T Shirt Screen Printing EquipmentCredit: http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Lifeandhealth/Pix/pictures/2010/5/11/1273572173069/Screen-printing-T-shirts-006.jpg
This article is all about t shirt screen printing equipment, and how to do it! I've written it as a guide for anyone who wants to get into t shirt silk screen printing, and it will show you the basic equipment and supplies you'll need to get started with your project or home business.
T shirt screen printing equipment is quite specialized, so you'll want to get the right stuff! I've written a few articles on screen printing basics, and screen printing presses (both commercial presses and homemade diy screen printing presses) and so I won't go into that equipment too much. I will be focusing on the specific gear needed to do t shirt silk screen printing, and the process involved and how it differs from conventional printing.
Let's get started with t shirt screen printing equipment!
T Shirt Screen Printing Equipment: What You'll NeedCredit: http://www.twandevos.nl/molen.jpg
Let's take a look at what t shirt screen printing equipment you'll absolutely need to get started. First off, you'll need to find a press that's capable of handling the correct and efficient printing of tees. There are special platforms, called 'platens', that are specially formed to the shape of a t-shirt. There's a little hole for the neck to go into, and it keeps the proper shape of the garment as you print it.
An important but not vital piece of t shirt screen printing equipment is platen adhesive spray. This is an aerosol spray you put on your platen, and it gives the surface just a bit of stickiness. The platen is quite smooth, and ordinarily the tee is going to want to shift around. The spray adhesive keeps the garment in place and ensures a perfect print.
In learning how to screen print t shirts, you'll realize that your shirts don't have to be perfectly aligned. If your multi-colored prints are just slightly misaligned, it leads to a cool effect that is very popular. So don't stress out about it being picture perfect.
The next piece of t shirt screen printing equipment you should have is proper ink. Fabric inkis specially made to adhere to fabric perfectly and never wash out once it's dry. You can find fabric ink almost anywhere, art stores usually carry it. Beware that the ink sometimes dries a few shades darker than you see it when wet.
A very important part of how to screen print t shirts is making sure your ink dries properly! If it doesn't dry, it's liable to fall out or wash off. You'll know if the ink isn't fully cured if it seems tacky still. There are a few ways to cure it: a valuable piece of t shirt screen printing equipment is a flash dryer. These little wonders will quickly cure the ink, usually in about 30 seconds. You can also use a heat gun, or even a run through a clothing dryer will help. It's unlikely to cure correctly just by sitting, so be careful.
T Shirt Screen Printing Equipment: SummaryCredit: http://www.nolafreepress.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/12/sc-print.jpg
You can find a lot of highly specialized t shirt screen printing equipment out there. Special platens can be ordered for tees of all sizes and shapes, and you can actually get special platens for other types of garments too. You can easily find blank t shirts from a number of wholesalers over the internet, and they usually cost just a couple dollars each.
Be patient in learning how to screen print t shirts. It's not easy, and you're bound to mess up a few times, but you'll get it eventually. Just make sure you have the right t shirt screen printing equipment at hand, and you'll do a great job.