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I'm Just Starting Out... Need Some Info & Suggestions

Posted on Mon, 2 Jul 2007 at 14:04

I'm just starting out. I did some screen printing so many years ago, it hurts to count it :oops: , and at that time, someone else created the screens and set everything up, so that side of things is new to me.

I purchased some supplies (what I would certainly consider basic stuff) - single color table-top printer, exposure unit, 6 screens (305 count, I believe), scoop emulsion applicator, squeegees, ink, chemicals (emulsion, de-greaser, block-out, screen cleaner, etc, etc), inks, yellow light bulb. Did I miss anything vital?

Now, for my first real question - the problem I'm having is getting my positives printed - I need them at 22" square (approximately, the height is just a little more, but I can shrink it if needed). Does anyone have suggestions on what national company (or type of local company) might be able to do these? I need a few done (6-12, as I have 6 screens at present), but each is unique. I'd need them to be dark enough to work, but am not opposed to "touching" them up by hand if that's possible (is it? how?) because they're not particularly fine-detailed.

Secondly, I'm working in my house in Florida (no basement or attic). The only room without windows is my laundry room. How crucial is the "light safe" nature of the emulsion? In other words, if I work only at night, turn off all the lights in the outside room, cover all the windows out there, and only open the door enough to slip out, will that expose my screens if I've put them behind a dark cloth?

Thirdly, I'm not printing on t-shirt material, but on something much thicker. However, it still has a good smooth finish for printing (65/35 poly/cotton trigger-type fabric). Any general suggestions would be appreciated. I actually have a way to use "cuds" so if I end up with a few bad prints at first, I won't be wasting my material. :)

I've already learned a lot by reading the posts, and will keep searching. But any specific advice would be soooooo helpful.


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