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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Whats the best Mesh count for cmyk & the halftones, lpi, dpi setting? Im gonna be doing alot of photograph t-shirts. Im also gonna use plastisol. I dont have a dryer but i do have a heat press. is that okay?
 

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Someone is going to definitively say 305 mesh :D

Because you're asking, I'd first say you should do a WHOLE lot of reading on process printing, the theory behind it, it's limitations, print technique, set up, inks, separation and everything associated with it.
I say that because there are a lot of elements involved each of which alone can create issues. From inadequate art and separations to light sources, emulsion choice, screen coating and image/halftone burning, to mesh selection, set-up and print technique.

To more directly answer you inquiry, there is no "best" anything. What kind of "photograph" shirts are you planning? How accurately do you want them reproduced? What kind of press/colors do you have?
The assumption is that the higher the mesh and detail, the better. But it depends on the look you want, the art and other factors. And actually the overall goal should be using as coarse a mesh and large dot as possible to get acceptable results (which is subjective). I suggest starting with lower mesh counts (126, 156) to get comfortable with burning and maintaining halftones, then working up to finer counts. Process has limitations which can be compensated for in different ways, but high end process usually requires additional colors to round out the color gamut necessary. There are different angles that can be effectively used to minimize undesireable moire and maximize image clarity. And some use same angles for all colors. Then there's the choice of round dots, elliptical or diamond (square) all of which can produce different but great results. The inks are pretty transparent and require proper cure like conventional plastisols so a heat press will do.
 

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Although touched on by your mention of print technique, what experience I have with process color reveals the difficulty of consistency from print to print by way of squeegie handling, and the effects seen by the translucent nature of the inks, when printing manually. If you miss something because of uneven pressure or a poor flood stroke, then double-stroke it, the difference is noticeable to say the least. That isn't to say you don't notice it in printing halftones with more opaque inks, what with dot gain, but it's particularly objectionable with process inks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
yea I done cmyk before in school but never on a t-shirt, I just need the best mesh for the best result or maybe something i dont know about hahaha I find cmyk printing easy but maybe cause i did on paper not on a garment.
 

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The replies so far are spot on, you really need to read up on it.
Printing on a t shirt compared with paper you will see the ink prints much heavier, so it needs work in photoshop to lighten it before you expose the films. It can be printed wet on wet but the print will heavy up as you go, so to do a good job it would be best to flash between each colour.
I would say a 120t mesh is the best to start with and I have found that elliptical dots work best for me. 55lpi is a good starting point. Angles Cyan 15 degrees, Magenta 45 degrees, Yellow 75 and Black 75 seem to perform well for me.
Good luck!
 

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I'm going to definitively say 305 mesh. :p
(but only cause I got a bolt of the stuff)

Not really--I've run more than a couple 200 and 230 mesh process prints, and those mesh counts are excellent for very saturated hard edged prints. Depending on your black screen, you may be able to do higher mesh for CMY and then a lower for the black, so you can get good coverage on vector elements. If you're getting really crazy, 355 mesh may be the way to go. All depends on your artwork, equipment, and limitations.

No matter what count you decide on, dyed mesh and a smaller thread will help you hold small dots--which is critical if you've got fades to nothing or very light shades. And if you had no problems doing CMYK on paper, you're likely to do great on T-shirts--just try to get good quality high fiber mass garments so you're not losing dots in the weave.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I'm going to definitively say 305 mesh. :p
(but only cause I got a bolt of the stuff)

Not really--I've run more than a couple 200 and 230 mesh process prints, and those mesh counts are excellent for very saturated hard edged prints. Depending on your black screen, you may be able to do higher mesh for CMY and then a lower for the black, so you can get good coverage on vector elements. If you're getting really crazy, 355 mesh may be the way to go. All depends on your artwork, equipment, and limitations.

No matter what count you decide on, dyed mesh and a smaller thread will help you hold small dots--which is critical if you've got fades to nothing or very light shades. And if you had no problems doing CMYK on paper, you're likely to do great on T-shirts--just try to get good quality high fiber mass garments so you're not losing dots in the weave.
Nice, So you think if I get a higher mesh for cmy and lower mesh for k, itll work good? I want do something similar to this picture.
 

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I'm with Ty on this one. (not me, the other Ty :))

I might go with a structured halftone, as opposed to FM dots, just because of the broad gradients, but you'd have to do a heck of a job with CMYK for pics like you're listing.

You realize as well you will need underbase, and possibly a last down white if you're printing on black shirts? You may want to do a little more research on what you're getting yourself into if you've only done CMYK on white paper before--especially before you drop money on stuff.
 

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But anyways im gonna order new screen today and really need to know what mesh you guys prefer best for cmyk. Heres the pic im doing.
OK.
Get 200's (which will probably be dyed).
Get a one step exposure calculator to figure your exposure time. Solid 7 is about where you want to be.
Coat your screens 1/1.
Use a 42.5 line count
Round dot.
15/45/75/75 angles (CMYK order)
Use Union Ink Trutone Process Inks
Triple durometer squeegees
Set your off contact at about 1/8"
Print in order Y M C K

See what happens and post your results.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I'm with Ty on this one. (not me, the other Ty :))

I might go with a structured halftone, as opposed to FM dots, just because of the broad gradients, but you'd have to do a heck of a job with CMYK for pics like you're listing.

You realize as well you will need underbase, and possibly a last down white if you're printing on black shirts? You may want to do a little more research on what you're getting yourself into if you've only done CMYK on white paper before--especially before you drop money on stuff.
yes I already know, but black shirts arent gonna work out for me since I only got a 4 color screen press, Im thinking that'll be a pain in the butt.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
OK.
Get 200's (which will probably be dyed).
Get a one step exposure calculator to figure your exposure time. Solid 7 is about where you want to be.
Coat your screens 1/1.
Use a 42.5 line count
Round dot.
15/45/75/75 angles (CMYK order)
Use Union Ink Trutone Process Inks
Triple durometer squeegees
Set your off contact at about 1/8"
Print in order Y M C K

See what happens and post your results.
Ill deff let you know:D thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I got one more question, If i wanted to screen print this what should i do? Do i just need one screen for this or whats the best way for the good result? What would you do? Prentend the heels are black.

[media]http://media.onsugar.com/files/ons1/209/2098061/32_2009/66390e8ed0f4eb40_Two_In_The_Shirt_2.jpg[/media]
 
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