Tracking systems make the world go around. At least for the world of trade. The growing global trade business needs a way to trace and track products. Coding ink is the industrial ink used to imprint numbers and data that helps to identify and track various kinds of products from where they leave a manufacturer to their final destination.
It’s important to invest in the correct coding system, but it’s just as important to choose the right coding ink. Things like moisture, humidity, and temperature can affect coding ink’s durability. Drying and curing times are important in most coding applications as is the performance, and the quality of the coding ink.
Here are 6 tips to help you find the right coding ink.
- Lifecycle Coding – One of the biggest issues with choosing ink is lifecycle durability. Ink needs to last from the time it’s marked on the product from the beginning to past it’s delivery time to the consumer and beyond. Manufacturers put their inks through several stringent tests. For example, a soft drink container leaves the manufacturing plant with its coding mark. Where does it go then? Will the consumer put it in an ice cooler? They consider not only of the product, but its lifecycle and environment.
- Holistic Product Testing – In-house product validation testing is important when you want to be sure your ink is the best for the its purpose. Manufacturers conduct these tests for their particular production process, as should you. Partner with the ink manufacturer you choose for your ink purchases so they can help you narrow down and better define your needs for coding ink. They will have further tests that can be done to ensure your coding ink is ideally formulation for your purposes.
- Get Expert Advice – All manufacturers should talk to ink experts and take advantage of their expertise regarding marking and coding inks. Ink chemists and specialists have a greater understanding of inks, how there are made, and their purposes. They will be able to ascertain your needs and help you choose the appropriate ink for your applications.
- Stay Apprised of New Technology – You should be constantly changing and improving your processes. Ink specialists are always doing research to develop new formulas to match new coding applications. As you upgrade or expand your systems, take this into consideration.
- Don’t Cut Corners – Ink specialists and printer design engineers often collaborate to create printers and the supporting fluids necessary for compatible applications. That relates to concurrent development between ink and compatible printers to create a matched set. If you were to take away even one part of the equation, the system will not work as well as it should. It can be tempting to cut corners by investing in third party inks that aren’t designed to match your printers, but that can cause degradation in the performance and affecting the coding stability.
- Look at the Complete Picture – Ensuring that a code can maintain its integrity is crucial to the lifecycle of the product’s traceability. The coding cannot meet this goal if it’s not the right type or if it’s not of quality. Manufacturers must educate themselves about their clients’ needs and consult with printer and ink chemists and specialists to gain a full picture of the endurance of their coding so they can choose the best coding ink for the job.
Consider all these factors before investing in your marking and coding ink.