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  1. #1
    Premium Member
    alexfugazi's Avatar

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    Default Vellums v. Plastic Films? Thoughts?

    Hey guys-
    I've been burning my screens for a long time now with vellum for films, but I know a lot of you peeps use plastic mylar/duralar, etc instead.

    I've definitely been happy w/ my results, and the paper vellum films are so inexpensive, but I'm curious to know if you guys prefer the clear plastic films for reasons I'm not seeing?

    I am in no way expecting sarcastic responses for a few posts before I get someone to come back to me with actual first hand experience info.
    Yes. That is me wearing a Borat thong in my avatar.

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  2. #2
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    Epson (dye) printouts on "waterproof" films.

    I use them because they give really great resolution, burn faster and crisper (since you are dealing with clear & 100%opaque vs semi-opague/moreopaquer printouts. I think tech people call it the D-Max and D-Min) and I used vellum a few times and it didn't burn very well.

    I don't find the cost insane, especially when I compare it to the aggravation of dealing with other film making methods.

    I find the screens breakdown, especially on an automatic, when not fully exposed, which seems to be a regular thing with my experiences with vellum.

  3. #3
    Thornysarus's Avatar

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    Clear burns faster with a harder edge. Costs more, but if you're dealing with any sort of detail it's the way to go.

    I have large format films run locally at a sign shop with a 64-inch device. No way I'd try and do these in-house. I just don't do the volume that would pay for itself.

    Besides, they always do a good job... and if they don't, they do them over. lol
    Last edited by Thornysarus; 01-09-2012 at 07:11 PM.

  4. #4
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    i would think mylar would be a bit more durable if you decide to do any work on your films after you print (granted most people print the films once they're done with the artwork, but some don't) whether it be more ink, erasing, scratching off with an xacto knife, etc.

  5. #5
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    Hmm- what is your experience in pricing on plastic films? The local shop that people suggest is like $25 a shot, which is quite a bit more than the 2-3 bux I'm spending on vellums. I could see maybe using vellums for blocks of color and switching to film for keylines and stuff. Hrm.
    Yes. That is me wearing a Borat thong in my avatar.

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  6. #6
    RADAR's Avatar

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    i use the ink jet films, the only thing with them is that they are hard to tile when you print them out, it seems if one half of the film has more ink on it it shrinks just a bit, only matters if you are printing super detailed prints.

  7. #7
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    $1.00 per foot for film @ 24" wide. $0.75 per foot for 13" film. All on a roll.

    If I'm printing film for someone else, then I charge 10x as much. (if they want cheap film, they can invest the $$ to get the machines and upkeep them for themselves.)

    Buy a 24" Epson off Craigslist for $1000 and you are set.

  8. #8
    squeegeethree's Avatar

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    Plastic (polycarbonate) is the way to go in my opinion

  9. #9
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    That's good to know- I've always kinda hesitated on buying my own film printer, as my costs are so low buying them on vellum from D and J here in town, but it'd be nice to avoid the back and forth in the car a couple times a week. So, is the upkeep on the machines fairly straight forward? Do you suggest a service contract or anything?

    My new press can print up to 30" wide on the short side, so I'd have to get a larger printer than a 24"- if I was sticking with 18x24's that wouldn't be an issue.

    And as always, I thank you all for your advice! GP has been a wonderful resource for years for me now...
    Yes. That is me wearing a Borat thong in my avatar.

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  10. #10
    B-DROID's Avatar

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    Epson 7600 / 9600. You can buy different sized film (18", 24", 30", up to 40") on rolls and switch it out per job. They are pretty reliable and efficient, plus you can find them pretty regularly.

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