Button making

I am looking into making buttons for our team for the first time this year but am a little confused about all the machines that are out there. Is there really a difference between anyone of them. And can button backs and covers sold by different companies be used interchangeably between different machines. Also when it says the size of a button is is the radius or diameter. what button makers do your teams use and where did you get them?

Now I don’t have the links right now but there isn’t really a big difference (at least in my experience). One company makes the backs without their number on the back but for FIRST buttons, who cares? The size is done by diameter. I’m not sure of the model we use now but do not get this button maker. I’d say 1 in 10 buttons fell apart unless the person who was making them knew what they were doing (and that namely was pushing really hard and getting it lined up perfect). And even if you did it well a fair few still fell apart. And we had parents and students who slaved at least 10 hours making these buttons.

We have had this button maker for years now:


I recommend it, once you learn how to use it, you will have buttons made up in no time. This is great to because you can have several people working on the buttons at the same time. One person cutting the paper, one person loading the machine, and one person pressing the buttons together.

You can order the button blanks right from the same website, keep in mind you will also need a good circle cutter and the mylars.

I HIGHLY recommend these ones:

Do not get one that has adjustable sizes because they are JUNK!

The machine looks expensive, but its worth it.

I think we use Badge-A-Minit. If everything is lined up right, and you use the right amount of force (pushing way too hard is not good, for you or the button), then you should get decent buttons almost all the time.
Tip 1: Don’t try to do it in 30 seconds. You probably have a 20% chance of getting a good one.
Tip 2: If a button isn’t horribly mangled, but is unusable as a whole, you may be able to use the parts after separating them and checking them.
A typical button-making session: Students show up, button machine is there and ready. One student takes the machine (two if we are really pressed for time), everyone else grabs circle cutters (trust me, they’re a lot easier than using scissors and more accurate) and starts cutting out circles or sorting out backs, fronts, and covers. Hours later, we run out of something or do an arbitrary stop, with lots of buttons in bags.

Dr. Don Buttons supplys

this is the best place 4 button suplys.
the buttonj mache they sell is really good. if you already have the papers cut out, you can make a button in 10 seconds. and about 97% of them stay together!

thanks you have all been very helpful

This is a robotics competition… Why hasn’t anyone tried to automate the process yet?

Shh! Don’t give away any game hints for 2006! :rolleyes: