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General

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Heat Printing
February 1, 2014


Heat Printing

Heat Printing example
Heat printed designs are crisp and colorful, but aren’t recommended when durability is a concern. They have a shiny, plastic looking appearance.

Overview

Heat or transfer printing is a decorating process which uses heat-applied transfers and a heat press to transfer designs and images onto garments. There is a wide variety of heat printing processes, such as transfer papers, plastisol/screen printed transfers, dye sublimation, and print/cut applications. There are a variety of methods used to produce heat transfers.

The ClassB heat printing method

The artwork

Artwork specifications for heat printing are similar to Digital printing as both methods allow for a higher resolution image. The artwork is prepared in as many colors as required and may contain photo-realistic images.

The transfer material

We use a 55 micron thick polyurethane transfer material which is lab certified with the highest rating for color fastness, rebound, and carries at 50 washability rating. It uses a patented adhesive for a superior bond.

The ink

We use solvent based ink for a high quality print. There are four different ink colors – cyan, magenta, yellow and black. Those four colors combine to make the entire range of the color palette.

The printing process

Printing is done with a digital printer/plotter that first prints the image on the transfer material and then cuts the border for the transfer. It is a very precise process. Then the transfer is applied to the garment using a heat press to apply the proper pressure, temperature and time to properly seal the transfer to the garment. Once cooled, the garment is inspected and packed for shipping.

Other Methods

While all heat printing uses a heat seal press, there are a large variety of transfer preparation processes.

Laser/Inkjet transfer paper

This is the simplest form of the heat printing processes. Special paper is fed through a laser printer or ink jet printer then trimmed by hand and applied to the garment. It is inexpensive and very quick. Unfortunately, it does not work well on dark fabrics and does not wash well.

Sublimation Transfer

In sublimation transfers, a special ink is used that, when heated, turns to a gas and dyes the fabric. Dye sublimation provides sharp, colorful images with a soft feel, allowing fabric to stay light and breathable. However, sublimation is limited to use on white or light-colored materials. Because the garment must be made of or coated with polyester, it is not an ideal method for use on garments.

Plastisol Transfer

This is a process where standard screen printing techniques are used to apply the ink to a paper carrier. The ink is then partially cured and then applied using a heat press to finish the cure. It provides much of the benefits of screen printing without the equipment required to cure an entire garment. However, plastisol transfers are fragile and can be easily damaged by heat, light or abrasion.

How do I use a purchase order to pay for my order?
September 18, 2013

Qualifying organizations can use a purchase order with their initial order and receive NET 10 terms. Other organizations may need to first submit a credit application or may need to pay using a check or credit card. Read this entire article to determine which policy applies to you. If you are a…
  • BSA Council
  • Public School
  • Government Agency (Municipal, County, State or Federal)
  • Bank
  • National Brand Car Dealership
  • Hospital
Then you can receive NET 10 terms on your initial order, if:
  1. You provide a written copy of your purchase order that includes the customers name and shipping address. (An “intent to purchase” on letterhead is also satisfactory.)
  2. Product is shipped to the organization’s address and not a home address.
If you are a…
  • Private or Religious School
  • Business (other than those listed above)
  • Faith-based organization
Then you can receive NET 10 terms on your second order, if:
  1. You prepay for your first order with a check or credit card.
  2. You submit a credit application before submitting your second order and we approve that application.
  3. Shipment of all orders are to the organization’s address as listed on the credit application.
If you meet the requirements above, you can choose from 3 easy ways to submit your  purchase order:
  1. Email a copy to your customer representatives
  2. Fax to 888-744-1409
  3. Mail a physical copy (this will delay your order). Contact Us | ClassB®
Once we receive the purchase order, we will review it and advise you if we need more information.     All other organization types must prepay for all orders using check or credit card.

The hem on my shirts came undone, can you help?
July 2, 2013

Here at ClassB, we always strive to give our customers top-quality custom t-shirts along with the best possible customer service. In fact, we go above and beyond to exercise exceptional quality control procedures several times throughout the creation and production of your t-shirts. Unfortunately, there are times when even the most stringent quality control standards cannot prevent particular issues from occurring.

hem23

Over the past year, a very small number of our customers have reported a problem that occurred with a few of the t-shirts in their order. The problem is the bottom hem comes undone after the first washing. This happens because the lock stitch was not sewn correctly in the t-shirt manufacturing process.

