A few people have been asking me about my badge machine, so I thought I'd share here.
This is the beast itself:
Although it looks like some kind of kinky torture device, this particular machine makes 1 inch badges. You can buy them in many different sizes, and even one with inter-changable heads to make a variety of badges on one machine, but I read somewhere that those ones aren't as robust as a single-sizer. We bought ours off ebay a couple of years ago, along with enough gubbins to make 3000 badges, although the guy we bought it from also as his own website you can order from here. (It's in German, but you can easily translate everything using babelfish or similar.) I think it cost us around £200 for the lot.
These are the bits and bobs you need to make a badge:
It's very easy to use, if a bit tiring on the arms. The machine has two sections, part 1 and part 2, which are on a pivot. You put the badge back (the piece on the left here) in part 1, lay your artwork, or whatever, over that, then place a piece of "mylar" (in the roll on the right) over the two. You then put the fixing ring (the piece in the middle here) in part 2. Then you place part 1 under the handle, pull it down hard - like pulling a intransigent pint - then pivot it around so part 2 is under the handle and give it another pull. All you do then is insert the pin or magnet in the back et voila. Un insigne magnifique.
We also bought a circular paper cutter - which is the black circular thing with the handle in the background there - to make things a lot easier. I wouldn't like to even consider cutting every badge out by hand with scissors! With the circular cutter you can tape two or three pieces together and cut out more than one at a time.
Well, there you have it. Me and my badge machine. I'm off to make some more!