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What is Screen Printing?
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What is Screen Printing?

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This presentation is brought to you by FESPA thanks to Ad Versteeg of Evident. It is for viewing only. If you would like to purchase a copy in English, please contact chris.smith@fespa.com.

This presentation is brought to you by FESPA thanks to Ad Versteeg of Evident. It is for viewing only. If you would like to purchase a copy in English, please contact chris.smith@fespa.com.

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  • 1. What is screen printing?
    • By Ad Versteeg
    • E V I D E N T
    • This presentation has been specially commissioned in English by
  • 2. Is everything possible by screen printing?
    • There are three screen
    • printing categories:
    • Industrial
    • Graphics
    • Textile
  • 3. Yes, everything is possible!
    • Some examples of well-known products of the screen printer are printed T-shirts, jackets and caps.
  • 4. Where do we come across screen printing?
    • Screen printed art is a product that many people are aware of but there's more, much more…
  • 5. Screen printing is everywhere .
    • The screen printing technique is used far more often than most people are aware.
  • 6. It is a stencil technique.
    • This technique is very old. We have been stencilling for a very long time.
    • Approximately 300 years ago, the Japanese came up with techniques to strengthen vulnerable stencils by using hair.
  • 7. Open and closed areas .
    • The screen consists of a tightly stretched polyester mesh on an aluminium frame.
    • The stencils are created photographically.
  • 8. First patents .
    • The first techniques that are somewhat similar to modern screen printing came into being at the end of the 19th century.
    • Developments followed rapidly, especially after the Second World War.
  • 9. Modern machines .
    • Modern-day screen printers use highly advanced machines and equipment.
    • Every category has its own machines.
  • 10. Manually or fully automatic .
    • A lot is done automatically, but often manually as well.
  • 11. There is a special ink for everything.
    • Not only in every colour imaginable, but also for every desired material and all possible effects.
  • 12. You come across it everywhere in your life .
    • Between the pieces of pancake on your plate and on the T-shirt that you wear.
  • 13. Also at school.
    • It already begins in kindergarten.
    • Solving screen printed puzzles.
  • 14. One colour at a time.
    • The screen printer prints the colours one by one, layer upon layer.
  • 15. One colour at a time .
    • The original design is divided by colour and then rebuilt during the printing process .
  • 16. As many prints as necessary.
    • A separate screen is made for each colour, a tightly stretched mesh including the stencil with the open and closed areas.
  • 17. Ink on the screen.
    • A considerable amount of ink is placed on the mesh and pushed back and forth by the squeegee.
  • 18. Clear colours.
    • From simple to very complicated and fine printed matter.
    • Everything is possible.
  • 19. For interiors and clothing.
    • If patterns are not woven in then they are usually printed.
  • 20. Very fast machines.
    • This type of very fast printing machine is used primarily for graphic work.
  • 21. Fully automatic.
    • Paper, or any other material that needs to be printed, is inserted automatically on one side and comes out printed and dried on the other side.
  • 22. The machine does the work.
    • This is done in a very quick and efficient manner.
  • 23. The squeegee.
    • In principle this is not much more than a synthetic blade in a aluminium holder.
  • 24. The principle of screen printing.
    • The squeegee ensures that the mesh openings filled with ink in the stencil touch the material to be printed.
    • The material ‘sucks’ the ink from the mesh openings.
  • 25. Mesh glued onto the frame.
    • The mesh is glued with a two component adhesive onto the aluminium frame.
  • 26. But first getting the tension right.
    • The mesh, with up to 180 threads per linear centimetre, is set to the right tension with special tensioning apparatus before gluing.
  • 27. The tension is high.
    • The tension can be increased to 30 Newton and must be the same for all the screens that are used for the same order.
  • 28. The screens last a long time.
    • After printing, the stencil and any leftover ink are washed off the mesh and the screen can be re-used.
  • 29. A new stencil each time.
    • Modern stencils are created photographically.
  • 30. Different types of mesh.
    • Every order type has its own specific type of mesh.
  • 31. Editions vary.
    • The numbers to be printed can vary from
    • just a few to tens of thousands.
  • 32. The heart of the machine.
    • The squeegee is the heart of the screen printing machine.
  • 33. All possible substrates.
    • A good ink is available for every material to be printed.
    • More or less any substrate can be printed upon.
  • 34. Ink manufacturing.
    • Screen printing ink is not the same as letterpress ink or offset ink and it is definitely not a paint.
