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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So about a month ago we purchased two p600 printers and auto spray coater. In NY so figured would drive down to Jersey and pick up. Met the Spectra guys. Had demo, coated, pressed, and printed ourselves. Stressed maintenance. Showed tips and tricks on said maintenance. I like honest, hard working people. These were those guys. My questions received answers immediately. My opinion and self caused problems next....

Great company. Honest attitude. Great product. Understand this- Maintenance is on you. I wont go on a rant here but lets just say this is/will be my career so I treat my equipment as such. You are responsible for your work area. This is not where you neglect maintenance or science once in a while because if the equipment breaks, the company you work for replaces....you can slack. This is your equipment and being diligent is mandatory. I don't want to sound crass as Im smiling right now.
Keep your machine clean. I have already had a sliver of white ink in-between the belt teeth which caused a stutter and grind. This in turn put small knicks in the platen wheel that hits limit switch. The wheel may put a bit of pressure on the switch and that's ok. Not when you have knicks in your wheel that catch the limit switch, push it past its side-stop before hitting button. Originally I taped to fix. I decided to switch platen back wheel for front. No prob since. Keep your area clean and free of debris. Small humidifier in 12x12 room. Electric oil radiator (moist heat?), room 70F - 72F.

Still testing IA ink curing as well as white/dark IA coating. If anyone wants to see pics I will post once able.

If it wasn't for the people on this site.....Man, so many of us would be lost.
Thanks all for the screen print, vinyl cut, sublimation, and dtg info!

And.....Wow gatorGraf....stellar work!
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Also CMYK on Chromablast paper seems to work (pocket prints/odd places). White ink on the paper went through glue and stuck to back of sheet. Most did not come off paper. Sprayed bit of water on shirt prior on another try. Same result. Will try on some screen print release paper also with powder glue.
Will post some pics soon of some practice prints with the Spectra soon. Quality/Clarity is there....So many option in the CADlink (Spectra) RIP. Out of the box without changing settings is still great.
Forgot. DTG place down the road. Using Kornit. Entered as customer inquiring. Told owner prints look great. He stated that's because its not a "table-top" machine. I will tell you this..... I am my worst critic. However, the prints on the Spectra p600 had equal eye appeal. I could not tell any difference in quality and/print hand.
Big thanks to the Spectra fam for providing a quality build at an affordable price. Commercial units? 20-26 grand for one? Same maintenance? Thanks.... I'll take TWO for under 20 grand from owners lookin out for the blue collar folks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Not my art. Not being sold. Trash for testers. Robot Scene is Black Shirt Graphics IA no edits in Layers. Did use Jobs/KnockOutBlk for underbase. Lettering is from Corel. Only one run through of platen. Could of hit it again with white or sent two thin underbase. Not bad though. Used two coats at 50 with Spectra DTG spray machine. The "Boo" print of Velma....Zoinks Scoob.. is different Output modes. White Shirt Graphics IA queue. Used default no adjustments for first. Second was "Lighten" from "Jobs". Third was Layers/Edit/ICC Profile(same path for others) and changed Output to "CADlink gen printer. Last was CADlink gen inkjet. No white ink on FOTL Heather Grey Heavy Cotton. No pretreat. Two runs through printer(don't want to say 'passes' as this is in "Printer Options" and not related to actual platen runs). Old shirt. The "Spectra" lettering not part of print. Not too revealing but fig'd I would censor.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I had a bit of a back order. About a month or two. They were working on the ink level decoder at that time and I was in no rush and let that be known. I would give them a call as there was a lot going on at that time it was around Christmas/New Years. Depending on what or how many you are picking up, I would recommend some space. 2 printers and coater need space.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
White ink layer going good with 1 pass Black, Inline print mode. There is a video by GreatDane that explains the "Lightness" channel once converted to LAB color. Also found underbase preview for white ink only. Not the "View Raw Data" choice. Used 1 pass black queue. Un-ticked all colors but white then generated preview. Underbase looked exactly how it printed. Wasn't able to duplicate this method in other 2 pass queues. I am still wet behind the ears though. Will duplicate the Inline queue and use settings and print mode for 2 pass queues as well. Will toss up a couple pics during the week. These will be what my girlfriend/business partner printed. She has never, never touched a graphics program and yet watched vids about PS and saved the Lightness channel and Bam! Better than any of prints to date.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Still some practice with graphics program and not printer or settings. Will put up personal designs soon, pretreatment amount and press time. Will be doing work for comic book stores/local comic artists, tattoo shops. Pic's of prints were done one run of platen white and one run of color 1 pass Q Blk Shrt separately...not laid down in actual 1 pass. Once again no sales of these items. I worked for NY Tax and Fi and familiar with Attorney Gen. No bootlegging allowed. They are ALWAYS looking for that in Upstate. And I apologize for being so slow in posting and such as I do supervise a developmentally disabled adult during the day. Follow your dreams and print well!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Also put the Knock Out plugins 8BF's into photoshop plugins folder. In RIP been trying 30-40 KnockOutBlk and 1000 for Knockout Color. Trans/Opacity setting from there even within RIP no PS. But getting that soft feel and fade from those immediate settings (Inline-Print mode). Hope this helps some people out and I'm not wasting anybody's time. Thanks again Spectra!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
So on maintenance... I soak print head in flat oat bran plastic top every shutdown. Make sure you put your waste container above waste level and put clean solution in capping station. In the beginning I was wiping print head very lightly with foam pad with solution on it before I soak. I now just soak at end of day as white ink begins to congeal/dry super fast and any pressure may actually gunk it up. Seems to work the same of better. Either I will take.
Upon turning off printer I immediately soak print head first before flushing capping station. I then flush my capping station.
I also like to syringe solution from side (panel off) while printing. Use a new syringe or smooth pressure syringe....Trust me on that one. I do this with waste container down so as to free flow. I am this meticulous for a reason. I figure screen printers are constantly at a manual press doing some sort of action so I don't mind. When capping station clean I put waste bottle up again and fill cap so when head sets it wets. If you notice at end of print, when head sets and you print another shirt, the capping station has ink in it. This WILL begin to dry if using white. When head sets after next print...more ink drying in capping station and possible applied to print head. Almost forgot important note- I have empty gallon jug as waste cont. with long plastic tube. If I let end of tube be submerged in liquid waste ink it will not drain free. I pull tube out of solution (still inside jug) and slightly tuck tube under platen motor at back. This has allowed the free flow for cleaning during printing so head will set in clean solution. Also push index finger on side pinching it to metal side to give I slight pressure to assist flow. I apologize for the out of order nature of this write. More business and more family passing away has made my posts minimal at best.

