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Rotary dies, like the kind manufactured and distributed by Maxcess, are used in a variety of web converting applications and industries. And depending on the application for which it will be used, you’ll want to be sure you’re using the right kind of rotary die. Rotary dies come in two distinct varieties: solid vs flexible dies. So when it comes to solid vs flexible dies, it’s important to know the key differences between the two and the kinds of applications in which each is used. 

What do Solid and Flexible Dies Do?

In the world of rotary die cutting, both solid and flexible dies are used to cut identical shapes out of a variety of materials (paper, fiberboard, metal, plastic, etc.) expeditiously and precisely. In both processes, the cylindrical die rolls atop the material (or “web”) and presses it against a solid surface, effectively cutting the material into whatever shape is present on the rotary die itself. The die cutting process is essential in the production of labels, packaging materials, cloths, nonwoven items, and more. This process is known as “converting”.

When should I use a solid die?

As the name suggests, a solid die consists of a solid steel cylinder with the specific design machined permanently into the die itself. More rigid and sturdy than their flexible counterparts, these types of dies are typically used in more long run applications and are constructed for maximum use over a long period of time.

Solid Die Advantages

On the topic of solid vs flexible dies, solid dies offer a number of key advantages:

  • Solid dies are more durable than flexible dies.
  • Solid dies can handle tougher materials than flexible dies.
  • Solid dies are better at material handling and scrap removal.
  • Solid dies are more customizable.

When should I use a flexible die?

While solid dies are made from solid steel cylinders, a flexible die is basically a sheet of steel that wraps around and attaches to a solid magnetic cylinder. Typically flexible dies are used in the converting of less rigid materials like paper and film as opposed to tougher substrates like metal. Flexible dies are extremely versatile and the preferred choice for a variety of short run applications.

Flexible Die Advantages

On the topic of solid vs flexible dies, flexible dies have many favorable attributes of their own:

  • Flexible dies are more cost-effective than solid dies.
  • Flexible die production requires less turnaround time.
  • Flexible dies take up less storage space compared to solid dies.
  • Flexible dies are perfectly equipped to handle the most common web substrates.

At Maxcess, we manufacture the world’s most reliable solid rotary dies and flexible rotary dies to fulfill all types of web converting needs. And we would be happy to discuss with you which products in our long list of renowned options might be the right fit for your needs. If you ever have questions about solid vs flexible dies, or want to know which one might be right for you, contact us.