We informed Gildan right away and they are aware of the issue. They traced it back to the machine that was causing the problem and repaired it. Gildan said that this type of problem rarely happens and only a small percentage of affected shirts made it past their inspectors. Less than 1 in 1,000 shirts were affected by this problem but we’re still taking it seriously.

If this happens to any of the shirts in your order, we will replace the shirt or refund the cost of the garment in full.

This can happen to any stitch on your t-shirt, like on the sleeve or collar. These are extremely rare but we will deal with them in the same way, by fixing it for you. For the few customers who have experienced this problem, we sincerely apologize.

Your satisfaction is our number one priority. If you happen to receive one of these t-shirts, please let us know ASAP so we can make things right.

CPSIA Attribution Size and Location
October 11, 2011

The Federal Law CPSIA (2008) requires us to label products with some manufacturing information. We know our customers care about product safety, but the addition of the attribution is not always desirable from a visual perspective. We do our best to place the text in position that will make it less noticeable. We print it in the smallest letters we can but it must still be legible. Some licensed properties require ® and © identifiers, we include those in the same location.

Your design requires CPSIA information if the product is designed for or intended to be used by children under the age of 12. This basically means that any order that contains Adult medium or smaller shirts will include the CPSIA information. If you know that no children WILL use the product, the law reads that if a child COULD use the product, it requires the text. The CPSIA attribution line identifies the manufacturer and where to see the certificate of compliance.

Here is a link for more information about CPSIA: CPSIA 2008 Compliant – ECO-T

For licensing attributions, each license owner has specifications. Below are some example photos of our most common licensed properties:

An example of a Licensed product with CPSIA and licensing information:

CPSIA trademark and copyright line

Basic designs are harder to hide the line, but as you can see, it does not stand out very much:

Full size design with cpsia trademark info

The only real problem is left crest or really small designs and licensing. There is just no place to hide it! Here is an example:

CPSIA trademark information on crest design

Some alternatives may be available.  Please contact us to see if your order qualifies!  Contact Us  

How does shipping work?
September 30, 2011

ClassB offers free shipping on all orders over $50.00 to any address using a 5-digit US Zip Code! In most cases, we will provide an in-hand date that you can count on.

We offer 3 levels of service for screen printed garments – Standard, Priority, and Rush, each with a different number of work days. See Rush Services for more information

All other decoration methods use Standard Service.

Standard Service is 12 business days from when you place the order until you receive the products to anywhere within the continental US using Fedex.

Priority Service is 9 business days from when you place the order until you receive the products to anywhere within the continental US using Fedex.

Rush Service is 6 business days from when you place the order until you receive the products to anywhere within the continental US using Fedex.

Just add 3 business days to any Service level if we are shipping to Alaska or Hawaii. See Shipping to Alaska and Hawaii.  This applies to all addresses that can receive Fedex deliveries.

“International” Addresses (such as APO, FPO, DPO, and other territories of the US) will receive free Priority Mail Service on orders over $50.00. All products sent using US Mail will not have an in-hand date commitment but we will mail them to the US departure point using our regular production schedule.

Ink Color & Garment Color Interaction
September 29, 2011

The ink colors and garment colors are shown by themselves. If you are choosing a stock design and choose from our recommended colors, you should not need to worry about ink color & garment color interaction. If you are picking your own colors, be aware of how different colors look when they are next to each other. Their are a few main areas to consider.

