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So, @vvamic, where could one find more information (model, source, instructions) on the DIY dual 4720 head 24” printer? Or, better yet, would you recommend an equal quality solution at 13" (would it be worth going down, I just do apparel)?

It would be much appreciated.
adding to your research check here
 

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So, @vvamic, where could one find more information (model, source, instructions) on the DIY dual 4720 head 24” printer? Or, better yet, would you recommend an equal quality solution at 13" (would it be worth going down, I just do apparel)?

It would be much appreciated.
I am sorry but I don’t have much experience with printers other than I mentioned.

You can get more info about these 24” ones from Alibaba.com, just talk to the manufacturers and let them answer your queries.
I can recommed some manufacturers that I deal with and have been in inkjet printer market for more than 10 years at-least.
But I would recommend you try to buy the actual printer locally. Unless you have experience with industrial inkjet printers.

You need supplies too, so make sure you can get them locally too, importing in small quantities can be a hassle.
 

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You can find Chinese DTF ink's for like 20-40USD/Liter (white is usually around 10% more). My ink's are slightly more expensive and probably the best you can find in market for DTF within reasonable price.
I had a look earlier on myself and it's true, Chinese ink prices are now ridiculously low.
I already have all the equipment to do this, so I'll give it a go.
 

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I am sorry but I don’t have much experience with printers other than I mentioned.

You can get more info about these 24” ones from Alibaba.com, just talk to the manufacturers and let them answer your queries.
I can recommed some manufacturers that I deal with and have been in inkjet printer market for more than 10 years at-least.
But I would recommend you try to buy the actual printer locally. Unless you have experience with industrial inkjet printers.

You need supplies too, so make sure you can get them locally too, importing in small quantities can be a hassle.
Well, your recommended manufacturer from China would certainly be better than me gambling on one in the dark.

A major part of the appeal is the economics, going local would break the piggy bank, probably defeat the whole purpose once it gets near DTG money. No experience with industrial inkjets, but motivated to learn, capable, and will accept my own risks, understood. Supplies - I'm sure I can figure those out one way or another.

I don't want to put you on the spot, but I'm intrigued. You can PM me if you don't want to publicly float your Chinese vendor. Thank you.
 

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The name you have chosen is a bit silly.
1. DTF is an existing acronym for "direct to fabric".
2. The film is not the end product, so your process is not "direct".
My opinion at least...


It is much more simple than DTG actually, because it eliminates the dreadful pretreatment step.
It will also eliminate the cost of expensive mistakes. Messing up a large print on a premium shirt can easily cost $8 to $10 (cost of ink + shirt).
There are drawback as well though. Durability and print quality are the obvious/expected ones.

This machine is not complicated, but it's not meant for home use either.
You don't really need all this automation, unless you do really high volume.
Hello do you know where I can find information on the conversion of my Epson 3880 by chance?
 

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I am using this type of setup for more than 2 months now and I can give a brief review for the same.


The name comes from china and yes it is neither correct nor a good name for it. The correct name would be PET film Printer/Transfer, as it prints on a special PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate) film which is later transferred to the product.



The machines used in setup:

A printer that can use these special DTF inks . Currently there are 3 types of printers that are available in market.
A basic L1800 conversion
24” DIY printers using Epson heads. Cheaper ones use XP600 heads and the other uses two 4720/3200 heads (one for white, one fore CMYK).

I used the L1800 first, cost me around 1200 USD for the whole setup with consumables.
Head died within 2 weeks. L1800 isn’t meant for these inks especially the white. You need to clean after every couple prints and it takes around 10-15 minutes to print a decent quality A4 size image. So in my opinion not worth unless u want to give it a try and have money to throw away.

I went for the double 4720 24” head printer, this head is a replacement to the older Epson DX5 heads which many DIY DTG machines use. The machine has ink circulation, wet capping and prints quite fast. Last week I printed 10000 5x5 inch designs within 3-4 hours, with colour and white top layer(which later becomes the base).
Inks used are water solvable just as DTG but tend to be a different formula, Also somewhat cheaper than most DTG inks. I am using Korean inks currently which are more expensive than what the Chinese are offering but still less expensive than DTG inks.

Power Coating
Once you print your design on the PET film, You need to apply TPU (Thermoplastic Polyurethane) powder to it. The inks dry quite slowly so you have good 10-15 minutes to apply the powder to it.
This can be done manually or using a powder apply/heat machine.

