Product Design

Designers can request information on how to submit artwork to VMS by contacting us directly. Feel free to call us at 1-800-321-1496 and ask for an artist for product design assistance. We have included a detailed overview below of acceptable artwork based on our production software.

When submitting large files, an artist may require you to set up a File Transfer Protocol (FTP) with VMS. Additional details will be provided if required. Below is a complete list of VMS design guidelines and new product design help.

Fonts, Formats & Images

Fonts: All fonts are to be converted into-Outlines (AKA: Curves, Paths). Artwork that has been drawn to scale, properly colored and is ready for print production. This is our first preference. Your best option for text usage is to convert all fonts/text to outlines (AKA paths, curves) before submitting artwork. Fonts should be sent when there are multiple pieces of artwork with variable data or text that may need to change on an order to order basis. VMS works on PC operating systems so fonts need to be supplied in TrueType (.TTF) or OpenType format (.OTF). If working on a Mac, fonts will need to be converted to outlines before sending.

VMS can accept PDF files of your artwork to help expedite the quoting process however, the native art file will be required prior to further design work.

Formats: VMS requires artwork to be supplied in CorelDRAW (.CDR), Adobe Illustrator (.AI) or Encapsulated PostScript (.EPS). We can also accept Adobe Portable Document Format (.PDF) as long as the artwork originated in an industry standard program such as Adobe Illustrator or CorelDRAW. We can also work with desktop publishing documents created in Adobe InDesign (.INDD), but this should only be supplied if it is the only available option. These files take a great deal of conversion for use with our production methods, equipment and image setting software.

Images: If your artwork utilizes photographic images, the source files for these images should be sent along with the artwork. The vast majority of such artwork will be digitally printed. Due to the variety of digital presses we use, color and contrast may require adjustment for optimal printing. In such cases, we will adjust the photos in Photoshop for the best result. Images must be at a minimum resolution of 100 DPI at full size.

Associated Files: Any files that are used in conjunction with the artwork such as fonts and linked images should be sent along with the production ready art.

Engineering Blueprints & Reverse Engineering Parts

Blueprints: When production ready artwork is not available, the next preference is engineering blueprints. These drawings will contain detailed information for dimensions, graphic placement, materials and colors. VMS will create production ready artwork based on this information. When blueprints are not available, VMS will require a finished sample or something similar to use for reverse engineering the artwork and dimensions. Keep in mind that these alternative methods for generating artwork take a significant amount of extra time to produce which will increase production costs.

File Formats: VMS can accept the following formats for blueprints: .PDF, .DXF, .DWG, .SVG, .CGM

Color Matching, Press Proofs & Tolerances

Color For Approval (CFA): If your part has been quoted to print on one of our digital presses, we will require Pantone spot color values or printed samples of the colors you wish to match. Keep in mind that digital printing spot colors will not be 100% accurate so we will need to adjust colors for the best possible match and send a press proof for color approval.

Print Tolerances:
– Our minimum line weight for analog production is .008″
– Our minimum line weight for digital production is .005″
– Minimum stroke width of text characters should reflect the tolerances mentioned above.
– Borders should be at least .05″ from the finish cut edge. Cutting tolerances vary depending on method used.

Finish Tolerances:
– Minimum cutting tolerance is .010″ with regular cutting methods. Tolerances higher than .010″ will require special tooling which drives production costs up substantially.
– Embossing / Braille guidelines available upon request.