How To Screen Print With Plastisol Heat Transfers?
Screenprint transfers are a great way to expand your business and increase profits. This article will cover the process of how to make screenprint transfers, step-by-step. We’ll start with what you need: transfer paper, a heat press machine (or clothes dryer), inkjet printer, and an iron.
What is a Screen Print Transfer?
A screenprint transfer is a beautiful way to expand your business. It’s also great for increasing profits and can be a solution for anyone who needs to add extra designs or text on their clothing items.
Screenprint transfers are easy enough that they’re perfect for beginners with any level of experience in design software such as Illustrator, Photoshop, and GIMP.
Screenprint transfers are screen-printed images that are printed in reverse on transfer paper, placed face down against a shirt, heated up, and peeled off to show the beautiful design.
To make your own designs for shirts or other apparel items, you’ll need to have some experience with designing software such as Illustrator Photoshop, or Gimp because we’re not going over those steps here. We will cover how to print out designs onto t-shirt material (which is what most people use), but be aware that different materials require different methods of applying heat before transferring them onto clothing.
Here’s what you’ll need: Transfer Paper (also called “plastisol” transfer paper) – You can find this at any craft store, and it’s usually near the inkjet printer ribbon. Heat Press Machine or Clothes Dryer – You can find these at any craft store as well, but you may need to order a dryer online depending on what type of business you’re starting out with. Inkjet Printer – Again, this is commonly found in most stores and are affordable for beginners. Iron – This isn’t required if you have either a heat press machine or clothes dryer available.
Screen Print Transfer Process
Step One: Start designing your own prints on transfer paper (or “plastisol” transfer paper). These can be made in any program like Photoshop or Illustrator.
Step Two: Print out the designs onto t-shirt material using an inkjet printer with transfer paper and set them aside.
Step Three: Plug in a heat press machine (or clothes dryer) and turn it up all the way so that when you put your transfers down they will quickly stick to the shirt without coming off again right away while pressing them against the fabric inside of a screen printing frame, ironing board cover, or some other surface for transferring images quickly.
Step Four: Place your screenprinted image face down onto clothing or other fabric and press down for about 20-30 seconds – have patience if this is your first time doing this! You can peel off now once everything is totally cool and dry.
Step Five: Repeat this same process for as many shirts or pieces of fabric that you want to customize with heat transfers!
The amount of time it takes to make screen print transfer designs is about 30 minutes, but the results will be worth all your work. You’ll have a lot more creativity available when making shirt designs than if you were limited by use of just one printer ink color which most people are used to seeing in stores now-a-days. Now imagine what could happen after adding multiple colors into your design using screens – get creative and find out!
Insider’s Tip: Heat transfers can have a shelf life. The shelf life is directly tied into how “dry” or “gelled” the ink is. Over time, some of the oils and liquids in the transfer can be soaked up by the transfer paper. This will look like an oil stain or halo around the transfer. When you notice this on your transfer, it is no longer usable.
WHAT YOU’LL NEED To Screen Print With Plastisol Heat Transfer Paper
-Transfer Paper (also called “plastisol” transfer paper) – You can find this at any craft store, and it’s usually near the inkjet printer ribbon.
-Heat Press Machine or Clothes Dryer – You can find these at any craft store as well, but you may need to order a dryer online depending on what type of business you’re starting out with.
-Inkjet Printer – Again, this is commonly found in most stores and are affordable for beginners.
-Iron – This isn’t required if you have either a heat press machine or clothes dryer available.
Do not write numbers or bullet points! Write content like normal paragraphs without numbering sentences! It is important to have a logical flow of information!
How long do screen printed transfers last?
Screen print transfers can last anywhere from a few weeks to 12 months, depending on how often they are washed in the washing machine.
How do I remove screen printed transfers?
If you are not happy with your design after it’s been applied and dried, don’t worry! You have up to 24 hours before removing them for a refund or replacement. All that needs to be done is running an iron over the wet area of transfer paper for about 20 seconds then peel off gently (or use baby oil). There will be no residue left behind when peeling. If your heat press has cooled down too much so that transferring doesn’t work anymore you can also reheat using either a dryer at medium-high setting or place under lamp for a few seconds.
What are the benefits of screen printed transfers?
Screen print transfer paper is an inexpensive option for customizing clothing and other fabric when compared to having these items professionally embroidered, or even using vinyl heat press designs that leave residue behind after peeling them off. Screen prints can also be used in conjunction with other printing methods like acid dyes which will give you more color customization options than you would have otherwise!
