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My partner and I bit the bullet and bought all of our equipment. It cost us around $5k to get everything we needed except blank shirts.

We did a first run of about 12 of our designs to pass out to friends from a local screen printer I sometimes to artwork for.

I think if you do it yourself it will cost more in the beginning but will save you much more in the long run if you are successful. If you only have a few designs or color options it may be good to contact a local printer to print them up as you need them.

Our problem was we have so many designs, plus each design usually is offered with at least 2 shirt color options. So I figured it would be easier to do it ourselves, plus you don't have to fit in to the printer's schedule. If we want a shirt now we can go out and print it.
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