So you will need custom die cast medals for the next sporting or academic event? There are many of factors to consider to ensure you receive a great looking award medal at an excellent price. Consider the following when shopping for customized die cast award medals.
Custom die cast medals can vary in quality with respect to the manufacturer. When contemplating a die cast medal’s quality, here are several important questions:
1. Will the thickness of the medallion equal what was promised, or will the maker decrease the thickness to save lots of on costs? Will the medal feel “substantial” and also have considerable weight in accordance with its size?
2. Will be the letters and images likely to be clear, crisp and detailed? (Less Clarity can result from a rubber “spin cast” mold)
3. Will the buffing and plating be consistent across all medals?
4. On antique finishes, will the medallion’s edges be buffed, or will the manufacturer cut corners by leaving all of the edges blackened.
5. Will the ribbons/neckbands be attached with clips and jump rings that match the medal’s plating? (For example, polished gold jump rings applied to antique gold medals is unacceptable.)
6. Will each medal be poly-bagged and packaged properly?
Next, you will want to measure the medals manufacturing process. Custom medallions are usually liquid cast in a steel mold or die. You’ll typically incur a die charge. Medallions cast in steel molds/dies show amazing detail and quality. Beware of companies that work with a disposable rubber mold (spin cast) which decreases mold/die charges and overall costs but produces a less detailed medallion. Rubber molds could be a very cost-effective alternative for simple medals and quick deadlines, however if your medals have detailed imagery and art, a steel die is the foremost. Always ask if the manufacture could keep the die for future use, and if you will incur a die charge for future re-orders.
The finish of one’s medal is another factor to take into account. The finish and color of your medals depends upon the plating. Most medals are available in antique gold, silver and bronze. Antique finishes will be the most popular. A typical antique finish is where raised regions of your medal show a far more bright or shiny appearance, and the low relief areas tend to be more blackened. You may also have your medals plated in bright gold, silver and bronze where there is no “antique” effect and the final appears bright and shiny overall. Typically, bright finishes cost a bit more.
Including color in your custom die cast medals can really add to their appearance. Medals can be color filled with enamel, but there is yet another charge. This extra charge is normally well worth it, especially if you have a logo or insignia where you intend to maintain branding. You can be surprised how little color adds to the overall cost of your medal.
You have significantly more than likely heard about 2D versus 3D custom cast award medals. Two dimensional custom medals maintain 2 or even more flat plains or levels. Frequently, a 2D medal has a low recessed level and a raised higher flat level (raised text). Three D or 3 Dimensional medals have variations or graduations in levels making images look more realistic. 3D Molds are more expensive to make, but can really add that extra touch to the entire appearance of one’s custom medal.
Artwork should be provided by you, or created by another graphics person, or the maker. Keep in mind that what is black on your medallion artwork is normally raised, and what it white will undoubtedly be recessed. You most likely will be asked to provide digital vector art in virtually any of the next formats: pdf., cdr (Corel Draw),.ai or eps. If you cannot produce your own art, be prepared to pay from $45-$150 per hour for art creation.
Your custom die cast medals are no good if you don’t receive them on time. Based on where your medals are coming from, be prepared to wait from 3-10 weeks. Most American and Foreign die cast manufacturers work through dealers and reps that sell direct to the finish user. Overseas artisans continually impress with their focus on detail and quality at unmatched pricing, and North American manufacturers could be great at meeting quick turnaround deadlines and requiring lower minimums. Give yourself plenty of time.