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Hello, everyone. In the next few months I have some designs I want to create, and I'd love for them to have a really soft hand.
From what I've heard, water based inks create the softest of soft hands.
Do I have an uphill battle ahead of me if I've never printed water based before? Any recommendations in the way of ink brands, mesh counts, difficulties to watch out for etc?
Thanks in advance!
 

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Do I have an uphill battle ahead of me if I've never printed water based before? Any recommendations in the way of ink brands, mesh counts, difficulties to watch out for etc?
I dont think you will have to many challenges... I would suggest high mesh, because of the light consistency of the ink. Also, remember not to dump a lot of ink in the screen, because it will dry.

Practice...practice...practice.
 

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Do I need to use a different emulsion etc so my stencil doesn't dissolve? Really don't know a lot about this stuff.
Yes, you should use emulsion formulated for waterbased inks. Otherwise, the stencil will start to dissolve after a few prints.

Ryonet has an excellent series of videos on youtube walking you through all the steps of waterbased and discharge printing: YouTube - Ryonet's Channel
 

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Water-Based Homework

Water-Based Ink Homework
If you belong to the SGIA, you have access to water-base evangelist Charles Leach's terrific articles.


Getting into Water-Based Inks on Dark Garments
By Terry Combs
SPM December 1999
Getting into Water-Based Inks on Dark Garments | ScreenWeb | screenweb.com

Tackling Water-based Inks For the First Time
Oct 2007 By Jeff Proctor Impressions
Tackling Water-based Inks For the First Time

Water-Based Inks: An Eco-Friendly Solution for Special-Effects Garment Printing
By Ed Branigan November 2008 SPM
Water-Based Inks: An Eco-Friendly Solution for Special-Effects Garment Printing | ScreenWeb | screenweb.com

Water-Based Basics
(April 2003) Rick Davis
Water-Based Basics | ScreenWeb | screenweb.com

Water-Based Inks Health, Safety, and the Environment
Union Ink
Water-Based Inks

Water-Based Inks Joe Clarke

Joe Clarke Printwear
Water-Based Inks - Part 2 | Printwear


Discharge Ink Homework

Discharge Printing Step by Step
September 25, 2006 Impressions Staff
Discharge Printing Step by Step

Exploring the Secrets of Discharge Printing
Exploring the Secrets of Discharge Printing | ScreenWeb | screenweb.com
Terry W. Combs may 2001

Understanding Discharge Inks
Mike Ukena
Understanding Discharge Inks | ScreenWeb | screenweb.com

They've Come a Long Way
Ed Branigan
http://printwearmag.com/article/they%E2%80%99ve-come-long-way

Stuart Brent of Vacord writes a blog on discharge printing
Discharge Nation
Discharge Nation - discharge screen printing blog
 

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Hardener after effects

Use a dual cure emulsion and then an emulsion hardener.
Hardeners are usually used to make permanent stencils.

Beware, don't use a hardener as a substitute for complete exposure or choosing a water resistant stencil. Depending on the chemical structure of the emulsion, an absolute water proof stencil may be achieved, but is no longer reclaimable.

A hardener should be a last resort or a treatment so you can get another 50,000 prints from your stencil.
 

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Re: Hardener after effects

Hardeners are usually used to make permanent stencils.

Beware, don't use a hardener as a substitute for complete exposure or choosing a water resistant stencil. Depending on the chemical structure of the emulsion, an absolute water proof stencil may be achieved, but is no longer reclaimable.

A hardener should be a last resort or a treatment so you can get another 50,000 prints from your stencil.
We use hardeners when we have long print runs or if we will be reclaiming screens a few times. You can also post expose your screens to ensure they are not under exposed.
 

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Re: Hardener after effects

We use hardeners when we have long print runs or if we will be reclaiming screens a few times.

You can also post expose your screens to ensure they are not under exposed.
What hardener do you use, with what emulsion that allows you to still reclaim?

For you, what is a long run?

How do you stop the un-reacted diazo, that isn't cross-linked, from dissolving with the unexposed image area?
 

