Author Archives: SafeCard ID Team

A Slot Punch for Every Organization

slot punchesA slot punch provides the rectangular slot in the printed plastic ID badge so that it can be worn by use of a badge attachment such as a lanyard or badge reel. The punch will provide a consistent hole in a PVC card or an HID prox card without cracking the card.

Slot punches are manufactured with our without edge guides. The guide is an important device that allows for a consistent hole. The punch eliminated the guess work it takes to measure the center point of each plastic card when hole punching either a vertical or horizontal card. Use of a slot punch provides a uniform slot in each ID card that increases the professionalism of the printed card.

Hand held slot punches are designed for use in a small organization where only a few cards may be punched at a time. These punches are heavy duty and designed to last.

Stapler style slot punches are easier to use than the hand held punch. Designed like a stapler, this slot punch provides a professional hole with a push on the top lever of the punch.

Table top slot punches are the choice for many medium to large card production groups. The lever is easily pulled and the movement causes a consistence slot punch with ease.

The electric slot punch can be operated by electric operation directed from a foot switch. Insert the card and press the foot pedal with your foot to discover a perfectly punched ID card.

Slot punches are designed to restore themselves by spring load so that the punch is ready for the next card. The slot punch is a high quality product that is designed to last for many years.

Tips for Purchasing Your First ID Card Printer

You have been placed in charge of researching ID card printer systems for your organization. They have asked to you locate and recommend the best printer system for your business needs. Following are some items that your ID card integrator will ask to help you select the best printer system for your needs.

Current Card Needs

Cards are used for many different functions in different environments. Some businesses may need the card for a simple identification device. Other organizations have multiple needs that the card must meet causing additional wear on the PVC card. Payroll, access control, and debit functions are a few of the many multiple uses for ID cards that are used freqently throughout each work day.

Future Card Needs

Additional enhancements to future card printing may be planned as well. Will you be needing proximitiy cards in the near future? Will security features be needed with an upcoming expansion of the business? Answers to questions like these help an ID card integrator provide the best photo ID card system recommendation for current and future business projections.

Card Surface Printing Needs

It is important to know printing is needed on the back of the card. Printing both a front and back would require a dual sided printer. Providing additional printing area, cards with back side printing often print bar codes or company contact information and mission statements on the card.

Card Element Needs

Will there be logos and special symbols placed on the card? Are these items accessable in a electronic format such as a .jpg? Will there be a photo of the card holder printed on the card? A camera that interfaces with the card printer system is often desired. The correct ID card software for your volume requirements and network needs is an important part of the system evaluation. A software that imports and maintains card information in a database is often an important element in medium to large size organizations. Reprinting capabilties, reporting options and network connections are possible with some software versions.

Although it is easy to select and purchase a prepackaged turn key system, it is important to speak with an ID card expert from an integrator for a free consultation and recommendation for your specific needs. The consultation will provide you with different options and recommendations that fit your current and future applications. Our ID card experts can be reached at 888-485-4696.

Zebra P330i – Installing an Extended Card Feeder


To add the 220 card extended card feeder to the Zebra P330i printer, follow the directions provided in the video.

1. Remove the feeder cover by pressing in on the left side and pivoting out the right corner.
2. Place the feeder extension on top of the printer case and align the holes.
3. Insert screws into the three holes and tighten slightly.
4. Place the bottom corner of the feeder onto the small raised pivot point. Place the top pivot point into the hole in the feeder extension.
5. Completely tighten the screws.

Find out specific information about Zebra Printer models:

Zebra P110i
Zebra P120i

Zebra P330i
Zebra P430i

Evolis Printer – Software for Printing with a Mac

Many customers look for the capability of printing ID cards on their Mac computer. The problem for these users is that there is little to no option for ID badge software to design the badges.

Evolis has provided a video demonstrating the use of software now available for designing cards with a Mac computer. Details are provided below.

For more information about this capability with Evolis printers, contact our ID card experts at 888-485-4696.

Tips for Printing on Your HID Prox Card

When printing from an ID card printer directly to your HID prox card (1386 cards), it is important to load your cards into the ID card printer hopper in the correct way. When the card prints and ejects the card from the printer, it is important that the image of the card is printed on the correct side with the correct edge at the top.

If you are going to be slot punching the HID prox card to wear the badge with a badge holder, punching the card correctly is critical. There are four small, usually blue, colored dots on the upper back side of the HID cards. The dots indicate where a slot punch can be safely placed.

If the HID card is slot punched at a different location than where the dots are located, the internal functioning of the card can be damaged. The internal electronic mechanics of the card run throughout the inside of the card. If part of the functioning pieces are damaged by the slot punch, the HID prox card will be non-functional.

Learn how to use an HID prox card as an identification card without directly printing on the card.

Using an HID Prox Card as an Identification Card

PROXCARDWhen you want to use a 1326 proximity or clam shell card as an access card and identification card, you can purchase a pressure sensitive overlay that can be printed on your ID card printer.

Depending upon the printer manufacture and printer specifications, you will need to purchase a 10 mil or a 24 ml pressure sensitive card or a 10 ml pressure sensitive card with a mylar back.

Directions for applying this card to the access card:

1. Using your direct to card printer, print a single sided photo ID card to the pressure sensitive card.
2. Before removing the backing, adjust your slot punch to align the hole in the pressure senstive card to the hole in the prox card.
3. Peel the backing and apply with printed card to the clamshell card.

The benefit of using the pressure sensitive card on the proximity card is that you can remove the pressure sensitive card and replace it with a new identification card when needed.

If you are using a HDP5000, this option is not available.

For more information about HID prox cards and photo ID card systems, visit our plastic card printer store online.

