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I like how you have managed to work with the PVC so well. I saw in one picture you had some parts made with a nice rounded corner. How did you do this? It makes a nice look.
Also where do you buy you PVC from. I have made some DTG printers out of aluminum but think a PVC platen would look nice. Especially in black since it would match the color of the printer. I would also like to try to make a scissors jack for the platen out of PVC too.
you sure put alot of work into this project :)

Philip
terry...

heres a tip i haven't shared yet besides with bob.. the material i used is pvc type II high impact plastic.. therefor it can be solvent welded ie( plumbing glue) it just takes a bit longer to set up and your cuts have to be precise even the cut edges sanded smooth for good contact.. i suggest making a square jig;) for those not confident about the plastic welding..

i use the plastic welder because my edges dont have to be perfect the rod fills it.;) then i just sand the top level..

also you could build it from plexi ie acrylic,plexi glass lexan available at lowes;)..this can be painted with acrylic paint and will look the same or vinyl stickered.. the best part of this material is it is solvented welded also but its bond is instant.. heres the trick you use (mek) available at most hardware stores including lowes..lol:D its branded as a parts cleaner and its some potent stuff..lol (this is the main ingredient in most plastic glues) you will use it in its pure form, it has the consistency of water use a syringe or hypo applicator to apply the liquid to the pieces to be bonded, instantly becomes one piece make sure you have it in a jig no taking it apart (this is how fish tanks are made;)) what it does is disolve or soften the molecules for a second between the two pieces that are to be joined then it hardens intertwining the two pieces molecules ie (becomes one piece) its not gluing, solvent welding:)

additionally you polish the edges using a map gas torch..similar to the small propane torch just different gas... it makes it awesome...

P.S DO NOT ATTEMPT TO POLISH THE EDGES WITH ANY MEK PRESENT IT IS EXTREMELY FLAMABLE..
 

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Thanks for the reply. I'm liking the plastic idea for certain parts more and more. What thickness polyethylene did you use. Is there a certain grade I need to use so it's not too brittle. Do you recommend welding parts when there is a bend as opposed to bending. I saw one picture you posed and it had a very nice rounded corner. Can I get this with welding plastic. How do you cut your plastic? I have cut this in the past and had troubles both with it shattering and melting when I cut with a saw.

Thanks

Philip

THANKS, PHILIP..:)

you can find material anywhere on the net.. prob locally aswell.. i fab plastic for my job thats why i use it and it is extremely light.. i have more info on this in the build your platen- base from plastic thread...

i used black polyethylene on the new printer..very cheap plastic and machines well..
 

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Hi,

Do you have a link for the build you own platen out of plastic thread? I did a search and couldn't find it?

Thanks,

Philip

THANKS, PHILIP..:)

you can find material anywhere on the net.. prob locally aswell.. i fab plastic for my job thats why i use it and it is extremely light.. i have more info on this in the build your platen- base from plastic thread...

i used black polyethylene on the new printer..very cheap plastic and machines well..
 

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Hi,

Sorry for all the questions. Do you use the low density or Hi density PE? I know HD is very strong. I didn't know you could weld PE?

Thanks again

Philip
THANKS, PHILIP..:)

you can find material anywhere on the net.. prob locally aswell.. i fab plastic for my job thats why i use it and it is extremely light.. i have more info on this in the build your platen- base from plastic thread...

i used black polyethylene on the new printer..very cheap plastic and machines well..
 

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This is the DTG printer I made that I want to make a platen out of plastic for. It should be lighter and give the printer a cleaner look.
My regular employer went out of business so I'm going to try to make this model and sell it. Any thoughts on how much I can sell it for? The shirt on the platen is one I printed on a C88 DTG printer I made. I am using this to give a comparison of the difference in the print size from the Epson C88 model and a DTG printer based on a Epson 2200. Should be the same for the R1900 model DTG. On mens large and xtra large t-shirts the print area looked to small on the C88 model. On the new model I can print up to 13" x 18" with the platen I have made, instead of 8.5" x 14". I have Multi Rip software and on a 13" x 18" print that is not a solid print, I plugged in the cost of the ink and it only costs .27 cents to print. I though this was pretty cheap. This model will also print on dark colored shirts too.

