Rubber is an important material in the manufacturing of products such as tires. Hence, the tire marking process, generally rubber marking, is an important part of achieving product traceability and identification in such industries.

Rubber marking generally involves using a rubber marking machine from compatible marking systems to mark the rubber product. Generally, laser rubber marking machines are the most common due to the available marking techniques. However, this article aims to bring the different rubber marking systems, techniques, and machines you can use.

laser engraving tyre

Recommended Rubber Marking Machines

At HeatSign, satisfying our customers is a top priority, and with us, you can be sure of the best rubber marking experience using our rubber marking machines. Below are a few recommended machines you can use

Portable Laser Engraver Marking Machine

HS-PFL20S/ HS-PFL30S

Portable laser engraver

The 20/30W handheld rubber engraving machine is ideal for creating permanent marks on large rubber materials. The machine is the first choice in many manufacturing industries because of its efficiency and lightweight properties. Irrespective of the difference in power, they are both perfect for tire marking operations. The black color of tires has a high absorption rate for lasers. Hence, this tire marking machine leaves long-lasting and clear marks on tires.

  • Marking Speed: ≤ 7000mm/s
  • Power Output: 20W/30W
  • Engraving Depth: ≤ 0.2mm
  • Marking Area: 100mm x 100mm
  • Power Supply: AC220V+10% 50Hz or AC110V 60HZ
  • Laser Generator Life: 50000 ~ 100000 hours

Portable HandHeld Inkjet Printer

HS-PT01

Handheld inkjet printer

The HS-Portable handheld inkjet printer is suitable for marking rubber of large size due to its portability. Their small size makes marking operation easy for large rubber parts. However, its size does not limit its capabilities. HS portable inkjet printer can reduce the long hours of waiting to label your products.

  • Weight: 0.89kg
  • Printing resolution: Max 600 DPI
  • Printing height: 2mm ~ 12.7mm
  • Variable number: 1-8 digit variable serial number
  • Integrated 4.3-inch touch screen
  • High-definition printing effect

30W CO2 Laser Marking Machine

HS-CL30

hs-cl30 30w co2 laser marking machine

The HS-CL 30 CO2 rubber engraving machine is highly stable and flexible for deep engraving; incorporating it into your production line makes marking operation seamless.

  • Marking Speed: ≤ 9000mm/s
  • Power Output: 30W
  • Engraving Depth: ≤ 0.3mm
  • Marking Area: 110mm x 110mm
  • Power Supply: AC220V or AC110V
  • Laser Generator Life: more than 20000 hours

Common Rubber Marking Processes

Rubber has unique properties hence its application in different industries. For a smooth marking process, you should understand the material’s properties in relation to the different rubber marking techniques available. Below are the common rubber marking process and their properties.

rubber marking

· Laser Marking

The laser marking system is the most common marking system for rubber. It comprises several techniques, including laser etching, engraving, ablation, foaming, etc., which deliver different marking types and leaves permanent marks.

Aside from the permanency, the marking’s readability depends on the rubber laser marking technique. For example, laser-etched rubber products are clearer than laser-engraved products. Also, laser-annealed products have higher contrast coloration.

Rubber laser marking machines can be handheld and traditional engraving machines which determine the ease of operation even though both can laser stamp rubber products. Furthermore, the rubber laser marker can be of different technologies, with the fiber laser machine and the CO2 laser system being the most common. Some businesses can also use UV lasers due to the low heat generation.

– Factors To Consider Before Using a Laser System for Rubber

Now that you understand how the different rubber laser marking systems work, it is important to choose the right one to avoid damaged parts. Consider the following factors before choosing a machine to laser stamp rubber materials.

Recommended Wavelength

You should take note of the wavelength of laser markers before making your selection. The recommended wavelength for rubber laser marking is 10.6 microns. Rubber components can absorb light at this wavelength without any negative effect.

Laser Power Output

The laser power output of the rubber engraving machine is another factor you should consider. When working with rubber material, the ideal laser engraver should have a power output greater than 50 watts. This is because lesser power results in poor productivity. Generally, most CO2 lasers have high power (50-150 watts). This property makes them a common solution for all laser engraving rubber applications.

External Outlet

The presence of an external outlet plays a significant role in efficiency and safety as rubber generates toxic gases and particles. As a result, you should have an open outlet that promotes the evacuation of gasses and particles released during the rubber marking process.

Air Assist

For the CO2 rubber laser engraving machine, an air assist should be available and projected at the focal point. The jet of air removes the gasses and particles that build up when marking rubber parts. Furthermore, this eliminates unforeseen risks during the rubber engraving operation. It is important to note that other rubber laser markers do not require an air assist.

Inkjet Marking Method

inkjet marking method

This rubber marking method is popular because of the convenience and safety it provides for a user. The inkjet marking system can incorporate different colors on rubber products. Hence, it is widely applicable in the tire marking industry

There are many inkjet printers around, and depending on the business, you can go for a handheld or inline marking machine. The inkjet marker is perfect as a rubber marking method because of the following reasons

  • Most inks used in rubber markingare waterproof and smudge-proof
  • Unlike a rubber laser marking machine, inkjet printers are more compact and occupy less space.
  • The inkjet rubber marking process is simple and fast, even for beginners
  • Finally, it is cost-effective

Nevertheless, users need to be careful of using one since there is a high chance of incompatibility between the ink and the material. Also, the markings are not permanent.

Embossing

embossing

The embossing process uses heat and pressure to create marks on the surface of the rubber material. The markings are made using custom dies that leave specific patterns and designs on the rubber surface. Furthermore, this rubber engraving process modifies the composition of the component as it marks it. Rubber part manufacturers use embossing for the following reasons, especially in tire marking:

Visual Impact

Embossing creates a three-dimensional effect on rubber materials. Thus, in addition to rubber engraving, embossing adds style and elegance to your part.

Less Time Consumption

The automation of the embossing process ensures that tire marking enthusiasts mark at high efficiency. As a result, the time spent on rubber marking is short.

How To Select the Right Rubber Marking Method for Your Part

Choosing the most appropriate rubber marking method for your part is important to avoid errors. The following factors should be considered when selecting the right marking technique

· Readability and Permanent Marking

This is the most important factor to consider regarding rubber engraving. In addition to being indelible, a mark must be readable and permanent. Here, rubber laser marking stands out, especially in the automotive industry. Laser markers directly etch a surface of a black tire. Hence, the marked texts reflect off the black surface when using a tire engraving machine.

· The Total Cost of Marking

The cost of marking may influence your decision when selecting a rubber engraving machine. The total cost depends on the initial investment, the use of consumables, and the maintenance fee. Though inkjet printers are relatively cheaper, they need more consumables. On the other hand, laser markers are a more expensive option.

· Properties of Rubber

You should consider the intrinsic properties of the rubber product you are working on. The different rubber types have unique textures, colors, and elastic properties. This color difference may affect the visibility of the mark when you use a less appropriate marking technique. However, laser markers are compatible with almost all rubber types. This rubber engraving technology is the safest way to mark rubber materials.

Get The Best in Terms of Rubber Marking

Rubber marking is an essential step in the production plan of many industries. For example, tires used in automobiles are made using rubber. As a result, rubber marking is synonymous with tire marking in the automotive industry.

Rubber marking enhances effectiveness and productivity, conserves time, and easily identifies tires. Choosing the right rubber marking machine can be a challenge. As a result, this article introduced the major rubber engraving machine and how to choose the right one for your project. Still, searching for the best tire marking machine? Search no more. At HeatSign, we enlighten you and take you through the entire rubber marking process.