Recent Blog Posts
Throughout the process of fabric printing using water-based screen printing inks, heat curing the print is one method to ensure the print is stable and can remain on the garment. Heat curing is subject to variability due to local conditions in the workspace; including the moisture content of the fabric, the ambient temperature and the relative humidity.
There are several practices involved when applying heat to fabrics to cure them. We recommend test printing before and at the beginning of each print run as heat setting varies from printer to printer. When heat curing water-based screen-printing inks such as PERMASET AQUA®, PERMASET SUPERCOVER® and PERMATONE®, the following methods are used:
For screen printers who are just starting out, make sure that your prints are completely air-dry before heat curing, and testing should be done before embarking on a large print run. For this type of printing, you can employ heat press and flash dry methods.
1. Heat Press
Heat presses are a favoured option for start-up printers as they are compact to buy and quick to operate. They are recommended for small scale production as it takes time to cure each garment.
2. Flash Dry/Cure Units
Prints must be completely air dry first. Flash units are cheap, compact and quick however they can give variable results. The flash dry method is intended to dry ink to produce opaque colours or dry off colours to prevent smudging between print layers when printing multi-colour prints.
For home-studio printers, we recommend using these three methods: hand iron, oven bake and tumble drying to heat set the print.
3. Hand Iron Curing
Firstly ensure your prints are completely dry. When ironing Metallics, fabrics must be ironed from the inside or reverse side as the pigment in metallics limit the amount of heat going into the fabric. This is especially necessary when curing PERMASET SUPERCOVER® prints.
4. Bake Method
You can bake a print in the oven using a low heat temperature of 90°C or 194°F. Make sure to fold the fabric after air drying and wrap it in aluminium foil before placing inside a domestic oven.
5. Tumble Dry
You can heat cure a print by putting it through a tumble dryer. This method requires 30-minutes. You should always test this method prior to curing all your prints this way.
6. Tunnel Dryer
For commercial and trade printers, employing the drying tunnel method is the best method. The tunnel dryer is also called a belt dryer, this method is the most common for professional screen printers. For PERMASET® inks, the recommended curing is 160°C or 320°F with a standard time of 3 minutes going through the tunnel. Some print shops have success with shorter dwell times, again test this method and find out what works best for you.
Please Take Note
There are recommended temperature and time instructions for each product on the back of the PERMASET® packs to ensure you can properly set heat fabrics and garments. Learn more about screen printing with PERMASET® here, or contact PERMASET® for further advice and tips on screen printing using water-based inks.
For further information about heat curing PERMASET inks check out our Heat Curing Product Information Sheet
The good thing about water-based inks is that they do not contain phthalates and are water-soluble. You don’t need high–grade solvents to clean the screens, just water. But when you leave water-based inks on the screen mesh to dry, it makes the screen especially tricky to clean. You’ll have to be careful not to ruin the screen and the stencil.
How do you remove the ink when it’s dried up?
Managing screen cleaning depends on how you clean and the screen wash you use. To get the most benefits of water-based inks, the idea is control. Use safer, eco-friendly screen wash or less-caustic alternatives that will not only remove the ink but will protect your screen mesh as well.
Firstly, learn about harsh solvents. These may be lacquer thinners, screen opener solvents, and other products that are high in toxicity and caustic. For the safety of the screen and screen-printers using them, avoid these toxic solvents. Secondly, look for safer screen wash options like Franmar AquaWash Water–based Ink Remover available from screenprintingsupplies.com.au
Here are the basics on how you can make screen cleaning more manageable:
- Prepare your screen and several dry rags.
- Take your screen and the rags to the washout booth. The area will make it easier for you to clean the screen.
- Using the dry rags, wipe off excess ink that’s built up around the screen. Start with the thinner areas as they tend to dry very quickly. Clean off as much ink as possible and wipe the rag from top to bottom.
- If the ink can’t be eradicated using water and water–resistant emulsion, remove the remaining ink by spraying or applying a screen wash or stain remover. Choose the milder options that wipe the ink quickly without causing damage to your screen.
You can also opt to soak the screen with a haze remover but it’s more caustic and aggressive. You need to pair it with a pressure washer, applying the highest possible pressure to prevent the haze from remaining on the screen.
