Sublimation Printing Windsocks. Why We Switched

February 18, 2021

Sublimation Printing Windsocks. Why We Switched - The Custom Windsock Co.

Seriously Customized...All the Way to the Way We Print

Our job is to make you look good and stand out. When you have a tattered. faded windsock, it says a lot. Windsocks are designed to be bright, visible and noticeable. It's an opportunity, not only to keep your site safe, but to show off your brand.

Custom printed windsocks in full-color print are a rare thing to find and we are the best in the business. We started full-color printed windsocks a few years ago and we got a great response. We started reaching out to customers to find areas of improvement and with lots of feedback to work on, we wanted to fix the pain points.

Custom printing in full color means a movement away from traditional screen printing on nylon or knitted polyester. Digital printing wasn't really cutting it either and failed to meet our standards for quality. We wanted to try something better using newer printing technology. We wanted to try sublimation printing on knitted polyester. We did. And it worked!

What is Sublimation Printing?

Sublimation printing is a newer method of printing which allows the inks to penetrate deep into the fibers of the material and become permanently bonded to them. The result is a high-definition print that has a very intricate level of detail. This means that smaller windsocks can also be printed to look amazing at a close view. This is great for our promotional windsocks because they may not always be flown and may be examined in great detail by the end recipient.

How Does it Work?

First, the design the customer sends us is printed into a specialist transfer paper as a mirror image using special dye-sub inks. These are water-based inks and have a lower environmental impact than the stronger chemical inks we used prior. Once this process is complete, we line up the transfer with the fabric and through a combination of heat and pressure, the inks are transitioned from their solid form directly into a gas (skipping the liquid stage altogether).

The inks then penetrate the fibers of the knitted polyester and become permanently bonded to them. This results in a vivid, beautiful print.

Why We Made the Switch

Prior to sublimation printing, we mostly screen printed or digitally printed our windsocks. Digital printing was great because it allowed us to change up the logos and print custom windsocks quite easily but the material faded more quickly than screen printed windsocks. Screen printing did not allow us to easily switch up the artwork.

Enter sublimation printing! Dye-sub printing allowed us to increase our level of sharpness and detail in the print. In addition, we could print a number of colors in one run so it turned out to be more cost effective and give better pricing to our customers. Sublimation printing is practically made for knitted polyester, the two go together like chocolate and peanut butter.

The best part of dye-sub printing is the longevity of the product. Screen printing was the most fade-resistant and best method before dye-sub because you could manually push more ink into the fabric than you could with digital printing. With sublimation printing, the inks can penetrate deep into the fibers and make the windsock extremely fade-resistant.

Overall, we feel that this was a worthwhile move. Better for the product longevity, better from a safety standpoint and more cost effective, which means, better for you!

Feel free to leave a comment or if you like, you can get in touch with us directly at info@custom-windsocks.com. 

picture by Nina Luong

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