Screen printing is a technology that has been around for ages. It uses a woven mesh to create ink blocking stencils. Several screens can be used to make multiple colour images. Though very ancient the technology has not really evolved from the traditional way of screen, ink and films to have your design.
In the present day we still use the same technique to print t-shirts. The only improvement that is noticeable is the man power as there is an invention of an automatic press machine, making the job a lot easier to do. The automatic press can print about 8 to 12 T-shirts at a go. The manual strenuous work has been replaced by this technique.
Change is always inevitable and that’s what is happening to screen printing, there is constantly new things being launched and that where “direct to garment” printers come in. With time screen printing will fade to the past and replaced by computers. This reminds me of the Canon LP17 article and why we should use it in film production.
The screen is produced by converting digital artwork from a computer to a film paper which will in turn expose your screen. Before computers there were many methods used to produce screen prints. For instance, by drawing the design with a light resistant pen, then we have “chemical based” system which works as camera film.. A company known as “OYO” the manufactured a dry based machine which was an image setter; it burned the image on to the screen. I found this method uses shrinkage with the films meaning the registration marks didn’t align.
With the exposure on t-shirt printers, I decided to dig deep in the net and checkout what other printers were there. On my quest I came across “Revolution Transfers” a company producing large types of t shirt printers. The company recommended Canon LP17 and this is an investment that has helped me move my company to the next level. Its prints are the best compared to image setter. Another advantage that comes with the printer is that when you do not use it for T-shirts, you can print banners, poster and family photos on different media.
The speed of the printer is fast than I thought and the quality remarkable. The printer has a user friendly software and there only some few technical setup to start with. There are feature that I have found to be useless for this printer.
I have used the printer for 3 years now and cannot stress further how good the printer is but can only say it saves money compared to image setter on t-shirt print.