It’s an age of textile printing when digital printing is taking over the conventional methods. In addition to providing diverse styles of printing graphics on fabrics, this shift has also enabled textile businesses to reduce setup and operational costs, as well as personalize the functionality and results of digital printers.
Popular amongst evolving digital printing methods is sublimation printing, which uses dye sublimation inks to transfer photographic imagery on various types of fabrics. This alternative to traditional printing methods is comparatively lasting, using bold colors that can be tweaked to create novel designs.
Process: [Initiate Sublimation]
Essentially, sublimation printing involves heat-sensitive inks. When exposed to high temperatures these inks turn gaseous and combine with polyester, the material it is typically used on. In other words, the ink particulates become a part of the fibers, resulting in long-lasting designs.
Let’s delve into the various items you need to equip on to your production line:
Printer and Ink
High-quality printers are the foundation of a smooth sublimation printing process. Various Epson printers are specifically designed for dye sublimation.
As for the colors, sublimation printers can be categorize into four-color models (Using CMYK) or eight-color printers (CMYK, LM, LC, Or and Vi). Dye sublimation inks are typically quite vibrant, and the right color combinations can give vivid images.
A Raster Image Printer (RIP) software is required to streamline the printing process, and control print results.
While most textile printer manufacturers offer their own software, certain printers are compatible with professional software specifically created for optimized color management.
Sublimation paper, also called transfer paper, is used as a base for sublimation printing designs. It is then applied to the fabric, and heated, thus ‘transferring’ the ink to the target item. It is important that you choose a high-quality paper that gives precision in printing and transfers the designs efficiently.
For the actual sublimation to take place, you need a heat-press, a tool to provide the heat and pressure to print the design from transfer sheet to fabric.
That is what a calender does: it provides a high temperature for a specific amount of time to the materials. Ideally, a temperature between 356 to 392 degrees Fahrenheit, exposed for roughly 55 seconds, is needed for optimal transfer of the dye ink.
As leading premium dye sublimation and pigment ink suppliers and manufacturers, we help textile businesses create remarkable designs. Reach out to InkJD today to get the superior-quality dye sublimations inks in the market!