    • The pigments must be rolled very finely so as to be able to get through the small mesh openings.
  • 35. Many standard colours.
    • The screen printer can mix all imaginable colours and in between tones himself with the inks available.
  • 36. Mixing colours.
    • This can be measured simply by eye or automatically by using a computer and established measurements.
  • 37. Additives.
    • Special additives need to be added to most inks.
  • 38. The machine prints.
    • The printer checks.
  • 39. Moving parts.
    • The screen goes up and down, the squeegees back and forth and the substrate to be printed moves on and off the print surface.
  • 40. Colours on top of each other.
    • Transparent colours printed on top of each other automatically result in a mixed colour.
  • 41. Organised optical illusion.
    • Printed matter that is printed with transparent ink in combination with small dots of different sizes gives the impression of a photographic work.
  • 42. The four colour process .
    • Seen through a magnifying glass, small dots of transparent ink are printed on top of each other.
    • Although all colours and tones are visible, they were printed by using only three.
  • 43. Primary colours.
    • Red, yellow and blue or as they are called in graphic terms: Magenta, Process Yellow and Cyan.
    • And Process Black to finish it off.
  • 44. Not only flat surfaces.
    • The material or object to be printed does not always need to be flat.
    • Round shapes are printed on special printing machines.
  • 45. Big and small.
    • Printing round shapes directly is possible in all sizes.
  • 46. Rotary screen printing
    • With rotary screen printing the screen is round.
    • It is a hollow sleeve of perforated nickel material.
    • The squeegee remains stationary inside, the sleeve turns around and the substrate is fed underneath.
  • 47. Textile carousel printing machine.
    • T-shirts must be printed ‘wet on wet’, colour after colour, without moving the fabric at any time in between.
    • Special machines have been developed for this.
    • So many colours to be printed, so many screens and squeegees.
  • 48. Every craftsman knows his trade.
    • Special machines and inks are necessary for every type of product.
  • 49. Casual clothing.
    • Textile printing and graphic screen printing usually do not go well together.
    • Usually a company is specialised in one or the other.
  • 50. More than just T-shirts.
    • Besides the T-shirts and caps, the textile printer often also prints complete sports outfits as well as bags, umbrellas and all other types of merchandising.
  • 51. Glass printing.
    • A huge industry has sprung up to deal with the demand for gambling machines, often with companies having their own screen printing departments that are bigger than many ‘real’ screen print shops.
  • 52. Glass ink.
    • Special glass inks are used to print on glass.
    • After printing, the glass goes into the oven.
    • High temperatures ensure that the ink becomes one with the material.
  • 53. Wooden jigsaw puzzles.
    • Besides printing wooden puzzles, these types of specialised companies will also have to do the finishing such as laser cutting.
  • 54. Special equipment.
    • Special tools have been developed to print on umbrellas, for example.
  • 55. Ceramics.
    • Such work can be printed directly or using the transfer technique.
  • 56. Learning aids.
    • You can see such products in most schools.
  • 57. Ties.
    • This is a separate branch of the industry, ties of pure silk, often printed with a multitude of colours, limited editions and rare spectacular designs.
  • 58. Industrial screen printing.
    • Manufacturers of washing machines have their own screen printing department.
  • 59. A combination of techniques.
    • The screen printing technique is often combined with other techniques to achieve the desired result.
  • 60. Technical printed matter.
    • Another example of round screen printing.
  • 61. Special effects..
    • There are a lot of inks that are intended for certain effects.
    • This is a high-gloss UV ink.
  • 62. Screen printing on bank notes.
    • Security ink is printed on bank notes, among other things.
  • 63. For inside and outside.
    • Screen printing ink is able to withstand harsh weather conditions.
  • 64. Fine dots.
    • Such colourful pictures are also composed using very fine halftones.
  • 65. Halftones also used on textile.
    • T-shirts printers also use halftones a lot.
  • 66. Enamelled advertising signs.
    • Very colourful and very durable.
    • Special inks are also used here.
  • 67. Beer crates.
    • The crates have been designed in such a way that it is possible to print on them directly.
  • 68. Clock and watch faces.
    • Not only are the clocks at the railway stations decorated using this technique, but the faces of most watches as well.
  • 69. Lorry canvas.
    • They are printed directly using very large size screens and squeegees.
  • 70. Artificial leather.
    • The layer that looks like leather is screen printed on the textile carrier.
    • Special pastes are used for this.
