June '15

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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2 0 1 5 J U N E P R I N T W E A R || 77 I n the ensuing battle for press-time profits, plastisol ink has given sway to its aqueous adversary: water-based ink. Notwithstanding, what has seeped out of this colorful conflict is a bit of local tes- tosterone—decorators who have mastered water-based printing in the U.S. show off their biceps first and then their aqueous image. Truth be told, the rest of the world is chuckling at our bravado. The U.S. is the most plastisol-dependent country in the imprinted sportswear business while water-based inks are the prosaic standard in other areas of the world. Weighing Water- Based Ink Determining the cost and value of water-based versus plastisol b y J o e C l a r k e Joe Clarke has spent the past 45 years in the lab and engineering de- partment in prepress and on press as a research and development and technical researcher as well as a man- ager of screen print production. He has received a number of print-related patents and is a member of The Academy of Screen and Digital Printing Technologies and a Specialty Graphic Imaging Associa- tion fellow. Clarke has presented hundreds of papers, written a couple books, and published more than 600 technical and man- agement articles for which he has earned numerous industry awards. Currently, he is president of Clarke Product Renovation, a Chicago-based corporation that brings product and process technology to the screen printing industry. He contributes fea- ture articles on textile screen printing exclusively to Printwear. Reach him at n Intermediate

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