Impressions - February 2017 - 44

SPECIALTY PRESSING PRODUCTS
Curved and rounded products require special heat presses, such as a mug or cap press, which
have curved surfaces designed to fit those products. Combination presses also offer flat- and
curved-pressing capabilities with specialized attachments.
Specialty 3-D heat presses also are designed for products with curved surfaces. In addition,
they can apply images to multiple surfaces of a single substrate, such as the top and sides of
a cellphone cover. This type of press uses a vacuum system, not a platen, to pull a membrane
tight around the substrate and then applies convection heat.
Wraps can be used with some rounded products as an alternative to presses. Transfers are
secured to the substrate using a special high-temperature wrap that surrounds the item and
latches into place. The substrate is then placed in a convection oven for an extended period
of time - typically 12-15 minutes. Wraps are available in multiple sizes and can be used for
products such as mugs, pet food bowls, cookie jars, etc.
Finally, a rotary press - also known as a calendar press - is a continuous-feed unit used for
pressing fabric as it comes off a roll-style sublimation printer. The fabric passes through a
series of heated rollers that also "press" the sublimation. It is typically used for large-volume
fabric pressing.

mounted on an arm to be moved straight
up and down.That motion exerts equal
pressure across the substrate's entire
surface, regardless of its thickness. In
addition, when the heat press is opened,
the upper platen can swing to one side,
making it easier to access the lower platen
for placing and aligning substrates.
Drawer heat presses also have a mounted upper platen that can be lifted and
lowered, but doesn't swing. Instead, the
lower platen pulls forward, enabling easy
access.This type of unit works well for
thin and thick substrates.
2. Platen Size
Platen size is the most important factor
when choosing a heat press, as it determines the maximum image sizes that can
be applied. Equal heat across the entire
surface is important for high-quality
sublimation. However, the temperature
can decrease along the heat press's outer
edges, so only work with images that are
smaller than the platen's size.
With a quality heat press, you should
assume a 1-inch buffer zone on all four
sides. (This may be overly cautious, but
sublimation is a heat-sensitive process.)
Thus, the usable heating area of a 20" x
24" press would be 18" x 22".
As a general rule, the heat press should
be at least 1 inch larger on all four sides
than the printer's maximum field size.
For example, if the printer is capable of
13" x 19" printing, then the heat press
size should be at least 14" x 20".
P.44

3. Manual or Pneumatic
The recommended pressure for sublimation on most substrates is 40 psi.
However, most presses do not have pressure
indicators, so medium pressure generally
will suffice.
Most heat presses use a mechanical
closing system that is manually operated.
Platen pressure is controlled by adjusting a
knob, which activates a jack-screw system
that raises or lowers the upper platen in
relation to the lower platen.This controls
the spacing between both surfaces when
the press is closed, which determines how
much pressure is applied to the substrate's
surface. The gap should be increased or
decreased, depending on the item's thickness or thinness.

I M P R E S S I O N S M A G . C O M FEBRUARY 2017

Some heat presses are available as pneumatically controlled systems.They use air
pressure to close the platen and apply a
specific amount of pressure to the substrate
surface.At the end of the pressing process,
the system automatically opens.
Pneumatic systems offer two distinct
advantages over manual ones. First, the
operator doesn't have to use physical exertion to operate the system, which reduces
the chances of repetitive-motion injuries.
Second, precise pressure settings can be
specified, which makes it quick and easy
to set up different types of substrates for
production.This also makes it possible to
replicate pressure parameters on future jobs.
In contrast, manual pressure settings are
based on feel, not precision.This leads to
trial and error when it comes to setting up
jobs, and also makes it difficult to replicate
exact settings on future orders.
The heat press is a critical part of sublimation production, and you should
focus on purchasing a reliable unit that
will deliver precise temperature and even
pressure on each job. Select a unit from a
reliable source that offers technical support,
parts and service. Focus on the long-term
investment rather than the short-term
purchase price. 
Award-winning author and international speaker
Jimmy Lamb has more than 20 years of apparel
decoration experience. He currently is manager
of communications for Sawgrass Technologies,
Charleston, South Carolina. For more information or to comment on this article, email Jimmy
at jlamb@sawgrassink.com.