Contrast

If you would like your design to be readable from a long distance, choose a light shirt color and a dark ink color. If you select an ink and shirt color that are very similar, you will not be able to see the design at long distances. Low contrast designs are popular and some of our stock designs include low contrast options. High Contrast – – – – – – – – –  – – – – – – – – – – – – Low Contrast

Saturation

Some colors do not go well together. They are too close in saturation and, when touching, create visually disturbing effects. Shifting to a darker shirt or ink color generally fixes this problem. Too Close Saturation – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Adjusted Colors

Opacity

Inks are not 100% solid. Any ink color will allow some of the shirt color to show through. In some cases, you may choose particular colors and, because of the ink being less than 100% solid, the ink and garment mix to a different color. Cyan Ink on Yellow Haze Shirts:

Online Garment Color Swatches
September 29, 2011

The color swatches shown on our web site represent our best effort to show you what color your shirts are going to be when you receive them. However, there are a number of factors influencing the accuracy of these swatches. Generally, you can trust the name of the color and be confident that your garments will be the color you expect them to be. It’s also good to be aware of factors that affect fabric colors:

Dye Variation

Each “batch” of t-shirts are dyed with a hand-mixed dye. This means that the “red” shirts you order this year may be a slightly different shade of “red” than last year.

Garment Care

Because each person will care for their garment in different ways, the shirts in your order may only match in color when they first come out of the box. Harsh detergents, hot water, and high heat dryers can all serve to fade a t-shirt prematurely. If you’re taking a group picture in your garments, take this picture before you send the shirts home with each person! You should also accept that your computer screen has different settings than our computers screen. For example, depending on your computer screen, some colors can seem like completely different colors! In the example below, the SAME color swatch has been shifted about 15% in hue and brightness in different combinations. These shifts can make a Royal Blue fabric look purple, teal, navy blue, and lilac! The best thing to do is calibrate your monitor using images that show colors that the human brain is best at distinguishing like skin tones and foods. Color calibration is typically done through the ” Monitor” or ” Display” Control Panel or Preference Panel.

When can I view my art proof?
September 29, 2011

Once your order is placed, your design information will be sent to the art department where our talented group of artists will begin work on your design.  Within 2 business days, an artist will post an artwork proof for your approval to our website.  Once the art proof is available, your Customer Representative will email you a link to that page.

Your online art proof page is the place where you’ll be able to request any changes and give the final approval on your artwork before production. If you have trouble viewing your proof, give us a call at 1-800-851-4020 or email your Customer Representative.

Why does it take a so long?
For most of the year, we can turnaround stock designs with text and color changes in 1 business day. Complicated custom designs usually take longer, as they require more work from an artist to set up.  During the busy season, we sometimes will need 3 business days to post complicated custom designs.

What’s the difference between Screen Print and Digital Print?
September 14, 2011

Screen Printing and Digital Printing are two different ways to apply a design to a garment.   While there are a great many technical and process differences involved this is a basic overview.

We have a new page that covers the differences with detail here:
Decoration Methods Comparison

Screen printing is a stencil process that applies liquid ink to the garment, 1 color at a time.  When cured, the ink is extremely durable and washes well.  Screen printing has a lot of setup and clean up procedures so it is the best choice for larger orders of a few ink colors.  Screen printing can be applied to a wide variety of garments, fabrics, and colors. Learn more.

Digital printing is an electronic printing process that is very similar to an ink jet printer.  Once cured, the Digital print is durable but it requires more care in laundry and is not quite as durable as screen printing.  Digital printing is much easier to process and is suited for short runs and images of high detail and multiple colors.  The process is only available on 100% cotton fabric. Learn more.

Ink and Fabric Combination Tips
September 14, 2011

Some ink colors and shirt colors are just not meant for each other!

Here are some general guidelines to get the best looking shirts:

1.  Avoid combining bright colors at opposite ends of the spectrum.   Bright Red ink on a Bright Blue shirt will look fuzzy around the edges.  The eye has a real problem focusing on these combinations. Learn more.

2.  Consider Contrast.   Dark ink on a light shirt will show off the design much better than light ink on a light shirt.   Of course, if you are looking for a subtle look, then stick with low contrast between the ink and shirt. Learn more.

3.  Ever use a Black and White filter on a digital camera?  Sometimes two different colors are the same intensity.  These colors would look the same shade of gray on an picture taken using a B&W filter and are usually a poor choice.

4.  Remember the Color Wheel!  Complementary colors usually look best.  Remember that white and black are also ink colors that we can use to make your design awesome!

5.  Just Try it!  Use our online designer to experiment with different shirt and ink colors.  While the colors shown may not appear exactly the same in reality (Learn more),  it will help you choose colors that work well together!
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