Author Topic: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison  (Read 13162 times)

Offline ZooCity

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Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« on: July 21, 2011, 08:31:18 PM »
So we're finally getting into our new space here in the next couple weeks which means we're going to be able to print wb and discharge.  I plan on sampling the various ink systems and choosing one I like best but wanted to hear about preferences here.

I've printed a bit of Matsui before and enjoyed it.  At the same time we're going to be running Wilflex plastisols and using the IMS pretty extensively with an integrated scale.  There's a temptation to go with the Oasis pigments for this reason.  Discharge will be down the road once we're up and running with WB and I know you can use the various activators/bases interchangeably to some degree with whatever pigment system you're using.  Running CCI discharge with Oasis pigments for example.   Then I'm sure there's many others.  While I feel Pantone matches via formulas are going to be used less (am I wrong on this?) having a central system for formulas would be a treat. 

I have about 8 gallons of TW 5500 series wb graphics inks that I ran a flatstock job with last month and they, for instance, have high-pigment concentrates but no formula system.  Using this system I noticed I don't personally have a need for a pms formula system on everything as I have enough color knowledge now to mix quickly and effectively by eye but I'm not the only printer up in here and I want everyone on a routine of standard practices for recording and replicating ink mixes.  I've heard that pms matches with the Matsui set is frequently problematic as well. 

Any hard votes one way or the other?   Cost is not an issue, I buy whatever works best for our shop and I like high quality pigments.  Going with TW over Speedball for example was worth every single penny.   

Just doing a little homework in advance. 


Offline squeegee

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2011, 09:19:57 PM »
I like Matsui in that it resists drying in the screen, but IMHO their formulas just suck.  Oasis soft base dries too quickly in the screens and certain colors are lumpy and not print friendly.  The Oasis pigments  are more sensible to me than Matsui, but I come from years on the Wilflex's plastisol system and the Oasis pigments are relatively similar.  Oasis formulas are pretty good.  Lately have been using Matsui Printgen MG retarder in Oasis and it really helps.  I'm glad to run both trying to make the best of each system's fortes.
On discharge colors, have had the best results with Sericol, a few Matsui colors too.  Sericol is a balanced system with no pigments, it's predictable and very printable, they at least have discharge formulas that are in the ballpark.

I've also realized that the activators are pretty much the same from Rutland to Matsui to Sericol, so I buy whatever is cheapest.  The activator I buy now is less than half the price of some brands and works great.

I kind went head first into these systems, but have learned a lot by having all of them at the same time.


Offline ZooCity

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2011, 09:45:00 PM »
I'll add Sericol to the short list.  I do want our wb system to be our discharge system, that's for sure. 

One thing I forgot to mention, environmental impact and workplace conditions are a big consideration.  No stinky inks. 

Offline squeegee

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2011, 09:58:57 PM »
Sericol and Rutland discharge stinks.  Matsui discharge and WB are the least objectionable smelling IMHO, but with discharge, you're gonna have a smell one way or another.  Oasis has it's own odor, not too bad.  You can also run Sericol as plain WB without activating it, it doesn't smell until you activate it.

Offline JBLUE

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2011, 12:46:29 AM »
I just started using the Sericol system. Since I am just getting into it, it seemed like the easier system to use when starting out. Plus I did not need to upgrade to a 100th of a gram scale from a 10th. The discharge agent is pretty strong smelling too.
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Offline tonypep

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #5 on: July 22, 2011, 06:09:10 AM »
I would go with CCI base and white, Oasis pigments. It's the best combination I've come across. Matsui comes in second. Do yourself a favor and come up with your own formulas. Let me know if you need advice on screen prep.
tp

Offline squeegee

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2011, 07:52:14 AM »
Hey Tony, I think we'd all benefit from some of your advice about screen prep for discharge/WB, care to spill the beans?

