I’m getting ready to do a 6 video series on my economy line of plastisol inks. This line is very inexpensive yet performs as well or better than other more expensive inks. It tends to be thinner than other brands and has a lower tack characteristic even in the high opacity series. The high opacity white and fast flash white are both wicked opaque, easy to work with and allows for using higher mesh counts for those fine halftone images on black garments. In the video series I will print with yellow, orange, red, light blue, green, and blue high opacity colors which happen to be phthalate and PVC free. Check out the links below for my plastisol inks and my YouTube channel with over 400 free educational screenprinting videos.
Here are some tips in dealing with plastisol screenprinting inks for tee shirts and other garments:
1) Plastisol inks are thixotropic therefore the more you mix and/or stir them, the thinner and creamier they will get. Working the ink on screen will also make it thinner as you print such as is the case with automatic presses.
2) The ambient room temperature can affect the thickness of plastisol ink. The colder it is the thicker it will be. Therefore it is wise to store inks, especially high opacity inks, at room temperature between 74 and 84 degrees F.
3) Adding reducers, soft hand base or thinners to high opacity inks will change their ink flow characteristics and reduce the opacity. Since these inks are formulated to be opaque it is illogical to add anything to the more expensive high opacity plastisol inks.
4) If you notice a clear, watery solution sitting on the top of your plastisol ink in the bucket then you need to mix it very well. The clear liquid is the plasticizer and that is what rubberizes the ink. The plastisol ink will not print or bond to the fabric properly unless mixed thoroughly so there is no clear liquids visibly present sitting on top of the ink.
5) Keep the plastisol ink containers tightly closed when not in use. Long periods of exposure to air will not only invite dust and debris but it may also thicken the ink up over time.
6) Plastisol inks begin to gel at about 175 to 250 degrees F so it is important to make sure plastisol inks do not get over heated for any reason. Semi gelled plastisol inks will not print well and may present bonding issues.
Learn how to screen print tee shirt tutorial videos:
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