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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Washing shirts before screen printing?

I was just wondering if anyone bothers to wash shirts before printing?
I have gildan brand shirts i'm doing, they most manufacturers apply a sizing to them? It says they are preshrunk.
 

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I have never heard of a printer washing their shirts before screen printing. It seems like a bottleneck for the work flow and an unnecessary expense that will only cause you to raise your prices.
 

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I wouldn't do it. I don't know anything about what washing does to the print quality, but as a customer I expect that “new T-shirt smell” to be there when my shirt arrives. It's hard to explain but there's nothing better than wearing a brand new tee.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
thanks for the replies,

as an airbrush artist it's sometimes recommended to wash the sizing out since you're applying alot less product when you airbrush and will help any prolong the colors and adhering.

Just wanted others opinions regarding printing, didn't make sense to me either to wash them. Since you're applying a lot more product I wouldn't see much of a problem with adhering, etc...
 

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I airbrushed t-shirts for 17 years before I began doing art and seps for screenprinting. I used inks made by a friend of mine in Carrolton Georgia who's company was Aqua Flow inks. He originally brought me those inks in mason jars to try out and he got it right. I used his white ink on colored shirts and blacks and at one time (seems like a century ago now) I was considered one of the best t-shirt airbrush artists in Atlanta. I NEVER washed t-shirts first and still had excellent washability on his inks. Excellent color vibrancy, opaqueness and minimal tip drying as I worked. I used a Paasche, Badger and Iwata airbrushes depending on the size and complexity of the design I was airbrushing so I don't believe washing shirts before you airbrush on them will help you make more money in any way.
 

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Everything I have read on Google says you have to pre-wash your T-shirts because T-shirt have sizing in them and the sizing will prevent the ink from bonding with the fabric. For example, this article talks about washing and curing. jezzeblog.blogspot.com/2012/03/curing-fabric-prints.html
 
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