T-Shirt Forums banner

1 - 4 of 4 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi,

New to the forums and new to the t-shirt business in general. I've been reading these forums and doing some research in the past couple of days, but I find the more I read the more difficult the decision becomes: heat transfers, or screenprinting? I've read the basics of both and understand the general ups and downs, but still cannot completely figure out which way to go.

I suppose the biggest difference for me would be achieving photo-realistic prints. That I'm not too concerned with, since I'm mainly printing graphic type shirts, involving mostly solid colors. However, gradients are a big factor. With screenprinting, I understand it can be done through halftones, but requires software to generate the halftones. Is this practical? Effective?

I understand starting either way will be costly. I will want multi-colored graphics, so a multi-color silkscreening station will be necessary. Those I've only found for $1800+. silkscreenbiz.com has their 6 color for $2100. However I also have a friend who no longer needs his 4 color and may be willing to sell it for $1000ish. I need to look more into that. Along with that I must have ink. Translucents don't seem to be expensive, I should be fine with that.

As for heat press, a decent heat press will cost me at least $400. And it seems quality does matter, so I'm guess 600. I currently have a Canon ip6000, but it seems that Epson's perform better. I still need to have this clarified. I'll probably want larger designs, but I'm not completely sure yet. So if I were to heat press, I'd be deciding between the $70 c88 or the $400 1280. And I understand the ink and paper will add up.

Have I skipped over anything? Basically, I want to be able to print on-demand. I won't be printing in large bulks. Most likely, anywhere between 3-10 shirts a week, that would be my estimate. Most of my designs are graphics, involving multiple, solid colors. I like to use gradients, but it isn't a must. I am trying to maintain budget, but I would rather make nothing than produce crap.

Sorry for the long post, but I have a lot of questions and I want to make sure I understand what I'm doing when I start.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,800 Posts
hi there,

wow! you are serious. :)

with digital transfers someone will come along ( most likely later in the day ) that can clarify and help you decide... lots of peeps that do that on this board.

as for the screen printing type, like you said, if you are not planning to do large runs as you start, may be sourcing it out or making plastisol transfers as you need may work. No big start up capital investment this way.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,766 Posts
As for heat press, a decent heat press will cost me at least $400. And it seems quality does matter, so I'm guess 600. I currently have a Canon ip6000, but it seems that Epson's perform better. I still need to have this clarified. I'll probably want larger designs, but I'm not completely sure yet. So if I were to heat press, I'd be deciding between the $70 c88 or the $400 1280. And I understand the ink and paper will add up.
Greeting grasshopper.. $400 press.. no no no my young protégé.. The best way to start is 15 x 15 about 650 includes shipping from Coastal Business.. You have not yet reached the level of knowing what you don't know. So you must consider that to give more than you receive is not a way to go. meaning.. don't spend it if if it is not coming back. So my suggestion, and only that is a c88+ When you have reached the level of OMG (Oh my God I am busier than hell.) Then you may spend the money for larger printer. Remember grasshopper that the c88+ uses pigment ink (Durabright Ultra) the 1280 does not so there is additional things you must do if you get 1280, like a bulk system which is additional cost. When you say photo realistic prints I am assuming you mean on a shirt. I print photos all day on tees with Epson+miraCool transfer paper Or Iron all. They look great. So my young grasshopper if you think you are ready don't be afraid to ask more questions as one day you will know what you do not know today. Lou
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
10,512 Posts
ultimaslair said:
With screenprinting, I understand it can be done through halftones, but requires software to generate the halftones. Is this practical? Effective?
Yes.

ultimaslair said:
However I also have a friend who no longer needs his 4 color and may be willing to sell it for $1000ish. I need to look more into that.
Yeah, definitely needs to be researched. Depending on the press it may be a good deal, or it may be a total rip-off. You can get a basic four colour press cheaper, but if the press is good it might be worth a lot more.
 
1 - 4 of 4 Posts
Top