Today we decided to share with you our thoughts on the wear resistance of the print with different types of application.

It is worth recalling what types of applications there are:

  • Direct digital printing
  • Silk screen printing
  • Thermal transfer
  • Sublimation
  • Embroidery
  • Chevron
  • Thermal transfer to fabric
  • Solvent printing on film

Singleprint offers all types of application except solvent printing, due to the poor stability of this method of application. To learn about prices and details, you can contact one of our managers, contact here.

Each type of application has its own special effects and features.

Let’s say right away that wear resistance is a relative concept, for someone a little scuffing or fading of colors is a plus, and for someone it is unacceptable. That is, most often the question of wear resistance passes into the field of subjective opinion.

Along with this, it is also important to take into account the fact that there is no perfect way of applying prints. Each of the application methods has its advantages and disadvantages. Therefore, it makes sense to consider a specific type of application in the context of the tasks facing the customer. Therefore, before offering a price, we ask you to show the layout and ask you clarifying questions.

Today we will talk about thermal film (thermal transfer on T-shirts and thermal transfer on fabrics). This topic is very capacious, large and interesting.

Unlike other types of printing, thermal transfer technology on fabric is distinguished by the fact that there are no restrictions on the type of fabric, its composition, or color. Cotton, synthetics and a mixture of these fabrics in any combination are suitable, thermal transfer technology allows this. Well, except for silk, but everyone has problems with it) Of course, thermal film for printing on T-shirts has its disadvantages. For example, you cannot print a photo, thermal transfer technology (flock) on fabric does not allow this. But in the transfer of simple inscriptions and drawings in terms of simplicity and cheapness, there is no equal technology of printing on fabric by the method of thermal film transfer!

Technology of thermal transfer to fabric 1

What is melting ? It is a flex melting (flex), a film for thermal application, thermal stickers, etc. This is a PVC or polyurethane film with hot-melt adhesive applied to it. Under normal conditions, the glue has a solid structure, does not stain hands or clothes, and is not felt at all. But it is worth placing such a film in a thermopress heated to 150-160 °C and the glue melts and firmly sticks the melting to textiles or other surfaces.

As you can see, the front side of the thermal film is temporarily hidden from any external influences and is exposed only after transfer. Minor scratches on the adhesive layer during storage will not negatively affect the quality of the subsequent image.

There are many manufacturers of thermal melting. We use only high-quality and proven material, mainly Siser (Italy).

So, all thermal transfer films differ in several indicators, let’s cover this topic as widely as possible.

  • Composition of melting .

– PVC (polyvinyl chloride) is essentially rubber. As a result, the films are thick and quite rough to the touch. An ideal solution for use on coarse fabrics, for example, for marking work clothes.

– Polyurethane – more difficult to produce thermal film and, as a rule, more expensive. But you will overpay for a reason. Polyurethane films are thinner, elastic. The spectrum of their application is very wide.

  • Thickness of thermal melting.

A very serious indicator that should be paid attention to. You must understand that the film is a sticker. And the thickness of this sticker is of great importance. Some types of film are designed for denser fabrics, and some for thinner ones.

  • The presence of glue on the substrate.

Look at the photo for this article. You can see the edge of the thermal film peeling away from the backing. So the substrate itself on the side of the film can have an adhesive layer. This glue sticks to hands and other surfaces already at room temperature (but does not contaminate them). Why do you need an adhesive layer?

First, for reliable retention of the film itself on the substrate. If your thermal transfer contains a lot of thin, small parts, then when cutting on the plotter, the adhesive layer on the backing will help you hold them securely in place.

Second, the adhesive layer helps to keep the transfer on the t-shirt even in a vertical position, when you need to judge – straight or crooked you placed it on the t-shirt before welding it tightly. By the way, do not worry – the glue will not contaminate your products, regardless of direct contact with them.

There is such a type of film as SOFT, which does not have an adhesive layer on the substrate. And how does the film hold without glue – you ask? With the help of static charge. And keeps the static not bad. But if there are elements of the pattern less than 5 mm, it is better to forget about such a melting.

Technology of thermal transfer to fabric 2

These are the main indicators of thermal transfer films that you should consider when choosing. And what other thermal films are there?

  • Flex is the basic film that is used in 80% of cases
  • Flex soft – films of increased elasticity, specially developed for highly “stretchy” stretch fabrics.
  • Perfect for sportswear. Such a film is not damaged by strong stretching and deformation in the heat of sports fighting.
  • Reflect – reflective films. You have all seen the glowing stripes on the overalls of DPS employees and road workers. With the help of similar films, you can repeat the same yourself. Moreover, the matter is not limited to stripes, you can apply absolutely any pattern!
  • Neon (fluorescent) – this unique photoluminescent film is able to “charge” in daylight and glow in the dark with neon shades. T-shirts with images and inscriptions from such a film are very popular among young people!
  • Brick – three-dimensional films. This series of thermal films is able to make a “thick” thermal transfer that rises above the material.
  • I want to say something special about flock. This is very interesting material. Products from it look solid and plentiful. Fluffy three-dimensional letters can decorate any product. Flock is a very popular material, so it is produced by almost all companies in a wide range of colors. An interesting feature of this material is that after the first wash, the flock looks even more attractive – the villi straighten and become fluffier.
  • The glitter film has a shiny, mirror-like surface. Compared to a matte film, glitter is thicker, so the inscription / drawing on the product looks more voluminous. The surface of the glitter film is rough.
  • They are used for bright, fashionable and stylish products.
  • Flex hologram-film with a holographic effect gives a unique look to clothes, the film has a special functionality. Designer transparent mirror holographic color film that shimmers on the product.
  • Gold / silver – a special special effect when you need “expensive-a lot”