substrate. Inks are formulated to allow adhesion to different substrates so it is key to select the ink that is best suited for yours.

Inks that are well-suited to decorate a polycarbonate part may differ from those used to decorate a Styrene product, for example. Careful analysis is needed of the ink’s ability to adhere to the intended surface. It will be important to have a clear understanding of surface tension on the substrate, whether pre-treatment or curing is required, and if so, what kinds.

Finally, there will likely be specific considerations tied to your unique application. Your ink partner will need to know your industry, artwork design and color, opacity and desired printing speed, and total print quantity requirements to provide insight into the best-suited ink for your particular needs.



What specific PERFORMANCE considerations are studied by ink suppliers before making a recommendation?

Experts in the Morlock Ink Lab can identify the best formulation for your decorating needs after considering a wide number of factors, including:

  • Substrate
  • Industry
  • Color
  • Ink type (1 or 2 component or UV)
  • Needed capabilities
  • Adhesion requirements
  • Abrasion requirements
  • Opacity
  • Printing speed
  • Need for pretreatments
  • The desired number of prints



DELIVERY Considerations: Pad Print Ink Selection

So, you have found an optimal pad printing ink for your application. Now you need to ensure the supplier you have reached out to is well-positioned to deliver the ink in the way you need it. Please consider these questions:

i. Do they have a large ink warehouse? (Are they likely to have your ink in stock or the ability to produce it quickly for custom inks?)

ii. Is the ink ordering process easy? How long does ink delivery typically take?

iii. Do they offer any special ink-related services you might require- like precision color matching?



Would you like to know more?

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