Hot Vs Cold Peel Transfers
There is no difference in the end result of a hot peel or cold peel. The only thing that could differ would be if you were using either transfer paper with plastisol ink (cold peel) for printing on cotton, linen, or polyester fabrics then it may not work as well because they are heat sensitive materials – so make sure to take this into consideration when selecting your type of transfers!
It can be as simple as printing the color onto your transfer paper with an inkjet printer, or you could mix different colors together using acrylic paint. If this is something that interests you then I recommend checking out my blog post on “How to make multicolored plastisol transfers”.
-Transfer Paper (also called “plastisol” transfer paper) – You can find these in any craft store and they’re relatively cheap!
-Heat Press Machine or Clothes Dryer – These are available at a variety of retailers but may need to be ordered online depending on what type of business you want to start.
-Inkjet Printer – This will also be found in nearly every retailer and it’s affordable for beginners too!
-Iron – Ironing isn’t necessary with heat presses or dryers.
-Prepping Screen Print Transfers – Inspect the transfer paper to make sure that ink is not running before starting!
Screen printed transfers, also known as plastisol heat transfers, are screen printed images that are printed in reverse on transfer paper and placed face down against a shirt which is then heated up until it peels off smoothly without any residue left behind. These prepped items can last anywhere from two weeks to 12 months depending on how often they’re washed in the washing machine. They can be removed by simply reheating them for about 20 seconds using an iron (but use baby oil if your heat press has cooled down).
MAKING THE SCREEN(S)
To print on a shirt, you coat the screen with thin emulsion. But, when printing onto a shirt transfer paper, you need to coat the screen with thicker emulsion. Use the round side of the scoop coater to get a thicker layer of emulsion on top of your screen. The reason for this is that you want a thicker ink deposit onto your transfer paper; therefore, you need a thicker layer of emulsion.
Remember when printing film, you need to reverse your image in the print dialog. Make sure your images are printed with the text reversed on the negative (the back side of a lens). When exposing your screen, make sure that you show this to us now and not later. We will reverse it again during heat pressing for best results!
SCREEN PRINTING THE TRANSFER
Heat transfers are easy to make. You need to have an off-contact of 1/16″ throughout the screen, and keep it consistent. If you print a few transfers, use spray adhesive so they don’t move around when printing. If you plan on printing lots of transfers or different colors, get a vacuum pallet that will hold them down with suction while they are being printed. When printing multi-colored transfers, you need to print in reverse order (under base). You also need to flash between colors. If the design has thick areas that take a long time to gel, then it may need more flashing time. Thin areas will gel faster. For example, if you are making a neck label with fine print, thin areas will gel quickly and thick areas will take longer.
Insider’s Tip: If you do not remove all of the powder, too much adhesive will stick to your garment.
TIME TO CURE! WAIT A SECOND…
Actually, you are not really curing the ink during this step. You want to make the ink wet but it needs time to dry when heated. How long and what temperature it needs depends on what type of ink you are using and how detailed the design is. Thicker designs take more time (more heat) and thinner designs take less heat. Low cure inks like FN-INK™ will need less heat whereas plastisol inks (with a 300°-320° cure temp) will need more heat.
Printers usually heat up the ink for 6-10 seconds. That will change if the ink is thick or there are a lot of details in the print. For low cure inks, you want the ink to be heated to 180°. For high cure inks, you want it to be at 240°. Don’t use different kinds of ink for multicolored prints. Pick one and stick with that for a good result!
How do you tell if your ink is properly gelled? You should be able to peel it from the paper. If the ink is under-gelled, then it will break apart easily. If the ink is over-gelled, you won’t be able to peel it off of the paper. The best way to tell that your ink has been gelled well is if you can stretch and split it without having any cracks or breaks in it.
Storing your screen print transfers properly is key to ensuring they last for an extended period of time.
Once you transfer is cured, you should store it in a dry and temperature-controlled place like a heated studio or room. If stored properly, it can last for more than a year!
This is easy. Set the heat press to be 30°-40° hotter than the cure temperature of your ink. If your ink cures at 260°, set it at 300°. For standard plastisol inks, set it at 330° and then use light pressure for 10-12 seconds.
For a medium transfer, you should press firmly into the shirt. Wait for the time limit or for the transfer to cool down. Always do a wash test before you use it and make sure it is completely cured with good adhesion.