Screen Printing FAQ

Click here for more information on promotional screen printing.

Question: Why bring our screen printing in house?
Answer: Owning your own screen printing equipment is an investment that will pay for itself. You will eliminate the cost of shipping, obtain profits that would otherwise by retained by your contract printer and have quality control.

The principal reason our customers bring screen printing in house is because they are having problems outsourcing. You will be able to have control of delivery and quality. Your product is unique to you. We can help guide you through the variables involved in printing so the entire process is codified and part of your ability to respond quickly to your customers requests.

Question: What type of ink should I use?
Answer: You can choose from conventional or UV inks. Conventional inks typically offer better adhesion but slower cure times. UV inks cure almost instantly and require UV curing equipment.

There are many ink manufacturers producing UV and conventional inks for specific types of product surfaces. Some surfaces will not provide adequate ink adhesion. For instance, glassware typically requires pretreatment before screen printing. Systematic Automation offers a 360 flame pretreatment system.

Question: What is the importance of an ink adhesion test?
Answer: The adhesion test will tell you if the ink is exhibiting good adhesion or not and is used to determine the type of ink that you would have to use for a particular application.

We will show you the industry standard “Cross Hatch” adhesion test. All you need is a razor blade and regular office tape. Part of your quality control is being assured that your ink will stick and stay put after being exposed to time, light, washing, temperature changes, and any chemicals in the product use environment. SA can guide you through ink compatibility and surface preparation or pretreatment.

Question: Is my printer limited to printing only one type of product?
Answer: Systematic Automation printers are modular in design giving you the freedom to print a variety of different products. The Model F1, for example, can go from printing flat to cylindrical in less than a minute. Changeover between pieces of cylindrical tooling takes seconds. You can go from printing a shot glass to a wine glass in less than a minute.

Question: Can I print multiple colors without purchasing an automatic screen printing machine?
Answer: Yes, you just need your product to cure between each print and change your screen. Here is video of the Model F1 printing 4 colors with precise registration.

Question: What supplies do I need to begin screen printing?
Answer: All you need is a screen and ink. We will assist you in choosing the right screen and ink specification for your product. You can use products such as EZ Solv for cleaning your screen once finished with your print job.

Question: I am completely new to screen printing, does it require training?
Answer: Our printers are designed for unskilled labor. Dedicated pieces of tooling minimize any troubleshooting that is typically required from other printers. Also, The purchase of a machine comes with a free day of training at our factory, machine manual and video tutorial.

Your machine will be shipped ready to print. We will provide an instructional video of the machine printing your part upon your request. It is all part of the excellent customer support that comes with every machine we make.

Question: Where do you manufacture your machines?
Answer: We design and manufacture entirely at our ultra modern facility in Connecticut, USA. This enables us to have complete quality control.

Question: What is the difference between an H (mercury vapor) lamp and a D (iron) lamp for UV curing
Answer: An iron lamp will significantly increase intensity. Nanometer ranges are available on our website under UV and lamps. Iron spikes in the 395 nm range. Gallium additive is also available with a peak in the 410 nm range. Your ink supplier will verify if this will be more effective. If so, we recommend you try out an iron lamp and raise the lamp an inch or more. By raising it, you will allow more of the light emanating from the center of the lamp to reach to outside of the material being printed. Iron lamps and additive lamps in our experience are harder to start (may need to be fully cool to start and may require more than one attempt), they also have a shorter life.