Philip

here is the link.... buid your own base and platens from plastic

I use HDPE high density PE... and yes you can weld it...

however any thing you put heat to has a tendency to bow a bit... so after you weld it-> to pull the bow or slight warp out use a heat gun , heat it a bit and presto back to square... its welding temp is around 320 degrees..

i used 1/4 on the base and 3/16ths on the platen.. i also use aluminum L channel to stiffen the edges underneath the platen (counter sunk and pop riveted to the plastic)... this setup is very light;)

hope it helps..
 

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The Epson R1800 has in starvation problems when used as a regular printer. It's worse on DTG conversion because it trys to put out even more ink. You can go with the 2200 they work well and can put out more ink than even the R1900.

Philip

Has anyone ever tried using an Epson R1800 with 4 x white for printing on black's.

I have heard that they have ink starvation problems. Its just that I have been trying for over a month to get an R1900 and I have a couple of R1800's laying about doing nothing.
 

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Different print heads, 2200 can open up more to put out more ink but the R1900 has a Teflon coated print head. This is a plus and helps with clogs. Multirip supports both printers so either will work well as a DTG printer. The 2200 is not in production so there are no new ones available.
Also the 2200 drive the paper feed roller by gear and the R1900 is belt drive simular to the C88

Philip

Has the 2200 got the same print head as the R1900 ?

I think I read somewhere on her that German13 said that the 2200 was none too good for conversion but then that may have been somthing to do with it maybe not having roll mode before he started using sheet mode on his R1900.
 

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The 2100/2200 are basically the same printer. 2100 was mostly sold out of the usa.

Philip

Thanks Jeff, I think its sunk in now :) Getting a bit long in the tooth here !

Would love to get my hands on a R1900 but few and far between over here. A used one costs x2 more than you guys can buy a referb from Epson over there so looks like I will have to go for a 2200.

Whats the difference between 2100 and 2200 when it comes to a DIY DTG conversion.

Oh and speed is not really an issue here.
 

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I'm building both 2200 and R1900 models of DTG. My DTG setup is about the same for both models except for the drive motor mount because the 2200 uses a gear drive and the R1900 is a belt drive. Both are quality printers. The 2200 has been discontinued for about 1 1/2 - 2 years so Epson will sell parts to service centers for about another 5 years then you can still get parts till the service center runs out. I've picked up several 2200 because they are less in price that the R1900 and they both can do the same thing and print the same size prints. Multi Rip works for both. The R1900 is a little faster than the 2200 but the 2200 can put down more ink so there are pluses and minuses either way. Some have done double prints because the first print didn't put down enough ink. In this case the 2200 would be a plus. The R1900 has a teflon coated print head. This should help with clogs. But I have talked with higher ups at Epson and they said they have never heard it mentioned that the teflon coated print head on the R1900 were to help with clogs......why else would they use a teflon print head?
In any case people can build with what ever model of printer they want to.

Philip
thats interesting...

but take into account how long the 2200 has been discontinued? i would certainly want parts avail for at least seven years for the work that is put into a quaility dtg!!!! after that your screwed.. and time to make one thats in production..

why not just start with a printer that is in production? its the safest bet!!:) not to mention the differences in printer function- quaility itself.. the 2200 and 1900 are night and day by comparison
 

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If you don't find a taker for the print head I'll pay the shipping.

Philip
I have built both, the 2200 and the backup donor parts machine went straight to the trash a few weeks after the 1900 went online. Both were cmyk with white underbase. Not even in the same ballpark. From experience, my humble opinion is that I would stop spending brainpower, time, and money on the 2200 you have in progress and chalk it up as DIY DTG college tuition... and focus on a better printer you can get in days from epson.... after all you are in the business of printing tees, not making printers from printers people are selling on craigslist because they are gathering dust after the owner upgraded to a better printer. I considered running cleaning solution to it and taking it offline and reserving it for a backup... but then realized that I needed the space... if space was being taken up, I'd want it to be a second mainline printer made from a 1900, so to the dump all the 2200 printers and parts went.

On a side note, I do have one clean head leftover for a 2200 that was spared from the trash by my not noticing it until the other day. $75 if anyone wants it. It was clogged with stock paper ink in one channel and wouldn't clear by head cleanings, but cleared right up when I removed it and soaked the nozzles in windex and sprayed cleaning solution through each channel. email me at essen(at)me(dot)com if you have a 2200 based machine in operation and want a backup head.

*edit* or free head if you cover the shipping cost if you have given me advice in building no matter how small.
 

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The thickness of 1-2 business cards. Do a test print on paper you will be able to tell.

