Mistakes are expensive and with screen printing mistakes are irrevocable. Poor color output, bad art, lack of quality control can lead to major wastage of time, materials and eventually unhappy customers. By avoiding these below mentioned mistakes you will not only be able to in the quality of your output but also seen an increase in sales and happy customers. Moreover, it will save from rework and loss of resources.
Here are the top screen printing mistakes you need to avoid at all cost
Sending artwork to production without proofreading
Typos are not uncommon while designing your artwork. Misspelled words do transpire from time to time. Often times this mistakes are so subtle that it goes unnoticed. Only way to make sure that your graphics are perfect you need to proofread it before sending it to production. Take time to double-check each piece of artwork before it makes to press. You could even have someone else to do the job and also makes sure it gets proofread various times by multiple individuals. If you can, you should send the final artwork to your customers for approval before you print it. It is much easier to fix the error in the graphics than to fix a set of 500 press runs. After finalizing the artwork it is advised to run a test run first to make sure that you get the desired output.
Not Thinning Your Ink When Necessary
Most screen printer use plastisol inks and most inks are sold as ready to use. But, they are often times too thick to be used properly, which may lead to blurry designs. For most inks a thorough stirring is necessary to get the right printing texture on the fabric. Some are needed to be mixed with reducers. How much thinning is it required will be decided by the kind your texture you want on your fabric, which comes from experience. This will not only lead to less wastage but also on increased sales and happy customers.
Sticking to Flash Curing Between Each Color
Many screen printers flash cure each color as best practice which in reality is an inefficient and time-consuming process. This can be avoided by implementing proper printing techniques. If you have proper registration, you can print web-on-wet and totally avoid flash curing between each color. This can be achieved with good artwork, right screen tension, right off-contact and ensuring that the platens are tight on your machine before each press run. Take proper steps to ensure the right registration so you can eliminate the need of flash curing each color and increase productivity.
Not Controlling Temperature During Curing
To get the proper curing for your prints you need to invest in a professional conveyor dryer so that you can control the cure temperature as per your need. Although all plastisol inks must reach the same temperature for cure, separate printing jobs would require separate dryer setting. Thicker ink will need a lower temperature for a longer period or time because if you try to do it fast with high temperature you run the danger of scorching the substrate. Other factors that cure temperature include moisture level and substrate material.
Not Ready to Move Out of Your Comfort Zone
Most screen printers stay stuck to their old regime and are not willing to move out of their comfort zones and try out new things. As screen printers work in the clothing industry, which changes with trends, they need to change too. You need to experiment with different inks and techniques to get different print finishes. You need to adopt latest technologies in print industry such as t-shirt design software. It will help you to stay relevant to the changing trends and help your business to evolve. When you rely too heavily on your core processes, you miss out on the opportunity to grow your print shop.