This one of the most popular questions that we receive at American Screen Printing Association. Many people want to build their own exposure unit for screen printing and the key component of any exposure unit is the light source.
So the question always comes up, what kind of light should I use in my exposure unit?
Before we discuss what is the best type of light for burning screens, two important questions must be asked first.
One of the most overlooked aspects in the screen printing industry has to be the maintenance of your shop. From making sure your equipment is running top notch to having a clean work environment, it is a key part of any successful printing business.
We think that our list of useful maintenance tips for screen printing shops is one of the best ways to ensure that your productivity is always high. When you take care of screen printing equipment, you'll prolong its functionality and it will serve you well for years.
If you want to create great looking screen-printed designs on hooded sweatshirts, you should know that paying attention to a few variables which are specific to hoodies will be the best way to get great results.
In this article, we'd like to share some tips which make it easier for you to please your screen printing shop clients, whether they are ordering just a few hoodies or larger runs.
Pay Attention to Thickness
If you want good results, you should alter your off-contact to twice what you'd typically do. These settings usually work very well for sweatshirts. As well, we recommend utilizing an effective pallet adhesive, as fleece is prone to moving around and this will ensure that the image doesn't shift or throw off your registration which will result in blurry prints. Also, you should think about the different features of hooded sweatshirts when you are designing the art for hoodies. For example, make sure that the design doesn't lie too far down on the sweatshirt. If it does, the pocket might be in the way.
If you are planning to start your own screen printing business, you need to do some important preparation work before you buy any printing equipment.
This is especially important if you plan to set up your print shop in a basement or in a garage.
Even if you are starting out in a commercial or industrial building, you should read over this article as following the advice given could save you a lot of headaches.
At American Screen Printing Association, we get lots of inquiries about using LED light from people who are building their own exposure units.
Since traditional 'high UV' light sources (metal halide and mercury vapor lamps) for 'home made' exposure units are becoming harder to find, LED lights sources are available that are affordable, safe to use and will work effectively for exposing screens.
Before we discuss LED light sources, we need to discuss some important details regarding light sources in general when building your own exposure unit.
How to Build an Exposure Unit
Even if you are only slightly handy with some common household tools like a drill, a screwdriver and a saw, you will be able to build your own exposure unit.
You do not have to be a skilled craftsman or have any advanced skills to build any of the units that are described in this article.
Many new screen printers don’t have a unlimited budget when starting out, and building your own exposure unit is one way you can save money.
For many, building a “home-made” unit is a source of pride and achievement.
Another benefit of “doing it yourself” is that if anything ever breaks, you’ll know how to fix it, since you built if yourself.
In this article (originally written in June 2014), we're going to present several types of homemade exposure units you can build. All are affordable and will do the job of burning screens nicely.
Sooner or later, you're going to have a customer ask you where they can get some custom "brand" tags to put on their line of custom apparel.
While there are companies that specialize in making custom printed tags, why not do it yourself? It's not too difficult if you know what to do. Custom label tags can be a profitable item to add your line of print services.
Cap and hat screen printing can be tricky without the right equipment. There are numerous methods available for screen printing caps, hats and visors. Some are better than others.
One of the best solutions that we've seen (and have used) is The Hat Champ offered by Livingston Systems. Livingston's Hat Champ is an attachment that will fit on your existing screen printing press. Special screens are not required–you can use your regular screens. These two features are very worthwhile. If you have ever used "cap screens" you know that they can be a real pain to work with. Being able to use your existing screen printing press is ideal and cost effective.
Much of your time in the screen printing process will be devoted to screen making. This includes cleaning, washing out (after exposure), reclaiming and coating screens.
You’ll need a dedicated area in your shop devoted to this process.
In this article, we cover the important details you will need to know for preparing screens for the application of emulsion.