Dye Sublimation Printing

Dye Sublimation Printing

Dye Sublimation Printing is an ion transfer process using specially made transfer paper that discharges ion gas when heat is applied. The ion gas smears into the synthetic fabric leading in to any image on the transfer papers which then becomes a permanent image on the composition of the fabric.

In the process of sublimation, heat is applied with pressure. Normally temperatures will be between 150 C° and 230 C° and will be given 10 to 20 seconds depending on the fabric and the desired effect of the image. The pores of the synthetic material open and the ion gas penetrates into the fabric when the heat is applied. After the removal of the high temperature, the ion gas is trapped. This will make the image and synthetic fabric the same unit.

 

           

         

 

The characteristic of sublimation

 

1. Color versatility: Dye sublimation can display any colors and types of image if it is using the transfer paper. The images on the transfer paper will be made CMYK, not RGB, so if you want to make any images, you will need to make it in CMYK color mode, not RGB and convert to CMYK.

 

2. Image versatility: You can print any vector images and higher resolutions such as PDF, JPEG, and TIFF. However, the image will vary as per the composition of the fabric. The image area and non-image area on the fabric are the same, so will have a smooth feel. It does not wash out and fade even with long time usage.

 

3. High resolution: Because any color can be displayed, the image can be very colorful and vibrant. Even photo grade effects can be achieved. On the contrary, if you want to have more vintage look, it also can be displayed.

 

4. Cost effective: It is a very cost-effective way to make any garments as per your needs and desires of certain images. Custom fabric is very expensive and required high quantity of yardage. You can get any image on the fabric in limited quantity in limited time. This can make you adapt to the rapid changes of the fashion market.

 

5. Durability: No crack or fades are in the sublimated image on the fabric. Unlike the screen printing, no lays on the fabric means the surface of the garment is smooth and comfortable. Many sportswear and casual clothing are made of sublimated fabric. It also does not block the air flow of the perspiration in the body.

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       

The difference from the silk screen printing

Silk screen actually uses different inks together and lays the mixed inks on the fabric, so you can feel the thickness of the ink which can make user uncomfortable. You need to match the pantone color with mixed inks, so the final image correction, color ways, and higher resolutions are almost impossible. You can do silk screen printing on almost any fabric comparing to the sublimation process can be done on the synthetic material.

 

 

Application and limitation

Due to the fact that sublimation needs synthetic material, 100% cotton or organic fabrics cannot be done. If the fabric is composed of a combination of synthetic fabric and organic fabric, only the synthetic are can be sublimated, but not the organic.

Sublimation on colored fabric can be done, but the color way will vary because the existing color of the fabric will affect significantly to the color you want to sublimate. You may get a better result in light colored fabrics such as light gray, light beige, and light pink. However, sometimes the dark colored fabric turns into totally amazing effects that you did not anticipate, such as red, blue and purple.

 

Rayon and Nylon are difficult materials for sublimation. In fact, Rayon is not a synthetic material. It is organic, but treated. Nylon can be sublimated in low temperatures at about 160 F to 180 F. However, it gives you a very light color effect or vintage effect. If you are looking for more vintage and classical looking and soft feeling of fabric, Nylon is a good choice with sublimation.

 

 

The most popular composition of the synthetic fabric and effect

1. Sample A: 95% polyester and 5% spandex: most vibrant color effect, photo grade and active wear

2. Sample B: 50% polyester and 50 % cotton: vintage image, classical, and more naturally blended image

3. Sample C: 62% polyester. 32% cotton and 5% spandex: in-between 95% polyester and 50% polyester effect

4. Sample D: 50% nylon, 42% rayon and 8% spandex: very soft, very faded, and vague image

 

 

What we can do for you

The sublimation process is simple and cost-effective. However, before you do any actions, you need to consider many aspects of sublimation related conditions such as availability of transfer papers, fabric selection and graphics that can change your course of desired production. We, Vinteclo, will find the best way you can finish up your project with the right plans and techniques. Please let us know what your objective in the dye sublimation process is.


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