How To Solve The Moisture Problem Of Sublimation Printing Paper?
The introduction of moisture into the sublimation printing process can cause unwanted results. During production with a heat press operating at 400°C /204°C, moisture can flash to steam and literally blow the ink away from its intended target. Some of the problems that are attributed to moisture include color shifting , image bleeding and the uneven transfer of solid-filled areas.
Under normal circumstances, a small amount of moisture can accumulate in the transfer paper and it’s usually absorbed directly into the substrate during pressing. However, hard substrates, like metal and ceramic, are unable to absorb excess moisture. Thus, it’s important that you take steps to minimize the introduction of moisture into the process.
The first step is to protect the paper from moisture absorption. As a preventative measure, store your paper in a dry place. Consider a sealed container such as a re-sealable bag. If you suspect moisture, set the paper on your press for a few seconds. Do not press it; just expose it to the warmth. The heat radiating from the press should help evaporate most of the moisture.
Another trick is to use newsprint or butcher paper instead of a Teflon sheet. The heat transfer paper will help absorb moisture from the transfer sheet during pressing, whereas Teflon will not. Be sure to use a fresh sheet of paper for each pressing cycle.
If you are working with garments or fabric, it’s also possible that the substrate may contain some moisture. Pre-pressing the garment for about 10 seconds should remove the moisture, as well as any wrinkles. To avoid this problem, keep your paper or fabric in a dry place. If you suspect moisture, try these techniques:
1) Place paper on the raised pedestal bottom of the press and let it dry under the heat platen. Don’t close the heat platen!
2) Pre-press fabric for 10 seconds before transferring
3) Use a fresh, non-textured paper towel behind the transfer sheet
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