How does Pad Printing Work?

The process starts with creating a printing plate or as known in the industry as a “cliché”, which is a 1:1 image of the design to be printed. Clichés can be made from short run photo-polymer material or chemically etched onto hard steel material.  They can also be laser engraved into special laser clichés.  The etched printing plate is flooded with ink and the excess ink is wiped off using a sharp edged ink cup and the ink remains only in the etched design area. The silicone pad then lifts up the ink from the printing plate and transfers it onto your product.