Philip

Using an Epson R1900 which is best for printing on white cotton for testing or short term use Dye or Pigment based ink and would it benefit from any pre or post printing treatment, any particular (normal ink type) supplier recommends in the UK. Roughly how many if any washes before it fades or disappears. I don't want to load up with pukka ink till I am sure things are working correctly.
 

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I tried to make a scissors jack to adjust the platen simular to the one in your picture and I couldn't get it to be stable. Lab jacks work but they are exppensive.

Philip

Its been a very interesting, and memorable experience with the diydtg project... Although i think it has gave me a few more gray hairs aswell...:) thank you t shirt-forum members here and the die hard diy,ers for the knowledge fond experience... i intend to spend alot of time on the otherside of the forums to learn the other aspects of this biz- hope the experience with the people there is the same!!!!:) i might also get a little more sleep now!!!! the build turned out to be very simple in the end!!! only two real mods outside building the base... asf mod and adding a drive belt- pulley system..that simple!!! i will try to field any questions from time to time and i think enough other people have an understanding of how this works to help... i know there are two working 1900 builds already.. (ESSEN) and (SUNORACLE) using different transports-methods of delivery etc.. best of luck on future builds... just be patient the printer does all the work!!!!!

Thought i would go ahead and post up pics of my new and final design VERY BOTTOM PICS...(outside of making the platen removable and finalizing details for the cover..:p

****a little side note if you want to do this on the cheap (material) i wood reccommend a light wood, in fact if i had it to do over again i would use wood..it makes the build very fast just using glue and a brad nailer... especially if you are not concerned with apperance (although you can make them look very good with a coating... my original wood test platten (pic in the 1100-1900 platen designs) only took my two hours to build after the design was complete -cuts were made.. i doubt most machines in a biz setting would be visable to the customer.. i did this in plastic for the look etc...but its performance would be no different by changing materials, the bottom line is the machine needs to look pretty if the intent was selling the machine, but looks aside as long as they work they will make money the easy way!!!...***** the possibilites are only limited by your imagination as far as a base-carrier, transport system...

the original design a few pics down memory lane....... (should have stuck with my intial instinct compare it to the final at very bottom, very similar outside of platen)






dont forget the first working prototype...lol:D




my final design is a single timing belt drive... with a 4 point adjustable platen... shes a rock star..lol:D it looks more complex than it is, everything on the platen is a series of aluminum angle at different sizes on flat plastic stock with home store full extention slides..lol..i tried the fancy ones but these ended up working the best they have an additional function of keeping the shirt inside the carrier aswell... this platen will be removable... hours and hours of research and trials went into the design... it paid off..;) and will continue to do so i hope!!!! as far as the shirt biz future... after i get the vid up and finalize the cover i intend to spend alot of time on the other side of the forums learning the biz (reading alot)... im totally jazzed with the final product with a realatively low investment for the equipment the future should be exciting.. this can be done with practically any epson machine 1400 & up... hopfully we can get enough biz to expand to more machines..:p i intend on opening the marketing flood gates locally at this point.. the printer will print multiple copies-multiple pass with perfect registration (batch jobs) all day:D (just gotta feed her ink)..if you make a couple platens and have blank shirts ready to go i supose this will make it abit faster aswell... it will run at 720 res as explained with the previous model - super fast prints there are advantages to this on certain prints and items, but for the most part i will be running in the super fine res ek rips 1440 x res..

video coming soon!!!

p.s had to add my cats in the pic;)
 

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I tried it with a bottom made of plastic and a top made of plastic and I used 1/8" x 1" aluminum strips and it was real sloppy.

Philip

to be stable it needs a frame on top and bottom..blow the pic up and you should see a portion of this...:) mine used springs and snaped in place.. but you could simply use a threaded bolt for this.. i would reccommend using aluminum flat stock for this...

you can also use a turnbuckle 4 (aluminum) and replace the eye hooks with screws.. you need to match the threads.. one side is left hand thread and the other right...
 

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Good job, you got the registration on the 2nd pass figured out. Are you using a rip and how did you line the platen up for the second pass?

