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2 questions, is permaset super cover much stronger than speedball ink? and could it be possible in theory to add a speedball colour to ie red to a permaset white to make a pink... ? has anyone ever mixed brands of waterbased inks? i mean it works when Im painting with acrylics so...... thanks for any help would be really cool
supercover is thicker because of the additional pigment.

Mixing might work. Try it and test.
 

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HI morning, I'm new here in the silk screen industry and i have a problem about how to make your textile water based ink more viscous..

here's what i'm using:
TULCO Screen Printing Supply: Products - Dye Series Textile Ink

there are 3 types:
Dyeprint - Ultra-soft, breathable;
Dyeflex - Flexible, elastic;
Dyesub - similar to sublimation print, soft, breathable, non-elastic

THE ONE THAT I'M USING IS THE "DYEFLEX clear(for color mixture) and DYEFLEX white(ready made white)" its like a "mid-heavy icing like" and easily clogged my mesh when screenprinting, and about 10shirts before clogging, and lastly hard to flood stroke... hope that you could help me...thanks in advance
 

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Does manual screen require off contact???
personally, I use no off contact with water based inks. It's been working much better for me personally. Now, you'll get a mix of opinions on here but you know what they say about opinions.

Try both and whatever works best for your print stroke, go with it. But again, for me, and my print stroke, no off contact has been working better for me. Experiment and good luck.
 

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As JohnnyFive said, experiment a bit and see what works best for what you are doing.

That said, there is a whole lot of info out there about how to print, and an awful lot of it is put forth like it is written in stone, without ever bothering to mention that it is talking about printing Plastisol. That is because Plastisol is all there ever used to be, and is still the most widely used ink. Tell tale signs are talk about wanting a thick coat of emulsion on the screen (thick gasket), high screen tension, stirring the hell out of the ink, and off contact.

The general wisdom is that water based should be printed On Contact so that the ink penetrates into the fabric (with Plastisol one deposits the ink on the surface).

Zero off contact means that screen tension is less important, because you are not pushing the screen down to the fabric and requiring it to snap back as you slide the squeegee across it. Some people use a small off contact with water based, like no more than 1/16 inch.

I've found zero off contact to work best for me. YMMV

One time when a bit of off contact might give better results is when the print/ink requires you to Print / Flash / Print in order to get opaque coverage. But for "normal" dark ink on light fabric, direct contact is best.
 

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personally, I use no off contact with water based inks. It's been working much better for me personally. Now, you'll get a mix of opinions on here but you know what they say about opinions.

Try both and whatever works best for your print stroke, go with it. But again, for me, and my print stroke, no off contact has been working better for me. Experiment and good luck.
Screen printing be definition is an off-contact medium. At some point the screen must separate from the shirt. Off-contact means the mesh pulls itself from the ink film at a smooth consistent speed. For tacky inks this is very helpful.

That said, the tinkering style of all craft skills tells us, if it works don't fight it - print and make money, but I'm concerned anyone is having troubles printing with off-contact.
 
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Screen printing be definition is an off-contact medium. At some point the screen must separate from the shirt. Off-contact means the mesh pulls itself from the ink film at a smooth consistent speed. For tacky inks this is very helpful.

That said, the tinkering style of all craft skills tells us, if it works don't fight it - print and make money, but I'm concerned anyone is having troubles printing with off-contact.
Like you say, it comes down to what works for the individual in the circumstances. But thin water based inks are intended to be printed with zero off contact. When printing opaque water based and/or printing over an underbase, a bit of off contact may indeed help, but else add a needless variable.
 

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Screen printing be definition is an off-contact medium. At some point the screen must separate from the shirt. Off-contact means the mesh pulls itself from the ink film at a smooth consistent speed. For tacky inks this is very helpful.

That said, the tinkering style of all craft skills tells us, if it works don't fight it - print and make money, but I'm concerned anyone is having troubles printing with off-contact.
Man, I'm concerned every time I get near a press...lol....but that just is a testament to how much of a newb I am at this. I'm sure I'll eventually cross into the off contact world with experience.


Not surprisingly, today I was considering doing some shirts where I have to do an underbase and then print colors on top of it. I was just visualizing how not having any off contact when printing the other layers on top of the underbase could cause some issues. May do a bit of testing to see how much better that works compared to not having any off contact when printing on the underbase. I'm guessing having the proper amount of off contact will work better.

I think another one of my issues earlier with off contact is that I wasn't properly shearing away the ink when doing my print stroke. I was having a bunch of ink still in the mesh when it was pulling away (the screen from the garment) and it was leaving nasty marks on my prints (from where the ink was pulling away slowly or....well....not sure how to describe it.)
 

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...

I think another one of my issues earlier with off contact is that I wasn't properly shearing away the ink when doing my print stroke. I was having a bunch of ink still in the mesh when it was pulling away (the screen from the garment) and it was leaving nasty marks on my prints (from where the ink was pulling away slowly or....well....not sure how to describe it.)
If the image area isn't completely clearing on the print stroke, do a dry stroke to clear it.
 

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Shearing ink

I think another one of my issues earlier with off contact is that I wasn't properly shearing away the ink when doing my print stroke.

I was having a bunch of ink still in the mesh when it was pulling away
It's physics. What defines a screen printing ink is that it's multi-viscosity - When you move it, it shears, the viscosity drops and it flows more.

If you're ink isn't flowing, try stroking faster. Warm ink also flows better than cold ink.

Forcing more ink through the mesh will force the ink in the mesh onto the shirt, and the ink on the shirt further into the shirt. If the ink has time to settle and return to it's high viscosity state it will split like a sandwich cookie or hot split transfer. Some sticks to the mesh, some sticks to the shirt.

Adding off-contact to a low tension will shorten the time the stencil is in contact with the shirt which means ink will have little time to settle and return to it's high viscosity state before the mesh lifts off the surface of the shirt.
 
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Re: Shearing ink

It's physics. What defines a screen printing ink is that it's multi-viscosity - When you move it, it shears, the viscosity drops and it flows more.

If you're ink isn't flowing, try stroking faster. Warm ink also flows better than cold ink.

Forcing more ink through the mesh will force the ink in the mesh onto the shirt, and the ink on the shirt further into the shirt. If the ink has time to settle and return to it's high viscosity state it will split like a sandwich cookie or hot split transfer. Some sticks to the mesh, some sticks to the shirt.

Adding off-contact to a low tension will shorten the time the stencil is in contact with the shirt which means ink will have little time to settle and return to it's high viscosity state before the mesh lifts off the surface of the shirt.
can't really speak to anything you've said here. way over my head....but...I can say this...

After listening to you guys, I went back tonight and essentially tried the poor mans off-contact setup (using 4 quarters in the corners of my screen to help me properly gain off contact)....I have a DIY Ryonet 4 color 1 station press....so no true off contact or micro-reg yet....yet....anyway....

Where I'd had issues before with off contact, tonight I printed a test print, and 3 shirts PERFECTLY using the off contact method. With that said, the error I had before was me....and my stroke. Only thing different I did tonight was a push stroke and pull flood (using water based inks). I seem to do better with that method. Really made sure to shear the ink away and drive it into the fabric.

I hope to be able to continue to have that success with the off contact. Only did 1 color tonight so the real test will be trying to reg up and do 2-3 color prints (with no micro-reg, just eyeballing it) and see if I can continue to get the crisp prints.

Thanks for the motivation to move forward fellas. Probably wouldn't have done it without the bit of encouragement to do it properly.
 
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