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  • Low Cure ink info and color availability

    I have been considering switching over to some low cure inks. Possibly switching over to them entirely. I love the idea of only needing one type of ink for all substrates as well as using less heat/electricity to cure them. I was wondering how many of you in here use LC inks, what brand, and what you like and dislike about them.

    There does seem to be one issue, of which I hope will remedy itself as more LC inks become available and more common, is that the lines of LC inks offered do not seem to have many colors available yet. FN Ink looks great, price is really nice, but I would like to see more colors offered. I would imagine that a shop using mostly FN Ink would need to get used to mixing new colors often. I am trying to avoid mixing as often as possible. Also, I have not seen any LC inks available for 4 color process printing. Why is that?

    If anyone can share any info that have on their experience with LC inks, please do. Chuggins, I am sure you will see this and I am looking forward to hearing what you know.

  • #2
    Hi Spencer!

    ok...... here goes....

    LC inks are awesome - you can use them on just about everything which is great. However - NOT ALL POLY IS CREATED EQUAL... (steps off soapbox). There is still a good amount of blended garments out there where the poly threads will still bleed into the inks at fairly low temps.... Many printers who use LC inks, will still need to use a dye blocker base on these fabrics. Thankfully, those dye blockers are also LC inks - but it is definitely something to keep in mind.

    When it comes to color selection - LC inks are still in their infancy, which means we are testing the waters as far as color selection goes. And honestly - many of those colors you see in standard cure ink lines DON'T SELL MUCH AT ALL. Its kind of crazy when looking at sales numbers...

    So honestly, mixing low use ink colors will be a necessity for many print shops. In fact thats what a PMS mixing system is - mixing colors - and there are many many shops where that is ALL they do. I understand the ease of grabbing a color off the shelf and re-ordering that same color. But the question is: convenience or keeping costs down?

    As for 4 color process inks - those are more of a niche market. it is far easier to do a simulated process job than a cmyk job. Both in separations and in printing the shirt. You can see that reflected in ink sales to first time buyers and repeat buyers, the numbers DROP.

    So, in the long term as the LC market matures, you the buying customer will see these inks come to market as Regular Cure inks are phased out.


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    Spencer 411 Designer and screen printer in St. Louis, MO. Find out more about Spencer 411

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