ink quality: Effective adhesion relies on the quality of the ink, with the chemical composition playing a pivotal role in determining its ability to adhere to the fibers of the fabric. The chemical properties of the ink significantly influence its bonding characteristics with the fabric, ultimately impacting the overall adhesion quality.
temperature before applying the powder: The air temperature during the printing process plays a significant role. Make sure your room is under 25 degrees celsius or cooler. Most dtf setups also have a pre-heat plate which the just-printed film passes over (so it pre-heats it - curing the ink) before the adhesive powder is sprinkled onto the film. You can adjust the temperature of this plate but generally 40-42 degrees is ideal. If the temperature of either the air or plate is too high, it can lead to issues such as ink drying too quickly, preventing proper bonding. On the other hand, if the temperature is too low, the ink may not cure or bond adequately with the fabric.
temperature after applying the powder (the drying and curing process):
fabric type: Different fabrics have varying levels of porosity and react differently to temperature and ink. Some fabrics may require specific temperature settings for optimal adhesion.
humidity: Humidity levels in the environment can also impact the drying and curing process. High humidity may slow down the drying/curing, affecting the ink's ability to adhere properly.
By addressing these factors and ensuring a proper match between materials, equipment, and printing parameters, you can minimize the risk of cracks / edge peeling and improve the overall quality and durability of your prints.
How to prolong the life of not just the print but whole shirt
To extend the life of both print and shirt:
choose natural detergents; avoid chemical-based options (especially those with harsh chemicals).
Wash clothes at lower temperatures.
Use a slower speed cycle for washing and drying to reduce the risk of tearing and print cracking.
Iron at a suitable temperature to avoid burning or melting the print.