  • 71. Rear window demister.
    • The ‘wires’ of the rear window demister are printed on the glass.
    • The same applies to the text and the black border covering the adhesive layer.
  • 72. The dashboard.
    • Printed on special foils and by using techniques that ensure that everything can be easily read during the daytime as well as the night time.
  • 73. Logos and brand names.
    • Clearly recognisable, the car industry cannot survive without screen printing.
  • 74. Tiles for on the floor or the wall.
    • The design may look like it is made from natural stone but in fact it is fake.
  • 75. Glasses and bottles.
    • Also here a choice has to be made: either print directly or use the transfer technique.
    • Printed with special glass inks.
  • 76. Transfers.
    • Transfers are sheets of special paper on which, in this case, printing takes place using glass ink.
    • The ink is then transferred from the paper onto the glass, after which the glass still needs to go into the oven.
  • 77. Clogs .
    • Also in this case transfers are used.
    • Wooden shoes are rarely painted by hand anymore.
  • 78. Electronics industry.
    • Track and cells, probably the most common screen printing work.
  • 79. Printed circuits.
    • The screen printing technique is literally carried out within a square centimetre.
    • Very high demands are set to the dimensional stability and the thickness of the printed lines.
  • 80. Printed circuit boards.
    • These are also called ‘printed wiring boards’.
    • The list with equipment that contains such screen printed work is extensive.
  • 81. Solar cells.
    • Made from a thin layer of silicon.
    • Metal layers on one side and a pattern of small metallic lines on the other, printed by using the screen printing technique.
  • 82. Drawing sheets.
    • Millimetre patterns printed for the architect and technical drawer.
    • Wear resistant and printed on strong, water resistant synthetic materials.
  • 83. Printed art.
    • Quality printed matter on the best materials and limited editions.
    • Often composed using a multitude of prints and colours.
    • Signed and numbered by the artist.
  • 84. Decoration.
    • Decoration on crockery for example, mostly produced via a transfer technique.
    • It is difficult to print directly onto bent or hollow shapes.
  • 85. Ceramic transfers.
    • Many transfers are printed at the same time and applied to the crockery one by one.
  • 86. Tattoos.
    • This is also a type of screen printing.
    • This is a lot less permanent than the real deal.
  • 87. Toy industry.
    • Inks for toys need to meet special conditions.
  • 88. Very large sizes.
    • This is a very large fully automatic screen printing machine that prints several colours at the same time.
  • 89. Traffic signs.
    • Clear colours must be visible from far away.
    • They are often printed on reflective materials.
  • 90. Not to be missed.
    • Clear designs, the best materials and visible from far away.
  • 91. Gluing is also possible.
    • If it is not possible to print on an object, then self-adhesives are used.
    • The screen printer has all the necessary techniques.
  • 92. Striking stickers.
    • If a sticker needs to really stand out, then this is possible.
  • 93. Digital printing.
    • Most graphic screen printers nowadays have digital printers that they can use to quickly print a picture with photo quality.
    • Only one copy is not a problem.
  • 94. Printers in all sizes.
    • The digital printers are available in very large sizes and are used on flexible material as well as on thick, rigid surfaces.
  • 95. Pad printing technique.
    • In the case of really difficult shapes that need to be printed, the screen printer will use the pad printing technique.
  • 96. Difficult shapes.
    • The pad printing technique works with silicon cushions that take the shape of the object to be printed so that the picture can be transferred perfectly.
  • 97. Embroidery.
    • The textile printer often uses an embroidery machine.
  • 98. If it needs to be a bit more chic.
    • The printer of T-shirts and the like can also often embroider.
    • This can be done quickly, with multiple T-shirts at the same time, in all possible colours and every imaginable effect.
  • 99. Where can we find them?
    • When you need to find a screen printer, look in the telephone directory or on the internet.
    • Under the S of screen printing, the T of T-shirts, the P of posters, the B of billboards or the S of stickers.
  • 100. Everything is possible at the screen printer
    • This presentation is based on the informative Dutch booklet ‘Alles Kan bij de zeefdrukker’.
    • It can be ordered via the site of ‘Het Zeefdruk Instituut’, among other places.
    • www.zeefdruk-info.nl
  • 101. All rights reserved.
    • Copyright © 2010 Evident, the Netherlands.
    • No part of this content or the data or information included therein may be reproduced, republished or redistributed in any form, without the prior written consent of Evident.
    • Ad Versteeg.