September '15

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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98 || P R I N T W E A R S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 5 re-press in 10-second intervals until the garment is fully dry. You don't need a lot of pressure for the initial press. Use light pressure to start and move to heavy pressure on the final press to matte the fibers down and cre- ate a smooth printing surface. Some smaller users report good results by "hang drying" their pre- treated shirts, and then pressing the shirt just prior to printing. Howev- er, most users utilize the heat press method. It is crucial to chart all of your results, and include details regarding the brand, style, and color of the shirt, and the amount of pretreat fluid deposit used to achieve the best printing results. PRINT PARAMETERS All direct-to-garment printers, no matter the brand, allow you to set printing parameters. It is important to understand what the resolution, passes, and color settings actually mean, and how they affect your di- rect-to-garment print. These settings have a dramatic change on both the look and cost of your print. The best way to understand these set- tings in a practical way is to take one design, print and change one variable at a time. Do- ing this, you can see the actual print differences, based on your select settings. Some printers even make a storyboard of this process to show customers, as these print settings may affect your pricing model, and your bottom line. It's import- ant to note that the shirt you print on interacts with your print settings in a dramatic fashion. That is to say, some shirts produce a fantastic print in low or medium resolution, while other DIRECT-TO-GARMENT TECHNOLOGY continued on page 111 Left: Example of a professional pretreat sprayer. There are several brands available. (Image courtesy Lawson Screen & Digital Products) Conveyor dryers are available in either gas or electric and must be convection-air to efficiently heat and drive out the moisture from the printed garment. (Image courte- sy Lawson Screen & Digital Products) Adjust settings for each print as resolution, passes, and color resolu- tion have a great effect on end results. (Image courtesy Lawson Screen & Digital Products) Right: A good heat press is perhaps the most critical piece of equipment necessary for di- rect-to-garment printing. (Im- age courtesy Lawson Screen & Digital Products)

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