Dye / Toner
questions about the dye sublimation business;
What it is, how it works, what you need, and where to get it.
If you entered at this site and would like a guided tour, click
here. If you are following the tour, the next section is how you can profit
from sublimation. At least skim this section however, because it does have useful
FAQs about Sublimation
What is dye sublimation? A simple,
efficient, fast and profitable method to letter metal plates and many fabrics.
Sublimated products are sold every where. Visit our "About
Sublimation" page for a detailed explanation.
What do I need to get started?
See our "Helpful Hints"
page, under "Equipment," for a general list and quick overview.
Do I need a special laser printer?
No, just a printer that doesn't use "throw-away" cartridges. We
supply sublimation toner cartridges for over 500 different printer types,
even old ones, like the HP 4 (which, by the way, is a good, solid workhorse).
Do I need a powerful computer?
No, just what floats your boat. We personally couldn't stand using a 486,
but above that should work fine.
What if I want to do a lot of
graphics? If you are certain you are going to be doing a lot of graphics
talk to someone at your local computer/printer stor. Stored graphics eat
up space in a hurry and processing time can be very slow on a "dinosaur."
300 dpi and 600 dpi printers do a nice job on most graphics. If you need
1200 dpi output, check out the newer printers that we support. If you want
to hold start-up costs down, consider getting an HP 4000 (you can get an
excellent rebuilt one for around $450) or a PostScript HP 4, make some money
and then upgrade. Keep the old machine as a backup.
I already have a laser printer
that I use for regular printing. Will the sublimation toner cartridge hurt
my printer? No, like your regular cartridge, the dye sub cartridge is a
self-contained unit. When you switch cartridges, nothing remains.
What computer programs do I need?
It is really a matter of preference, practicality and price. Many of our
customers want the latest version of Corel Draw. Others successfully use
a version so old they have forgotten the number. PageMaker is a fairly inexpensive
and simple to learn program that you can also paste imported graphics onto.
It also is very efficient in job flow through time. Almost any desk top
publishing program will work nicely.You might want to also check out a very
versatile little program - The Print Shop Pro Publisher. We are astonished
at how great this inexpensive program was for producing transfers.
I don't have much time or money
to spend on new programs. What else can I do? Believe it or not you can
use just WordPerfect to start with. To create an efficient layout, create
a text box .3 larger than the plate you are burning (this will be your registration
marks for the plate). Use center justification and just start typing, breaking
lines where it is logical. When finished, make all text bold and larger,
to fill up the box, leaving at least a quarter inch margin. Use the enter
key to separate logical groups of text and to roughly vertically center
the text. Click the "paragraph" feature under "format"
to fine tune the spacing. Transfers are printed as a reverse image. Click
on "print" under file, click on "properties" and then
under graphics click on "print as a mirror image." I would want
to save my money and get something more efficient ASAP but, hey, everybody
has to start somewhere. Seems like we read about this small company called
Microsoft starting in a garage.
I have most of what I need but
don't have a (specific piece of equipment). Where do I get one? Go to our
page for needed equipment or for suppliers of blanks, metal or whatever,
check out our "Supply Sources" page.
Can I create a different color
by printing one color and then printing another color on top of it? No.
It will look terrible and your customer won't like it. If full color is
a necessity and white is the main material you use, check out
I have no sublimation experience.
Are the techniques difficult to learn? We don't think so. If you have the
initiative to start, you should have the will to succeed. If you run into
a technical snag we can probably help you. We explain a lot of techniques
on our "Helpful Hints"
Has anyone ever had a problem
with one of your dye sublimation cartridges? Yes. Everything from a customer
not knowing how to use it correctly, to a manufacturers defect in a brand
new part. We solve problems two ways: successfully over the phone or with
a replacement cartridge as fast as you need it.
Compared to many others, the
prices, for your sublimation cartridges are very low. How can you do that?
Easy. We believe in establishing long-term relationships and are willing
to give up some short term profits to get it started. We figure you are
in business for the long haul and we want to be with you.
Why do you re-engineer your cartridges
with new, up-graded parts? The simple answer is- ours work better. See our
page under "The Process".
Some suppliers advertise they
only sell OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) cartridges, because they
are better. You don't. Why? Wish we could and still maintain our exacting
quality standards. Life would be a lot simpler if we didn't hand rebuild
every cartridge, with upgraded parts. Granted, the shell is used (but who
cares about the box), but everything inside is new and the best we know
how to provide.
Some suppliers require that you
send empty cartridges back to them, do you? No. The only truthful reason
we can think of, for that requirement, is if they reuse some expensive parts,
to increase profits. We don't do that so there is no need for a return,
unless you want to. Cartridges are probably not very good for the environment
and if that is an issue with you, you can return it for proper disposal,
at our expense.