Philip
HERE SHE IS ... "the dark horse vid"

heres the vid , did two passes on the same image.. this will show the printers registration capability "PERFECT" i trimmed down the ink setting in the rip etc to run it twice... you get the idea->>> it will print dark shirts in the same fashion, as soon as i get the white ink i will post a new vid of this also... the art was pre spooled to keep the boredom factor down:p...

i made a mistake by not having my platen height set properly on the first vid "so it kicked it out on the second pass and i had to manually send it again" you can see in the second vid i adjusted this...

i combined the two vids into one for some reason the second one attached didnt down load so ill try and get the other shirt being printed up later!!!... two shirts printing because my cameras video memory card can only hold about five minutes "thanks for the gator graphic randy- you cant get a better detailed graphic than that for a test- registration is perfect!!!!! as seen..

i used the wrong version of rip for the vid by accident but i didnt want to reshoot it, the newest mod doesnt eject the three inches at the end of print, what this gives you is an extra three inches of print up to 22" that way..

ok super tired was up late- gonna get some zzzz,s hope you like her as much as i do... she speaks for herself...;););):D

[media]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RAoTWZb_qh0[/media]
 

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There are two things on the market. One chip that reads full all the time and there is also a manual chip re re-setter that costs around $10.00.

Philip

Im wondering if they make reset ink chips when you go to a bulk system equivilant to how much ink is in the bulk system?

or do you have to still reset based on the carts size regardless?
 

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There is a chip you can add that is make for a CISS system. It shows the cartridge full all the time. There is no way on a bulk or CISS system to show actual amout of ink left other than taking a look. most CISS systems come with the chip. I might have 1 or 2 of the CISS systems around for the R1900 and 2200

Philip

i have the carts that when the lights come on you just press and hold the two buttons to reset it.. which works very well its just based on the amount of ink in the carts...which makes reseting frequent or adding ink when printing alot... so i was hoping that a bulk system has a longer reset time based on the bulk amount rather than the cart amount of ink...:)
 

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Most of the ciss systems have chips that show that the cartridges are full all the time regardless of the amount of ink.

Philip

sounds promising...im going to talk to dan (dtginks.com) on this in detail aswell... hes the ink king so im sure he will have some info aswell.. i appreciate the update...

i have been three up nights straight late remote testing with the rip... making a killer version for the diydtg (tdozer r1900).. dealing with platen travels and riding the 3inch end of print eject amongst other things its alot to it, back and forth testing this thing ..sending print to files etc... but its getting real close!!!!:) the rip itself was already awesome imho...

hopfully i will have some awesome news on this within a week!!!!;)
 

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I looked at the MSD sheet from one manufacturer to see if I could figure it out the pre-treat formula in the past and the pre-treat formula lists 10-15% as a nitrate but isn't specific. Is this what the in organic salt is? Do you know why some have a so called different formula for white shirts from dark colored shirts?

Philip

Do you know why some hav
hey guys...:)

I have embarked on my new mission...

PRETREAT:

I have been researching its ingredients.. and they are as follows...

WATER: BETWEEN 80-90%

INORGANIC SALT: BETWEEN 1-10%

POLYMER: (PLASICISED VINYL ACETATE HOMOPOLYMER) BETWEEN 1-10%

THIS EQUATES TO BASICALLY A LIQUID PLASTIC ADD HEAT AND ITS A SOLID...

I HAVE BEEN IN THE PLASTICS INDUSTRY FOR NEARLY 20 YEARS AND I CANT QUITE UNDERSTAND WHY THIS FORMULA IS SO EXPENSIVE.. I DEAL WITH SOME PLASTICS THAT ARE 700 DOLLARS A FOOT AND THIS SIMPLE FORMULA IS NO WHERE NEAR THOSE COMPOSITIONS!!! A SIMPLE SEARCH OF THESE CHEMICALS WILL SHOW HOW INEXPENSIVE THEY ARE... THEY CAN BE BOUGHT IN POWDER FORM AND MIXED TO LIQUID ASWELL...

I WILL DO SOME MORE EXTENSIVE RESEARCH ON THIS..AND IF I CANT FIND IT IN BULK CHEAP, I PLAN ON MAKING MY OWN..

WE ARE STUCK WITH THIS UNTIL A DIFFERENT INK FORMULATION IS AVAILABLE...I WILL POST MORE AS I FIND OUT MORE! IVE SEEN PRICES OF 80 DOLLARS A GALLON FOR THIS STUFF AND @ 80-90% WATER I FIND IT CRAZY!! MAYBE ITS THE HUGE MARK UP, MAYBE SHIPPING, POSSIBLY IT COULD BE SOLD IN CONCENTRATE TO REDUCE SHIPPING THE WATER WEIGHT COST?;)
 
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