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How Thick are ID Cards?


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Standard ID Card Thicknesses

If you know anything about ID cards, then you probably already know that a “CR8030” card is the industry standard size Example of a Standard ID Cardfor everything from credit cards to access control and ID cards, membership cards, gift cards…you get the idea.

To dissect this rather mundane naming convention, the “CR80” portion pertains to a card’s actual dimensions or its overall
size. CR80 cards have the following dimensions: 3.370 inches × 2.125 inches (or 85.60mm × 53.98mm), complete with rounded corners and a radius that ranges from 2.88 to 3.48 mm.

But what about the thickness of ID cards? Is there more than one thickness for ID cards? Absolutely! ID card thickness is calibrated by a unit of measurement called a “mil,” which is equal to 0.001 inch.

We carry the three most popular card sizes: CR79, CR80, and CR100. Each of these sizes come in various thicknesses, depending on your specific requirements. We can also special order other card thicknesses, based on your request, with 5,000-card minimum orders. The most commonly ordered cards are offered in several different materials including PVC and composite. Please keep in mind that cards can actually vary in thickness – only by a couple of mils, however – depending on the manufacturer.

The following are the most common card thicknesses, complete with referencing examples of how each can be used:

10-mil cards – most often used as a business card instead of an ID badge. It’s important to note that if you try to use 10-mil cards with a retransfer printer or any printer with laminating or dual-sized printing capabilities, you’ll end up melting your cards. This can do serious damage to your printer by gumming up the printhead and internal components, putting your ID card printing program on hold. In addition, not every ID card printer can print on a 10-mil card. It’s best to check the card thickness specifications of the printer that you own to make sure.Shop Our ID Cards

13-mil cards – also frequently used as business cards or gym membership cards. 13-mil thick cards are recommended over 10-mil cards for using with an ID card printer. Like 10 mil cards, 13-mil thickness is not good idea for use as ID cards or printing on retransfer or laminating printers. Although not all dual-sided printers have trouble printing double-sided badges at 13 mil, a good many do.

20 mil cards – used to create bus tickets or mass transit cards. Because of their thickness, 20-mil cards may not feed correctly feed into every printer. We recommend always checking with your card printer specifications prior to printing on 20-mil cards.

30-mil cards – the most popular choice for access control cards, credit and debit cards, corporate ID cards, gift cards, college and university ID cards, etc. 30-mil cards are the most common cards used throughout the industry.

55-mil cards – these are a bit of relic in terms of usability in the new millennium. There are very few printers that can actually print on a 55-mil card anymore (the EDIsecure XID 9300 is an example of an ID card printer that can still print on 55-mil cards). A common use for this card thickness is luggage tags. One of our customers from several years back used 55-mil cards for creating award cards.

60-mil & 65-mil cards – are also called “clamshell” proximity cards. Frequently used within organizations having a medium to high employee or contractor turnaround, these cards are used primarily for access control and door entry.

For all of your ID card size and thickness questions, you can always rely on the expertise of our ID Professionals. Call us  today at (800) 321-4405 x2 or chat now.

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