9 Considerations Every Sublimator Must Know
Oct 28, 2019
Dye sublimation printing is a common printing method that demands some knowledge and insights into printing in general and sublimation process in particular. You need to give it the time and attention to pull it off with success. Besides, you need to learn to take care of the equipment and tools you are using to produce a flawless print.
In addition, you need to take into consideration the operational and maintenance-related procedures of dye sublimation process so that you get the best out of this job.
In simpler words, you need to invest not only money but also your brain to make it a success. We have some handy tips and tricks that will help you keep everything up to the mark and you will be able to get more from your business in less time.
No matter if you are printing fancy one-liners or creating custom patches, these tips will make your job easy as a sublimator:
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1. Keep Your Printer On
Switching off the print after every job does little to help your printer. In fact, it uses a large amount of ink to clear the ink head which can result in quicker consumption of ink. To avoid this to happen, you need to keep your printer on so that it keeps the ink moving in the head and doesn’t let it clog.
2. Change Your Ink After Every Six Months
The ink of your printer tends to cause print issues after a time, such as banding, low coverage or color variation in prints. So if you are printing logos and custom made patches, a dried ink can cause missing lines in the print which can spoil the entire design.
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The majority of time, it happens as a result of dried ink. A period of six months is a standard for an ink to dry. Therefore, you should replace the ink after every six months to avoid spoiling your prints as a result of low opacity of a dried ink.
3. Buy a Good Heat Press
A good heat press can significantly improve the quality of prints and reduce the amount of time and efforts that you put into every job. Besides, you can cut down on the expenses that you invest in maintenance of the heat press.
Keeping these things in mind, you should buy an industrial heat press that rates top on quality. In addition, it should come with an LCD display that you can use to set the time, temperature and pressure for a print. A good heat press can save you time and minimize the grunt work that you put into every job.
4. Learn Specs of Every Substrate
The result of every print is contingent on the substrate that you use to print a design. Therefore, you should learn how different substrates behave with a dye sublimation process. To understand your substrates, you need to read the manual that comes with it and see instructions for printing. This will help you properly produce a print on a particular type of substrate.
5. Use Repositionable Spray
A repositionable spray is a useful thing you can use over a print to help it stick to a substrate. It could be an excellent substitute for a heat tape that Sublimators often use. However, a heat tape is not the best choice to sublimate on both sides of a substrate and this is where a repositionable spray has an edge.
The good thing about a repositionable spray is that you can easily peel off the print from the substrate in the event when you have put it on a wrong spot. It will be easily removed without leaving any marks on the substrate.
6. Be a Good Designer
Getting a sublimated print is not just about using the right dye sublimation equipment but it is equally about creating the right design. Unless you produce a really appealing design, you cannot produce a print that can pop.
Therefore, it is important that you should first master the art of design process by learning the tools of a design software before you go ahead and print the design.
7. Research, Research and Research
To learn any skill, you need to have the right knowledge to educate yourself about the various aspects of that particular skill. Similarly, you can excel in dye sublimation only when you drill deeper into the creative and technical processes involves in getting a sublimated print.
Fortunately, you live in an era where you can find plenty of resources on this form of printing. There are various websites and blogs where you can find informational resources regarding the dye sublimation process and how to master it.
8. Make Use of Domestic Items
Domestic items can come handy during the production stage when the right tool is not available. For example, you can use a butcher paper as an alternative to a Teflon paper as a protective sheet when heat pressing a substrate. Similarly, you can use a lighter fluid to remove finger impressions from a print when the right fluid is not available.
And you can use a simple cloth brush as an alternative for lint remover to get rid of unnecessary threads that might come in contact with the print.
9. Set the Right Pricing
And last but not the least.
Pricing is an essential part of running a dye sublimation shop. Apart from taking into consideration the production cost, you need to consider the market price of a sublimated print. While there are no standard rates for a print, you need to work out factors like the design complexity, ink usage, number of colors, size of print and total number of prints since they are directly affect the production cost of a design and make up the direct costs of a print.
In addition, you need to analyze the overheads that indirectly affect the production of a print. These indirect expenses include costs of labor, electricity and shipping. An aggregate of these costs should be added to the direct costs to calculate the original production cost. Once you get the production cost of a print, it will be easier for you to set your profit on every individual print.
Make sure that your final price doesn’t go disproportionately higher than the market price or you might lose business in the long run.
Keeping in mind the aforementioned tips and tricks can help you run your dye sublimation printing with success and help you increase the revenue of your business.
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