Textile printers are constantly seeking methods to make their designs and textiles better. The kind of ink used for printing is a crucial component of good design. Great-quality inks that are simple to print with and are less harmful to the environment have been in high demand in recent years. With so many various kinds of ink available, how can you choose the one that best suits your production process?
Types of Inks
Even when printing on surfaces that don't hold colours very well, acid inks are renowned for their vivid hues. Acid inks are therefore frequently used to print on wool and silk. When printing on these kinds of materials, acid inks provide excellent colour vibrancy. Acid inks are frequently used for printing swimwear, which is frequently made of lycra and other fabrics besides wool and silk. Because acid inks have great endurance for chlorine and salt water, but also because of their high colour brilliant.
The most widely used inks in the textile business nowadays are reactive ones. Reactive inks are particularly well-liked, especially among digital textile printers. Reactive inks are best used when printing on cotton. Reactive inks, however, can also be used to print on silk and wool.
The digital textile industry saw the emergence of transfer printing and sublimation printing as digital textile printing grew in popularity. When you print something with sublimation ink on paper, you then place that piece of paper and the fabric in a chamber where intense heat and pressure cause the ink to transform from a liquid to a gas (sublimates). The polyester fibres are easily penetrated by this gas. The colours are sealed into the fabric after the pressure and temperature are released.
Although approximately 50% of all fabrics in conventional printing are printed with pigment inks, it makes sense that many clients request "digital pigment printing." They actually seek a simple procedure with good colour and a reasonable cost. All those benefits cannot (yet) be realized digitally.
The most popular inks for traditional printing on polyester fabrics are dispersed inks. Disperse printing involves spraying the ink directly onto the fabric, which is then steamed and cleaned. The strands are opened up during the steaming process, allowing the ink to properly infiltrate the fabric. Following the steaming procedure, the fibre seals once more, locking the colours into the fabric. As a result, the colour brilliance and wash fastness are both quite high. Nowadays, disperse ink are the most often used ink in conventional textile printings.
The type of ink you use has a large influence on the quality of your prints. Therefore, we believe that you should only use the best inks available for your printing technique. Because of the large variety of inks available, it can be difficult to choose which one best fits your production process.