Not all buckles are created equal!!

I get calls all the time about pricing on buckles. Of course all companies have their structure and pricing. And there are companies that focus on a lower price range than some others. The old saying your parents tell you….”You get what you pay for” is true with many things in life. The buckle business is no different.

There are many ways to cheapen up buckles.

  • You can make them out of thinner materials. If you get a buckle that you can bend with your hands, then you can understand that is what had to happen to get that buckle in a lower price.
  • You can mass produce buckle plates. If you get a mold made with the buckle plate in a mold, you can add all the beautiful engraving into an original plate, use a press and press out all the plates with the engraving pre-made. Then the lettering gets soldered on top of the engraving. This speeds up the process and cheapens up the cost of making the buckles…since you don’t have to pay to engrave them. The trade off to get the buckles made cheaper means that you have lettering that is put over the engraving and not detailed to just your lettering
  • You can put ribbons on buckles. To have each letter cutout and put on buckles takes time and money. In order to make buckles cheaper and faster…ribbons are used since the machine that engraves ribbons is faster than hand cutting letters. The trade off is you don’t have the classy raised lettering that makes them standoff the buckle.
  • You can also make the buckles as one piece. You make the buckle one time and have the molds made and ready to go. This is what you find when you have plated lettering. The lettering is made as one piece with the buckle or the lettering is made with a cheaper material. Then the manufacturer goes back and adds plating or coloring to the lettering. This is done with a pen system or a tank system. The tradeoff is that plating can wear off after a few years.

Now you ask yourself what is right or wrong? The answer is none of them are right or wrong, they are just different ways to make buckles. But, when you are comparing pricing, make sure you are comparing the same quality with quality. If you are not concerned with quality and only go for cost “Be careful what you wish for”, and be educated that there are tradeoffs for that cheaper price.

Susan Pool

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