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Re: Hardener after effects

What hardener do you use, with what emulsion that allows you to still reclaim?

For you, what is a long run?

How do you stop the un-reacted diazo, that isn't cross-linked, from dissolving with the unexposed image area?
We use a chromaline UDC-2 Emulsion. Pro Chemicals HardenX.
We get a full exposure but some jobs we post expose to try to over expose. Maybe this is redundant since the emulsion is already developed.

Say we where printing a one color discharge print in the thousands on a manual press and may have to clean out the the screen and ink back up in the morning. We may use a hardener so our screens don't break down.

Any thoughts??
 

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Re: Hardener after effects

Chromaline Magna/Cure UDC-2 is a very good 38% solids dual-cure emulsion with moderate water resistance. Completely exposed it should resist for thousands of images, no matter how many times you take the ink out.

A better choice from Chromaline would be an emulsion designed for water resistance like CP Tex - 42% solids, extremely durable, water resistant, designed for belt printers, yet still reclaimable if you use a pressure washer.

Of course, all water resistant stencils resist water-based stencil remover, so they are traditionally all hard to reclaim.

CP TEX is about US$20 per gallon less expensive than UDC-2 - also sold in quarts for lower volume shops.

Measuring Stencil Hardness
You will get diazo color change with those stencils, but without a step wedge test positive, you can't really tell if you actually cross-linked all the sensitizer.

The best exposure test for stencil hardness is a US$10 Stouffer 21 Step Transmission Gray Scale.
http://www.stouffer.net/TransPage.htm#21-Step

A transmission gray scale is a small film positive with darker and darker filters next to each other in steps. This is a standard photographic darkroom test positive that's been used since the 1930's.

When you have one on the stencil as you expose, you'll get a simulation of 21 different exposures to the stencil and you get visual feedback that shows how well your stencil is cured.

When you develop the stencil, areas that didn’t get enough exposure will dissolve with water and rinse down the drain. Aim for a minimum of a Solid Step 7 that adheres to the mesh and survives development. More exposure will make your stencil more durable and less will make the stencil less durable, but light scatter could start to choke fine lines or halftones.

The Thin Ice of Under Exposure
You might consider under exposing, but at the expense of a weak stencil on the inside - where the ink is.

Plastisol ink is like salad dressing when it comes to attacking a stencil, but water-based ink, (made of 80% water) is made of the stuff that dissolves un-cured stencil like the Wicked Witch of the West.

Once you know how to completely cure the stencil - then you can focus on how to get fine lines to print. That's when you worry about using an exposure calculator to calculate how to fatten your fine line art so it survives the choke of under cutting or light scatter.

Put one on an out-of-the-way edge of every screen you expose for the rest of your life.
 
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Greaves, I appreciate all your input in this forum. How will Chromaline's PC 701 hold up to waterbased ink. I'm going to be trying some matsui and permaset inks and was wondering if I need to change emulsions. 701 is all I've been using and all my exposures are dialed in for it.
 

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I love discharge printing. It gives the softest feel. If you want an ink that is kinda between plastisol and waterbased ink, try Gen IV inks. It is a waterbased ink that doesnt dry in your screen as quickly and is easier to work with because it has the consitancy of mayonaise. They say it can sit on the screen for an hours or so without problems.

I've been playing with it lately. I really like how easy it is to use. It is softer than plastisol but not quite as soft as the normal waterbased inks. ....Just an idea:)
 

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PC 701 is a high speed plastisol emulsion designed for low energy exposure units - not resistance.

This is only your first shock, as you decide to work with water-based inks. Every part is more work and takes longer.

As you re-read the final paragraphs of Post #16, poor exposure can be fatal even for water-resistant stencils, where plastisols can be printed with the poorest stencils you can imagine and "they work".

For a WR stencil, expect exposure times 6 to 10 times longer than PC 701.

Time to buy a US$10 Stouffer T-2115.

Gen IV inks are from International Coatings
http://www.iccink.com/screenprint/waterbase.htm
 
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