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Discuss the different plastisol screen printing inks and curing methods on the market. Share tips on getting the best results with the different ink manufacturers.



Plastiol Ink

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Old March 8th, 2012 Mar 8, 2012 4:19:45 PM -   #1 (permalink)
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Default Plastiol Ink

Have a question. Just printed my very first tshirt last night. Using a manual printer. I used plastiol ink with 2 colors and shirt came out great. Printed on a Gildan softstyle sand color shirt. Used green and blue ink. Everything seemed great until I did a test wash. The colors just didnt seem very crisp. Looked as though I may have washed it 30 times or so. Not sure if its a problem or not but the ink I used is about 3-4 years old. I stirred it very good and it seemed pretty creamy. Looked great when I printed but not so much after the wash. Does anyone think the age of the ink is the problem? Thanks

Last edited by scott8801; March 8th, 2012 at 04:20 PM.. Reason: I bought existing shop thats why ink is so old.
 
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Old March 8th, 2012 Mar 8, 2012 4:22:15 PM -   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

I don't know about the age of the ink but your problem might have been under-curing your ink. How did you cure them?
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Old March 8th, 2012 Mar 8, 2012 4:28:09 PM -   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

Not sure what you mean about curing the ink. I guess thats why I'm a newbie to this. Should of read more information on that topic.
 
 
Old March 8th, 2012 Mar 8, 2012 4:41:48 PM -   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

Curing is what you do after you print a shirt. You take the shirt off the platen and put it under a flash dryer, heat gun, heat press, or conveyor dryer. It's how you dry the ink. Otherwise it won't dry. So, how did you dry (cure) your ink before you tossed it into the washer?
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Old March 8th, 2012 Mar 8, 2012 4:45:22 PM -   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

Sorry, I have a conveyor dryer. I was just reading some old posts on here and I dont think I had enough heat in the dryer. I have a temp gun but I think it was only around 240 at the exit of the dryer. the ink seemed really dry when I took it off the dryer but I guess maybe it didnt cure enough. Would that wash the ink out a little bit when I washed it? thanks for all your help.
 
Old March 8th, 2012 Mar 8, 2012 4:48:47 PM -   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

I'm guessing he didn't.. could that leave ink in the washing machine?
while we are here, can i get some feedback on types of curing pros and cons?

flash dryer-- use after one color before another color is printed on top of it?
heat gun-- for drying specific spots?
heat press-- like for sublimation? this confuses me for screen print
conveyor-- do they make infrared conveyors? and whats good about these



do you only use a uv light to cure emulsion?

wow lots of questions, I'm hoping this will help more people than just me
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Old March 8th, 2012 Mar 8, 2012 4:50:20 PM -   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

I didn't see your reply scott, but one more question.. what happens if you over cure a shirt?
 
Old March 8th, 2012 Mar 8, 2012 4:52:43 PM -   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

Not real sure. I'm just starting out and been testing with my dryer. I did have it to hot and on a white shirt it actually looked like a marshmellow. As they say TEST, TEST, TEST.
 
Old March 8th, 2012 Mar 8, 2012 6:25:18 PM -   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

You want the final ink temp to be around 325 F. It shouldn't scorch the fabric. I use a an infrared flash dryer about 3 inches above the fabric for 35 seconds. Comes out perfect every time.
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Old March 8th, 2012 Mar 8, 2012 7:32:42 PM -   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

Union inks cure at 300*. Most inks ~320*. Stretch test is pretty widely used. Infared temp guns are kinda expensive, so if you using a flash you could just wait till it starts to smoke. It's kind of a bad practice, but works decently. Also, it's important to make sure the entire image is cured, on a large design, the center cures first. On a conveyor, you can buy cure-test strips which will show you what temp you are curing at.
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Old March 8th, 2012 Mar 8, 2012 9:07:04 PM -   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

If you over cure the ink you will get "rebleed". The
Print will look great. And feel 100% cured. But the pigment will evaporate after a few hrs and print color will darken.
 
Old March 9th, 2012 Mar 9, 2012 5:25:40 AM -   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

Quote:
Originally Posted by scott8801
Have a question. Does anyone think the age of the ink is the problem? Thanks
When you bought the existing shop, did the owner offer any training? If not I suggest you stop and do a whole lot of reading and study. Sure you have to learn as you go to a certain degree, but the process can be much more effective and less frustrating by having a more comprehensive understanding of all the basic elements of screenprinting.

"How to print t-shirts for fun and profit" is a good place to start. Get the book (or digital version), read it through a couple times. It will help eliminate some problems before you have them and answer a lot of questions before you ask them.

The most valuable tool you can have at your disposal is knowledge.

Last edited by TYGERON; March 9th, 2012 at 05:51 AM..
 
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Old March 9th, 2012 Mar 9, 2012 5:39:19 AM -   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cschuck14
I didn't see your reply scott, but one more question.. what happens if you over cure a shirt?
Depends on what kind of ink you're printing. Generally "overcuring" means the ink has gone waaay beyond the temperature required for full cure. There is wiggle room. Regular plastisols can remelt, become brittle and lose their pigment becoming to a degree transparent. Puffs will expand then fall almost like a souffle and further will become brittle. Measuring temperature is absolutely critical. Temp guns don't do the job that they are thought to do when it comes to accurately measuring ink deposit temperatures.
 
Old March 9th, 2012 Mar 9, 2012 5:50:39 AM -   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arizona
Union inks cure at 300*. Most inks ~320*. Stretch test is pretty widely used. Infared temp guns are kinda expensive, so if you using a flash you could just wait till it starts to smoke. It's kind of a bad practice, but works decently. Also, it's important to make sure the entire image is cured, on a large design, the center cures first. On a conveyor, you can buy cure-test strips which will show you what temp you are curing at.
Some Union inks cure at 300. There are tons of different formulations each with their own characteristics and properties. Aside from accurate temp measuing, stretch test, abrasion test and washing is more definitive. Temps guns are not accurate with ink. Yes, waiting 'til it "smokes" is a bad BAD practice (LOL) for multiple reasons. The substate can scorch before the ink fully cures. With higher moisture content materials (like cottons), the "smoke" is moisture evaporating which precludes the actual ink curing process.
 
Old March 9th, 2012 Mar 9, 2012 7:17:57 AM -   #15 (permalink)
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Default Re: Plastiol Ink

I would suggest going to Ryonet and getting the training series "Screen Printing 101". It is an excellent learning guide and takes you through the steps one at a time. It also goes over the mistakes and how to avoid them.
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This is a discussion about Plastiol Ink that was posted in the Plastisol Ink Screen Printing section of the forums.

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