While highly toxic solvents can remove ink stains with less effort, they are not a safe choice. Always look for safer alternatives. At best, the practice is to clean screens right away. This way, you’ll only need water to clean the screens.
As a guide to cleaning water0-based inks off screens straight away, checkout this video ‘Washing PERMASET ink off Screens’
Water-based inks are eco-friendly and easy to use. To learn more about the PERMASET® range of water-based inks for screen printing, accessories and tools, you can shop here, or Contact PERMASET via this form.
PERMASET Metallic Inks for Fabric Printing
Reflective of metal particles, Metallic inks are specialty inks that provide added shine, vibrancy, and brilliance to your design. When you custom print with metallic inks, you achieve attention-grabbing effects which add to your design or printed piece. Gold and silver metallics are the most common however metallic inks also come in other vibrant colours.
PERMASET’s range of metallic inks for fabric are available in Gold Lustre, Bright Silver, Copper and Pearl White. The PERMASET Metallics range are all part of the lineup of PERMASET® AQUA inks.
So what makes PERMASET Metallic inks an ideal choice for your screen print designs?
- Metallic screen printing inks can be used on light and dark-toned fabrics
- When printing PERMASET Metallic inks onto dark fabrics you do not require an underbase
- You may use PERMASET Metallics for screen printing on both natural and synthetic materials
- Reductions can be made with PERMASET® Metallic Pearl White and PERMASET® Standard colours to create a wide range of Metallic effects including some lovely Rose Gold colours like those below
- Create shimmering metallic colours by mixing any PERMASET standard colours with PERMASET Metallic Pearl White
- Add extra highlights of metallic sheen to text and designs to create unique features on t-shirts and other garments
- Metallic inks are excellent for performance outfits for theatre or dance, providing costumes with added shine that’s sure to dazzle the audience
- Metallic prints on custom sports uniforms help to make your sports team stand out in a crowd.
PERMASET Standard and Metallic inks are intermixable. Check out our metallic ink products by visiting your local PERMASET Stockist
PERMAPRINT PREMIUM Metallic Inks for Printing Paper, Cardboard, Coated Metals and More
PERMASET also has a range of Metallic inks for screen printing onto other substrates called PERMAPRINT PREMIUM Metallics. You can use the PERMAPRINT PREMIUM Pearl Copper, Pearl Gold, Pearl Silver and Pearl White Metallics to print onto different materials, for example:
- Add elegance to different substrates such as sealed paper, cardboard, and some coated metals using PERMAPRINT PREMIUM Metallic inks
- PERMAPRINT PREMIUM Metallic Pearl Gold is ideal for event invitations, wrapping papers, posters, covers on notebooks, Christmas decorations and more
- Highlight special elements in hand-printed wallpaper, posters and packaging by adding PERMAPRINT PREMIUM Pearl Silver
- Add embellishments to book covers, hand printed packaging, signage or placemats using PERMAPRINT PREMIUM Pearl Copper
- Mix PERMAPRINT PREMIUM Pearl White with other PERMAPRINT PREMIUM ink colours to create shimmering colours like those used in this lovely book cover (see video below)
Our range of PERMASET AQUA Metallic inks are suitable primarily to textile printing and can be applied on fabrics including cotton, silk, polyester and synthetics. Our PERMAPRINT PREMIUM Metallic inks can be printed onto paper, cardboard, some coated metals, some plastics and wood. You need to experiment on some surfaces to determine the finished results.
Versatile and revolutionary, PERMASET eco-friendly inks offer a beautiful range of metallic inks for many applications, using 100% solvent-free pigments for exceptional colour yield. To find out more about PERMASET inks visit this page or Contact Us with your questions.
You can expand the range of metallic effects using PERMASET Pearl White as a reducer.
All 19 PERMASET Standard colours and Metallic Pearl White are intermixable. This allows you to create a wide range of colours with shimmering effects. The four Metallic Colours; Gold, Copper, Silver and Pearl White are also intermixable.
Rose Gold currently trending in fashion, is easily made by mixing PERMASET Metallic Copper with Metallic Pearl White.
See below a range of metallic effects which can be created by mixing PERMASET Pearl White with other PERMASET colours.
There are a number of manufacturer’s screen print inks available in Australia. With the industry on the rise the focus is moving away from plastisol and discharge inks to the more environmentally sustainable water-based inks on offer. There are a number of options available to help you achieve your preferred print design.
