Leaving my mark


I rushed to get to the implement check on time for the Masters track and field championships. Handing my discus over to be measured and weighed it suddenly dawned on me – how will I know which one is mine. Sure it is a bright red but I am sure there will be the bright red disci ready for throwing.

If only I had listened to my wife! Don’t write your name on the discus with permanent marker because it won’t be permanent. Hitting wet grass will take the ink off. “Why not get get it laser marked on the rim” she said.

If only I had listened. No stress in the lead up to the competition and identification for the life of the discus.

I had the evidence before me. We had had the jewelry laser marked for insurance purposes.

We had our daughter’s medical implements laser marked so they would not go missing at University. Hard to say ‘its mine’ if it has another name on it. The system allows the marking with any type of code (barcodes, data matrix codes, serial numbers etc) and to use markings as an anti-counterfeit measure by providing all information required to comply with UDI (Unique Device Identification) or MDR (Medical Device Regulation) standards. So from out point of view it ticked all the boxes for her implement marking.

Having sent some time looking for a red discus with an X for identification I decided to think about other practical applications for permanent identification at home and at work. The plane trip home gave me the time to consider.

After telling my wife she was right in her suggestion and watching the smile grow larger I then outlined some ideas on how we could safeguard property in the event of theft.

The outdoor tools and equipment were the first items selected- we decided on our own serial number code and arranged to have it applied. It was not just metal that the marking could be applied to – plastic, foils (in many cases laser marking has replaced screen printing) and believe it or not with a CO2 laser application glass, leather, wood and paper can also be marked.

Having prepared and worked through our list of tools, equipment, ornaments etc etc and knowing that laser marking is permanent and resists both wear and contact with acids and heat I was confident that I had covered all the bases.

The lesson learned – next time listen to my wife’s suggestion in advance.