If you think you have a white channel out, during a clean shine light at spit pad and watch for waterfall ink spray. You may see problem directly on print head during "spit". You may also see a "puff" of white ink in the airspace under print head. I'm fascinated with simple things like a child so I watch the "spit" during a clean most of the time. And I ALWAYS flush capping station during a clean. When doing large prints any white ink on head will begin to dry. Had a large print run with large image and when clean didn't work I soaked for 15 min instead of wiping with foam.
This is what I have been doing. Things have been fine. By no means whatsoever am I "telling" people that I am DTG scientist.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Wipe and grease the metal rod as it will get inky at end of day. I put piece of clear packaging tape over hole on left inside of printer as ink spray can get on that white wheel and interfere with eye for platen advancement. Also wipe the strip at top with alcohol swab. Sounds like quite a bit but isn't really when its routine. Even a home baker has to clean at the end of EVERY baking day.
And boy was it fun going to the store to purchase a ahhhhh...ummm....small lipstick sized "massage" device. Lol. I use this on the actual cartridges near the square filter to agitate ink sticking to it.
Takes me less than 15 min to both prep for printing and shutdown maintenance. Couple squirts in cap during and maybe a short soak.
Next I will perform cleans and collect and weigh my waste. I really only see a couple milliliters exiting in tube. I use milliliters with agriculture so familiar with visuals.
Will post pics of photo to digital painting in popular graphics program with Bleach effect and smudge.
Printers are great mods in my humble op.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I had to drive to northern MS/AL for funeral so I flushed printer. I first did multiple cleans as I had a bit of a white channel blocked (Viewed by watching head at spit pad). I did the cleans by installing all cleaning carts. Once satisfied that ink was purged by the cleans (Ink very thin and watery in cap station), I soaked the print head again, also cleaning solution could sit in lines. I let sit for about 30 min. I then changed out my spit pad so as during a clean cycle I could view ink (if any) spit out. I then did an "Initial Ink Charge". You would be amazed at the ink cleaned from lines. I just got back from my 100mph through PA on I84 back to NY so I will be re-installing ink tomorrow and will post results.
A couple tips- For cleaning carts, remove top cap and fill with solution from bottom or cart with small syringe provided. Tip the cart a bit when pushing REAL slow as to get sol into front top box with filter. If you do not fill the front upper box it will not suck ink from cart.
Make sure you check you WIC settings and make sure of you waste ink level percentage so you don't need to reset during a clean or flush.
Wrap your ink cart exits (bottom of cart where ink exits) with plastic wrap to keep moist. Also agitate daily.
Even when you purge ink to soak with cleaning solution, I personally would soak the print head in dish as I still find small "flakes" of ink floating in sol.. I stay over-zealous with the maintenance.
Hope this helps. Have a great day all!!
 
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