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Basic Flash Troubleshooting - Part 1: DON'T PANIC!!

Updated: May 4, 2021

This is probably one of the most crucial pieces of advice ever created, and is of upmost importance to remember when you start having problems with your flash production.

While nobody likes production problems, they happen anyways, and when they do, you need to get them resolved immediately, which often requires the help of a professionally trained Trodat technician.

Because current safety protocols often dictate that Trodat technicians work from a distance (over the phone), you must act as their eyes and ears to paint them as vivid and accurate a picture of the problems as possible.

In this four part series we will discuss how you paint that picture and the three most common flash issues faced in today's production environment.

So, how exactly does one “paint a flash problem picture”?

The first step is to tell us exactly what the issue is. Is it an imprint issue? The impression is not crisp and clear. Is it an ink migration issue? The stamp ink will not fully migrate throughout the foam, or it’s taking an extremely long time to migrate. Or is the stamp leaking? Your customer received the stamps and it is covered in ink. Tell us what is happening.

Next, tell us what product line you are experiencing the problems with. Is it a MaxLight, a PSI or an Ultimark? Is it an older Z-Style version or a newer S/E die plate process? Specifying the product line will help us ask the appropriate follow up questions. Different flash products require different solutions, and having to guess which product you’re working with may not result in the correct fix.

Furthermore, what consumables are you using in the production of the flash stamp? Are you using Forever ink, Premium ink or another stamp ink? What vellum and transparency are you using? Did you buy it from us or from the local office supply store? The consumables used in production will have a direct impact on how your stamp turns out.

What flash machine are you using to make the stamp? Each flash machine functions differently. We can quickly narrow down or eliminate a machine issue by knowing what machine you have and the setting used for that machine. Also, we need to know the condition of your machine. Nothing lasts forever, especially a piece of electronic equipment.

Lastly, how long has the issue been going on? Did you just make one stamp or has the issue been going on for months? A problem with one stamp can be a simple fluke. Mistakes happen, which correlates to a bad stamp, but multiple or chronic problems generally mean something is wrong or was changed.

As you see, painting a picture is not hard. It just requires a little thought and preparation. In future posts we will discuss the three most common flash problems (imprint, migration & leaking), how to properly identify them, and what issues they may cause them.


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