Offline tonypep

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #7 on: July 22, 2011, 08:42:51 AM »
Of course many different emulsions etc. will work but the idea of using the same ink and screen chemical company appealled to me and it has turned out to be an excellent option. I use the CCI WR25 and hardener, the GR70 and Microwash 2 products for cleaning and reclaim. Plus the CCI discharge white and base as mentioned above. All these products were specifically designed to work together. Heres the screen prep technique:
 Screens are coated two over two as normal. For extremely long runs you can let dry and hit the print side one more time for extra insurance. Expose and dry. Appply the HardenerX to the print side and dry. Using the leftover WR25 black out all open areas around the  inside diameter of the screen. Also for pinholes, reg marks, and any writing. Post expose for twice the normal light units. Finally tape as normal being sure to use a rubber base adhesive brand. If you do this correctly you will not need to use a whole roll!
Again I've used other brands with the same method but this results in a highly water resistant stencil that will reclaim easily. On that note discharge screens should be reclaimed straight away.
Best tp

Offline Prosperi-Tees

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #8 on: February 12, 2012, 05:52:14 PM »
Any updates on what you are using Zoo? I am considering getting further into WB as well. My concerns are drying in the screen as our shop in the dead of summer will be 110+ at times. I already like the CCI white and base and will evaluate Sericol next week. I wish CCI would get their pigments done so I could compare.


Offline ZooCity

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #9 on: February 12, 2012, 06:36:58 PM »
Any updates on what you are using Zoo? I am considering getting further into WB as well. My concerns are drying in the screen as our shop in the dead of summer will be 110+ at times. I already like the CCI white and base and will evaluate Sericol next week. I wish CCI would get their pigments done so I could compare.

I'm going to start with CCI Discharge Clear and White bases and probably use Matsui or maybe Sericol RFU colors and mix by eye until CCI comes out with its pigment system.  Then I'll probably migrate to that and just use up the backstock of spot colors over time.  I do want to trial Oasis and give it a chance.

Thats the plan at least.  Going to be another minute before I can go at it head-on.  Been dabbling and slowly preparing for the addition as I can. 

Offline Prosperi-Tees

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #10 on: February 12, 2012, 07:50:14 PM »
That's cool, me and you are on the exact same track.

Offline brandon

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2012, 09:29:55 PM »
Any updates on what you are using Zoo? I am considering getting further into WB as well. My concerns are drying in the screen as our shop in the dead of summer will be 110+ at times. I already like the CCI white and base and will evaluate Sericol next week. I wish CCI would get their pigments done so I could compare.

The CCI rep was in our shop last week. Great to meet him. We use Matsui for pigments and CCI's discharge base and white. He is coming back in about two months and I plan on taking some hours out of my day to chat with him. Hopefully he will be bringing some of their pigment samples. He said they are about three months out from being available. Very excited to give them a try

Offline Prosperi-Tees

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #12 on: February 12, 2012, 09:38:05 PM »
My CCI rep was in last week and had a printed sample of their red discharge. It was good, not great just good

Offline SkylinePrints

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #13 on: February 13, 2012, 10:08:58 AM »
Great info guys.  i have to ask this though... where do y'all buy the inks (sericol, matsui, etc...)?  I just talked Nazdar about Oasis and was told they are having trouble getting pigments from China so they have very limited if any stock.  Google search reveals actually very little about where to purchase the inks or maybe i'm just searching the wrong terms.  So far, I have only found one company but they are a 3 day ship to me.  (I'm in Atlanta) 

so, we do you buy from?   :)
Have a great day! :)
 Nathan Harrison Skyline Prints Embroidery & Screen Printing 4982 Bill Gardner Pkwy  Locust Grove, GA 30248  (770) 914-1558  www.SkylinePrints.com  Follow us on Twitter at www.twitter.com/skylineprints or Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/skylineprints

Offline Prosperi-Tees

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Re: Waterbased Ink Systems Comparison
« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2012, 12:00:51 PM »
The only place I see Sericol is Atlas Screen, Dimensional Products and GJS Machinery (I think)