Tunnel Dryers

Introducing  the new WPS Tunnel Dryers

WPS Essential Tunnel Dryer (£1950 ex VAT) – a compact small dryer, ideal for printers using manual tabletop or small floor standing carousels, which runs on a standard domestic 13amp plug. Designed for fit in to small workshops / garages and easy to transport.  Based on the WPS Mini the essential dryer gives a reliable, cost effective dryer.

Ideal when using ‘Plastisol Inks’ Great for T Shirts / Hoodies / Work clothes and many other substrates.

Can cure up to 100 garments per hour (Plastisol ink)

  • To set temperature you can move the heating array up or down to suit requirements
  • Two passes required for heat cured water based inks
  • Belt speed can be set
  • Uses standard 13amp plug

Can be upgraded to the WPS Premium dryer which includes digital temperature control.

WPS Premium Tunnel Dryer (£2100 ex VAT)  – a compact small dryer, ideal for printers using manual tabletop or small floor standing carousels, which runs on a standard domestic 13amp plug. Designed for fit in to small workshops / garages and easy to transport.  Based on the WPS Mini the essential dryer giving a reliable, cost effective dryer.

Ideal when using ‘Plastisol Inks’ Great for T Shirts / Hoodies / Work clothes and many other substrates.

  • Can cure up to 100 garments per hour (Plastisol ink)
  • Digital Temperature Control
  • Two passes required for heat cured water based inks
  • Belt speed can be set
  • Uses standard 13amp plug

Printing Plastisol White onto 100% Polyester Garment

Dye Migration – Screen Printing Problems

100% Polyester Garments are becoming more and more popular, recently I tested some AWD (All We Do) Pink 100% Polyester Hoodies and some Black technical garments to see which ink worked best.  If you use a conventional plastisol or even a low bleed ink you run the risk of dye migration. So when printing onto a red garment with white plastisol ink after curing (and sometimes a day or two longer) you notice that the white ink has gone a shade of pink.

Why does dye migration happen?

It is quite a technical discussion but it’s basically about the way polyester is made and the way the manufactures seal the dye (in particular the temperatures that are used).  The dye used turns into a gaseous substances (also known as sublimates) when the dye hits around 165 degrees Celsius, which inconveniently is around similar plastisol curing temperature.  The dye then bleeds through any ink printed on top.

So what are the options:-

Set the curing temperature to be lower and continue to monitor the temperature, note that the risk of under curing increases significantly. Check the documentation with the ink to confirm curing temperature, remember to allow for thick ink deposits.

Don’t screen print onto 100% polyester, probably not really an option for any of us as we live in a competitive world

Print a grey or black under base – a proven solution but can be expensive and not that practical especially for the smaller printer

Use a low bleed ink e.g. Rutland SF02 low bleed or Union Diamond White, in reality a great solution for Poly / Cotton blends but risks of ink bleed are still very high on 100% polyester garments.

Use a specialist Polyester Plastisol ink – we sell the Best of Brands Polyester White, which works an absolute treat.  Make sure you don’t over cure the ink, but in my experience using this ink reduces risk, gives a smooth opaque finish and works a treat.


5 Home Screen Printing Needs

1. Produce One-of-a-kind Instances for your CD, Film and Video Game Collections

Getting empty cd purses and screen printing custom designed labels for the spinal column and putting quotes, logos or signs on the cover is a terrific means establishment your comprehensive collection in vogue. Photo emulsion sheets could be reduced into smaller sized items and strips making it very easy to ink the slim spine.

2. Customize Messenger Bags or Laptop Bags with Your very own Layouts

Make something unique for back to school. Instead of paying £40 quid for the exact same bag each else will have, acquire a canvas messenger bag and share your originality with screen printing. You can also tailor totes, grocery store bags and laptop computer sleeves.

3. Display Print on Glass.

Photo emulsion sheets could be coiled glass to evaluate print glass and even more. Put your layouts of glass, mirrors, candle holders and go glasses. You will certainly need an enamel paint as textile display printing ink will certainly not be irreversible.

4. Club and Group Shirts

You could make your own T Shirts for school tasks or sporting activities. An image emulsion display can be £10and t-shirts are affordable at your neighborhood department establishment.

