Screen printing is a versatile, fast and efficient process. It’s used to print a wide variety of items, from fabrics like t-shirts and hats to paper, plastic, ceramics, wood, and metals. The technique uses opaque color ink that creates a bold and eye-catching design on any product. It’s ideal for high volume printing because setup costs are spread out over more products. In contrast, digital printing is faster but is more expensive per individual product due to the cost of the equipment.
With this in mind, many companies choose to utilize screen printing for team apparel. This is because the process can accommodate various types of custom designs and prints, from bold graphics to intricate patterns. This can be a great way to create unique and eye-catching apparel for your sports team.
The screen printing process uses a stencil and mesh to transfer ink onto the desired item. A squeegee is then used to press the ink across the surface of the product. The printed material is then rinsed and dried in a drying machine. The process is very durable and can withstand repeated use in harsh environments and outdoor elements. It’s also easy to customize the inks to specific applications, ensuring a high level of quality.
To begin the process, a frame is built to hold the mesh screen. Then the screen is coated with a light-reactive emulsion. The emulsion can be prepared in several different ways, from placing a stencil on the screen and painting it to transferring a design on transparency film to the screen using photo-sensitive emulsion. Then, the screen is exposed to an exposing unit for an allotted amount of time. The part of the screen that reflects the design is hardened by exposure and becomes a stencil for printing. The softer, unexposed parts of the screen are then washed away, leaving the areas where ink will be applied.
Once the screen is ready to be used, the design on the squeegee is positioned over the mesh screen. The ink is then pressed across the surface of the product using a squeegee that’s the same size as the stencil. The squeegee distributes the ink across the entire screen, pressing it into the open areas of the stencil to transfer the ink onto the underlying product.
After the ink is dry, the screen is lowered over the material. A squeegee is again used to press the ink into the open areas of the stencil, printing it on the product. A squeegee is usually made from rubber with a firmer texture for more detailed prints and a softer, thinner rubber for less detailed prints. The item is then sent through a dryer and checked for quality assurance.
For any project involving high volume printing, screen printing is the most cost-effective method. It can be applied to a wide variety of materials and can print multiple colors at once. With this in mind, it’s important to understand the different methods of screen printing and how they work to ensure that your finished product is the best quality possible.
As the popularity of screen printing has continued to grow, so too has the versatility of its applications. From showcasing your brand with logos and slogans on t-shirts to displaying bold artwork in public spaces, there are endless ways that you can put your custom screen-printed apparel to use. The team at Minneapolis screen printing services takes pride in incorporating the art of screen printing into our community, and we’re excited to share some of our favorite ways that you can use our designs to show off your unique style.