When it comes to screen printing, water-based inks are gaining in popularity due to their sustainability credentials, vibrant colours and soft handle, plus the fact that they are much safer for the user. Compared to plastisol and discharge inks, rather than sitting on top of the garment, water–based inks seep into the fabric, dying the garment directly. As a result, the print has a softer handle and is increasingly breathable, as well as much more durable than that of other inks. For this reason, water-based inks are becoming the most popular inks for screen-printing designs onto various garments and materials.
Screen Printers are increasingly choosing water-based inks like PERMASET. Photo courtesy Anchors Aweigh screen printers in Wollongong.
PERMASET, Australia’s number one brand of premium water-based inks, is experiencing increasing demand within both Australia and overseas due to its wide selection of diverse and exceptional inks for screen printing. These inks are available not just in different shades, but with distinctive purposes as well. Whatever material, substrate or requirement you have for screen printing, PERMASET has a product available for you. The following guide outlines what screen printing ink suits your project best.
Known as the ultimately versatile textile ink solution in Australia, PERMASET AQUA is a revolution in the screen printing industry. Since its suitability lies primarily to textile printing, it can be applied on a range of fabrics including cotton, silk, polyester and synthetics. Aside from its versatility on different fabrics, Permaset Aqua is undeniably eco-friendly. This 100% solvent free range contains pigments which provide intense, vibrant colour, rich in coverage and deliver exceptional colour yield.
Given its 45 solid years of experience, PERMASET never fails to give your design an impressive look and continues to be the best partner for your chosen textiles. Whether you’re wanting to print promotional shirts and merchandise, a fashion label, caps, tote bags, flags, yardage, eco-friendly homewares or personalised fabrics, PERMASET AQUA is your go-to screen printing ink.
PERMASET water-based textile screen printing inks are excellent for printing t-shirts and other merchandise.
Popular for its superior performance on high-end art production, PERMAPRINT PREMIUM is the most appropriate ink for printing on sealed paper, Tyvek, cardboard, polycarbonates, polyesters, poly-styrene as well as some coated metals. PERMAPRINT PREMIUM ink has been responsible for creating extraordinary hand-printed wallpapers, stickers, backlit displays for trade shows, and hand-printed packaging, making it a popular option for many artists and designers in Australia. Not only that, PERMAPRINT PREMIUM is highly-applicable to both wood and leather as well. A variant of this range PERMAPRINT PREMIUM Hybrid ink, is excellent for screen printing polypropylene shopping bags. PERMAPRINT’s exceptional suitability to a range of diverse substrates makes it unique among any other screen printing inks within Australia.
PERMAPRINT PREMIUM inks can be used for printing stickers.
This poster was printed using PERMAPRINT PREMIUM inks by Friendly Arctic screen printers in Nashville, USA.
Following the standards of environmental care, PERMPRINT PREMIUM is formulated to be free from toxic and ozone-depleting chemicals, plasticizers, and lead, making it safer for people to use than other screen printing inks.
Specially-formulated for colour matching, PERMATONE can generate as many as 1,869 colours for your intricate designs and merchandise. Given the numerous shade options PERMATONE offers, you won’t have a hard time achieving the right colour combination for your particular company or brand logos, or simply for the design of your organic fabric or garment.
PERMATONE is completely solvent-free yet produces superior, soft handle and vibrant colors for your design. Moreover, this ink works perfectly with hemp, linen, organic cotton, and other sustainable fabrics, thus creating a highly-durable printed material. It’s also excellent for use with delicate garments like baby clothes, underwear and swimwear. If you’re aspiring to achieve a long-lasting organic screen print in multiple colours, PERMATONE is your best choice. The PERMATONE colour-matching set of inks holds the coveted Soil Association of the UK, so if you’re wishing to print organically then this is the ink for you.
CSIRO t-shirt for the Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras 2020 screen printed using PERMATONE inks by Killer Merch Screen Printers in Coburg Melbourne.
PERMASET prides itself on the diverse range of inks the brand offers. Depending on the type of output you’re striving to acheive from your screen printing, PERMASET will always have something appropriate to offer. Always remember to choose the material or substrate you’re planning to print on first, and then decide which ink is the most suitable for your needs. With PERMASET, we have an ink suited to almost every project!