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Start up printer

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Old March 31st, 2020 Mar 31, 2020 7:36:04 PM -   #1 (permalink)
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Default Start up printer

Looking into a printer for a start up. We are going to have a Hotronix FUSION-IQ Heat Press. We are looking for the best printer for apparel, wood, hats, leather balls, and mugs. Not trying to break bank to start, looking to be no more than 2-3k for the printer at the most but we still want to give the best possible product.

Open to any and all comments and suggestions.
 
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Old March 31st, 2020 Mar 31, 2020 8:15:23 PM -   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Start up printer

You're going to need more than a printer. You're also going to need at least 1 more heat press. You can't do mugs, balls or hats on the Fusion.


What printing technique did you have in mind? That will dictate your printers. You'll need more than 1 of those too.
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Old April 3rd, 2020 Apr 3, 2020 9:39:14 AM -   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Start up printer

Looking for best printer to do heat transfer onto apparel - Don't want to go DTG route
 
 
Old April 3rd, 2020 Apr 3, 2020 10:51:06 AM -   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Start up printer

Quote:
Originally Posted by krow1204
Looking for best printer to do heat transfer onto apparel - Don't want to go DTG route
You can start with SawGrass. They have a configuration for cotton and poly apparel. Yep, that means two printers, one each for printing on both fabrics. $6,000/per

Or place your order for the new Epson desktop printer from a vendor here on T-shirtforum. $2,700/per (may have to wait for delivery)

Or you can buy the lowest cost wide format, 4 color printer you see in the isle at BEST BUY or Staples. Add to the cost of the printer a cartridge or CIS system. $200/per

Be aware, the first thing you are going to do is pour foreign substances into the most critical part of the printer. Every week remind your self cheap printers are consumable. Don't spend 100 hours troubleshooting a $100 printer.
And yes, you will need a cheap Epson wide format for Poly (sublimation) heat transfer and for cotton (dye) heat transfer. People who think cheap will be tempted to think they can simply swap out the ink. If you try, be sure to sign up for the rewards plans at Staples and Best Buy. You will be back. Be advised, a printer idled for a week with sub or dye ink will become a care and feeding project. If you can not keep the printer busy, don't get it.

And as Splathead stated, if you are doing all the stuff, you are going to need to spend the money you saved on with cheap printers for accessories to heat transfer onto curved surfaces. You are going to need LOTS of other stuff too.

OR....I would suggest a deeper dive into Laser and HTV.
Be aware, every method has it's issues. Your job is to solve those issues in a manner you can live with and at least break even.
 
Old April 3rd, 2020 Apr 3, 2020 11:29:22 AM -   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Start up printer

If you have Corel or AI you can do plastisol transfers with no cost in equipment other than the heat press. If you want to spend $2K then get a Roland or Graphtec 24" cutter and you can do HTV and also do banners, signs and decals.

As an example, we started out with a $400 US Cutter, ran it for 5 years and grossed around $250K with it over its life. We sold it for $200 and purchased a Graphtec for $1600. We then purchased a VersaCamm for $16K along with a 4 head embroidery machine with all the profits.

You are entering the market at a great time as a lot of your competition may not survive the current crisis. That benefited us in 2008 when we rented a storefront with less than 1000/sqft and rents were down. We got a good deal and were able to grow very quickly.

I would forget about the promotional products unless you want to source those. Use Distributor Central. It is free for you to use other than purchasing products.

Good luck and come back with any other questions.
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Old April 12th, 2020 Apr 12, 2020 8:24:02 AM -   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Start up printer

You are starting out with a quality heat press so that is good. You need two printers and a Mug press to add onto your equipment needs such as a white laser and sublimation ink jet printer. They will keep you within your 1.5K cost.
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