How Does Water Transfer Printing Work?

hydro dippingMost people are simply not aware of hydrographic printing. The process is also known as water transfer printing. It is a process which makes it possible for the user of it to apply designs and patterns to shapes that are irregular by design. It is correct to say that any item, which can hold a base coat; and that can be submerged in water, is applicable with respect to the process. The list of following items are a few of the types of objects that can be dipped:

  • Dashboards;
  • Various types of hunting equipment;
  • Items relative to camouflage, and,
  • Automotive parts.

Making use of water transfer printing allows the user to actually customize each item to which it is applied .

In order to provide the reader with a better understanding of the process of water transfer printing, the procedure is provided below. (Oh, by the way, the process is the same precise process, used by many high-end and reputable manufacturing organizations, in way of decorating their respective items.)

The process, overall, involves simply cleaning the object, buffing it, and then applying a base coat. Then the user dips the item (which allows him or her to apply a pattern to the object.) He or she rinses the item off, dries it and finishes off the operation by applying a clear coating onto the object which he or she has been working.

The print water transfer process is fairly effortless for the user to learn. The results of the process are quite excellent. In order to provide the reader, even a greater understanding of how it works, the hydrographic process is provided in greater detail next.

The user of the process, makes it a point, to select a pattern or image from a library of hundreds of films. The films are referred to as: water printing films. The average distributor of the films generally carries images relative to:

  • Animal prints;
  • Decorations that are appropriate for automotive parts;
  • Hunting designs;
  • Camouflage designs,
  • Stone and marble imagery; and,
  • Designs suggestive of royalty.

Generally, in the majority of situations, a base color coat is applied to the item which is to be part of the process. In example of the preceding statement, normally, it looks better to apply a brown-hued base coat to a design that has a wood grain appearance. In way of another example: a silver base coat is best applied to a print that appears metallic in appearance. It is correct to say, a distributor carries a wide variety of paints, ideal for hydrographic printing or, what is also known as the water transfer printing process. Additionally, patterns can change a great deal appearance-wise, dependent on the underlying based coat which is first applied onto the object.

The hydrographic film is conveniently placed onto the surface of the water in what is known as a Dipping Tank. The film, which is clear, is water soluble, and it dissolves. Once the film dissolves, the actual pattern is left floating on the water’s surface. The tension of the surface allows the pattern to sway around any surface with a shape.

The residue, that remains, is rinsed off. It is important to rinse the residue off in a thorough fashion. The ink is now adhered to the object and it will not come off. Provision is made so the object can dry, satisfactorily.

If the process is performed in a precise and responsible manner, a thorough inspection, in the way of quality control is suggested. Once the quality control portion is properly conducted, then a clear coat can be applied to the item in order to protect its surface. The clear coat makes it possible for the object to have a nice, shiny, spectacular appearance.

Normally, too, persons who think they would be interested in becoming involved in the water transfer printing business can be trained by the distributor. The water transfer printing technique can be applied to nearly any hard surface. There are films, paints, machines and finishing coats, as suggested above, unique to the process.