Dye Sublimation, Troubleshooting Issues – Case 1

A fact of selling printers for Dye Sublimation work is that the customer always firstly blames the printer when things go wrong and they call us to resolve the issues that they are having. The reality is that the number of printer issues versus other issues is minute. In 1000 printers we have had three returns correctly and they were for main board failure or image shadowing issues.

Customers buy the printer and the cartridges from us and get the ink, paper, mugs and presses elsewhere and when it goes wrong for them they immediately blame the printer, which is very frustrating and time consuming for us. We have even had people who bought the printers cheap and other items elsewhere telephoning us for assistance because the people that they purchased from either will not answer the telephone or they can not answer the question.

So, we have had customer issues ranging from incorrect inks and transfer papers being sold by other suppliers, Tesco standard mugs or cotton T shirts being used to sublimate on, as well as incorrect printers being sold that are not technically capable of printing dye sublimation inks. Believe me, we share your frustration!

We accept that there is a lack of information and a lot of mis information in the market regarding Dye Sublimation Printing and without setting ourselves up as experts, we will try and share some of the knowledge that we have in terms of “How To Tutorials”, “Video’s”, “Case Studies” and FAQ’s. This will take a while so be patient but please also understand that our primary objective as a company is to make a profit through sales of quality products to new and existing customers.

All that we ask is that you be fair with us. If you are a potential customer, welcome, get involved and please ask questions. If you are looking for the cheapest source of product supply then by all means read and watch the content on the site, however please do not call us or use our time and resources that have been put in place to support our customers. We think that this is a simple fairness policy that all can accept.

Case Study 1)

Tony from Hull who purchased 10 plates from us. He had purchased his printer, inks, paper and press equipment from Manchester,

Customer telephones and advises that he was printing and producing mugs yesterday and all was well but now today he advises that the mugs are not looking good with a chalky effect on them, almnost like black and white. He also said that the transfer paper was sticking to the mug after pressing. The print looks fine on the paper before sublimating in a mug press.
Before any major comment from us we would firstly establish what items, if any were purchased from us and when. We may ask for a receipt date or invoice number before we procede further to ask questions in order to try and help.

Our Questions:

We would continue to establish answers to these questions irrespective of other customer comments, or tales of woe, lol!

Transfer Paper
1) Are you certain that the paper is Dye sublimation transfer paper?
2) Who’s transfer paper were using, yesterday and is it different from the paper today?
3) Is the paper being printed on the correct side? Print side facing downwards in a cassette
Front paper loading printer, or face upwards in a rear feed printer?

Ink
4) Are you certain that the ink is Dye sublimation ink?
5) Who’s ink were you using, yesterday and is it different from the ink today?
6) Is the print well defined, has it dropped any colours from the print?

Printer
7) Have you performed a nozzle check and is it ok
8) Have you performed a head clean and re-checked a nozzle check?

Media
9) Are the mugs Dye Sub mugs, ie are they coated, which supplier?
10) Are you sublimating at the correct temperature/time for the media type?
Press
11) Are you setting the press in centigrade or Farenheit – Makes a big difference
12) Are you sublimating at 180 degrees centigarde for 180 seconds? (Time varies with media being used)
13) When you place the cold mug in the press are you waiting for the temperature to drop and then
return to 180 degrees before starting the timer to “go”?
14) Are you removing the tranfer paper from the mug immediately it comes out of the press?
15) Are you quenching the mug in warm/tepid water?

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