Die-Cut Stickers

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By Implant Media February 19, 2019

Die cut stickers are one of the most popular ways to have your stickers produced. But how are die-cut stickers made? – To understand this we really need to know what die-cutting is –  because as it relates to sticker it isn’t quite what you might think.  Die cutting is the process of using a “die” to cut or mark material with a “formed” shape that is present on the die.  In the print industry “die” and “form” are an interchangeable term and either can be used to describe the tool doing the cutting. There are a few ways the process of die cutting is run in the print industry with customised printing presses and stand-alone die cutting machines being the most popular (the process of die cutting isn’t one that unique to the print industries with 100’s of other industries utilising the process as well). Even the types of dies can vary, with wooden block and engraved metal sheets being the two most popular methods of constructing dies for print. At istick we have a rotary die-cutter that takes magnetic rotary dies, its digital controls and precision parts make it very acurate for whatever we want to cut.  We can use this to make any shape sticker that you require, but you may be interested to know that we don’t actually use it for 95% of our sticker jobs.  This is because the dies are expensive and for the short run custom jobs that we are famous for it would mean the stickers jobs would cost prohibitive.  The rotary die cutting process is great for use with jobs that are either over 10,000 units or jobs that are repeated quite often and in most cases with hope for both (and even this depends on the size of the sticker). This is partly because of the die cost and partly due to the setup cost associated with setting up the die cutting machine. So how do we do die cut stickers from 10 units for such a low price? Well, the secret is that they aren’t actually die cut – We use a special digital cutting machine that produces results for stickers that are indistinguishable from the real thing.  If we were trying to produce complicated die-cut products, with cut lines scores, fold marks and inserts it would be almost impossible on digital cutting machines, but as die-cut stickers only need to follow one cut line and at most two these machines are perfect for this application.  Slower than a cutter cuttter but much much quicker to setup and with no cost for the physical dies it allow stickers to be produced in any shape you want at prices that won’t break the budget!