Graphic Overlays

Graphic Overlays | Overlay Printing | Panel Overlay | Overlay Labels | Graphic Overlay Printing
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Industries and Uses for Graphic Overlays

Graphic overlays can be found in every area of our daily lives, from manufacturing, telecommunications, and the military to agriculture, food service, and consumer goods. Depending on the type of industry, application, and environment, these overlay labels will have certain requirements. The experts at Hallmark Nameplate will work with your team to custom design and manufacture the best graphic overlay printing to perfectly suit your needs. Learn about the most common uses for graphic overlays, the industries that use overlay labels, and special requirements, based on the application, setting, and industry regulations.

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The Purpose of a Graphic Overlay (aka Panel Overlay)

A graphic overlay, also known as a panel overlay is a critical printed interface on mechanical and electronic assemblies that allows the user to effectively interact with the device, machine, or equipment. This top layer visually represents the device's user interface panel, and it is the first thing the operator sees. There are various forms, such as a single layer that is backed by adhesive or part of a membrane switch.

These overlay labels typically include the company name and branding, in addition to product information like IDs and serial numbers, plus instructions for using the device. A graphic overlay may also include important safety warnings. This functional user-friendly interface is very important, as it helps define the user experience.

Graphic Overlays for Every Environment

Another important function of a graphic overlay is to keep moisture, dust, and debris from harming the electrical components inside. Overlay printing labels are designed to withstand extreme environmental conditions - both indoor hazards such as cleaning solutions and chemical exposure, and outdoor challenges like extreme temperatures and UV exposure. They are made to accommodate objects of any shape or size and are found in nearly every industry, from manufacturing sectors and the military to consumer equipment, devices, and tools.

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Popular Uses for Graphic Overlays

Some of the most common uses of graphic overlays are equipment control panels, heart monitors, refrigerators, ATMs, vehicle dashboards, ultrasound scanners, microwaves and commercial ovens, coffee makers, gas pumps, CPAP machines, exercise equipment and game consoles. They're used on printers, copiers and other business machines. Graphic overlays are found in critical military environments, such as the computer screens of tanks and tactical vehicles, helicopters and aircraft.

Some of the Industries That Use Graphic Overlays and Special Requirements

Aerospace

Aerospace

This multi-faceted industry uses a wide variety of overlays and nameplates, such as instructional and warning labels, aviation tags, schematics, Lexan labels, and specially designed dials and instrumentation.

Agriculture

Agriculture

Equipment overlays for agriculture must withstand the most challenging environmental conditions and be extremely rugged. They must also provide clear product information, instructions and safety warnings to prevent serious injury.

Construction

Construction

Because construction equipment is engaged in hard labor out in the field, graphic overlays, which may include important operating and safety instructions, must be protective as well as informative. Graphic overlays for construction are designed to resist abrasion, moisture, UV and extreme temperatures.

Consumer Products

Consumer Products

Whether it’s a refrigerator, a lawn mower or a game console, consumer products take a lot of abuse. Consumers must be able to clearly read model numbers, serial numbers, on-board instructions and safety information, even when the equipment is many years old. This requires overlay material to be extremely durable and long-lasting.

Fitness

Fitness

Fitness equipment, especially when it’s used at a high-traffic gym or fitness center, sees a lot of abuse and nearly constant use. Overlays used for fitness equipment must be able to stand up to heavy use as well as harsh cleaning solutions. The information conveyed on fitness machine overlays is essential for user safety and to minimize facility liability, so the user interface must be straightforward and easy to understand, with sharp graphics. Overlays for fitness equipment are designed to resist moisture, scuffing and chemical corrosion.

Food Service

Food Service

Whether it’s a catering company that needs property tags for their equipment that’s used in client facilities, or identification and safety labels for a school cafeteria, food service organizations require nameplates and labels to keep track of supplies and equipment, and to keep workers well-informed and safe.

Manufacturing and Industrial

Manufacturing and Industrial

Graphic overlays used on equipment for industry must be “industry grade,” ready to handle heavy daily use and harsh chemical environments. As heavy machinery can pose a potential workplace risk and increased liability for organizations, interfaces must be robust and easy to read, as well as intuitive. This involves a smart design and high-quality graphics that remain sharp over years of abuse.

Marine

Marine

Graphic overlays used on equipment for industry must be “industry grade,” ready to handle heavy daily use and harsh chemical environments. As heavy machinery can pose a potential workplace risk and increased liability for organizations, interfaces must be robust and easy to read, as well as intuitive. This involves a smart design and high-quality graphics that remain sharp over years of abuse.

Medical and Dental

Medical and Dental

The medical device industry requires nameplates, labels and overlays to communicate the proper usage of equipment, tools and substances. They also need instructional and warning labels, UID nameplates and barcodes, model and serial number nameplates and overlays for their state-of the-art diagnostic and therapeutic devices.

Military

Military

Any equipment used by the military must meet their strict specifications, and graphic overlays for military equipment is no exception. These overlays for sensitive, mission-critical equipment must be protective, heavy duty and have a crisply designed, easy-to-use interface.

Research Laboratories

Research Laboratories

Scientific research requires absolute precision and strict adherence to safety regulations. Therefore, much like for medical facilities, graphic overlays for equipment used in research labs must convey instructions and safety warnings in a clear, easy-to-understand manner. These must help to protect sensitive equipment from chemical exposure and be impervious to such harsh substances for long life.

Retail

Retail

An important requirement of overlays for retail equipment is that there will likely be many employees who must understand operating instructions and safety warnings. Therefore, long-term durability and clear graphics are essential.

Transportation

Transportation

There are many overlays used in the transportation industry, from automobile dashboards and gas station pumps to control panels for mass transit trains and buses. As with any equipment that experiences heavy use and must relay important operating instructions in a clear manner, transportation overlays must be made to resist wear and tear in addition to harsh chemicals and other environmental hazards such as UV and extreme temperatures.

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Custom Designed Overlays for Your Industry

At Hallmark Nameplate, we have more than 50 years of experience designing custom overlays that meet the unique needs and requirements of your industry and your application. Our team of experts will recommend the best materials and design that is most appropriate to the equipment or device, usage factors and environment.

Contact us for more information and a free quote.

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