Preferred File Types and General Submission Guidelines

The information contained herein is not intended to be exhaustive or exclusive. Other file types than those listed below may be acceptable for use. SP/Dow is happy to work with you to determine your needs and meet your specifications. Be it a napkin sketch, existing sample or detailed document, any reference you wish to provide us in any form is always greatly appreciated.

Electronic Files for Graphic Artwork, Logos, Icons and Images

Preferred:  .AI, .PDF       Acceptable: .EPS, .CDR

  • Whenever possible, use vector-based files rather than raster (bitmaps or scanned images.) If only raster files, photos or images like .JPG, .TIF, .GIF, .BMP are available, please provide the largest image available for clarity.
  • Files in original format are preferred over translations.
  • Identify all fonts in use. If unique, please provide Truetype (.TTF) file where possible. If proprietary or altered, please explode fonts to line work before saving your file. 
  • For lower quality images, provide dimensional information if available.
  • Identify all colors in use. Pantone Matching System (PMS), RAL, or Federal Standard Colors are preferred. CMYK values are only good for digitally printed products. For matching to existing product or chips from other systems, please see Physical Sample submission notes below.  For non-standard color matches, physical color chips will be provided by SP/Dow for review and approval.
  • For larger files, please provide them either in a ‘zipped’ format, on a thumb drive, or contact us for instructions to post on our FTP site.
  • In some cases, SP/Dow may recommend minor changes to your artwork to ensure printability. All graphics will be electronically proofed for review and acceptance. 
  • Please review for any necessary legal trademarks or copywrite symbols. For graphics containing non-English language text, remember to review for all proper glyphs, accent marks, grammar and punctuation.
  • For areas shown white, please specify if white printing, clear, or cut-out.
  • For complex background images, please remember to provide the image extending beyond the intended size or die line. Masked images are acceptable.

Electronic Files for 2D Prints, Drawings, and Specifications

Preferred:  .DWG, .DXF       Acceptable:  .PDF, .DOC, .TXT, .GBR, .SLDDRW

There seem to be as many ways of presenting information as there are stars in the sky.  Just remember that this is where you need to provide as much information as possible.  You may be intimately familiar with your project, but in most cases, we’re starting from scratch.  These are just some of the things to keep in mind for inclusion:

  • Dimensions for overall size, feature locations, tolerances and thicknesses where applicable.
  • Application and environmental information, if important.
  • Electrical Shielding or Grounding requirements, if any.
  • PCB Component values, LED colors, Metal Dome actuation force or other requirements.
  • Circuit schematic, pin-out and connector information.
  • Adhesive or material requirements.
  • Military, regulatory, environmental or other requirements. (ITAR, RoHS, etc.)
  • Window and Cut-Out sizes and locations.
  • Labeling or Testing requirements.
  • Transparencies, Textures and Embossing.
  • Branding, Colors, Fonts, Icons, Logos, Text, or any Graphic information not specifically intrinsic to any provided artwork files.
  • Corner radii, chamfers and circuit tail or shield tab size and exit locations.
  • Metal Backer materials, finishes and hardware requirements.
  • Lighting or Backlighting methods and requirements, if applicable.

Electronic Files for 3D Parts or Assemblies

Preferred:  .SLDPRT, .SLDASM       Acceptable:  .IGS, .STEP

  • If sending an Assembly file, please remember to send all the associated part files as well.
  • Unless contraindicated by security or regulatory requirements, please don’t send files with suppressed components, or without notification of having done so.
  • Graphic features or indications may be present for registration purposes, but please send any associated Graphic files in ‘flattened’ 2D format (see Graphic File section above) where possible.
  • Graphic features that are not meant to be an actual part of the 3D construction or mold should be clearly labeled as such, and be capable of being hidden, suppressed or ‘turned off’ without negative effect to the 3D geometry.
  • Please include in the file any pertinent color or material information not otherwise available.
  • If authorizing 3D printing, please include a .STL file, if available.

Physical Samples (Legacy or Competitor), Housings, Color Chips, Prototypes, etc.

  • Consult with your Sales or Customer Service representative as to whether parts can be picked up in person, or for appropriate mailing information.
  • Always indicate if the sample(s) in question need to be returned, require security controls or can be shared with third parties.
  • Providing an actual housing sample for reference (where applicable) can help increase the accuracy of your part’s overall fit, adhesion properties or color match.
  • SP/Dow can reverse-Engineer existing parts in the absence of available documentation. (Please be aware that samples provided in this capacity, depending on the complexity of design may not survive the process intact.)
  • If sending chips or samples for color matching, remember that the larger the sample, the more accurate our spectrophotometer readings will be.