FAQs

Because these colors have a longer than normal description, PANTONE allows abbreviations to identify these colors. In our RGCC Mixing Calculator, Cool Grey 8 C would be found by searching for CL GY 8 C and likewise Warm Grey 8 C would be WM GY 8 C.

The use of Rutland’s pearlescent base and adding small amounts of color concentrates will produce a metallic type luster, other than that, the best you can do is to match the metallic color with standard pigments.

Our RGCC Software Calculator contains an excellent tool for determining ink usage. Simply enter the number of shirts, image size, screen mesh, percentage of ink coverage, and the type of ink being used and the software will estimate the amount of ink needed to print the job.

As we develop formulations we are matching to current color standards like PANTONE, or various seasonal colors for major brands. These standards vary slightly from season to season and PANTONE books also vary over a period of time. As a result, we have to tweak the color and that creates a new formula. Using our RGCC software gives you all updated formulations at the time they are created.

ES0026 Thermoline Clear with 3% to 8% EA0001 Fiberbond to help promote better adhesion of the flock fibers to the ink film. Always test garments before production and be sure to follow the wash test specifications of the end user.

Be sure the entire ink film is completely cured. An under cured ink film will cause more severe crocking. Colors that are most likely to crock are yellows, reds, oranges, and navy. Use Clear shape or Primer clear at 20% to 50% by weight to reduce pigmentation. This will not only help crocking but it will give your ink and print a softer hand. Check color to be sure it is within spec. before printing production.

To control dye migration, use the following procedures:

  • Print with high-opacity, low-bleed inks.
  • Use no more heat than necessary to cure the ink. More heat means more   dye migration.
  • Print and flash-cure ES0266 Barrier Base, then print, flash a low bleed white then print your other colors.

Dye migration is the problem caused by dyes in polyester fibers transferring to and changing the color of plastisol inks. Dye migration may appear immediately after the ink is cured, or hours, days, or up to two weeks later. Dye migration happens when the dyes in the polyester transfer into the plastisol and cause a change in the color of the plastisol. Garment colors that are likely to migrate are black, red, maroon, dark green, purples, and dark blues. If the garment has polyester, it can migrate.

A good ink choice for blends is EL9240 Snap White or EL9073 SF Low bleed white. Typically. 100% polyester causes more severe migration. Use EL9746 Super poly White on 100% Polyester. In severe cases ES0266 Barrier Base (dyno grey) used as an underlay with a low bleed white overprint will give optimum results. When curing, use no more heat than necessary to cure the entire ink film as excessive heat can make the dye migration more severe. (See the Technical Data Sheet for the particular ink you are using.) Make sure you have enough ink deposit to cover the fibers completely. Always test the garments before production.

Check with the garment manufacturer and be sure the garment you have is a dischargeable garment. Only 100% cotton garments are dischargeable and only then if they are dyed by the manufacturer with dischargeable dyes. If the garment is 100% polyester it will not discharge. If the garment is a 50/50 cotton/polyester blend, the cotton will discharge and the polyester will not. Always test the garments to ensure they are dischargeable before production.

When printing wet-on-wet, the dry screen will pick up wet ink from the garment. If the ink remains wet on the back of the screen the amount of ink pick up is minimal. As a matter of fact, after several prints you will find that the colors appear slightly more opaque since the amount of lift off is nil (printing wet ink against wet ink). Build-up results when the ink on the back of the screen dries out. The dry layer of ink will, again, as with the dry screen, pick up ink from the garment. As the second layer of ink dries, the build-up process continues. The layer of ink on the backs of the screens will widen also, creeping into the image area. Once this happens, production must be stopped to wipe the screens clean. Once production begins again, so does the build-up process. Rutland plastisols have been formulated to remain wet during the printing process and therefore eliminates any build-up on the backs of screens.

YES! It is recommended to stir any product that has been setting for over a week. In some cases liquid can settle in pockets throughout the ink. Stir this liquid back in the ink to avoid fusion or opacity problems. Stirring high opacity plastisols will also maintain, if not increase shelf life. The opaque inks will continue to thicken with time as the high loads of pigment continues to absorb available liquids. If the ink has been sitting 6 months or more, open and stir to increase the shelf life (printability).

Store in closed containers at 65 to 95 degrees F.(18 to 32 C.). Prolonged exposure to temperatures above 95º F (32º C) can cause the ink to start to gel while it’s still in the container.

NO! The dry cleaning fluid will “attack” the plastisol causing degrade and wash out.

