Screen printing requires heat. Every screen printer knows that applying the right amount of heat for the right amount of time results in a crisp screen print that’s fully bonded to your substrate. Sometimes, however, heat can prove the enemy.
For all of the work that goes into creating the perfect screen print, perhaps the biggest element that determines the success or failure of a print is heat. The right flash temperature determines the integrity of your underbase, or whether a heat transfer will, well, transfer. Getting your ink to the ideal curing temperature for the correct amount of time determines whether your finished print will crack, peel or wash out.
When you decide to make a go of printing t-shirts for a living, you’ll soon realize that in order to produce garments in any significant quantity, you need a conveyor dryer. But there are so many choices, from tiny tabletop models to giant industrial dryers six feet across. How do you know which is right for your shop?
When many screen printing veterans first got started, they may not have realized just how many variables factored into properly curing their prints. As the industry has advanced, new technology has made it even more difficult to get fully caught up. Fortunately, by familiarizing yourself with the basics of curing and doing some careful tests, you can make it easier to get a proper cure.
As screen printing has advanced, new fabrics and inks have increased in popularity and brought with them a number of different challenges. In this day and age, it’s more important than ever for screen printers to develop, test, record and implement conveyor dryer procedures to properly cure their prints.