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Old November 13th, 2013 -   #1 (permalink)
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Default Screen printing 2 colors not sharp

I'm trying to do my first screen printing job and I'm having trouble getting a sharp, clean result. Since I'm new, I don't know if my trouble is in my technique of applying the ink, the type of screens I'm using, the way I did my artwork, or something about my press. I'm including pics of how I did my artwork, the burned screens, and the hazy result (which was actually the best result that I could get with multiple attempts). I ended up throwing away the shirts and cleaning up until I figure out how to do it better.
I am trying to print on red cotton t-shirts and my design is navy with a white outline. I'm using waterproof film with black dye ink using an Epson 1400. For both the white and navy I'm using 110 mesh screens. My press is a one station, 4 color Springer press.
Sometimes I noticed there is ink on the underside (shirt side) just outside of where the mesh is open. Is that normal? I kept cleaning it off after ever attempt but I'm not sure that it should be like that. Also in addition to the hazy look, it also seems very rough unlike what I expected. Maybe I'm just used to feeling vinyl though and that's normal?
We tried different application pressures and different techniques based on the countless threads and videos that I've seen. Maybe it's an off contact issue? Do I flood, lower the press, push the ink, lift, flash, repeat? I tried one push with and without a flash and I tried multiple pushes without lifting it up. They were all bad. I don't know but it's extremely frustrating to not get a good result or even a consistent bad result.
Any tips or help would be greatly appreciated! Thanks
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