The most popular printing method is screen printing because the price is cheap with a method that is easy to apply. One of the fabrics commonly used for screen printing is polyester. Then, are there any difficulties when screen printing on polyester?
Although the screen printing method is very common using polyester, there are some tips that you need to know. The following is a review that is important for you to know:
Can You Screen Print on Polyester?
You can do screen printing on polyester very successfully as long as you use a different ink with careful temperature measurement. So, you managed to make a quality design even though you use synthetic materials, such as polyester.
Although using polyester is more challenging than cotton, based on the cost, the use of polyester is much less. So, this is perfect for those of you who have a small business on a low budget.
Then, if you master how to do it, you will no longer see the stark difference between this screen printing style and screen printing on cotton. You will get used to taking precautions so that you produce the best quality screen printing.
So, although polyester is a good material for screen printing, you will encounter some difficulties when printing it. For example, you will often find color migration so that the colors on the fabric leach into the ink of your print design.
5 Tips for Screen Printing on Polyester
As you know before, there are some difficulties that you will encounter when screen printing uses polyester. However, you don’t need to worry because there are some tips to prevent it. The following are some tips that you can do in screen printing on polyester:
1. Pick The Right Polyester
You need to know if there are many types of polyester blends. Each type of polyester blend has its characteristics. This depends on the fiber ratio because polyester mixed with other fibers can prevent the ink from absorbing properly.
Therefore, you must have the right polyester blend for your needs. For example, you can use 100% polyester blends that cure ink very well. While polyester blends of less than 65% often cause curing problems.
2. Choose The Right Dye
Screen printing on polyester is possible, but you also need to choose the right type of ink for your purposes. There are various types of ink for screen printing, for example, plastisol ink, which is synthetic and bright.
Meanwhile, water-based inks are softer to the touch and more environmentally friendly. This is because the water-based ink is easier to absorb into the fabric, while the plastisol ink only sits on top of it so that it has a stiff feel.
If you are using polyester, to prevent dye migration, start with a thin layer of low-bleed or no-bleed ink. Then, polyester is resistant to absorbing moisture so you should use an under base if you use water-based inks.
3. Use an Underbase for Light or Dark Fabric
Different inks work differently on dark or light fabrics. Therefore, you should use an under base depending on the polyester color you choose. For example, you can prevent dye migration by using a single layer of gray or white under the base.
When you put them under the base, the plastisol color can be more easily applied to it. On the other hand, the gray underbase will be thicker and dry faster at lower temperatures so that it can slow down the migration of the dye.
4. Address Ink Drying Concerns During The Flash Cure
As you know, the dye may migrate before the final curing process. This happens because you overheat the fabric under the flash curing process.
Flash your image to the substrate only as long as the image needs to be cured. Then, the temperature tape will assist you in measuring the temperature of your fabric on the conveyor dryer as well as under the flash cure.
Alternatively, you can use a permanent synthetic fixer, which is useful for ink sets that are difficult to adhere to polyester. Therefore, to avoid color bleeding, you must test the ink on the fabric of your choice.
5. Use a Slip Sheet During the Heat Process
During the applications and curing processes, polyester requires the use of slip sheets to keep your artwork flat. This is because polyester is a synthetic fiber. In addition, you can place the slip-sheet under your design inside the garment before you print it.
That’s an interesting review about screen printing on polyester that you should know. You can apply all of this information when you want to screen printing using polyester. Then, do it carefully to produce high-quality screen printing.