Five Key Questions to Help Guide Your Decision
Any good storyteller knows the five key questions that help supply critical information for the reader; who, what, when, where and why.
Original equipment manufacturers begin with similar sets of questions as a product slowly comes to life using CAD software to develop blueprints and plans. Yet one important component can be left to last when its involvement from the beginning is key.
High-quality, custom industrial nameplates often supply critical information to the purchaser and need to be designed to last the lifespan of the products. The labels must be incorporated into the design and planning phases.
These five questions can help determine which style of nameplate will best suit your product.
Who are you as a company?
Every company has a brand identity, for better or worse. What sort of image is your company trying to project? One of strength, quality and durability or one that’s more ephemeral, disposable?
Metal nameplates are the material of choice for durable capital equipment with an anticipated lifespan of multiple years. It is often possible to incorporate brand logos in multiple colors to help identify the manufacturer years into the future, not to mention product I.D. numbers, etc. Disposable products or small appliances with a shorter lifespan might choose a different nameplate material that still conveys the appropriate information and promotes your brand image.
What key information will the nameplate provide to the end-user?
Again, the intended end use of the product being manufactured guides much of the decision making in terms of key information. Smaller products or those with a shorter lifespan might incorporate the company logo or brand name or have simple guides for on/off switches for example. Other more durable goods and capital equipment often include more detailed information that must, depending on the industry, follow certain regulatory guidelines.
Some potential possibilities include:
- Manufacturer’s identity
- Product I.D. number
- Safety identification
- Rating instructions, i.e. for amperage, etc.
- Dials, gauges or scales
- Key codes to assist with operation, repairs or maintenance
When do you need the custom industrial nameplate?
Timing for production purposes needs to be factored in just as you would a piston, spring or valve. Obtain comparative quotes early on to factor in design, manufacturing time and delivery. Determine at the project’s outset where and when during the production process the nameplate will be applied on the manufacturing line.
A word of caution—waiting until the last minute to decide on a nameplate can have costly consequences. One legendary tale tells of a manufacturer that ordered nameplates a week away from production shipping dates. Due to the complexity of the information required on the plate for regulatory reasons, the manufacturer had to shut down the line and furlough the workers until the plates could be manufactured and shipped for installation.
Where will the product be used?
Environmental considerations play a huge role in determining nameplate composition and material selection. Harsh conditions related to weather or chemicals play a huge role determining nameplate base materials and location on the final product.
Factors to consider include:
- Indoor or outdoor use
- Light exposure (for fade resistance and image permanency)
- Chemical exposure
- Target industry*
*Various industries demand different standards. As one example, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) might get involved with image permanency for equipment used in food manufacturing. All parts of the equipment within many food manufacturing applications, including the nameplate, must be able to withstand rigorous and sometime harsh cleaning cycles and emerge food-safe.
How can I find out more?
Turn to the company with a stellar reputation for customer service and quality. A company with decades of experience providing solutions for custom industrial nameplates that inform, advertise and fit within your specific project parameters. Contact Nutron Nameplate Inc. at 888-737-5052.