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Decorators Strive for Regular Maintenance

When it comes to machine maintenance, most Wearables readers are diligent. Nearly half (47%) of readers who took a recent poll on ASI Central say they clean and service their equipment at least once a week. Only 2.9% say they’ve never performed such maintenance.

Several readers weighed in with more specific information on their equipment maintenance schedules. Howard Potter, owner of A&P Master Images (asi/702505), says his shop does a basic wipe down and oiling of embroidery machines every day, cleaning them fully once a month. Screen printing presses are cleaned once a month, more often if an operator uses excessive ink by accident.

David Collin of Busy Bees Embroidery says maintenance frequency depends on how often the equipment is used: “Most shops running only one shift like ours will run maintenance every one to three weeks, depending on the load and the downtime to allow for full maintenance. Not good, but sometimes cleaning and oiling on hard-to-get cams might be delayed a week or more. If the load on the machines is heavy, for example, in a two-person shop with five or so heads, overtime may be required to maintain a sensible schedule of service and maintenance.”

Dennis Harbin of Rag Bag Aero Works Inc. says it’s important to understand and follow the equipment manufacturer recommendations when it comes to equipment maintenance: “By properly adjusting and maintaining my equipment, I have products that run over a million stitches between thread breaks. I literally load the machines, turn off the lights, drive nine miles into town, go to the store and return in time to reload the next batch. ... It’s hard enough to make money doing decorating. Poorly maintained equipment can make it impossible.”