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Information to get you started on heatpress printing

Heat Transfer Tips From the Insiders

From general heat press usage to application of heat transfer materials onto tricky garments, make your work easier with these tips from knowledgeable professionals. Let their trial-and-error experiences save you time and money!

General

 

  • When lining up shirts on the platen, make sure that the collar tag is not off-center. Next use the underarm area to center your shirt on the top of the platen and check again on the bottom of the shirt. This will give you three reference points for correctly aligning your shirt.

  • Keep a lint roller by your press. Many boxed shirts arrive with extra threads and lint on them, which can interfere with the application of your design. Just sweep them away with a lint roller.

  • Print the care instructions for the material you are using and provide it to the customer with their garment.

  • Metal zippers can withstand a heat press, but plastic ones cannot. Be careful to place plastic zippers, snaps, and buttons off the heat press machine, as they will melt under the heat and pressure of your press.

  • Use a rubber mat under your feet if have your heat press in a carpeted area. The heat press generates static electricity - a rubber mat will help reduce shocks.

  • To save time, keep a towel placed on the lower platen rather than inserting it into a shirt. Place the shirt directly on top of the pillow and pull under the arms a bit to straighten it on the platen.

  • Own a cap press? Don't just use it to print hats. A cap press is perfect for printing on a variety of small areas such as polo shirt pockets, shorts, small infant shirts and onesies, small dog apparel, etc.

  • To easily slide garments on and off of a press, wrap a Quick Slip Pad Protector on the bottom platen to make heat applying faster and easier.


Application Tips

 

  • Always read and follow the application instructions for each material.

  • Always use a cover sheet.

  • Dog-ear a corner of your square heat transfer paper – it makes it much easier to peel away the paper when you open your press.

  • To ensure quality application, pre-heat your garment to remove moisture and wrinkles.

  • For best results, peel carrier diagonally from one corner to another in a fluid motion.


Application of Letters and Numbers

 

  • When using pre-cut two-color name or number transfers, tack the background down for a few seconds then put the foregrounds on. This will prevent foregrounds from shifting when you put the cover sheet on. – Cheryl S., Customer Service

  • When applying Player Names to girls uniforms or shirts, place the player name lower than the shoulder area. Many girls have long hair and ponytails which cover the traditional placement. – Peggy D., Customer Service

  • When spelling names with pre-cut (Die Cut) letters:

    1. Place a long piece of Transfer Mask on a table, from left to right, with adhesive side up.
    2. Stick each letter (backwards) to the tape, using the top edge as a guide.
    3. Once the name is spelled (backwards), using the tape as your carrier, place the name on the garment where needed, cover, and press.
    4. Peel tape after heat application.

 

Equipment Tips

 

  • Do not plug your heat press into a surge protector. Maxx and Hotronix® presses have their own internal breakers. Plugging them into a surge protector could cause issues with the breaker working correctly as well as limiting the power supplied to the press. Also, as surge protectors are not made to support the power needed for a heat press, they will overheat and eventually fail if used.

  • Always check the pressure of your heat press machine with your garment on the press. Different thicknesses will affect pressure, so check with each type of item you will be pressing.

  • To remove stuck-on transfers from a Teflon® coated heater: heat the press to around 400° then, using a plastic spatula, gently scrape the ink/vinyl off. Do not use a metal spatula.

  • If your heat press is on but hasn't been used in a while, preheat the lower pad before applying designs. Inks and adhesives tend to flow to heat, so heating the lower platen will make application easier.

  • Glass cleaner (Windex) works great on silicone pads, whether they are hot or cold. Using a hand towel, work the cleaner into the pad until clean.
 
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