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need some help

1087 Views 11 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  lben
hi guys,

i've heard that DTG printing is the best way to go but since I'm starting out small right now, I'm just going to do it with a regular pigment ink printer that can print on release/transfer paper. I already have a heat transfer machine. This is my question, what is the best pigment ink printer that is out there? that is affordable and where can I get it from?

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anyone going to help me out?
thanks man, i appreciate it!
dtg isn't necessarily the way to go, either. it has its pros and cons as does any method. it's the way to go for some people, not suitable for others.
i meant a heat pressing machine for t-shirts, doh lol
i figured as much, but thought it best to ask. :)

it's not 'pigment ink' that we use for transfers, but if it helps we use an oki printer (toner) and magictouch transfer papers. when we did sublimation, we had a typical epson workforce and got our supplies from sawgrass technologies.

anyway, i don't do pigment ink, but i'm pretty sure you can use something like an epson workforce 1100 (hope i got the # right), which should go for about $75 or thereabouts as i recall. they're pretty common and shouldn't have a problem finding one.
is the epson workforce 1100 good enough for a beginner ? do they print good on the heat transfer paper? i like it when a printer can hold up to 100 + pages. when using this printer, will the image fade from the t-shirt after it's put on it by the heat press machine? if that made any sense, lol. i was looking at this one... click below and tell me what you think?

Epson WorkForce 60 Inkjet Printer

why don't you use pigment ink? it what do you use?

Thanks for answering my questions.
i just checked and epson retails it for $179.99
yeah, epson would retail it for that much. :) you don't have to pay that much for an 1100, though. say with shipping and handling, $100. chances are that where you get your ink they'll sell the printers, too.

we don't use pigment ink because every method has its pros and cons and at some point you just have to make a decision on *something.* we got what we got because the price on the oki was good and the magictouch transfers did what we wanted, which was shirts and metal for plaques, and there are a lot of specialty paper that they have (we can even make temporary tattoos if we wanted ~ which i think would be a great idea considering our clientele, but, you know, the wife isn't too hep on the idea, i guess b/c the process isn't that easy). too, ink is more expensive than the toner and there can be clogging issues (i base this on our sublimation system, not sure if it applies to pigment inks, too). don't quote me, but as i remember we're supposed to get roughly 2500 prints out of each colour of toner... and that's the 'small' cartridge. replacement carts are somewhere in the $135 range, i think. compare that to *any* printer ink system, pigment or not! :)

the transfers work well for us. pigment inks supposedly have a better colour depth, though i've yet to meet anyone that could reasonably know the difference. maybe if you compared the two together they might see it, but it's just not an issue for us and what we do.

as far as fading goes, it's going to happen with heat transfers. it is what it is. don't want fading? i'll screen print that... for a lot more money on the nine shirts, full colour, that you're wanting. i think the reds are more prone to fading after repeated washes. if i could get people to wear polyester so i could use the sublimation, it would never fade. to answer your question, no, the heat press shouldn't fade any of your colours. not even sure if that's possible, lol. the sun and washing will eventually fade it, though (again, speaking of my system, not sure how well pigment inks hold up).

with any method, you have to look at what you want to accomplish and break the economics of it down. for us, the toner is the way to go, but i'd never say so someone it's by far the best way. it's just the best for us and what we do. :)
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Every now and then Staples and Office Max have a sale on the Epson workforce 1100 (it's been discontinued) for $99. I would look there first. Amazon and eBay might have them for a good deal too. You can get refillable ink carts with bulk pigment ink at a very reasonable price from cobraink.com You can also get an Epson C88+ printer but it can only handle 8.5" x 11" paper. The WF 1100 can handle much larger paper for larger prints. You will want pigment ink because that won't wash off. Unless you go with a laser printer, then you'll have to get laser paper too.
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