June '21

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Page 85 of 118

G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M 2 0 2 1 J U N E G R A P H I C S P R O 8 1 time," explains Zingone. For a small or- der, you can easily spend more time in the setup of that printing, although with larg- er orders, the setup time becomes a lower percentage of overall time spent on the job, he adds. Check out the example on page 83 for more discussion on this topic. Conversely, DTG shines in small run, customizable scenarios. "DTG can print that one item in 5–10 minutes start to fin- ish, is relatively easy to setup, and doesn't involve any cleaning or many support- ive processes to run," says Moore. What's more, the color options are endless. Where screen printing requires a different screen for each color, DTG can print every color of the rainbow and beyond. These prints are also done in high- quality, photorealistic images, says Paul Crocker, DTG Connection. As for its customization abilities, he explains that there is not a significant setup process for each unique graphic, with the only additional time needed being chang- ing the graphic itself. He adds, "With DTG, there is virtually no difference in per piece printing cost if you are printing a single shirt or 500 of the same graphic, or printing 500 unique designs for that matter." The biggest drawback to DTG, accord- ing to Moore, is the slower speeds and often-higher cost. The initial investment tends to be high, but the consumables (inks and pretreatment) tend to run up the bill. W hat's more, the lower-cost printers run the risk of being converted printers, meaning that traditional print- ers are converted to use DTG water-based inks. This can lead to breakdowns, poor performance, and little support. To combat this, Zingone urges shops looking at DTG equipment to consider those designed specifically for the task and going through a reputable company to ensure any troubleshooting or main- tenance issues can be easily addressed. It is also important to note that DTG uti- lizes water-based inks, meaning that it is mostly limited to cotton fabrics for best results and requires pretreatment. Providing you with The Right Products, Right Away ® for over 70 years! 70 years!

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