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Old April 25th, 2005 -   #3 (permalink)
toonsign
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Default Re: Does dye sublimation *have* to be on the polyester style tees?

Hi Rodney,

Sublimation ink heat transfers work best on man made fiber such as polyester, nylon, satin, lycra, etc... It does not work on natural fibers such as cotton, wool, canvas, etc... When the sub transfer is heat pressed, it will show on any material (cotton, poly, canvas, lycra...), HOWEVER, if the heat transfer is on any man made fabric (cotton as an example), the image will wash out after the first and definately the second washing. It only works on man made fibers.

Currently there are some suppliers that do offer the poly/cotton garments where the poly fabric is on the outside of the garment and the cotton is on the inside. These shirts are a bit pricey...about $4.50+ for a white t-shirt. Many years ago, Xpres in NC sold a 65/35 blend t-shirts but felt very uncomfortable...$3.50 each.

For the commercial market (contractors, electricians, etc...) you can use 50/50 shirts with sub transfers but for years, I spray down a light mist of White Rain Unscented Hair Spray onto the shirt, place the sub transfer on it and then heat press as usual. The hair spray just gives the 50/50 material a little "extra" so the image will last longer. Eventually, the sub ink image will wash out of the cotton portion of the shirt, but not on the polyester fabric. Your image may look a little faded or washed out over time. I do NOT use 50/50 blend and sub transfers for my wholesaling. For 100% cotton, canvas, 50/50, etc... I use pigmented heat transfers. These transfers are made for 100% and other fabrics.

I tried the prep sprays and having miserable results with them years ago, now use the White Rain only. Mind you, this is ONLY for the commercial market. Do not use sub on 50/50 shirts for your onesie's or any retail type trade.

Hope this helped a bit.

Fred
http://www.uscolorprint.com
 
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