[time-nuts] Labeling project boxes/panels

Charles P. Steinmetz charles_steinmetz at lavabit.com
Sat Jan 21 17:33:26 EST 2012


I'm tired of setting up silkscreening for one-off or small lot 
projects, and am looking for new ways to neatly label panels 
(generally painted metal, sometimes bare metal or 
plastic).  Preferably, something that can be done on-premises without 
needing to send graphics out and wait for delivery.  I'd like to be 
able to do layouts on a pc -- at a minimum with letters and lines, 
and hopefully the capability to paste graphics, as well.  I'm willing 
to overcoat the labeling if necessary (preferably with a spray rather 
than an adhesive film).  Duty will generally be indoor, but I'd like 
the labeling to survive locations that get direct sun through a window.

I'm familiar with the Dymo and Brother industrial tape labelers, but 
would like something that is not so confined to available tape widths 
(if I'm doing an overlay -- which I'm not in love with generally -- 
I'd like to overlay the whole panel).  I don't know if the Scotchcal 
family of products has anything useful for this.  I have heard of 
materials available for (laser?) printers that create water-soluble 
decals, but have not run across any.  I know there are heat-transfer 
PC resist materials -- are there similar things oriented to panel 
labeling (this would not address plastic panels, I presume)?  One 
potential drawback of printed solutions (where the actual toner or 
ink from the printer becomes the label) may be making light-colored 
labels for dark panels.

Anything else people like?  I know I said I disfavor sending out for 
overlays, but if anybody thinks really highly of this method, and can 
identify a good vendor, I'm willing to listen.

Thanks,

Charles











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