Aluminium is normally lighter (which is generally neither here nor there), lasts longer (won't warp), easier to clean (non-porous, so ink is easier to wipe off), and costs a little more.
From my supplier aluminium is about 15-20% more expensive than cedar in standard sizes (i.e. the kind of thing you'd use for t-shirt printing), but cheaper in very large screens (not relevant for most people on these forums).
Personally I prefer aluminium - the price difference isn't significant (especially for such a re-useable piece of equipment) and they're more pleasant to work with.
I use both though - there's nothing wrong with wooden screens (assuming they're a high quality wood and well joined). Next time you need a screen I'd recommend you try aluminium and decide for yourself - it's at least worth trying.
Screens are very much a matter of use what you've got though - they're not worth replacing until they actually physically require it. Most of the screens I use are wood, because that's what's there, but the new screens I buy will be aluminium.
also wood will eventually start to warp. once the frame is warped your limited to one color prints with that frame if your even able to do that. Aluminum is the way to go for sure and you can have them restretched when the mesh tears.
Aluminum is the only way to go. If you have wood screens that aren't warped yet.....use them until they go bad. You'll eventually want a variety of mesh counts as you grow your business. The mesh count you use will be determined by the graphic you want to print.
so far I've only been doing one color shirts, and i think two of my woodscreens are already warped, but they dont seem to affect the printing. they just aren't level when I lay it down flat. I'll be converting to aluminum as soon as i can anyway, so no worries. thanks for everyone's input.
A little bit of warping may not have any real effect on a one colour print. If you're registering a multi-colour print, obviously it's potentially a much bigger deal. Also, they can eventually get extremely warped - to the point where they don't even lay flat enough to do a one colour print, because you can't get even ink coverage across the mesh. But as you've noticed, a little bit of warping doesn't necessarily mean you have to immediately discard the screen.
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