Die Cut Foil Tape Alleviates Paint Dimples

February 19, 2014 at 10:08 AM


There are several types of die cutting options for an unlimited number of applications and uses.  Earlier this month our blog post addressed additional applications for using steel rule dies. At the close of the article we mention other die cutting processes that may be right for your needs.  

First, we want to highlight another favorite customer story and successful use of die cutting.  This project also used a steel rule die cutting technique.

Project: Aircraft – die cut foil tape to apply to screw fixtures to alleviate paint dimpling

An important factor in valuing airplanes is their paint job.  Dimples and chipped paint is not ideal for making good impressions for passengers or buyers.  It’s also important to keep the paint covering materials that could rust or corrode.

Aircraft with dimpled areas experience additional interference drag and pull at the materials.  Paint can dimple and tear.  We used foil tape, that we die cut to a specific shape, and applied this to the top of the screw fixtures on an aircraft. This stopped the problem of the screw causing a dimple where the panels were attached to the frame.


Result: Project success with foil tape application

The customer had an imperfection in their aircraft which hindered sales and did not look appealing, We solved their problem with a little R&D and a simple die cut piece.

This new process has produced a better product and was a better solution than other possible options, like redesigning screw fixtures with costly molds and engineering.

The bonding quality is a major consideration for the fatigue life of the airplane’s paint.  Painting or prepping all the minor pieces separately, including all the screws, is a pain but necessary for a factory look and proper repairs.



Perhaps you have project requiring heavy duty materials, printing and die cutting together or something you just haven’t found a supplier for.

Let’s recap a few other die cut options

Thick aluminums and steels that require precise and accurate cuts often use a hardened steel die for cutting.  The die investment is typically considerably more than a steel cut die, but they are very durable and economical for high run volumes and have very tight tolerances. SCN has the capability to run projects through an automatic feed process, increasing production efficiency – even though most projects are still cut 1 part at time.  Large punch presses bring together male and female cutting surfaces for die cutting, forming and embossing projects.

Popular flexographic printing is often paired a cutting process with a rotary die however this process can be produced with or without printing.  An etched cylinder can create precise and accurate cuts rather inexpensively, quickly and put through high volumes.  Warning labels, thermal transfer labels, and other high volume low cost labels are typically produced with this process.  Expect high quality printing and precision cutting in a single pass.

Finally, we’d be remiss if we didn’t do a bit of bragging about the abilities of our CO2 laser with high-speed galvo head and servo motion cutting system.  This laser die cutting or digital die cutting machine has both roll and sheet fed capabilities.  This tool-less die option is fast, saves money and produces great quality products for digital, flexography or silkscreen projects that may require special cutting, perforation, numbering, etc.  These abilities lend themselves to some great unique projects.

Die cutting is a popular option but only one of the many capabilities at SCN.  Please follow our updates via RSS feed to read more customer stories.

Do you have a project you think could benefit from die cutting?  Leave a comment below - we’d love to get some conversations started.





Tags: projects with cost savings CO2 laser steel hardened die rotary cut die aircraft solutions
Category: Die cutting

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