For standard sized torch-heated irons and standard sized electric irons, it'll take us 3-5 business days to make your iron and get it ready to ship. Oversized irons may take a bit longer than our standard lead times due to increased production time.
Once it's cut, we'll proof it out and send you a picture. Provided you approve, we'll get it in the mail the ASAP. (Please be aware that if you would like design changes made to the logo once it’s been proofed, there is a $30 fee ($60 for xl irons) to re-cut your branding plate.) We do offer a Rush Upgrade for a fee, with approval, but you should contact us in advance to discuss your timeline.
Torch-heated brands are good for small-scale production or one-offs. They yield the same results as an electric iron, but they require just a bit more practice to figure out optimal heating time. Also, they require re-heating after a few minutes, which doesn't take a terribly long time, but it can get tedious if you're doing a lot of pieces. Electric brands are easy to use, but they cost more.
If you're doing a number of brands at once and you just want something that'll be consistent and easy to use, we'd recommend electric. If you don't mind occasional slight variations, and the moderate learning curve associated with a torch-heated iron, then go with that.
For torch-heated irons, most folks use a plumber's torch, but you can just as easily use a gas cooktop or propane grill; anything with a hot, clean-burning flame. We don't recommend using a wood-burning fire, primarily because it's difficult to control the heat, and they tend to crud up your iron with soot (that is unless you’re going with a brass head).
For electric irons, simply plug it in. It'll get up to branding temperature in 15-20 minutes. Essentially zero reheat time between impressions--it's got more than enough power to do long production runs. At operating temperature, you should be able to make a good, dark impression in 2-4 seconds.
We'll include a "Use and Care" sheet with your iron that has directions and tips.
We encourage all of our clients to contact us prior to placing an order. This gives us a chance to determine how well your design will brand at your desired size, as well as get you a quote. Remember, this is a completely custom piece created to fit your needs. We don’t offer standard sizing per se, but the iron can be made to fit just about any size needs you have.
For design files, we ask that they are black on white, vector based or high res (at least 600+dpi) saved as one of these preferred formats: ai, psd, pdf, eps or jpg.
We make our branding plates out of Aluminum or Brass. As a rule of thumb, aluminum is best for occasional use, and brass is the best choice for professional environments. Both yield identical results as far as sharpness and detail. Aluminum is, obviously, less expensive, and it’s considered safe for food contact. At high temperatures, aluminum is a bit softer than brass, and if heated incorrectly it can sustain damage. Brass is essentially impossible to destroy with high heat, and it withstands non-ideal conditions substantially better, like branding dirty, rough, or painted surfaces. When properly cared for, a brass branding plate will last for a lifetime.
Our brands are primarily designed to be used on wood and leather. You can also brand many paper products with interesting results, and even (at low heat!) thermoformed plastics. If you plan on branding food products, we need to discuss your design! Meat and bread simply won't tolerate fine detail.
We do not intend our brands to be used on living creatures for any reason, nor will we knowingly manufacture a brand for that purpose. There are other sources for livestock brands.
Nope. You need to own the rights to whatever you want made, or it needs to be in the public domain. We will not knowingly violate someone's copyright or trademark, even if you say please.