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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi there,

I'm a total newbie to screen printing and just testing the waters right now. I've made 4 small screens so far and they have all come out really well. However when I do the printing with the squeegee I lift the screen off and there's a bit of smudging (especially when I use white) and I've found that there's a bit of ink on the underside of my screen. I also find that it's hard to lift the screen off as the fabric kind of lifts then slides off, creating a smudge. Does this have anything to do with it being on contact?

Thanks
 

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Wekcome to the wonderful world of screen printing :)

It can be many things but in most cases its your off contact, it normally needs to be an 8th of an inch or in australia like 3-4mm. I normally use tongue depressors for my off contact.

But without sufficient off contact the ink will push out the sides of the design as with the off contact the mesh springs back up and wont leave smudging...

Hope it helps but just make sure you play around with it a little bit but dont make the off contact too much.

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However when I do the printing with the squeegee I lift the screen off and there's a bit of smudging (especially when I use white) and I've found that there's a bit of ink on the underside of my screen. I also find that it's hard to lift the screen off as the fabric kind of lifts then slides off, creating a smudge. Does this have anything to do with it being on contact?
Water based inks should be printed on-contact. that should eliminate ink on the underside of your screen.

As Monkeystylz suggested, use a pallet adhesive to prevent the garment from lifting.
 

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Anything waterbased ink that is opaque for dark garnents in general is a little thicker and you will need off contact for that. I use off contact for all my water based inks and have not had any problems

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hey Andie and Toby, the 1/8" worked ok but as I said, I'm still really new to screen printing. I've been at it quite a bit since I posted the original thread and since I'm screen printing yards of fabric I've found on contact has worked just as good, I think it was mostly my technique at first that was cause it to smudge... Since then no problems. Hope you find a solution!
 
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