Metal Nameplates: Material Options and Marking Choices

BY Rowena Taylor

Metal Nameplates - Material Choices

When it comes to creating metal nameplates for your business, a couple of the things you need to decide on are the type of metal you are to use, and the kind of marking method these tags should be made with. You will find that you actually have quite a number of options for both of these and the combinations you choose will bring you different results. For instance, if you were to choose a metal like bronze and you have it marked using etching, the same design will look rather different if you chose aluminum and had it marked using stamping.

To help you with your metal and marking choices, here are the most commonly used metals for nameplate creation, and the marking methods that you can choose from for these:

Metal Choices

Aluminum – probably one of the most chosen by people who need metal nameplates, specifically due to its low cost. Since aluminum is one of the most abundant metals on the planet, it can be sold at a lower cost than other metals similar to it. It is a very lightweight metal with a silvery sheen, and is very malleable and easy to work with. One of the cons of aluminum is its tendency to get dented easily, which is probably why this should only be used for applications where these are not exposed to such a possibility.

Stainless Steel – this is a better alternative to aluminum when the application requires a silvery metal that is not that prone to denting, although this can be a bit costlier than aluminum. Stainless steel is also very durable and is rather impervious to certain chemicals, tarnish, rusting and high heat.

Bronze and Brass – these two are similar but different as well. Bronze is more reddish and brass is more golden in color. These two are also rather malleable, and can be marked using a wide variety of methods. These are considered more decorative than silvery metals, and this is because these have a golden tinge brought about by copper, which is one of the metals used in the creation of this alloy. This particular metal is also tarnish and rust resistant, although there are some chemicals that may damage the beauty of these particular metals.

Marking Mediums

Metal Nameplates - Marking Methods

Aside from metal choices, you also have choices for when it comes to marking your metals with designs. Some of the most popular marking methods being used on metals are those that can only be used on metals, like stamping, embossing and etching. Other methods that are also equally as popular, and can be used on other materials as well, are engraving, digital printing, and silkscreening. There are also some marking methods that can be used only on very specific metals, like photosensitizing, which is generally used on anodized aluminum.

One particular marking method that people find ideal for when they need their metal nameplates to have very durable markings (although these other marking methods are durable enough) is the stonewear process. The marking on these plates are baked on after printing, making these highly impervious to UV rays, scratches, chemicals and many more. 

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