The Durable Industrial Marking Blog

Custom Branding Irons and the 5 Keys to Making a Successful Mark

Posted by Matt Martin

Used to mark materials like wood, cork, leather, plastics, paper, rubber and more, branding irons are a marking solution that can be found across many industries and applications.

branding_irons.jpgWhat Are Branding Irons Used For?

Branding irons are often used to permanently mark trademarks, logos and manufacturer's names directly into an item. The marks created by branding irons are embedded deeply into the material so they resist wear and tear, leaving a long lasting and easy to read mark for the life of the item.

Other than metal and glass, branding irons can mark nearly any material so they are widely used across a range of applications and industries. Some of the most commonly branded items including lumber, tires, plastic parts, handmade crafts, furniture, saddles and leather goods.

Custom Branding Irons

Branding irons consist of two components: a branding iron and a branding die. The branding iron is the actual tool that heats up and is used to press the die into the material. The branding die is attached to the branding iron and includes the engraved text or image that will be branded into the substrate being marked.

The branding die portion of a branding iron package is the part of the set up that is customizable. Once you have the system in place, either a hand held or drill press branding iron, a customized branding die can be affixed to the iron to create custom, indelible marks.

branding-iron-die.jpgThe 5 Keys to Clear Marks with a Branding Iron

When considering making a branded mark with a hand held or drill press branding iron, there are 5 factors that will contribute to determining the successful outcome of the mark:

Copy Design: Clean, simple designs work best when branding. "Busy" or highly detailed art can result in less than satisfactory results. Custom bronze dies can be engraved per your artwork or provided with a pocket to hold interchangeable type or logos for when stamping variable information is required.

Temperature: Temperature settings vary depending on the material to be branded. In general, rubber and leather branding temperatures are between 325° to 400°F, softwoods from 650° to 750°F, and hardwoods and thermoset plastics from 750° to 850°F. Our branding irons are sold with optional temperature regulator's to ensure consistent results.

Pressure: It is very important that pressure is applied evenly to ensure deep, even impressions.

Dwell Time: Dwell time refers to the contact time between the branding die and the material to be marked. This time is determined by the die temperature relative to the melting or burning temperature of the material.

Depth of Brand: The longer the dwell time and the greater the pressure, the deeper the branded mark. The desired depth of the mark depends on the application requirements and the desired appearance.

Check out one of our drill press branding irons in action below.

Learn More

Contact us for more information about custom branding irons.

Download How to Use a Branding Iron

This post was published on January 4, 2017 and updated on May 27, 2020.

Topics: Hot Stamping, Marking Tools and Supplies, Branding Irons and Branding Dies