INKJET PRINTING MACHINES
Inkjet printing is a type of computer printing that recreates a digital image by propelling droplets of ink onto paper, plastic, or other substrates. Inkjet printers are the most commonly used type of printer and range from small inexpensive consumer models to expensive professional machines The concept of inkjet printing originated in the 19th century, and the technology was first extensively developed in the early 1950s.
Starting in the late 1970s inkjet printers that could reproduce digital images generated by computers were developed, mainly by Epson, Hewlett-Packard (HP), and Canon. In the worldwide consumer market, four manufacturers account for the majority of inkjet printer sales: Canon, HP, Epson, and Lexmark, a 1991 spin-off from IBM.
The emerging inkjet material deposition market also uses inkjet technologies, typically printheads using piezoelectric crystals, to deposit materials directly on substrates. There are two main technologies in use in contemporary inkjet printers: continuous (CIJ) and Drop-on-de- mand (DOD). Another emerging printing technology is pyroelectrohydrodynamics by which liquids can be printed at nanoscale volumes.
A heat press is a machine engineered to imprint a design or graphic on a substrate, such as a t-shirt, with the application of heat and pressure for a preset period of time. While heat presses are often used to apply designs to fabrics, they can also be used to imprint designs on mugs, plates, jigsaw puzzles, and other products. Both manual and automatic heat presses are widely available. A new style of the press that is semi-automatic has entered the market as well, allowing for a manual closing process with an automatic opening. Digital technology in newer machines enables precise control of heat and pressure levels and timing. The most common types of heat press employ a flat platen to apply heat and pressure to the substrate. In the “clamshell” design, the upper heat element in the press opens like a clamshell, while in the “swing-away” design, the heat platen swings away from the lower platen. Another design type a “draw style press” allows for the bottom platen to be pulled out like a drawer away from the heat for preparation of the graphic. Vacuum presses utilize air pressure to provide the necessary force and can achieve high psi ratings.
Most heat presses currently on the market use an aluminum upper-heating element with a heat rod cast into the aluminum or a heating wire attached to the element. For high-volume operations involving the continuous imprinting of items, automatic shuttle transfer presses are used. The substrates to be imprinted are continuously loaded onto the lower platen and shuttled under the heat platen, which then applies the necessary heat and pressure. The pattern is printed in sublimating ink on sublimating paper which allows the pattern to transfer. You can get some highly effective patterns and great effects using this technique.