Technical Tips for Transfer Printing

Helpful Hints to Speed Up Production. 

Pre shrink paper stock, then keep out moisture.

When using multiple ink colors with hot-split inks, be sure to butt-register, rather than overlay ink on ink. If ink overlay occurs, ink/color strength will be impaired when the transfer is heat fused onto the garment.

Pre-heat paper in a dryer to 260 F (132 C), then print immediately to maintain registration, or cover with plastic sheeting. The paper also may be stacked in a temperature-controlled oven.

Oven temperature should be set in the region of 100 F (38 C).

When printing transfer graphics that have disciplined registration, it is important that all moisture is removed from the paper before the print run commences. Failure to achieve this will result in poor graphic registration as the print run continues. Remember to continue to keep the transfer paper in plastic wrapping or in a temperature controlled oven, as moisture will invariably be absorbed by the paper between each printed color.


Transfer Papers

Plastisol heat transfers are mostly printed on specially prepared transfer papers. Transfer papers should have good release characteristics to allow the ink to release from the paper during application. They also should have good hold-out characteristics to keep the ink from absorbing into the paper during storage. 10007TFX TransClear can be used as a paper release coating.

Transfer papers must be very stable when exposed to moisture and heat. Poor quality papers may shrink, expand or curl when exposed to these elements, causing poor registration.

Transfer papers are usually supplied for hot-split (hot-peel) or cold-peel transfer inks. When printing hot-split inks onto uncoated or semi-release coated papers, the majority of the ink is heat-pressed onto the garment while some ink stays on the paper.

For cold-peel transfers, when the transfer is heat-pressed onto the garment, the transfer is allowed to cool and the transfer ink is peeled totally from the paper, leaving 100 percent of the ink on the garment.


Transfer Paper Storage

  • Keep paper in original wrappers and cartons until ready to use.
  • Do not stack cartons or wrapped reams on cement floors. Use pallets.
  • Keep all mill information from cartons or skid wrappers (lot, run and order numbers, dates, etc.) for proper identification, in case of a problem or claim.
  • Store paper away from heating pipes, overhead water pipes or any area that would add or subtract moisture.
  • Don’t allow paper to sit on the loading dock, exposed to temperature, humidity and possible damage.
  • Finished/printed transfers should be kept in an environment that is not hot or cold. Continual temperatures of 100 F (38 C) or more may result in the transfer ink not easily releasing from the paper. Freezing temperatures result in transfers that will impair the ink's release from the paper.


Mesh, Stencil and Measurement

Transflex Dry Ink Deposit Range:

2 mils and up: transparent super soft-handed

5 to 12 mils: Opacity and ultimate latitude.