October '14

For the Business of Apparel Decorating

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8 8 | Printwear O ctO b e r 20 1 4 in a thick flood. The goal is to just cover the image, not push the ink through the mesh. Setting the flood bar too low results in more friction, which causes inks to dry in mesh. Also, clean the screens. Keep a bucket of water near the press so that when you pause production, you can wipe the image area to prevent ink from drying. You can also keep a spray bottle close and mist the top of the ink screen if your ink becomes tacky. Mesh selection is important as well. S mesh and calendered mesh resist squeegee abrasion better than T mesh. Typically, with all S mesh, you can use slightly more of an angle and less pressure than necessary for T mesh. The mesh knuckles on calendered mesh create less friction between the squeegee and screen mesh to improve screen open time. These meshes use a thinner thread construction and allow more open area for ink to pass. Brian Brownlee, wilflex What is the best way to get consistent and accurate color matches? In order to achieve accurate and consistent color matches, the color specialists need both the color formula and application parameters. First, formulate the colors within the pigment loadings suggest- ed by the ink manufacturer. Too high loading is not cost effective and diminishes the durability of the printed ink. Too low loadings make the ink more sensitive to the printing and curing processes. The formulation should also follow basic color concepts, e.g., red is the opposite of green, and you rarely mix the two together. For the ink room, the pigments may have some color change be- cause of settling in the bucket as the inks age over time. First-in, first-out is always the best solution for storing and managing inks to avoid any aged inks. Additionally, ink mixing speed and time duration are both crit- ical to achieve homogeneous pigment dispersion. To check color, The 2014 Q&A TroubleshooTing guide sCreen PrinTing Using a three-stack cooling station on over-dyed shirts helps prevent ghosting. (Image courtesy of Wilflex)

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