Whether you are planning on creating custom t-shirts or producing a fine piece of art, silkscreen (a printing technique using a stencil) may be a viable option. Silkscreen equipment can be very expensive to purchase, especially if you are only planning on using it for a specified time or specific project. Renting the equipment can be a cheaper alternative, but finding a place that offers silkscreen equipment rentals can prove to be challenging. The following suggestions could save you both precious time and money by directing you in your search for rental silkscreen equipment.
Obtaining rental screen printing equipment is not always an easy task. Screen printing equipment is expensive and it can be difficult to find companies willing to take the chance with renting it to the public. Don't be discouraged if you are unable to find equipment right away because there are businesses that do offer this service. Be sure to start your search for equipment well in advance of the project, as it may take awhile to find it.
Where you decide to obtain your equipment may be a matter of geographical location. In larger cities, there are studios specifically designed for silk screen rentals. These are complete with space, equipment, materials and even employees on site to help. If this service is not available in your area, there are several other options. Many art supply stores offer the rental of screen printing equipment. If your local store does not offer such a service, they will be able to direct you to a location that does have rental equipment. If your local high school, college, university, art institute or trade school offers screen printing classes, you can contact them regarding renting their equipment. At the very least, the instructors of these classes will have resources within the industry that will prove helpful in your search. A phone call or visit to a local screen printer could yield useful information. Networking with people within the industry offers a higher probability of locating rental print equipment.
Before securing your screen printing equipment rental, do your research! Visit various equipment manufacturing sites to familiarize yourself with what is available and to learn which equipment will best serve your needs. Be sure that you or someone you know has the proper training to use it. Although straightforward in its concept, to the novice, screen printing can be a daunting task. Be prepared to have a proper vehicle to pick-up or inquire about delivery of the equipment. Have your art work completed and materials purchased before renting the printing equipment. You do not want to pay for rental time before you are actually ready to start printing. If you have opted to rent the equipment without a studio, prepare a facility with enough space, light and ventilation to finish your project.
Amanda Peterson, author