So you found a button making machine in a closet at work. Or at an estate sale. Or in a dark corner of your basement. Either way, you have the button maker and you need to determine the size of the button it produces.
While you may be tempted to try to guess its size by looking at the die on the button maker, this is not an accurate determinant of the button maker’s model and size. Oftentimes button makers tend to show up with remnants of button supplies or even finished buttons! “Ah ha!” you may say, “this will help me determine the size.” Believe it or not, measuring a finished button is also not an accurate predictor of button size. The reason for this is slight variances among button material. What’s more, even measuring can lead to error – for example, are you measuring at the start of the curve or at the rim of the button? Or beyond that even?
So how do you determine the button size of an unmarked button maker?
Does it have any stickers?
This may be a no-brainer, but a sticker with the model number is a sure-proof way to determine what size button your button maker produces. Depending on the source of the Tecre machine, it may have a sticker right on the button making machine itself.
Look for any paper trail / electronic documentation of the original order.
This can be anything from an order confirmation email or an invoice to instruction or layout sheets. These will always have a model number or button size that can help us determine what model button maker you may have in your hands.
Who is the manufacturer?
If the machine is indeed manufactured by Tecre, the machine was originally purchased either from a reseller or directly from us. We may have some information on file for you. Give it a try and call!
If the machine is not a Tecre machine, don’t yet despair! There is still a chance that we may sell compatible button supplies. While we can’t guarantee the success rate, many button makers in the industry have cross-compatibility. See here for more information.
Measure the mylar.
Got button remnants? These can prove to be very helpful. While we don’t recommend measuring a button shell or a finished button for reasons we listed above, a piece of the plastic mylar can be very helpful in determining the size of the button maker. Since each button size corresponds with a very specific mylar size, an accurate measurement of this piece can greatly assist us in determining the size needed for your button maker.
Mylar measurements can be found here.
Still striking out?
Tecre is happy to send you samples of material to test in your button maker. Feel free to call and request samples!