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Thread: print your own T-shirts

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
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    Chilliwack, B.C.
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    11,797

    Default print your own T-shirts

    Looking to print my own T-shirts. So far all I can find is 'send us your design and we'll print them for you'. What I want is the machine itself. I have read that you can ink jet them, or you can print the design to an iron-on transfer. It has also been suggested that with the right printer, you can deposit a 'heavier duty' ink, which has better lasting qualities.

    I'm in the beginning stages of this search, so I thought I'd ask here if anyone has had any experience with this. I don't have room for multiple stages of silk screen setups, so I'd like to stay with a direct printer of some kind. Presumably it would have a platen where you fasten the T-shirt down- maybe even with a vacuum hold-down- then you would deposit a suitable ink or colored solution, maybe require multiple passes for different colors- just a few guesses here.

    So far I have not found any links to the proper type of machine, though I'm pretty sure they must exist by now. Can anybody steer me?
    I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Loveland,CO
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    235

    Default

    Type "silk screen equipment" into your search engine.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Kelowna BC
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    2,569

    Default

    I don't understand the no room for it but want to do it.
    I had a 4 station 6 color machine, no screens, that I would have sold this January and Feb, was down to 200 at the end.
    I took it apart for hardware, still have the plates and adjusters i think. It was /is 3 .5 hrs from you..
    It was a Blue Max 3.
    Last edited by 754; 07-19-2019 at 09:33 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Posts
    4,440

    Default

    What you need is either a "dye sublimation" printer, or a "direct to garment" (DTG) printer, either one of which is going to cost you several thousand at least.

    Relevant link.

    Doc.
    Doc's Machine. (Probably not what you expect.)

  5. #5

    Default

    If you're just making a couple, I've had good luck with these.

    https://www.amazon.com/Avery-Inkjet-...SIN=B0000C0CIR

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Posts
    103

    Default

    Second what Doc Nickel said, I've been looking for imagesetters to create negatives for exposing photo resists
    and came across these printers by Okidata, I think they're what your looking for, nowhere near as pricey as Doc's link
    but still pricey, smaller output size -
    https://www.oki.com/us/printing/prod...ers/index.html

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    USA MD 21030
    Posts
    5,559

    Lightbulb

    Sometime ago I bought a pack of Avery transfer sheets for my inkjet printer, but never used them. I found professional T-shirt printers for about $16,000 - $60,000, but Amazon has some for well under $1000:

    https://www.amazon.com/digital-tshir...tshirt+printer



    Last edited by PStechPaul; 07-20-2019 at 12:37 AM. Reason: link

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Russellville, AR
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    1,216

    Default

    My daughter uses a Silhouette machine to cut designs from iron on vinyl which she fuses to t-shirts using a heated press. Don't know the make of the press. Can get vinyl that is suitable for decals such as car dealers use to put on vehicles.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    Springfield Mo
    Posts
    607

    Default

    Id just as soon go with silkscreening before i went for a machine. For simple patterns youd be more than set, multiple colors id wager you could do with multiple screens, one color at a time.

    That said, if youre trying to print a photo, silkscreening probably isnt the way to go

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Chilliwack, B.C.
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    Default

    The T-shirt I'm wearing right now has rather blocky graphics on it, but the coloring is impregnated right into the cloth. The lines are sharp, and there is some pretty tiny printing on it that you can actually read. I'm sure the machine that did this is capable of decent imaging. You can feel the difference between the colored areas and the rest of the shirt, but there is no melted on vinyl. The cloth moves equally well over all its areas, colored or plain. This is what I'm going for since I also want the shirts to be comfortable.
    I seldom do anything within the scope of logical reason and calculated cost/benefit, etc- I'm following my passion-

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