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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been looking for ways to print my certain designs on t-shirts and recently got into researching DTF Printing, but I had a few questions that I couldn't find online. I noticed that some printers can be converted to become a DTF Printer. My question is, is it worth converting a printer, or is purchasing one more beneficial? If purchasing one is more beneficial, what are some notable companies that sell them? If converting a printer is more beneficial, what exactly would you need to convert one? I'm pretty confident that all printers can not be converted, so what are the requirements for one to be converted? Where is a good place to find and order films from people or companies that print them for you?

I know this question is quite broad, but are DTF printers worth it for a small t-shirt business run at home?

Attached is some art work that I wanted to get printed on clothing. Will DTF be effective in printing these certain designs, or should I try another route? What would be the most effective way in producing shirts with the fade and glow that the images have.
Purple Pink Font Art Magenta
Sleeve Cartoon Art Red Font


Also, for anyone who does DTF printing how is maintenance and the overall quality? I've heard a few opinions here and there so I would like to have more input.

There may be certain details that I missed out on, so feel free to let me know any thoughts you have and recommendations. If you have any questions or need clarification, please feel free to reach out to me. Thank you so much!
 

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DTF can be a good method to use with your designs. If possible it is a good idea to take the shirt color out of your designs. For instance, on a black shirt you knockout the black in the image and the black shirt will show through in those areas. Transparent colors should be changed to solid halftone colors.

It sounds like you will not be printing every day, so maintenance to keep any machine running will be an issue. Do not believe anyone who tells you it will not be a problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I most likely will not be printing every day. I am only aware of the white ink needing to be shaken so that it doesn't clump up and clog the tubes. As far as white ink maintenance goes, is that all there is for maintenance? Also what is the purpose of solid halftone colors? I am new to the printing process, so sorry if I'm unaware of anything.
 

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DTF does not print transparent areas well. At some percent the transparent area will not show. Changing a transparent area to solid halftone colors will simulate the transparent area. In your first image, it looks like the pink is transparent to make it blend into the shirt.

You will need more maintenance than just shaking the white ink everyday. The less maintenance you do, the faster your equipment will become unusable. We print everyday with our industrial printers that are made for DTF and still spend 15 to 20 minutes everyday for maintenance on each printer. Even with good maintenance and consistent usage, problems will come up that will require parts to be replace. If you are not printing everyday, it may not be worth having your own printer.
 
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