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Quick question on pretreatment

1442 Views 11 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  DDT Designs
1) Read a few times about going half and half. half water and half pre treat. Is this the standard if so should it be distilled water? Or is just using the pretreat alone ok. I use Image Armor

2) Whats the best way to avoid discoloration on the shirts when curing the shirts with the heat press. Is there a way to get rid of the discoloration? I did a red shirt and after I dried the pre treat the area treated came out looking a fair bit darker then the actual shirt. Would washing take care of this?

3) When using the AI for light colors on white shirts I get a yellow box happen. Reasons and how can I avoid this.

Cheers and thank you for taking the time to answer my questions.

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Yellow box is likely scorching. Too much heat or too long or too much pressure. We do white shirts for 30 seconds with no pressure @ 330º
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DO NOT dilute Image Armour. it is made to be used straight out of the bottle. DuPont, you could dilute up to 50/50, but not IA.

it sounds like maybe you are using a bit too much pretreat. We've done a lot of light colored shirts, including white, and haven't had any issues with yellowing. like Mike said, heat could also be your problem. i had a light orange shirt stain a bit, and it did come out in the wash, but you don't want to have to pre-wash your shirts, so try backing off on the amount of pretreat, and check your temps.

my process is i dry the pretreat at 330 with heavy pressure, and i cure my prints at 330 for 90 seconds (per layer) with very light pressure.
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Sorry, I just discovered my previous post was not complete. I do 30 seconds heavy pressure on the pretreat and 90 with no pressure on curing the print. Hope I didn't cause a problem.
I also read around here once that you can give your shirt a light spray with distilled water before applying the pre treat, that his would help in shirts not getting discolored. Yes no? The one most frustrating thing I find on these forums is there doesn't seem to be an industry standard that much. Everyone seems to do things slightly different. Different weights, different pressures, different amounts, sigh.
that's because we work in different shops, different environments, different hardware/software, different products, etc.

you could try misting around the edge of where your pretreat will be. you shouldn't need to mist the print area.
So heat pressing a pretreated shirt is just to dry the shirt correct? So as was mentioned using zero pressure would still do the trick?
it will do the trick, but the reason for the heavy pressure is to ensure the fibers are dried "flat". i also use a sign vinyl squeegee to lay the fibers down white they are still wet. then it goes to my heat press.
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So to fix my problem.

1) adjust pretreat amount accordingly. I use a hand sprayer so this is always touch and go to get the exact amount every time.

2) flatten the fibers (which I do using a whooser brush) then heat press at a lower temp with lighter pressure.

3) print then cure normally.

Up until now I have just worked with white and blacks. But now everyone wants colored shirts. So learning curve is back in action. lol.
Thank you so so much for you keep repeating same song to NeoNewbies without getting tired. Remind me school teachers.
Don't know how to thanks to you.
Cheers! Beers are on me always
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if that works for you, then do it! i dry my pretreat with HEAVY pressure and cure my prints with LIGHT pressure both at 330 degrees. i also pretreat by hand.
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Up until now I have just been working with blacks and whites. Whites I never bothered to pretreat because I always got the yellow box. So whites I just printed then cured the inks at 330 at one interval of 90 seconds.

For blacks I dried the pretreat at 350 for one interval of 90 seconds or until there was no more steam. Then cured the inks at two intervals of 90 seconds at 330. Flipping the paper over between intervals.

This has worked great for me. Before I started doing this system my prints would always flake off in the wash. Now they stay looking great even after ten washes.

For the colored shirts I lowered the temp and use very light pressure until there is no steam. The pretreated area now has very little difference in color with the rest of the shirt but still getting scorch marks along the outer edge. I am afraid if I lower the temps too much when curing with less time or less pressure that my prints will start flaking off again.
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