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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am new to sublimation and am wasting way too many hours trying to figure out which printer to purchase and how to use it to print for sublimation on mugs. :(
Much of what I read ends up being confusing and frustrating, or I read that a printer, for instance the Epson C88, is a good starter printer, but I have no idea how to switch it over to sublimation. I wanted to purchase the Ricoh E3300, as it seems to be a good starter and is supposed to be a sublimation printer, but it doesn't seem to be available anymore.

My budget is around $200 for a printer. I would be upgrading once I get started, but need to start small first.

I have read where Cobra inks is reliable for changing the printer to print for sublimation. How is Ink Owl? They seem to have an adaption kit for the Epson C88, if I remember correctly. I have read where if you change the ink to sublimation ink, you void the warranty, so would need to purchase the printer from a dealer. Is this true? So many posts are old(er), so have no idea what has improved or changed since the post was written.

Any thoughts and advice would be very much appreciated! This needs to work!
 

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Once you use any 3rd party ink in any printer you void the warranty. In the C88 you talking about $100 so it's a small risk you'll have to take.

All you need to turn an inkjet printer into a sublimation printer is:

1. Refillable cartridges or a continuous ink system.

2. Sublimation ink.

That's it.

You take out the cartridges that came with your printer, swap them for your refillables and print. Done.

If I were you I would skip the C88 and get the Epson 7110, or 7610. Then you can print on paper as large as 13X19. Trust me, you'll want the larger sized prints. C88 only prints up to legal, i think.

Most of us here do use Cobra for cartridges and ink. They will also have the color profile software so your colors come out right.
 

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WF 7210 is the replacement for the 7110. It is currently on sale for $149 with free shipping at some of the big name online stores. A quick Google will pop up the ads.

With Cobra carts and sub ink, you'll be in low to mid $200s, including the printer.

I recently made this same purchase, but with pigment inks, and it all came to $220.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you for your help! Some of the information that I am reading makes it sound like it is really difficult to change to sublimation ink, but if all I have to do is change out the ink cartridges, that would be easy!

Off to google...!!:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Do you know if the WF-7210 WILL WORK. I had a WF-7110 but i keep getting the error 0x97
Is it giving you that error message with the sublimation inks? Or for printing? Have you contacted Epson or where you purchased your ink? . They might be able to help you.

Good luck and let me know if you figure it out. That has to be super frustrating!
 

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Do you know if the WF-7210 WILL WORK. I had a WF-7110 but i keep getting the error 0x97
Stick your original epson cartridges back in. If you still get the error, and the printer is still under warranty, call Epson.

If you don't get the error then it's your refillable cartridges. Call the supplier of the cartridges.
 

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What's been said here is pretty much true. Buy an Epson printer, do a search for continuous ink supply and sublimation inks for that printer or buy a ciss and inks from Cobra. You can get along without profiles while you get your feet wet but when you're ready you can download , with instructions, from Cobra free. Buy some sublimation paper, print your images out in reverse and do some experimenting.
 

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Hi Tammy, you've probably purchased a printer by now but Ithought I'd let you know what I did. I'm new to sublimation (November 2017),I've done t shirts etc using vinyl (and I have a heat press) but I wasinterested in sublimation. I did a lot of research and like you I just wantedto start small to see how I got on and didn't want to spend a fortune. So Ibought everything through ebay.co.uk (I'm not sure where you are located). Ibought a new Epson workforce WF-2010W for £42.50, it's single function with wifiand internet. I bought a set of sublimation inks advertised as suitable for theWF-2010 for £34.90 which is a set of cartridges full of ink and 4 bottles ofthe relevant inks with syringes to replace the ink when necessary. I bought 100sheets of A4 sublimation paper for £5.99. I bought some silicone plugs for thecartridges for if I need them when I replace the ink, I loaded the inkcartridges and they worked immediately. I have printed a few things usingsublimation t shirts and pillow cases and polyester/cotton socks and have hadgreat results but like anything it was trial and error when removing items frommy heat press too early and the paper moving and leaving marks elsewhere, so Ihave purchased some of the sticky back film that is on the t shirt vinyl tosecure future prints to the items. When I print out the picture it looks ratherdull but when it transfers to the white t shirt etc the colours are excellent.Hope this helps and good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thank you to all who have responded! I dove in and bought the Epson 7210 from the manufacturer and the sublimation ink from Cobra for that printer. Bought mugs, heat tape and sublimation paper. Now I just have to wait until it gets here to try all this stuff out! I'll let everyone know how it works out!

Looking forward to delving into this and am determined to make it work out. This looks like it will be just getting my toe in the water, so to speak. As I have done research, I am seeing a ton of stuff that I eventually want to add to my product line and can't wait to get started! T-shirts and hats will be next!
 

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Make sure you install the Cobra sublimation ink profile for that printer as per the Cobra website or your prints may not look correct. The profiles are downloadable on their site and videos showing exactly how to install it.
 

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My tip: buy good quality mugs. Lots of the cheaper ones have crap coatings, tapers, dents and dings, black specks in the glaze etc. and fade or the inks migrate after just a few washes. If you get poor results, don't automatically blame your printer, inks or paper.

Also, most mug presses will not allow a complete top-to-bottom, handle-to-handle print without fading at the edges, so if you find the need for these kind of prints consider using silicone mug wraps with an oven. I use a halogen oven but have also obtained great results in my kitchen gas oven.
 

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My tip: buy good quality mugs. Lots of the cheaper ones have crap coatings, tapers, dents and dings, black specks in the glaze etc. and fade or the inks migrate after just a few washes. If you get poor results, don't automatically blame your printer, inks or paper.

Also, most mug presses will not allow a complete top-to-bottom, handle-to-handle print without fading at the edges, so if you find the need for these kind of prints consider using silicone mug wraps with an oven. I use a halogen oven but have also obtained great results in my kitchen gas oven.
You should NOT be making mugs or any other dyesub product in the oven you cook your food in.
You can get a small toaster oven and get the same results and it keeps your oven clean for food while not costing you much.
 

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You should NOT be making mugs or any other dyesub product in the oven you cook your food in.
You can get a small toaster oven and get the same results and it keeps your oven clean for food while not costing you much.

Yes, you're quite right Amw, of course, but there's only myself or the wife that would have been poisoned :D and I only used the kitchen oven for a few trials before buying a halogen oven. I was just experimenting with obtaining a full-wrap image before splashing out on any more equipment.

Have to say though, the halogen oven produces superb results once you get your temps and timings correct, and it allows the printing of multiple mugs at the same time.
 
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