5. Offer T- shirts for Institution Fundraisers

Cake Sales, sweet bars, concessions, institution are always fundraising, and consistently with meals. If trying to obtain rid of that last cake so they don’t have to take it house with them try elevating cash with T Shirts, when every person else. Once more, doing it on your own will save the cash it will certainly cost at the professional screen printers. You will certainly be able to offer them at costs people will assume is sensible.


Magna Colour Selection Packs now available for online purchase

We have three new Magna Colour selection packs on line.  All you need to get going …

  • Discharge printer – includes the main 13 pigments, base, super white and activator powder.
  • Textile printer – includes the main 13 pigment and the textile FF base
  • Paper printer –  includes the main 13 pigment and paper base

Magna Colour inks are ECO friendly, soil association approved and designed for the professional printer.

Posted on 01 Mar 2017 by wicked

Union Silextreme silicone inks are based on cutting edge silicone polymers for delivering the ultimate stretch and feel on the latest performance fabrics. These inks have been innovatively designed to bring out the strengths and benefits of silicone chemistry to your textile screen printing operation.

The Silexteme Silicone Inks are Best in Class giving the following benefits :-

  • Ideal for Spandex / Lycra,  Cotton / Poly blends, Nylon, 100% Polyester and Sublimated Garments (don’t recommend on 100% cotton, especially ring spun garments)
  • Ideal for Performance Athletic garments, swimwear and Spandex / Lycra sports wear.
  • Gives very soft and flexible hand
  • Low curing temperature reducing risk of dye migration
  • Print is very elastic,  print always recovers to its printed position (good print memory)
  • Prints can be ironed
  • Durable

Silextreme Silicone Inks

Posted on 17 Nov 2016 by wicked

We are now a distributor of Rutland and Union Inks, the leading Premier Ink Brand. So we have taken the opportunity to refresh our online range giving more choice and better pricing.

Union Maxopake Inks –  Plastisol inks ideal for the manual printer, high opacity and easy to print with. The industry standard for printing onto dark shirts. The range includes the manual printers favourite white – Diamond White.

Union Maxopake Plastisol Ink

Rutland M3 Series

The leading plastisol mixing system,  The M3 inks have great opacity as well as mixing characteristics making them ideal for high production work. The Rutland M3 mixing system is designed mixing Pantone shades, ratios online on the Rutland website.  Ideal for automatic and manual printers. We  also stock the fantastic Low Bleed Cotton White, amazing print performance at an amazing price.

Rutland M3 Series Mixing Ink

Posted on 09 Nov 2016 by wicked

Wanting to give your designs that 3D look and feel, or wanting to add texture to your designs then take a look at our latest blog article that gives a step by step guide on how to achieve that 3D look and feel.

We are using Chromaline Phat Capillary Film – the perfect choice available from 100 – 700 micron thickness.

Posted on 19 May 2016 by wicked

Latest blog article explaining why you should always buy your plastisol inks in Litres!  Big thanks to the Colour Matching Team.

Posted on 26 Apr 2016 by wicked

Latest Blog Article – Simple Guide to printing a one colour design plastisol transfer and applying it to a dark coloured garment.  Plastisol transfers are a great way to optimise the amount of garments you keep in stock and allow you flexibility when dealing with repeat orders.

Posted on 19 Apr 2016 by wicked

We now have the ECO friendly MagnaPrint ULF inks online,  they are soil association approved and Oeko tex class 1 and 2 approved.  They are completely Formaldehyde Free and come ‘Ready for Use’  you just need to add 6% activator.  Available in 1 Litre and 5 Litre packs

Posted on 14 Apr 2016 by wicked
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Creating a screen using traditional exposure methods

Where does exposure fit in the screen printing process?

What emulsion should I use?

How long can I keep emulsion?

How do you get rid of pin holes?

How long should I dry my screen?

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Let’s go back to basics. Screen printing is also a stencil method of print making in which a design is imposed on a screen of polyester or other fine mesh, with blank areas coated with an impermeable substance, and ink is forced into the mesh openings of the mesh by the fill blade or squeegee and onto the printing surface during the squeegee stroke.

Emulsion is the means of making impermeable substance. Light sensitive, thick liquid which coats the screen. When the screen is exposed the emulsion hardens and unexposed areas drop out to leave the stencil.