I do it manually when printing less area, say 1 meter of roll, anything more I let the machine do the work. This machine has another roll on the other end with a rewinder (a simple paper roll) which is then attached to the PET film roll from the printer. As the printer prints the roll is slowly pulled towards the powder coating unit and then later pushed towards the heating panel, which is basically a curved metal plate with heating rods on it. The finished roll is cut manually at the end.
So all this machine does is sprinkle powder on the printed ink, dust the extra powder from the film and then bake it. The finished product can be rolled and stored for as long as you wish.
One thing to be noted is that this machine does save a lot of time by doing all this quickly but at the same time it bakes a lot of TPU powder which when melted releases fumes. These fumes are a health hazard if inhaled for prolonged periods.
The machine has exhaust vents for these fumes which should be properly piped and led outdoor or in a smoke filtration unit.

Design Application
The final design can be applied on almost anything, for garments preferably using a heat press.

Maintenance
The Powder coating/heat machine requires no maintenance.
For the printer I believe requires same level of maintenance as any industrial ink jet printer. Need to print atleast every other day or take a nozzle check and maintain temperature. Cleaning if the nozzle check has missing lines or after printing a good amount of designs is recommended.

Pricing
Powder coating machines go for around 2-3k and printers 4-5k. The XP600 head printers are ~1k cheaper. These are China prices.
Consumables
Inks: You can find a lot of ink suppliers, all are somewhat cheaper than DTG.
Film: around $80-150 for 100 meters
TPU: $5-10 for 1kg
You use almost negligible TPU, I have printed 150+ meters and I still have more than 50% of my 20 kg bag.

Now we get to the final part, advantages/disadvantages, design quality and durability.
Before I give my verdict, let me tell you I am in garment manufacturing and I have had experience with every garment printing method there is, if not first hand but enough finished goods with every print technique.

Quality is equal to DTG if not better, it’s more vibrant than DTG as the inks aren’t soaked into the garment. Colours come out bright similar to good quality Laser transfers.

Durability is excellent. I have washed different fabrics with designs on them, 100% cotton and polyester, fleece, polyblends 50/50. All machines washed for 3 weeks every day. The designs don’t fade or crack.

It’s quite hard to peel them, if for e.g using your nails, even a tiny piece is hard to peel if it’s applied correctly. Also if ironed after every wash it sticks even better.

Feel:
Here is where I believe it loses points.
PET film designs kinda feel like a very thick screen printed design or a very thin vinyl.
It’s quite smooth but at the same time has good stretchability. Imagine having very thin stretchable plastic film on shirt, that’s how it feels.
But if your designs are small in size and or breathable then this feel is quite minimum.
Also the quality of feel gets better if heat pressed 1-2 times after the initial application.
The TPU plays a major role here. The better the powder the better the feel and durability.
I tried $5 TPU and it’s feel is thicker than $10 one. I believe it can be made even less as there are even better/costlier TPU qualities available.
For me the $10 works well but people are free to try.

Can apply on almost anything, I have applied to jute bags and even on glass with a simple iron.

The only difference or win for DTG in my opinion here is the hand feel.

I guess I have wrote a lot, been like 10 minutes since I started, so I will end here with some final thoughts.

DTF or PET film transfer uses something from both DTG and Laser transfer.

It uses a DTG type printer to print transfers that are as good as them while being durable, faster and somewhat cheaper without any fabric limitations.
What about P600 ? I know it's well-known for DTG and widely respected.
ICompanies like Spectra, Katana,Tdozer, and DTGPro have made these for years, for DTG, and now it looks to me like a perfect fit for DTF.
L1800 printers although good in the fact that they have tanks and low-cost heads, are dreadfully slow, by what I've seen in the videos and forums.
I need speed, so I'm considering the P600.
 

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Yes, P600 is the us model. Shows as discontinued on the Epson website, but available on places like 123refills and Dtgpro, it's crazy in demand since it's well-known in DTG circles, lots of videos, Epson inkpad adjustment software and has the Extra large cartridges.
 

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What about P600 ? I know it's well-known for DTG and widely respected.
ICompanies like Spectra, Katana,Tdozer, and DTGPro have made these for years, for DTG, and now it looks to me like a perfect fit for DTF.
L1800 printers although good in the fact that they have tanks and low-cost heads, are dreadfully slow, by what I've seen in the videos and forums.
I need speed, so I'm considering the P600.
I would love to modify a P600 but getting hands on one is almost impossible. I can't find any locally for me. Even international ones are overpricing the hell out of them. Printing 1-2 off designs on 24" printer always end's up in wastage. So I was hoping to get a smaller printer which should be faster than the L1800, but also easily available, any suggestions are welcome.
 

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I am using this type of setup for more than 2 months now and I can give a brief review for the same.


