1. Select the proper platen. Printing can coolers properly requires a specific platen. This type of platen is designed for things like printing on pockets or sleeves, and also works well for can coolers.
2. Make registration marks on the platen. Mark the top and the bottom of the platen where the cooler will be placed. This will help ensure it’s in the proper position to be printed.
3. Line up the registration marks on the screen and expose. Use a mesh screen that allows for the proper printing of your design.
4. Use the right ink for the color of the can cooler. For a dark can cooler, polyester ink may work best. If the cooler is a lighter color, a regular plastisol ink may be the proper choice. Your ink choice may also be dictated by the fabric.
5. Cure the print. Always do a test cure to determine the optimum temperature and belt speed. There may have to be a few tests and some adjustments before the proper combination of time and temperature is reached. Also, consider the temperature at which the ink you’re using cures. The goal is to find an ideal marriage between ink, curing time and can cooler fabric so the ink is properly cured without causing it to melt.
Tip: If you think you can sell can coolers as a regular item in your shop, investing in a cooler-friendly platen is a good idea. There are multipurpose platens on the market that can be used not only for can coolers, but for other production options like printing on pockets or sleeves. Finding a multipurpose platen will allow you to increase the locations and types of items you can print. All instructions provided by Michael Ross Fitch of Swag Shop Creations in Port Arkansas, Texas.