2014 Resource Directory

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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22 | Printwear M i d - M a rc h 20 1 4 20 1 4 M i d - M a rc h Printwear | 23 There are many chemical suppliers in our industry that provide a wide range of chemicals for screen prep and reclaim including ink removal (screen wash), emulsion remover (stripper), screen degreaser (soap), haze remover (ghost image remover), micro-grit (mesh abrader), and a wide range of screen emulsions for screen making. Below is a snapshot of the steps involved in using these products in the screen prep process from start to finish. 1. Degrease the screen prior to applying the screen emulsion. Select a firm bristle scrub brush and apply degreaser to the screen. Scrub in all directions, working up a lather, then rinse with water. 2. Dry the degreased screen in a commercial screen dryer. A screen dryer will dry a degreased screen in one-third of the time that it takes to air-dry in the open. 3. Apply screen emulsion to the screen with a scoop coater and return the coated screen to the screen dryer. A commercial screen dryer provides a light-safe and dust-free environment during the dry cycle. 4. Expose the screen, wash out the image with a power washer, and return the screen to the screen dryer. 5. After the screen is dry, position the screen against a backlit viewing area to inspect for pinholes. Use liquid block out to fill the pinholes and tape out the screen prior to setting up the screens on the press. 6. After printing, the ink must be scraped from the screen and returned to the ink pail. A commercial screen wash should be used to remove the leftover ink residue from the screen. 7. Return the screen to the washout booth and apply degreaser to remove any excess ink residue left behind. Scrub the degreaser in all directions, working up a lather, and rinse with water. 8. After degreasing, apply stencil- remover to the screen, allowing it to set for a few minutes. Then, scrub with a brush to loosen up the hardened emulsion. When the emulsion starts to break down, use a power washer to remove the old stencil. 9. Many times, after removing the old stencil, there is a faint ghost image of ink left behind on the screen. To remove it, apply haze remover with a brush and allow to sit for five minutes. Then, clean the screen with a power washer. (Always wear gloves and protective eyewear when using ghost and haze removers!) 9 StePS to Screen PreP How To... PrePare a screen No matter what method is used to develop screens, all print shops should have a quality control in- spection station to review films and screens before the job goes to press. PW_MidMarch14.indd 22 2/28/14 1:04 PM

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