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Schmidt No. 4
Pitney Bowes Imprinter


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Schmidt No. 4


Schmidt Model 4


Schmidt Model 6

Schmidt No. 4

The Schmidt machine is a industry standard when it comes to imprinting machines.  The Schmidt model 4 is one of the single most recognized manually operated imprinters available today.

Perma Products . . .
a Schmidt in wolf's clothing

The Schmidt model 4 and the Perma Products imprinter are one in the same.  The Perma Products imprinter is a Schmidt model 4 private labeled for Perma Products by Schmidt.

Data Plate from a Schmidt Model 4

The only difference between the two machines is the data plate affixed to the casting. 

Data Plate from a Perma Products Model 4

Schmidt Model 4 . . .
and Dog Tags

Schmidt model 4 - What is wrong with this photo?

Again, I ask what is wrong with the photo above?  The main problem with the photo above is the box of military stainless steel dog tags and the Schmidt No. 4 together in the same photo.

I cannot stress enough - the Schmidt No.4 is one of the greatest machines available on the market for imprinting plates on a low volume basis, but this machine is NOT suitable for military stainless steel dog tags.

People say well the model 4 will "stamp" military stainless steel dog tags and I can prove it by the photo below.

YES - indeed the above photo is of a military stainless steel dog tag that has been imprinted using a Schmidt model 4 machine.

BUT . . . imprinting stainless steel on a Schmidt model 4 is much like using a electric carving knife to cut bathroom tile and expecting the knife to still be good for carving a turkey at Thanksgiving.

BOTTOM LINE is this, the Schmidt No. 4 is a fantastic machine for what it is intended for and that is imprinting aluminum, brass and very thin annealed steel and some plastics.  But the Schmidt model 4 is not a real good choice for imprinting stainless steel military dog tags. 

The stamping pressure necessary to imprint an impression that is deep enough to yield legible text can over time damage the machine and internal components.

Geo. T Schmidt states clearly on their web site - "*GTS does not recommend the use of character sizes larger than 1/8" on stainless steel - while the dial is quite capable of creating an impression in this material, the pressure required to mark larger characters may cause the ram to deflect resulting in incomplete characters."

Aluminum and brass are soft and malleable enough that they make great imprinting materials when used with the Schmidt Model 4 or Model 6 machine.

What is the Schmidt No. 4 good at?  There is NO better or more economical manual machine on the market than the Schmidt No.4 to make pet tags, data plates and simple plaques.


Above is shown the factory carrying case that is available as an option for the Schmidt No. 4.  This case makes transportation of the machine very easy as one can just grab the handle and go.  Notice that the operating arm unscrews and is stored in the case by two retaining clips.


The character wheel is the heart of the Schmidt or Perma Products machine.  This wheel or dial as G.T. Schmidt calls it, is where you select the characters to be imprinted.  Choosing a character to imprint is simple you rotate the dial clockwise or counter clockwise until the desired character lines up with the selection arrow located on the top plate.

If you look at the center photograph you can see the selection arrow located between the two screws and it is pointing to the "C" on the dial.  This means that if you pull the handle the machine will imprint C on the plates you are imprinting.

On new machines or machines that have seen little use the dial (character wheel) may feel a bit tight when rotating my hand.  This is NORMAL - The character wheel should NOT "free wheel" or rotate without the operator deliberately grabbing the knob and turning the wheel. The dial locks in place on each character by a detent in the character wheel.  You should feel each character "snap" into place when selected.

Why is the character wheel the "heart" of the machine?  Simply - it is the main part of the machine, it is the most expensive part of the machine, without the character wheel the machine is just a press.

The character wheel is INTERCHANGEABLE and additional wheels can be purchased from either Schmidt or Perma Products.  The character wheel is what determines the size of the imprinted text.

This information was taken verbatim from Geo. T Schmidt web site.


Character Size
Sharp Face ?
Flat Face ?

Each letter or figure occupies a space as wide as it is high.

Fractions (1/2, 1/4, etc.) are made with the characters in line - not above one another and occupy space equal to equal to letters or figures of the same character size.

For example, 1/8" characters are spaced 8 to the inch. Marking the word "TEMPERED" using an 1/8" character dial would occupy one inch.

The same reading in 3/32" characters would yield a mark 3/4" of an inch long.

Sharp face dials can be used on all materials - steel, brass, stainless steel*, aluminum, plastic, etc. The sharp face characters penetrate the nameplate material more easily than the flat face.

Flat face dials are used on brass, aluminum and plastic. Creates a wider impression. Use this character face when the impressions are to be color-filled (lacquer-stick or wax crayon).

* GTS does not recommend the use of character sizes larger than 1/8" on stainless steel - while the dial is quite capable of creating an impression in this material, the pressure required to mark larger characters may cause the ram to deflect resulting in incomplete characters.

Additional Interchangeable Dials and Spacing Ratchets to fit both Model 4 & 6 Machines (With Hi-Loy Flat Face Dial)
Price: $480.00

Additional Interchangeable Dials and Spacing Ratchets to fit both Model 4 & 6 Machines (With Hi-Loy Sharp Face Dial)
Price: $385.00




One of the things that anyone using a Schmidt or Perma Products machine should seriously consider purchasing are "Nesting Plates".  The nesting plates are fabricated to hold specific blank plates in the x-axis of the machine so that they may be imprinted in a straight horizontal line.  There are nesting plates for almost every shape and size tag that Perma Products offers their resellers.

Sample Nesting Plate

The spring loaded clip mounted to the imprinting platen of the machine will hold a variety of items for imprinting.  The factory clip works best on plates that have a flat edge that may be held flush against the clip.  On odd shaped plates such as pet tags the clip does not contact enough surface area to properly hold the tag and they tend to slip or move during imprinting.  The use of nesting plates can help eliminate movement during imprinting and results in a more professional, uniform look of the finished text.

The Setup . . .
Making Money

These photos illustrate a typical Perma Products "set up", You have a machine and your supply of plates (Tags) at the ready.  The operator of this "set up" used to display the tags to the public and let them choose from the wide array of blank plates.  All of the blank plates on these displays are anodized aluminum.  90% of these tags are "pet" tags.




As a courtesy we have available for download the following documents from G.T. Schmidt.

1. Operators manual for the Schmidt Model 4 and Model 6

2. Repair of the Schmidt Model 4 and Model 6

These documents are in Adobe .pdf format.  If you do not have Adobe reader you may get it by clicking on the link below.

These documents are copyright of G.T. Schmidt.


Another machine that people constantly ask about when they are seeking a dog tag machine is the Pitney Bowes manual imprinter.

Pitney Bowes Imprinter

For more information on the Pitney Bowes imprinter click on the photo above.  This machine is NOT a good choice when selecting a machine to make military dog tags.

Model 4
Model 6
Table Dimensions
9-3/4" x 7-3/4"
9-3/4" x 11"
Nameplate Sizes
up to 4" high, 8" wide
up to 8" high, 8" wide
Nameplate Thickness
.012" to .093"
.012" to .093"
Marking Limits
As low as 3-3/4" from top of nameplate
As low as 6" from top of nameplate
Net Weight
28-1/2 pounds
42-1/2 pounds
Shipping Weight
32-1/2 pounds
54 pounds

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