The name comes from china and yes it is neither correct nor a good name for it. The correct name would be PET film Printer/Transfer, as it prints on a special PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate) film which is later transferred to the product.



The machines used in setup:

A printer that can use these special DTF inks . Currently there are 3 types of printers that are available in market.
A basic L1800 conversion
24” DIY printers using Epson heads. Cheaper ones use XP600 heads and the other uses two 4720/3200 heads (one for white, one fore CMYK).

I used the L1800 first, cost me around 1200 USD for the whole setup with consumables.
Head died within 2 weeks. L1800 isn’t meant for these inks especially the white. You need to clean after every couple prints and it takes around 10-15 minutes to print a decent quality A4 size image. So in my opinion not worth unless u want to give it a try and have money to throw away.

I went for the double 4720 24” head printer, this head is a replacement to the older Epson DX5 heads which many DIY DTG machines use. The machine has ink circulation, wet capping and prints quite fast. Last week I printed 10000 5x5 inch designs within 3-4 hours, with colour and white top layer(which later becomes the base).
Inks used are water solvable just as DTG but tend to be a different formula, Also somewhat cheaper than most DTG inks. I am using Korean inks currently which are more expensive than what the Chinese are offering but still less expensive than DTG inks.

Power Coating
Once you print your design on the PET film, You need to apply TPU (Thermoplastic Polyurethane) powder to it. The inks dry quite slowly so you have good 10-15 minutes to apply the powder to it.
This can be done manually or using a powder apply/heat machine.

I do it manually when printing less area, say 1 meter of roll, anything more I let the machine do the work. This machine has another roll on the other end with a rewinder (a simple paper roll) which is then attached to the PET film roll from the printer. As the printer prints the roll is slowly pulled towards the powder coating unit and then later pushed towards the heating panel, which is basically a curved metal plate with heating rods on it. The finished roll is cut manually at the end.
So all this machine does is sprinkle powder on the printed ink, dust the extra powder from the film and then bake it. The finished product can be rolled and stored for as long as you wish.
One thing to be noted is that this machine does save a lot of time by doing all this quickly but at the same time it bakes a lot of TPU powder which when melted releases fumes. These fumes are a health hazard if inhaled for prolonged periods.
The machine has exhaust vents for these fumes which should be properly piped and led outdoor or in a smoke filtration unit.

Design Application
The final design can be applied on almost anything, for garments preferably using a heat press.

Maintenance
The Powder coating/heat machine requires no maintenance.
For the printer I believe requires same level of maintenance as any industrial ink jet printer. Need to print atleast every other day or take a nozzle check and maintain temperature. Cleaning if the nozzle check has missing lines or after printing a good amount of designs is recommended.

Pricing
Powder coating machines go for around 2-3k and printers 4-5k. The XP600 head printers are ~1k cheaper. These are China prices.
Consumables
Inks: You can find a lot of ink suppliers, all are somewhat cheaper than DTG.
Film: around $80-150 for 100 meters
TPU: $5-10 for 1kg
You use almost negligible TPU, I have printed 150+ meters and I still have more than 50% of my 20 kg bag.

Now we get to the final part, advantages/disadvantages, design quality and durability.
Before I give my verdict, let me tell you I am in garment manufacturing and I have had experience with every garment printing method there is, if not first hand but enough finished goods with every print technique.

Quality is equal to DTG if not better, it’s more vibrant than DTG as the inks aren’t soaked into the garment. Colours come out bright similar to good quality Laser transfers.

Durability is excellent. I have washed different fabrics with designs on them, 100% cotton and polyester, fleece, polyblends 50/50. All machines washed for 3 weeks every day. The designs don’t fade or crack.

It’s quite hard to peel them, if for e.g using your nails, even a tiny piece is hard to peel if it’s applied correctly. Also if ironed after every wash it sticks even better.

Feel:
Here is where I believe it loses points.
PET film designs kinda feel like a very thick screen printed design or a very thin vinyl.
It’s quite smooth but at the same time has good stretchability. Imagine having very thin stretchable plastic film on shirt, that’s how it feels.
But if your designs are small in size and or breathable then this feel is quite minimum.
Also the quality of feel gets better if heat pressed 1-2 times after the initial application.
The TPU plays a major role here. The better the powder the better the feel and durability.
I tried $5 TPU and it’s feel is thicker than $10 one. I believe it can be made even less as there are even better/costlier TPU qualities available.
For me the $10 works well but people are free to try.

Can apply on almost anything, I have applied to jute bags and even on glass with a simple iron.

The only difference or win for DTG in my opinion here is the hand feel.

I guess I have wrote a lot, been like 10 minutes since I started, so I will end here with some final thoughts.

