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Cynthia Schulte
By Cynthia Schulte
Monday, July 2, 2012 - 15:00

Lenco Marine elastomer keypad by Elite Label

Lenco Marine needed a user interface that controls the positioning of the trim tabs on power boats. The customer only had a vague idea of how it should look but they knew it needed to be durable, sealable, marine-grade and selectively backlit.

We decided to develop the part based on a similar project for Corvette.  The part uses backlit graphics plus LED windows to indicate the port and starboard trim tab positioning.

This is a compression molded clear silicone elastomer part. After molding, it is sprayed with white paint, followed by black.

The graphics are laser etched down to the white; making them visible both in daylight and at night, when they are backlit. Finally, the keypad is top-coated for durability and mounted and sealed. The part includes a window for a light sensor that adjusts backlighting to ambient lighting. 

In the end, we had a great part that has the necessary aesthetics yet was still able to stand up to the tough marine environment.   

By Cynthia Schulte
Friday, September 9, 2011 - 10:55

Laser etched touch panel Laser etching is a great approach to marking a variety of materials that would otherwise be difficult, if not impossible, to mark mechanically. Laser etching is ideal for near finished products needing identification, barcode, serializing, text or image backlighting or intricate decorative work.

The picture provides a perfect example of the use of laser etching.  The symbols were laser etched onto the buttons after the rest of the component was completed.