Sublimation Printing Method is used to achieve a 3d effect / photography printing on a T-shirt or any apparel. Below is the method utilized to achieve Sublimation print effect on to a apparel,
1. A specific printer, which is called as dye-sublimation printer, is used to print the transfer dyes on to the apparel.
2. There are two specific set of color dyes, which are used for Sublimation Printing - CMYO (Cyan Magenta Yellow Overcoating) and CMYK (Cyan Magenta Yellow Key). Choice of these colors depends upon the specific requirement of the garment.
3. There are essentially two steps in Sublimation printing, (a) Sublimation dyes or Liquid Gel ink are first transferred to special transfer paper (similar to normal printing) (b) These Transfer papers are then placed on to the apparel and the print is transferred through Heat Setting process. Through the right combination of pressure and heat (averaging 350 degrees Fahrenheit) the sublimation dyes are transferred to the apparel at the molecular level to bring in high resolution permanent image.
Advantages of Sublimation Printing:
1. Smooth effect on the fabric and almost the print feels one with the fabric unlike Plastisol print, which is rough and can crack after several washes.
2. Does not fade away even after several washes because Sublimation is applied to the molecular level whereas in other types of printing application is only on the surface level.
3. Ability to reproduce any kinds of 3D image, photograph as close as possible.
Disadvantage of Sublimation Printing:
Sublimation printing is not possible on a 100% cotton fabric because the heat to transfer the print would destroy the cotton fabric. Sublimation print is only possible on 100% Polyester and Poly-Cotton blends such as 80/20 Poly/Cotton or 65/35 Poly/Cotton.