How long and what temp do U use 400°F,4 minutes
let's talk about the process of sublimation. I probably skipped over the most important part, right? So sublimation ink, when heated, will basically, it turns into a gas, and it transfers from the sheet into your substrate. Now we won't get tactical, you know, the technicalities of how it happens is above my head anyway. But basically, it resolidifies into the fibres of what we are working with. So what that means is that while this process is occurring, we need the blowout paper to capture any ink that's trying to escape, because you can get sublimation ink residue in your heat press, on your Easy Press, you know, and we don't want that because what will happen is that can transfer on to your next project. So we use a blowout paper to capture all of that ink that's trying to escape. Also, the Teflon sheet is going to trap in moisture, and we don't want that when we're sublimating either, because all that excess moisture can cause problems with our print transfer process. So we talked about how it happens. Basically, you are going to set up your design and your software, print it out on your printer, with this special sublimation ink, and then you're going to line it up with your substrate, and press it on with your heat press. Now let's hit the pause button here. Because, you are going to press- well, not for everything, but for most of your starting projects, your starting point for pressing is going to be 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 60 seconds. Now, if you have , we'll say more delicate items. For example, sometimes white T-shirts can scorch really easy. You will want to experiment with those. A lot of times your sweet spot is going to be, say, 385 for 50 seconds, you know? So sublimation does have a bit of a learning curve and that not everything is going to press for the same time or the same temperature. If you are buying your blanks from a reputable sublimation dealer, they will be able to tell you, and a lot of times they have it right on their website, and they'll say okay, you're gonna press this for, you know, 365 for 45 seconds. So that's just an example, but you can for your items that you're finding locally, I suggest keeping a notebook, all right? You can write them all down. That way a year from now, when it's time to do more Christmas blankets, you already have a starting point, you can pull out that notebook and say, "Hey, these settings worked great for me last year.", all right? Now, your heat press. It does matter. I'm not saying that if you have a cheap starter heat press, that you can't start there. You know I'm a real big fan of not making these huge investments, and to brand new crafts that you may or may not like. If you already have a heat press that is a great starting point. Same thing if you have a Cricut Easy Press too, alright? Anything that will heat up to 400 degrees is a great starting point for at least testing out sublimation. Unfortunately, if you have an original Cricut Easy Press, the temperature does not go up that high. So that may be something that you want to try out. Also sometimes, if you have a local vinyl store or if you have a friend with a heat press, you know, just give him a shout and be like, "Hey, I don't know if this is something I want to do or not. You want to play with some sublimation?" Okay? And you know, your local vinyl stores really are a great resource. So I'm just planting that seed, because a lot of us, you can really, you know, go in and pick their brain, and I have converted so many people to sublimation that it's, it's borderline ridiculous is what it is. But, but it's a true thing. So what else do we need to talk about to get ready for sublimation? Let's start from the beginning. I know I'm reiterating some information, but I want to make sure that I cover it. We've bought our printer, we have our ink, we have our paper, we talked about our heat press, we talked about you can purchase designs, potentially personalise them, okay? And I'm going to be honest with you, that is the majority of what is involved in sublimation. Now, once you really get into sublimation and you decide, "Hey, I want to do this as a business, maybe I want to add this to my existing business." Well, then you can start talking about investing in, you know, the fact that you can powder coat your own sublimation blanks, okay? Or, maybe I want to experiment with treating cotton T-shirts to accept sublimation. Or, you know, maybe I need to invest in a wider format heat press so that I can press full colour sublimation T-shirts. This is really a craft that can grow with you, all right? But do you remember how in the beginning, I talked about how this would complement your existing vinyl business or hobby, okay? Because it really opens up a whole new possibility that you cannot get with vinyl, all right? So for example, you know, with vinyl for decorating T-shirts, you, obviously you press the vinyl on there, but you're restricted to what you can cut with your cutter. So obviously with vinyl, you're not going to get a nice watercolour design. Again, you can print it on a printable transfer, but those do not last as long as regular vinyl, and they certainly don't last as long as sublimation. Now I say that they complement each other because not only can you add these new types of products, but guess what? You can use sublimation on white glitter heat transfer vinyl, and turn it into just really, really awesome designs.