So you have your positive artwork

Making Your Artwork Positive.

Making Your Artwork Positive.

Now this process is one of the most tricky in screen printing and needs to be done thoroughly and carefully. Never skip on any step especially drying.

The first step is to degrease your screen

It is very important to degrease the screen prior to coating the screen with emulsion and exposing the artwork. A screen that is not degreased will have problems exposing and increase the chance of pinholes, the emulsion will not adhere to the screen properly and might washout before the image can be seen. The emulsion could also not wash out at all. Make sure you let it dry thoroughly before you coat it with emulsion.

Choosing your emulsion

There are many emulsions on the market and every printer will have their preferred type and brand. Some emulsions come pre sensitised and ready for use and some will need mixing. Our emulsion is a 2 part emulsion, its comes with sensitizer.

Shelf life is different depending on when the sensitizer is added . Separately both parts can last from 12-24 months. Once mixed the emulsion lasts 6-8 weeks (its life can be prolonged slightly if it is stored in a cold place, like the fridge).
Always make sure you have chosen the right emulsion if you are using Plastisol inks / Solvent inks you need a Solvent resistant emulsion like Ulano Proclaim or if you are using Waterbased inks you need a water resistant emulsion like Ulano 925wr. We also sell Autosol emulsion, which is a good dual purpose emulsion, it can be used with both waterbased and solvent inks.


Make sure you are doing all parts of the emulsion and exposure process in a light safe environment with NO outside or bright light. This includes mixing your emulsion, coating your screens, drying screens, exposure, and washout (as soon as screen is exposed as long as you wash it out straight away this is not a problem)..

A costing trough is the best way to get an even coverage of emulsion. Always check to make sure the coating trough has a straight edge and no damage otherwise you will get poor coverage and you can snag the mesh.

Here are a few things to watch out for if your images are not washing out correctly:
That you are not coating your emulsion too thick. One coat both sides should do it, with a nice even spread. There are sometimes where you may need some extra coats e.g. printing transfers and printing white onto a dark garment but you will need to adjust the exposure time.

Coating Your Screen

Coating Your Screen

That your film positive is very opaque and dark. If you hold it up to a light and can see through it, you need to double print your film to achieve a more opaque image.
That there is positive contact between your screen mesh and your positive film. If the film is not pressed completely against your mesh then you will get light reflection between your positive and your screen which will result in a blurry and not clear image. That’s why the glass is so important.
That you are exposing your screen for the correct amount of time, which will depend on the exposure system you are using. If you are unclear on exposure times please feel free to ask us. The simple run of thumb is – if the emulsions washes off too easily and you start to lose the stencil then the screen is underexposed and if after prolonged washing the stencil does not come through they you are likely to have overexposed the screen.
After you coat your screen, you want it to be COMPLETELY dry  before you expose the screen.

Exposing the image

Exposing Your Screen

Exposing Your Screen

To transfer your image onto your screen you will need to use an exposure unit. There are many different exposure unit set ups on the market and each has a different light source. Each having different light sources. UV, halide and halogen are very popular in the UK. Our Wicked exposure lamp has a 1000 watt halogen light source and is provided will all waterbased and Plastisol kits.

We also sell Actinic and Metal Halide exposure units which are able to expose quicker (typical exposure time is 2 minutes for an Actinic unit and 16 minutes for the lamp depending on size of the screen) than the cheaper lamp solution. Some units include built in drying cabinets making the whole process a lot faster.

A very large part of your decision if you are new to screen printing will be your budget and space. Exposure units vary dramatically in price. The WPS Lamp is small and compact,

After exposing and rinsing out your exposure, you want your screen to thoroughly dry (and ideally harden your screen, by exposing it to the sun or your exposure unit) before inking and printing. This process is often called double baking.

Before inking you need to use blocking tape (can use brown tape or professional blocking tape) to cover up areas on the screen not covered by the emulsion. Also fix any pinholes either using blocking tape or using screen filler which is a liquid emulsion, make sure you choose the right one as there are different versions for solvent and water resistant stencils.

Now you are ready to print

Registering Your Print

Registering Your Print

When you get bigger there are other options like the Revolutionary Riso QS200 Designed for the Professional Printer which prints directly from your computer onto a screen. Then the whole process takes under 5 minutes!