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Frequently Asked Heat Press Questions

 

A. Heat Transfer Presses

A1. How do I choose the right Heat Transfer Press?

Before deciding on which Heat Transfer Press to choose it is first important to understand the two main types of Heat Transfer Machinery:

Type Examples
Platen Type Transfer Presses Easty model # EHP EDP ECP FOT
Rotary Drum Transfer Presses Easty model # EMT ERT EST ELT MOT RTR ROT SOT

Platen presses are often used for printing on individual pieces such as cut apparel parts, T-shirts, sports apparel, tote bags, etc. Platen presses are also used to print on rigid substrates such as wood, metals and ceramic tiles.

Rotary Drum Transfer Machines are often used to print fabric continuously (roll to roll) and to print large fabric parts such as signs and banners which may be too large for a standard platen press. Drum machines can also be used to print sports apparel and other cut apparel parts. Drum machines are more productive than platen machines for sublimation printing on cut apparel parts and are therefore used when production volume is high. Drum machines are not used however to print onto rigid substrates such as wood, metal or ceramic tile.

Choose the right Heat Transfer Printing Press depends on a number of factors:

1) Types of Product being printed

2) Print Size

3) Production Requirements

If you wish to print full coverage on 60" wide yard goods a Rotary Drum Heat Transfer machine is required. T-shirts, mugs, wood or tile are best printed on a platen machine. Cut apparel parts can be printed on either a platen press or a rotary drum machine. Production requirements often dictate which type of machine is used. Banners and soft signage are often printed on a rotary drum machine.

Use our heat transfer press search to help narrow your heat transfer printing choices based on your printing production needs.

Let us know your application and we will be happy to recommend the right machine for your particular needs.

See our Introduction Guide to Heat Transfer Machines for further reading.

A2. What's the difference between a Rotary Drum Heat press verses Platen Heat presses?

Platen presses are often used for printing on individual pieces such as cut apparel parts, T-shirts, sports apparel, tote bags, etc. Platen presses are also used to print on rigid substrates such as wood, metals and ceramic tiles.

Rotary Drum Heat Presses are often used to print fabric continuously (roll to roll) and to print large fabric parts such as signs and banners which may be too large for a standard platen press. Drum machines can also be used to print sports apparel and other cut apparel parts. Drum machines are more productive than platen machines for sublimation printing on cut apparel parts and are therefore used when production volume is high. Drum machines are not used however to print onto rigid substrates such as wood, metal or ceramic tile.

A3. What are the typical life cycles of the heat transfer press heating elements and how difficult are they to replace?

The electric heating elements are not very hard to change. The side of the heat transfer drum opens up and the element cage assembly slides out. Generally speaking it would take about 3 - 5 hours or so to pull out the element cage and replace the elements.

How long the elements last depends on how often the machine is used. Generally speaking we expect elements to last about 3 to 5 years with normal use of 8 hours a day 5 days a week. Elements (complete set or individual pieces) can be purchased from us.

A4. Are there any special considerations as to where the machine should be installed in our production plant?


We recommend that the machine not be located right against a wall. Room is needed around the machine for servicing and for removing of the element cage. Four or five feet off a wall should be good. You will also want to have room in front of the machine for loading and in back for unloading. The press should also be located where there are no noticeable drafts which can affect its proper operation.

No special venting is required as Dye-sublimation fumes are non -toxic. However, many but not all of our customers do put a hood over the machine and vent to the outside.

A5. Which heat transfer presses are capable of adhering a high vision reflective strip to clothing?

Reflective tape is often attached to garments with a platen type heat transfer press. The following machines are typically used in this process:

A6. Which heat transfer machines are best suited for printing on t-shirts?

For T-shirt printing we recommend the following machines:

All our Heat presses are industrial grade and have 220 volt single phase electrical requirements. All heat presses have digital time and temperature controls. For further information check our heat press finder to find all presses suited for t-shirt printing.
 

A7. What are the advantages of using a rotary Drum Heat Transfer Press?

Rotary Drum Heat Presses are typically more efficient then their platen counterparts. These types of presses eliminate the need for registration marks and garment templates. The garment parts - fronts, backs sleeves can be cut in quantity. The paper is printed in a roll and fed into the machine with the graphic facing up. The cut parts are placed down onto the paper as it is fed into the machine. This is a much more efficient way to run the work.

These advantages make Rotary Drum Presses ideal for production factories looking to operate efficiently in a lean manufactuering environment.

A8. What sort of service do you offer for the heat transfer presses? Are replacement parts readily available?

We have been selling and servicing Easty line of Heat Transfer presses for many years. We offer phone and email support and if necessary can supply on-site technicians for servicing. We also carry spare parts for all our machines and with experience there aren't many problems we haven't already seen.

A9. Which heat presses do you recommend for sublimation printing for cyclewear?

The following machines are more often used to print cycle wear.
EMT EST 

sportswear cut parts
All paper transfers are laid out.

transfer paper cut parts
The transfers are aligned with the cut fabric pieces
pre-cut fabric
All fabric after images are sublimated onto fabric

The printed paper with the various parts of the cycle shirt (front , back and sleeves) is layed down on the heat press input conveyor with the printed graphic facing up. The various cut parts (front, back sleeve) are placed onto the paper and the whole sheet is fed into the machine. The transfer paper and printed parts are separated automatically and the finished printed parts exit out the back of the machine.

A10. I sublimate images on tote bags - which press is suitable for my business?

The heat press recommendation realy depends on your production load and specifications. Generally speaking for low production rates we recommend the Model #EHP which can handle a printing up to 16" X 20". For high volume sublimation runs take a look at our dual platen #EDP.

A11. I want to print onto poly-lycra but I'm concerned about stretching the goods too much when they pass through the heat press?

We have customers successfully running lycra without any stretching. It should be noted however, that there is some operator skill involved in the process. Stretching of goods can be caused by drum speed pulling and the resistance of the cluth on the re-winder being too strong. A skilled operator can recognize these problems and adjust accordingly.

We also will offer to run samples at our shop through the heat press to ensure quality results.

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