October '15

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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Lon Winters learned screen printing from the bottom up, starting his 20-plus-year career reclaiming screens. He has won nearly 50 international industry awards and honors, published numerous articles, and led several in - dustry seminars and workshops. Currently, he is president of Colorado-based Print This, Inc./, an international consulting firm specializing in technical advances, plant design, layout, troubleshooting, productivity, quality analysis, and complete garment-embellishing solutions. Visit for more information. Contact Winters at FROM SOFTWARE TO SUBSTRATE B Y L O N W I N T E R S R ecently, one of our good clients reached out to us for some testing. As you may or may not know, this is what we do, so we were more than happy to oblige. Here is how it went down. PREPARE TO TEST The discharge process is made up of an ink formulation that, after printed and through the curing process, the dyes are removed from natural fibers and replaced with the pigment added to the ink. In this case, we will use the discharge inks with no pigment add- ed—in essence, a clear base that removes only the dyes and leaves behind the grayish goods or natural color of the original fabric. As we all know, discharge does not work the same on every shirt color and fabric composition. It is hard to say what will happen without testing, so we teamed up with Fruit of the Loom (FOTL)/JERZEES and tested one of every color of shirt they have available. Easier Said Than Done… Discharge Testing Lon, I have a project for you if you are interested. We need to do discharge testing on all available garment colors in stock. We need to do two specific brands' discharge and a third party of your choice—either a popular ink company or an up-and-comer. We will provide 15" X 15" fabric swatches, three pieces per color way in three different discharge-bases only. No color. This is to measure how the garment/dyes discharge. All to be controlled by formula of chemicals/temps/belt speeds, etc. No smoke and mirrors, just down and dirty testing. Please call me to discuss. I am waiting on materials so we have plenty time but will narrow that down next week. I will need timing/cost for completing this project. Have a great day and hope to hear from you soon. Best Regards, Donnie Hey Donnie, Good talking to you the other day. I think we can just estimate the time this project would take based on the total colors and put a project number on it. Let me know how many colors we would be talking about. We would probably want three to six pieces of each if possible. Thanks, Lon 14 || P R I N T W E A R O C T O B E R 2 0 1 5 The author created a large block area with a gradient bar below to clearly see how the discharge affected the shirts. (All images courtesy the author) ● Beginner ■ Intermediate

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