Unclear Color in Sublimation ?

by Inkraz Store on February 01, 2021
One of the main characteristics of sublimation is that it allows you to reproduce designs with vivid and intense colors. It is a very simple technique to perform, and the success of the result depends on several variables that we have already analyzed in a previous post.

If you have been sublimating for some time, you were satisfied with the result and thought you had everything under control, but suddenly you face a problem of dull colors, the cause could be due to a change in the type of polymer used by the manufacturer of the product . Keep reading because we are going to explain how to solve this problem.

The basic principle of sublimation
Sublimation occurs when we iron the printed design onto the sublimable item. Upon reaching 200ºC, the inks deposited on the paper go from a solid to a gaseous state and these inks in the form of gas penetrate the polyester molecules (fabric or rigid articles that incorporate a polymer layer), and permanently stamp the polyester .

Ironing time will vary depending on the type of item. As a general rule, we will have to iron a white polyester garment for about 35-40 seconds to be able to sublimate it, but a ceramic mug may need 3-4 minutes.

Everything under control?
When we already have the whole process controlled: we use the same sublimation inks, the paper, the printer and the color profile that give us a good result, the transfer plate, and the same sublimation items as always. And suddenly, the resulting colors are very dull. We repeat the process, and the result is still wrong. What will be the cause of the problem? We can blame the inks, the paper, the plate. But in these cases, the problem may be with the polymer layer or the type of polyester.

Some sublimable items have a slightly softer polymer incorporated than others and this will mean less ironing time. In the same way, new polyester fabrics with a touch similar to cotton and with greater softness are incorporated that require less ironing time.

Reduce ironing parameters
In these cases, slightly reducing the ironing time and temperature is the solution. If you've even been successfully sublimating t-shirts at 200ºC for 40 seconds, and you are using the same products but suddenly your colors are off, try ironing them at 190ºC for 30 seconds and see how you get the colors back.

Always start by using the general parameters of temperature and time, but if you notice a sudden worsening of the result, reduce your parameters. With less time and temperature, you will get more color.

Vivid colors in sublimation

Although your supplier of sublimable products always tries to maintain the same quality standard, they are sometimes exposed to these types of differences. With this little trick, you can solve the problem of dull colors.

Have you ever had this same problem? How did you manage to solve it? Write to us and share your experience with us.