DTF or PET film transfer uses something from both DTG and Laser transfer.

It uses a DTG type printer to print transfers that are as good as them while being durable, faster and somewhat cheaper without any fabric limitations.
Can u give me idea. After 100mtr roll. How much ink is left in ink tank? Or what is the cost per sqinch ?
 

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I am using this type of setup for more than 2 months now and I can give a brief review for the same.


The name comes from china and yes it is neither correct nor a good name for it. The correct name would be PET film Printer/Transfer, as it prints on a special PET (Polyethylene Terephthalate) film which is later transferred to the product.



The machines used in setup:

A printer that can use these special DTF inks . Currently there are 3 types of printers that are available in market.
A basic L1800 conversion
24” DIY printers using Epson heads. Cheaper ones use XP600 heads and the other uses two 4720/3200 heads (one for white, one fore CMYK).

I used the L1800 first, cost me around 1200 USD for the whole setup with consumables.
Head died within 2 weeks. L1800 isn’t meant for these inks especially the white. You need to clean after every couple prints and it takes around 10-15 minutes to print a decent quality A4 size image. So in my opinion not worth unless u want to give it a try and have money to throw away.

I went for the double 4720 24” head printer, this head is a replacement to the older Epson DX5 heads which many DIY DTG machines use. The machine has ink circulation, wet capping and prints quite fast. Last week I printed 10000 5x5 inch designs within 3-4 hours, with colour and white top layer(which later becomes the base).
Inks used are water solvable just as DTG but tend to be a different formula, Also somewhat cheaper than most DTG inks. I am using Korean inks currently which are more expensive than what the Chinese are offering but still less expensive than DTG inks.

Power Coating
Once you print your design on the PET film, You need to apply TPU (Thermoplastic Polyurethane) powder to it. The inks dry quite slowly so you have good 10-15 minutes to apply the powder to it.
This can be done manually or using a powder apply/heat machine.

I do it manually when printing less area, say 1 meter of roll, anything more I let the machine do the work. This machine has another roll on the other end with a rewinder (a simple paper roll) which is then attached to the PET film roll from the printer. As the printer prints the roll is slowly pulled towards the powder coating unit and then later pushed towards the heating panel, which is basically a curved metal plate with heating rods on it. The finished roll is cut manually at the end.
So all this machine does is sprinkle powder on the printed ink, dust the extra powder from the film and then bake it. The finished product can be rolled and stored for as long as you wish.
One thing to be noted is that this machine does save a lot of time by doing all this quickly but at the same time it bakes a lot of TPU powder which when melted releases fumes. These fumes are a health hazard if inhaled for prolonged periods.
The machine has exhaust vents for these fumes which should be properly piped and led outdoor or in a smoke filtration unit.

Design Application
The final design can be applied on almost anything, for garments preferably using a heat press.

Maintenance
The Powder coating/heat machine requires no maintenance.
For the printer I believe requires same level of maintenance as any industrial ink jet printer. Need to print atleast every other day or take a nozzle check and maintain temperature. Cleaning if the nozzle check has missing lines or after printing a good amount of designs is recommended.

Pricing
Powder coating machines go for around 2-3k and printers 4-5k. The XP600 head printers are ~1k cheaper. These are China prices.
Consumables
Inks: You can find a lot of ink suppliers, all are somewhat cheaper than DTG.
Film: around $80-150 for 100 meters
TPU: $5-10 for 1kg
You use almost negligible TPU, I have printed 150+ meters and I still have more than 50% of my 20 kg bag.

Now we get to the final part, advantages/disadvantages, design quality and durability.
Before I give my verdict, let me tell you I am in garment manufacturing and I have had experience with every garment printing method there is, if not first hand but enough finished goods with every print technique.

Quality is equal to DTG if not better, it’s more vibrant than DTG as the inks aren’t soaked into the garment. Colours come out bright similar to good quality Laser transfers.

Durability is excellent. I have washed different fabrics with designs on them, 100% cotton and polyester, fleece, polyblends 50/50. All machines washed for 3 weeks every day. The designs don’t fade or crack.

It’s quite hard to peel them, if for e.g using your nails, even a tiny piece is hard to peel if it’s applied correctly. Also if ironed after every wash it sticks even better.

Feel:
Here is where I believe it loses points.
PET film designs kinda feel like a very thick screen printed design or a very thin vinyl.
It’s quite smooth but at the same time has good stretchability. Imagine having very thin stretchable plastic film on shirt, that’s how it feels.
But if your designs are small in size and or breathable then this feel is quite minimum.
Also the quality of feel gets better if heat pressed 1-2 times after the initial application.
The TPU plays a major role here. The better the powder the better the feel and durability.
I tried $5 TPU and it’s feel is thicker than $10 one. I believe it can be made even less as there are even better/costlier TPU qualities available.
For me the $10 works well but people are free to try.