  • White ink requires the longest cure time of any standard color. Light ink colors require longer curing periods than dark colors. Thick ink layers require longer curing periods than thin layers.
  • Glitter, shimmer, reflective, and metallic inks require longer curing periods because the pigments used in these inks tend to reflect infrared radiation (heat).
  • Prints (both on paper and garments) should be cured within a minute of printing. If you delay curing, the plasticizer in the ink may start to leach out of the ink into the substrate. This will look like an oily margin around the print.
  • Temperature tapes are not exact. They can vary as much as 10-20º F (5-10º C) and should be used only as a guide. The definitive test is how well the print launders.
  • Dryer temperatures can vary greatly with just minor changes in belt speed, garment loading, room temperature, air movement, or fluctuations in incoming voltage.

As a starting point, the temperature of heaters should be set at full on. If the heaters are allowed to cycle on and off there may be too long an off cycle for the dryer to maintain the proper temperature consistently. The belt speed should be set so the garments are in the tunnel 60-90 seconds. Small dryers may require a much slower belt speed than larger dryers. From this starting point, you will have to print sample garments and wash test them to determine the correct belt speed and temperature settings for your dryer for the various types of jobs you print.

Plastisol can generally be fully cured with a flash cure unit if the heater is set to the highest temperature and the unit is placed 2-3 inches (5-7.6 cm) over the garment for 20-30 seconds. For curing between colors where only a partial cure is required, the time can be less.

It’s very important to understand how to adjust your dryer to achieve the correct curing temperature. It is a common misconception that you need to measure the temperature of the dryer. Actually, you must be able to determine the temperature of the ink film on the garment.

The temperature of the ink film is determined by the time the garment is under the heater and the temperature of the heater. This means that the temperature can be controlled with the belt speed of a conveyor dryer or time under the heater with a flash curing unit. If the heater temperature in a dryer or flash curing unit reaches 800º F (427º C), it is possible for the ink film on the garment to reach the full cure temperature (320º F, 160º C) in a matter of 20-30 seconds. Generally the temperature in the dryer is much higher than the temperature required to cure the ink. This allows the ink to cure quicker for faster printing.

The definitive test to determine if plastisol inks are cured is a wash test, which is washing the garment in hot water with a strong detergent. Generally, it will take from 5-10 washings to fully test the cure, but if the ink is seriously under cured, the print will show deterioration after only 1-3 washings. There are two other tests commonly used to check ink cure. The most popular test is to stretch the print about 2/3 of the total stretch of the T-shirt. If the print cracks badly and does not retract when the fabric is released, the ink is probably under-cured. The stretch test does not always work on thick deposits of ink, such as with on athletic jerseys, where the top layer of ink may stretch but the ink deep down in the fabric may be under-cured.

Another test for curing can be done by placing a few drops of ethyl acetate onto the back of the ink on the inside of the garment. This spot of ink is then placed onto an area of unprinted garment and burnished or held tightly together for two minutes. If there is a transfer of ink to the unprinted area, the ink is not fully cured and the garment should be run through the dryer again. Like the stretch test, this test is not always accurate. Ethyl acetate is a fairly hazardous chemical.

If the ink is under cured, you can run it through the dryer again and complete the cure.

YES, but proceed with caution. Too much belt speed may cause the ink to fail the wash test because of improper cure. The combination of belt speed and temperature must be such as to produce the proper cure temperature on the garments during the production run. One garment may show proper temperature but a belt load of garments would run cooler and may not cure.

Yes. Colors will change from the wet ink to a cured print. Many variables such as mesh count, garment color, underlay, absorbency of the fabric, etc. will change the color of the final print. Always let the cured ink sample to cool properly before viewing the color.

It is best that you do know the color, make-up and weight of the fabric which will be printed on. This is simply one more variable which can effect the final color. A color may look very different on a light weight 50/50 poly/cotton fabric vs. a 100% heavy weight cotton. If you know the color will have a white underlay, make sure you print the final color on the same fabric or similar fabric color and include a print of the color on top of the white underlay (which should also be printed through the same mesh count as will be used in production.)

Absolutely! Color varies with mesh count and the more transparent the color, the more color variation you have. Get into the habit of printing the final color approval through mesh count which will be used in production. Also get into the habit of using the color control throughout a production run to avoid color shifting.

Yes. Colors will change from the wet ink to a cured print. Many variables such as mesh count, garment color, underlay, absorbency of the fabric, etc. will change the color of the final print. Always let the cured ink sample to cool properly before viewing the color.

Yes.  The addition of 2% EA0055 NPT Puff Additive or up to 10% M00009 Quick Flash Additive to the color will result in a faster flash.

Yes.  Try adding 0.5 to 1.0 % M00010 Thickener #10 to increase the viscosity of the ink.  The ink will set higher on the garment surface and give more opacity. Thickener #10 must be thoroughly mixed into the plastisol ink.

Add 1 to 2 % EA0055 NPT Puff Additive or EA0015  NPT Dulling Paste to the color you wish to dull. Adding small amounts of these puff agents will produce a matte finish without expanding the ink. Do not exceed the normal plastisol cure temperature of 320° F (160°C) to maintain a matte finish.