Finally printed my first poster print... I've done some T-shirts in the past, but this is my first flatstock attempt. I've been lurking as a premium member for awhile, studying all the process threads and Gigposter history so I can understand what you guys are saying when you call me a tubdumper. Built myself a vacuum table and, after a few exposure tests and two popped screens (gotta pay attention even when you're washing screens, apparently), whipped up a 3 color design that I could print with one screen (since that's all I have now). Here are some process shots:
Exposing the screen the Ryonet exposure unit I bought a couple years ago when I started printing shirts. Lessons learned: probably shouldn't coat the whole screen if I'm not using the whole screen. probably should have centered the image vertically (which I was planning to do but changed my mind last second for some stupid reason I can't remember). 24 minute exposure. 230 mesh count.
The screen hooked up to the vacuum table. The idea was that I could print one circle, flip it upside down and print the other circle, then print the text, which gets me three colors from one screen. My off contact is maintained by 2 pennies taped to the screen.
First color down: Speedball process Cynine. Didn't print off enough times before loading up the "good" paper so the first few I pulled were a little streaky.
Screen flipped around for the second color... three point registration in place.
Second color: Speedball process Magenta. I didn't really feel like tackling color mixing the first time, plus the straight process colors looked pretty cool, so I just went straight from the jar. This was taken after printing the whole run, so there's not a whole lot of ink left on there, though I gather from other process threads that I'm probably not putting enough on there anyways.
Second color on paper
Pretty sure I stole this trick from someone else's process thread on here, but my lovely wife brought this home from work for me. Makes getting ink on the screen pretty easy and I assume will make color mixing more repeatable, since I can measure quantity fairly accurately. I only have one so far, since the only way she can take them is if they are opened and not used. No longer sterile, but also not filled with Propofol. Taking drugs home from the hospital is usually frowned upon.
Last color down. Speedball black. I could stop the process thread here and make it look like it all went smoothly but that would be a lie. The black nearly killed me. The red and blue went down no sweat (probably because they were just big ass circles) but the black was such a pain that out of the 10 prints I did, only 2 or 3 look any good. Here are some examples of the problem I was having:
Ink would get all over the print side of the screen, I'd clean it off, then print off onto newsprint and it would turn out perfect...
then I'd load up the good paper and it would bleed all over again. It seemed to be worse if I flooded the image, so on the couple that worked out I didn't flood. So I have a big stack of newsprint and unused DBA forms with perfectly printed text and at least 7 or 8 posters with awfully splotchy text. How often do you guys flood with black ink? Seems like with a 230 mesh count, that's probably not the issue... or is it? The only other thing I forgot to do when I printed the black that I did when I printed the other colors was to block the unused holes on the vacuum table... did the paper maybe lift and stick just a tiny bit? It didn't stick to the screen when I lifted it, by I assume it could have been sticking behind the squeegee and then pulling loose when I lifted the screen.
Anyways... I'm hooked, so any help would be most... um... helpful.