Why choose Fine Cut Group for Membrane Keypads and Overlays?

20th April 2021 - Fine Cut
Why choose Fine Cut Group for Membrane Keypads and Overlays?

Fine Cut have been manufacturing Membrane Keypads and Industrial Graphics for over 35 years to a whole host of industries including Medical, Aerospace, Automotive, Defence, Electronic, Catering and Agricultural to name just a few. Their sales experts are supported by a talented in-house design team and highly skilled workforce of experienced technicians. 

Fine Cut Group are an ISO certified manufacturer, demonstrating their high-quality management standards and stringent quality control processes. They also participate in the UL Authorised Label Supplier Program, manufacturing UL certified labels & marking solutions for a range of industries across the globe. 

The Group house some of the most advanced manufacturing equipment and use only market leading material and adhesive suppliers to guarantee only the highest quality products are produced.

Graphic Overlays and Membrane keypads are used amongst so many industries – therefore many parameters need to be to be considered prior to manufacture, including environmental, mechanical, electrical and aesthetic to ensure they are suited to their environment and fit for purpose.

Both membrane keypads and overlays can be ATEX and UL-approved depending on material selection, as well as being mounted to steel and aluminium panels or ABS mouldings if required. Stainless steel domes or thermally formed polyester ‘polydomes’ can be chosen for an especially tactile response, whilst environmental sealing and electrical terminations can be provided to best suit your enclosure and electronics. 

A basic membrane is made of several layers, the number of layers vary depending on the requirements, but a common membrane keypad will consist of the top layer – the Graphic Overlay, reverse printed for durability on to either Polycarbonate or Polyester. Both print receptive, easily die cut and emboss friendly. Polyester has far greater tensile strength and can withstand in excess of 1,000,000 actuations before showing signs of wear and has a great resistance to chemicals and solvents.

In between the overlay and the rear adhesive are several spacer layers, a dome retainer - usually made from a Polyester PET film to hold in place the metal domes on a circuit and the actual circuit layer - printed using conductive silver ink onto PET (polyester) or FPC (polyamide). A huge selection of pressure sensitive adhesives are available to bond the membrane to most surfaces including metal, plastic, paint, rough or smooth. Environmental conditions that the switch will be subjected to also have a bearing on the required adhesive.

Membrane keypads offer unmatched flexibility and options include backlighting – a variety of different types of embedded LED options are available as well as transparent, tinted and secret til lit windows. Surface Textures can be added such as rough or smooth textures and UV hard coat surface finish to protect the overlay. Internal coatings such as EMI/RFI shielding to reduce electronic malfunction can also be applied.


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