Sublimation Printing - What is it?
This is often the first question we are asked. We are well aware that for some clients it is a totally new concept, though for others already in the printing industry ‘sublimation’ may be a familiar term.
Sublimation printing is a procedure for transferring full colour graphics or photographs onto a wide selection of products. These include metal, ceramics UniSub plastics and products and glass items all specially pre-coated and therefore, sublimation receptive. Polyester mousemats and jigsaws plus T-shirts with a polyester content can also be decorated. We regularly research and add new printable products to our range so the scope continually increases.
We have a large client base ranging from the entrepreneur, starting a totally new venture through to established companies keen to expand their product range. Screen printers, embroiderers, corporate gift manufacturers, shop proprietors and more. Because sublimation printing is so versatile and can be easily marketed, it is for some a full time business and for others an addition to their existing business or a supplement to their usual income.
We are happy to answer any specific queries you may have but we have set out below some of the most frequently asked questions.
Do I need a lot of working space?
No. The equipment is quite compact. It can usually be incorporated into your existing business space and we also have clients who operate from home. Others work from a small booth in a shopping mall.
Do I have to produce a large number of items?
No. One of the advantages of sublimation printing is that you can cost effectively produce a one off, a short run or multiples to suit your customer’s needs
Will I need to dedicate my printer to sublimation only?
Yes . If you have other printing work to do, with standard inks, then you will need a different printer.
I’m not sure which printer & inks to choose
As official distributors for Sawgrass Technologies dye sublimation ink, we are able to offer Sublijet IQ, Sublijet R and ArTanium UV+ for use in specific Epson and Ricoh printers (refer to ink price list). The majority of our customers are working with Sublijet IQ, renowned for its vibrancy and quality. It has the added advantage of coming complete with PowerDriver colour management software for ease of use and consistent printing.
Alternatively, you may choose Artainium UV+ ink or Sublijet R - the new formulation of Sublijet for the Ricoh Aficio series of printers. With a choice of inks and a selection of A2, A3 and A4 printers plus the option of 4 through to 8 colour systems there is something to suit everyone. Please feel free to contact us to discuss which printer/ink selection will work best for you. Each business differs so as well as prices we can give you other specifications to enable you to make the right choice to suit your requirements.
What about my PC specifications and what software will I need?
Most PCs, purchased during the last few years, should suffice and we generally use CorelDraw, Illustrator or Adobe PhotoShop software. If you contact us we can discuss what you may already have available to you and what may possibly be required.
I’ve never done any printing before. Is it difficult?
No. If you are reasonably familiar with using a graphics programme, then you should find the process quick & easy. There are no messy or time consuming preparations and the Heat Transfer Presses are straightforward to use.
What can I produce?
Using the appropriate Heat Transfer Press, you can decorate any of our sublimation receptive items. Personalise mugs, badges, trophies, clocks, T-shirts, mousemats and a wide range of other items in full vibrant colour.
Are profit margins good?
You can, of course, set your own selling price according to the product & quantity. However, because you will be able to offer unique personalised items, tailored exactly to your customers needs, they will, in general, command a higher price and profit margins can be substantial.