Printing Shirts with Reveal S versus DTG

Sublimation with the Reveal S paper and direct-to-garment printing are both popular decoration methods, but how do they compare?

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With DTG printers, the shirt must be aligned on the DTG’s platen to be printed. Once printed, the shirt must be carefully removed and placed in your heat press. Generally, DTG inks are pressed for about 35 to 45 seconds to cure the ink. I estimate the round-trip time for a typical DTG shirt is about three minutes. With the Reveal S sublimation paper, you only need to print the transfer and press. Transfer time is typically 20 to 25 seconds, which is about how long it takes to print the transfer.

After the first print, it is likely that the heat pressing will be the limiting factor for throughput. Allowing setup time to load the press, we can still achieve at least a three times increase in throughput along with a significant decrease in labor. With DTG, your material costs are just ink and the garment used. With the Reveal S process, it’s the paper, sublimation ink, and your garment. My cost estimates show the cost of both production methods to be about the same.

-David Gross, Condé

David Gross

David Gross

David Gross is president of Condé Systems Inc., of Mobile, Ala. For the past 24 years, he has devoted his work to advancing sublimation technology.


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