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How to Fulfil Screen Printing on Glass

Glass has the characteristics of being flat, clear, and simple to clean as a component for architectural ornamentation. After screen printing, the design on the glass is delicate and attractive. It is more prevalent for building decorating and satisfies people’s aesthetic demands in a significant way. Screen printing is a technique for printing pictures directly onto a glass surface. Screen printing might also be used to apply preservatives or other materials to portions of the glass surface that would otherwise be damaged by etching or sanding. It’s also feasible to print specific inks directly on the paper to project an etching or matte look. Now, let’s have a deep dive on how to paint glass using the screen printing technique. Keep Reading!
glass mason bottle for juice

What is Screen Printing?

Screen printing is the technique of utilizing a mesh screen, ink, and a squeegee to transfer a stencilled image onto a flat surface. Fabric and paper are the most common screen-printed media, although specialist inks may also be used to print different materials, including glass.. The most simple approach is making a stencil on a fine mesh screen and then forcing ink through it to imprint your pattern on the surface underneath.

While the printing procedure is typically pretty identical, the manner the stencil is made varies based on the materials utilized. Stencilling may be done in a variety of ways, including:

Cover the appropriate sections of the screen with masking tape or vinyl.

Plaster the stencil onto the mesh with screen protectors like glue.

Creating a stencil using a light-sensitive emulsion, which is subsequently developed in the same way as a photograph.

Screen-printed designs might utilize a single colour of ink or a combination of colours. Colours must be applied in different layers for multicoloured things, using distinct stencils for each ink.

Why is it used?

The fact that screen printing creates vibrant colours even on darker materials is one of the reasons why it is so popular. The ink or paint is also layered on the cloth or material’s surface, giving the print a pleasant tactile feel.

The method is also popular since it makes it simple for a printer to duplicate a design numerous times. Because a single stencil can be used to duplicate a pattern numerous times, it’s ideal for making replicas of the same garment or item.

It is also feasible to produce elaborate multicoloured graphics when utilizing professional equipment and an expert printer. While the intricacy of the process limits the number of colours that the printer can utilize, it does enable more vivid colouration than is achievable with digital printing solely.

Parts of a Screen Printer and their Functions

As a screen printer, you need the proper equipment for the job to create a clean, crisp print. Therefore, we’ll go over each piece of screen printing equipment, as well as the functions they do during the printing process.

Screen Printing Press

Many printers choose to use a press since it permits them to print a huge quantity of pieces of items in a short amount of time. Moreover, Since the press keeps the screen in place during prints, it’s easier for the user to change the paper or item being printed.

Manual, semi-automatic, and automated presses are the three types of presses available. Manual presses are labour-intensive since they are operated by hand. Semi-automatic presses are partially automated but still involve human intervention to change the objects being pressed, whereas automatic presses are fully automated and demand little to no human intervention.

The Inks

screen printing ink

The ink is pushed through the mesh screen and onto the printed substrate, producing a coloured impression of the stencil design.

The Silk Screen

Silkscreen is a metal or wooden frame with a thin mesh cloth stretched across it in silk screen printing. Originally, this mesh was made of silk thread, but polyester textiles have now replaced it, providing the same performance at a cheaper cost. The mesh may be customized in width and thread count to match the roughness of the surface or fabric being printed, with smaller gaps between threads enabling for more detail in the print.

The Squeegee

A squeegee is a long wooden, metal, or plastic handle with a rubber blade fastened. It is used to force ink thru the mesh screen and onto the printed surface. The printer will generally choose a squeegee that is around the same dimension as the screen’s frame, as this will provide a greater hedge.

The Washing Station

After each usage, the screens must be cleaned to eliminate any traces of emulsion so that they may be reused for subsequent printing. To eliminate the emulsion, some bigger print shops use enormous tubs of special cleaning fluid or acid, whilst other printers easily wash their screens with a water trough or sink and a powered hose.

How can you Fulfil Screen Printing on Glass?

Screen printing flat glass glazes are typically 240 mesh, with 220 mesh being the most popular screen printing mesh for glass screen printing.

The glass printing screen is identical to the screen used for traditional screen printing. The type of silkscreen cloth to choose is determined by the printing purpose. For highly accurate fine glass goods, a mesh count of 300 to 360 mesh is necessary. Polyester and nylon synthetic mesh can be utilized for infrared hot stamping glaze printing. Because it is cost-effective for a limited amount of glass screen printing types, this form of screen printing is widely utilized.

Below are the steps to use to fulfil the screen printing on glass.

1.Create a Design

To begin, print the design they wish to appear on the completed product onto a clear acetate film. This is going to be utilized to make the stencil. Now, as you choose this design, you need to have in mind the glass bottle design as well. This helps you to not only create a design of your choice, but also the one that suits your product’s bottle.

2.Prepare the Screen

Now, select a mesh screen based on the design’s intricacy as well as the thickness of the glass being printed. After that, a coating of light-reactive emulsion is applied to the mesh screen, which hardens when exposed to bright light.

3.Expose the Emulsion

The design is subsequently transferred from the acetate sheet to the emulsion-coated screen, which is then subjected to very strong light. Because the emulsion is hardened by light, the areas of the screen that are obscured by the design stay liquid.

If the final design includes more than one colour, each layer of ink must be applied using a distinct screen. To make multi-coloured goods, the printer must utilize his artistic ability to design each stencil and line them up properly to achieve a flawless final design.

4.Wash the Emulsion off, to Create the Stencil

The portions of the screen not concealed by the design will have hardened hard once the screen has been exposed for a certain amount of time. Any emulsion that hasn’t solidified needs to be carefully washed away. The design is clearly imprinted on the screen, allowing the ink to pass thru.

After the screen has dried, you can perform any required changes to ensure that the imprint is as close to the original design as conceivable. The stencil is now complete and ready to use.

5.Prepare the Glass for Printing

Afterwards, the screen is then mounted on the printing press. Beneath the screen, the glass to be printed is positioned flat on the printing board.

Although there are manual and automatic presses, most current commercial printers will utilize an automatic rotating carousel printer(so you are free to do so by the way), which allows multiple separate screens to work at the same time. This type of printer may also be used to apply the various colour layers in rapid succession for multicoloured prints.

6.Press the Ink Through the Screen on the Glass

The screen is placed on the printing board and lowered. A squeegee is used to drag the ink along the whole length of the screen once it has been applied at the top end. This forces ink thru the stencil’s exposed regions, impressing the design on the glass beneath.

You can lift the screen and place a fresh piece of glass onto the printing board if you want to produce numerous pieces. After that, the procedure is repeated.

Remove the emulsion using a specific cleaning solution once all of the glasses have been printed and the stencil has served its function, so the mesh may be repurposed to make new stencils.

7.Dry Your Glass and Check Your Finished Work

After that, the printed glass is dried, which ‘heals’ the ink and gives it a smooth, colourfast surface. Before being passed on to its new owner, you should check the completed glass product, properly examine and clean it to eliminate any remnants.

Conclusion

Now that you have a clear understanding of how screen printing on glass is done. You can start slow by getting glass bottle samples and doing it at home. Otherwise, get a professional glass bottle factory to do it for you. At Roetell, we value your satisfaction and have an excellent team that deals with clients well. Contact us for great offers. 

Reliable Glass Bottles, Jars, Containers Manufacturer | Roetell