Can apply on almost anything, I have applied to jute bags and even on glass with a simple iron.

The only difference or win for DTG in my opinion here is the hand feel.

I guess I have wrote a lot, been like 10 minutes since I started, so I will end here with some final thoughts.

DTF or PET film transfer uses something from both DTG and Laser transfer.

It uses a DTG type printer to print transfers that are as good as them while being durable, faster and somewhat cheaper without any fabric limitations.
Hello. I'm from India as well. I've got a couple of doubts regarding this. Would you mind sharing your email id?
 

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OK here is my verdict.
This thing does work but it is not the unicorn people portray it to be.

1. Design limitations
If you are thinking of printing halftones and feathered edges... forget about it. The glue will show and it's really ugly.
I cannot think of any design you could print with this and you could not print on printable vinyl.
You are basically limited to contour cut designs just like with vinyl.
Cost (film+ ink) is also similar to printable vinyl.
Printing time is much slower than printable vinyl because you need to print the white layer too.
I know vinyl needs to be weeded, but this needs powdering and baking. When done manually I think vinyl actually wins.
Edges are not as clear and sharp as with vinyl. This can be either a good or a bad thing, depending on the look you want to have.

2. Not as good as DTG for white or light color garments
CMYK DTG on light color fabric is really soft and that's something people really like.
These inkjet-via-film transfers are always a film on top of the fabric, even when the fabric is white.
To be honest JPSS transfers on white shirts are a much better option.
Therefore, inkjet-via-film transfers is a total fail for me... More expensive than JPSS and less quality.

To conclude this is not something I could personally use.
I think most people buying this would want to make transfers to re-sell, but even in this case I think printable vinyl would be a much better choice.
Vinyl film can be white, clear, metallic, etc. A lot more possibilities.
Chinese brand wide format solvent printer-cutters are really cheap (around £3,000) and are now as reliable as the big brands.
Bulk solvent ink is £30 per litre and easy to find.
If you prefer a known brand printer the Mimaki CJV150 (80cm / 32 inch wide) is curently priced around £5,500
Another positive solvent printers have is that you will not be limited to t-shirts... You can print stickers, banners, posters, product labels, etc...
No point wasting your time chasing unicorns. That's my opinion at least.
 

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Can u give me idea. After 100mtr roll. How much ink is left in ink tank? Or what is the cost per sqinch ?
I have already mentioned my ~ print cost in my earlier posts. Your question is something that depends upon type of job you will be doing. Printer has 5 ink types, so the colour you print most will get used more, off-course white being the exception as its used in almost every print.

It's (i believe) currently the least expensive garment printing technique when it comes to full colour, customization, no restriction on fabric and lower quantity.

OK here is my verdict.
This thing does work but it is not the unicorn people portray it to be.
Your observation is to the point, i already mentioned in my first post that this is no premium print. But i don't agree on your printable vinyl argument, i found this to have more design potential than vinyl, also printable/sublimation vinyl is too much work with a lot ways it could go wrong.

There are tons of videos (mostly from indonesian DTG print design sellers) you can check on Youtube if u really want to see the quality and potential it has.

But if you are into premium design’s you offcourse need not pay any attention to this.

Once again I don’t sell this, so if anyone finds this good or bad, it all depends upon their use and requirement.
For someone who sells full color/size printed shirts for less than $10 (some even under $5), it makes sense for me but it won’t for all.
 

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it also seems to require a very hands-on daily maintenance plus technical maintenance and/or troubleshooting
so i don't think it is just for anyone
research, research, research before plunking down thousands of dollars

here is an updated vid i posted in another thread:



this unicorn sighting is:
272471
 

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it also seems to require a very hands-on daily maintenance plus technical maintenance and/or troubleshooting
so i don't think it is just for anyone
research, research, research before plunking down thousands of dollars

here is an updated vid i posted in another thread:



this unicorn sighting is:
View attachment 272471
I can't tell if he is saying DTF is bad or selling his transfers. Maintenance is required with any industrial printer, some might require more than others.

Yes, the inks are hard on heads, hence it requires ink circulation and daily prints. If you cover that it works well.

i had issues with desktop version too, it was slow and required too much cleaning. My 24" is going strong printing atleast 2k prints/ week. It does have some minor issues now and then but that's understandable as this method is still in infancy and the machines are first gen. I am seeing improved ones coming up, i might update on that soon.
 
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