I cannot stress enough the importance obtaining adequate training when purchasing a new pad printing system, especially if you’re new to pad printing.
Too many people/companies think pad printing machines are a commodity and they’ll be able to figure it out. Maybe they will, but only after hours of wasted time and unnecessary frustration in an effort to “save money.”
In 28 years, I have never seen anyone “save money” by skipping training.
Regardless of whether you’re purchasing a simple one-color system or a complex multiple-color system, stop before you decide to skip training.
I include a day of training when you purchase even a simple machine. Whether you decide to come to me before the machine ships or have me come to you, the cost is travel expenses. We go over the theory of operation, artwork, preparing templates for cliche making, cliche making, proper ink mixing procedures, the effects of temperature and humidity, transfer pads, setup, adjustment, cleanup, maintenance and troubleshooting. I generally first explain and demonstrate, then let the trainees do it with some coaching and finally just observe as they do it alone.
When people skip training, we invariably end up spending hours on the phone and/or exchanging numerous emails with attached photos and perhaps video trying to diagnose and fix the problem while separated sometimes by several time zones. This is a waste of time for everyone. Even when we provide detailed manuals, videos and other training guides, people don’t always bother to read them.
Pad printers are not like toasters. You can’t expect to just select how dark you want your toast, put in a few slices, push down a lever and get the results you expect.
Everyone learns differently: audibly (listening), visually (seeing) and tactilely (doing). Truly effective training is rarely accomplished without all three levels being addressed, especially if you’ve never pad printed before.