Fargo DTC550 – Tips to Determine if the Printhead is Bad

Fargo DTC400e Dual If you are experiencing one of more thin white lines that travel the entire length of a printed card and the problem persists with every card, there is a possibility that you have a chipped, scratched or externally damaged printhead. It is also possible that it could be a blown pixel in the printhead.

To see if the printhead is damaged:

1. Clean the printer. Make sure to take special care when using the printhead cleaning pen to remove any particles stuck to the printhead.
2. Visually inspect the printhead for any remaining dirt.
3. Attempt to reprint one of the cards.
4. If the problem still persists, carefully remove the printhead.
5. Using a magnifying glass, inspect the glass edge of the printhead for scratches, chips or external damage.
6. If no damage is noticed, the printhead may have a blown pixel.

Printheads are only warrantied by evaluation processes through Fargo technical support. RMAs are needed for an evaluation to occur. If you see visible damage on your printhead, it will not be covered under your warranty, and you must purchase a new printhead.

For more information about Fargo printers and the Fargo DTC550 printer, our ID card experts can be reached at 888-485-4696.

ID Card Printer System Components

Evolis Pebble Printer SystemThe decision has been made. An ID badge system is needed for your organization. Important decisions will need to be reviewed and made at this time to get started. Specific requirements of your badges may call for a special module in the printer or a special software version to make sure that your badge needs are met. Prepackaged systems are perfect for most small businesses and organizations, however, it is important to take a peek at the options to make sure that your organization is set up not only for today, but for future badge printing requirements.

ID Badge Software – Choosing the correct software may be one of the most complex decisions in choosing an id card printer system. There are multiple manufacturers with a variety of software versions that can accomplish anything you could need on a card. Current and future needs of your organization will provide you with guidance as to which software best meets your needs.

ID Card Printers – The selection of a printer is also worth reviewing. There are a number of manufacturers as well for high quality printers. Printers can vary in the ability to print a basic badge to those with a high level of security with embedded information. You don’t want to over purchase in this area, but it is important to make sure that your selected printer has the capabilities to meet card printing needs both now and in the future. Some printers will ease the budget crunch a bit as they allow you to add card printing modules in the field at a later time. These printers can expand as your needs require.

ID Card Camera – It is important to have a camera that will provide the level of quality you want on your badges. Some companies do not really care about the quality of picture on the card. A simple camera that will print a black and white photo on the card is sufficient. Other organizations us the card as a visual identification and are specifically interested in a quality photo on their cards. A good digital camera is often sufficient for this. If a specific level of quality is needed, a consultation with an id card integrator may be beneficial.

Cards and Consumables – Standard PVC cards are used for most card printing. There are situations based on access needs and security needs that a specialize card is required. Print ribbons are specific to the printer selected. Normally, each model of printer has a number of ribbon types that will fit the application required. The card may be worn by the card holder. If so, a slot punch may be needed to make an attachment hole in the badge. There are numerous badge attachments that can provide a specified way to wear badges while on the job.

Zebra P330i – ID Card Printing Tips


ID Card Printing Tips for The Zebra P330i Card Printer

1. Install the print driver.
2. Load the print ribbon, cleaning cartridge and the cards.
3. Plug in the correct power cord for your location.
4. Connect the USB cable to the printer and computer.
5. Turn on the printer.
6. The LCD will display “initallizing” and then “ready”.
7. Teh computer will recognize the printer.
8. Slide out the output hopper.
9. Begin printing.
8. The LCD will display the action of the computer during printing.

Find out specific information about Zebra Printer models:

Zebra P110i
Zebra P120i

Zebra P330i
Zebra P430i

For other Zebra printing tips see the following videos:

Zebra P330i – Using the Single Card Feeder>br/>
Zebra P330i – Installing A Print Ribbon

Zebra P330i – Loading PVC Cards

Zebra P330i – Installing Printer Drivers

Zebra P330i – Installation Tips

The ID Card System – Who Should be Responsible for It?

You have completed the negotiations within the company and have decided to move forward with an ID card printer system purchase. After researching all of the printers, software and consumables needed, you have come to the place where the system will be installed and the task of implementation and operation will take place. The printer answers current badge printing needs as well as future expansion ideas. The software is capable of your design and printing requirements. You have chosen a camera that delivers the quality picture needed. All the consumables, like printer ribbons and cards, are ready to go. The question is who is going to implement and operate the photo id card system processes.

This question is debated in many organizations. There are many who feel that the human resource area should be the correct place to issue it badges. They are already responsible for new hire processes and it makes sense to provide an id card in the new hire process. Other reasons human resource departments are selected for this job is that those in the personnel area tend to stay in their jobs longer than other departments. This provides continuity. The human resources area can also follow through with proper procedures to replace a badge when that occurs.

Some people believe that the ID card issuance should come from the security department. They are responsible for security which is the basic reason for an id card. A positive reason for security to handle this function is when the parking deck or buildings require access control. Another reason for security to issue badges is to allow them to control visitors and employees with lost badges from their security location which is often nearby control areas. The negative to this may be that if the volume of employees coming in at the same time is large, the security officers may be tied down allowing for a potential security breach.

Organizational size may play a critical factor in who operates the system. If you are in a small business, there may not be any large department to handle the process. The important thing is to assign the project to a person or group of people who will operate and maintain the process appropriately. The person needs to believe in the importance of the ID card system and can sell its importance to those around them. The ID card system operator choice is just as important as the choice to obtain and ID card system in the first place.

Preferred ID Card Manufacturers

Fargo Printer | Evolis Printer | CIM Printer | Magicard Printer | Datacard Printer | Zebra Printer

Preferred ID Card Software

Asure Software | ID Flow | Card Five