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Problems with spacing between screen and printing medium.

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Problems with spacing between screen and printing medium.

Postby dashdanw » Mon Dec 05, 2011 3:15 pm

Hey guys, new to the forum so forgive me if I missed a good tutorial or something like that.

I have just recently gotten down good exposure times and measurements for my screen making process, but I don't have an official screen printing station as we are just doing this in my friends basement. We have been using quarters stacked on each corner of a large screen to get the print correct which works okay, but I wanted to know what you guys do to get good, consistent spacing? What is the general idea, is it supposed to make contact with the medium? if so should it be getting pressed up or just lightly skim?

I should add that I am printing on shirts, and with relatively thick speed ball ink (relative to other off-brands that is).

Another question I had is what was your guys success with printing fluorescents on black shirts? mine always seem to absorb into the cloth and don't show up very well.
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Re: Problems with spacing between screen and printing medium

Postby preflash » Mon Dec 05, 2011 10:01 pm

I try to print with no off contact. This allows me to layer the ink with each pass using less pressure with every successive pass. This requires a degree of "touch".

With a lot of off contact you will need a decent about of force just to contact the garment limiting your ability to determine how much ink you put down with each pass.

This is all using plastisol ink. I'm not sure what speedball ink is but I imagine its air dry.

You would need a way to spot dry the print in between passes.

With air dry in this could be achieved with a hair dryer. If you are using plastisol you would need a flash unit or a heat gun. Be careful not to shrink the garment in between hits.

Any help?
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Re: Problems with spacing between screen and printing medium

Postby dashdanw » Wed Dec 07, 2011 4:46 pm

what do you guys use for spacing?
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Re: Problems with spacing between screen and printing medium

Postby preflash » Wed Dec 07, 2011 11:25 pm

our presses have and adjustable bolt where the arm of the print head comes down.

When i was printing off a table with table hinges we would use no spacing or a piece of card stock depending on what was needed. but this was for conventional air dry ink.

are you not happy with your quarters?
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Re: Problems with spacing between screen and printing medium

Postby HollyPopRox » Fri Feb 17, 2012 10:45 pm

In our shop we prefer not to mess with the off-contact screws on our press, so we layersmall (about 1" x 2") thin pieces of cardboard and put them on the edge of the screen using masking tape
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Re: Problems with spacing between screen and printing medium

Postby HollyPopRox » Fri Feb 17, 2012 10:48 pm

Also, as for fluorescent inks, most aren't opaque enough and will sublimate, we found that Union Ink makes amazing plastisol fluorescents.
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