Swing-away heat presses
come in a variety of sizes.
Photo courtesy of Insta
Graphic Systems.


http://www.IMPRESSIONSMAG.COM

Impressions - February 2017

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Impressions - February 2017

Impressions - February 2017
Contents
First Impressions
From the Show Director
Overheard
First Look
Scene at ISS
On Design
What Powers Plackets?
What Being ‘Green’ Means
Critical Customer Training
Walking a New Path
Shop Talk
Embroidery Production
Screen Printing Graphics & Design
Sublimation
Direct-To-Garment
Heat Printing
Ad Index/Online Directory
Classifieds
Impressions - February 2017 - CT1
Impressions - February 2017 - CT2
Impressions - February 2017 - Impressions - February 2017
Impressions - February 2017 - Cover2
Impressions - February 2017 - 1
Impressions - February 2017 - Contents
Impressions - February 2017 - 3
Impressions - February 2017 - 4
Impressions - February 2017 - 5
Impressions - February 2017 - First Impressions
Impressions - February 2017 - 7
Impressions - February 2017 - From the Show Director
Impressions - February 2017 - 9
Impressions - February 2017 - Overheard
Impressions - February 2017 - 11
Impressions - February 2017 - 12
Impressions - February 2017 - 13
Impressions - February 2017 - First Look
Impressions - February 2017 - 15
Impressions - February 2017 - 15a
Impressions - February 2017 - 15b
Impressions - February 2017 - Scene at ISS
Impressions - February 2017 - 17
Impressions - February 2017 - 18
Impressions - February 2017 - On Design
Impressions - February 2017 - What Powers Plackets?
Impressions - February 2017 - 21
Impressions - February 2017 - 22
Impressions - February 2017 - 23
Impressions - February 2017 - What Being ‘Green’ Means
Impressions - February 2017 - 25
Impressions - February 2017 - 26
Impressions - February 2017 - 27
Impressions - February 2017 - Critical Customer Training
Impressions - February 2017 - 29
Impressions - February 2017 - Walking a New Path
Impressions - February 2017 - 31
Impressions - February 2017 - 32
Impressions - February 2017 - 33
Impressions - February 2017 - Shop Talk
Impressions - February 2017 - 35
Impressions - February 2017 - 36
Impressions - February 2017 - 37
Impressions - February 2017 - Embroidery Production
Impressions - February 2017 - 39
Impressions - February 2017 - Screen Printing Graphics & Design
Impressions - February 2017 - 41
Impressions - February 2017 - Sublimation
Impressions - February 2017 - 43
Impressions - February 2017 - 44
Impressions - February 2017 - 45
Impressions - February 2017 - Direct-To-Garment
Impressions - February 2017 - 47
Impressions - February 2017 - Heat Printing
Impressions - February 2017 - 49
Impressions - February 2017 - Ad Index/Online Directory
Impressions - February 2017 - Classifieds
Impressions - February 2017 - 52
Impressions - February 2017 - Cover3
Impressions - February 2017 - Cover4
Impressions - February 2017 - I1
Impressions - February 2017 - I2
Impressions - February 2017 - I3
Impressions - February 2017 - I4
Impressions - February 2017 - I5
Impressions - February 2017 - I6
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201912
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201902
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201901
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201812
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/dd_2018
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201810
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201809
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/teamspirit_2018fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201808
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201806
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201805
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201804
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201803
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/teamspirit_2018spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201802
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201801
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201712
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201710
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201709
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201708
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/teamspirit_2017fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/20170607
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201705
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201704
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201703
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/teamspirit_2017spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201702
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201701
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/sportsfanretailer
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201612
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201610
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201609
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201608
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/teamspirit_2016fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/20160607
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201605
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201604
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201603
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/teamspirit_2016spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201602
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201601
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/sportsfanretailer_201512
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201512
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/digitaldecorator_2015fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201510
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201509
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201508
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/teamspirit_2015fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/20150607
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/digitaldecorator_2015summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/sportsfanretailer_201506
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201504
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201503
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/teamspirit_2015spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201502
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201501
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/sportsfanretailer_201412
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201412
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201410
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/sportsfanretailer_2014fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201409
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201408
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/teamspirit_2014fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/digitaldecorator_2014summer
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/20140607
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/sportsfanretailer_2014spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201404
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201403
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/teamspirit_2014spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/impressions/201402
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201401
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_sportsfanretailer_201312
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201312
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_20131011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201309
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201308
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_teamspirit_2013fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_20130607
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201304
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201303
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_teamspirit_2013spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201302
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201301
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201212
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_20121011
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_teamspirit_2012fall
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_20120809
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_20120607
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201204
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201203
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_teamspirit_2012spring
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201202
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201201
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_teamspirit_2011fall
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201104
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_201103
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/nielsen/impressions_teamspirit_2011spring
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