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Dry Mounting Prints and Posters Using A T Shirt Press

 

Q: "Can I use a tshirt heat press to dry mount a print or poster?"
A: YES
 
I don't provide this service professionally, I do have a few local people I work with that have special projects. Since I owned the press, and have experienced the mess associated with spray adhesive, I thought I'd give it a try. I also thought a regular clothes iron might work but skipped that since I did have the press. I'll leave that for someone else to try.
 
Sure - this is the El Cheapo Posters website, but I do quite a bit of high end work for local clients not promoted on this site. I chose this web location to promote this informational page and show that "other" side of El Cheapo Posters, and to promote the El Cheapo brand - low cost, not low quality.
 
Materials:
Film: Dry-Lam E3650-R Colortac Dry Mounting Tissue ( 36.5" roll )
Print Media: MATTE ( also works with any traditional print media I've tried )
Insulation Paper: HP Translucent Bond ( 36" roll )
Tshirt Heat Press: PRESTO w/ 15" square base.
The artwork: "King Of The Jungle" / Panther Brunotte ( www.panthersgallery.com )
 
 
I researched this a bit on Google but couldn't find any definitive information. I happened to own a tshirt press and had tested using Dry-Lam Colortac 11x14 inch dry mount film and prints on foam core. The mounts were perfect so I decided to try larger prints a section at a time. The video linked here shows that process in it's entirety.
 
Process:
Set tshirt press temperature and allow time to reach temperature. My machine works at 250F / 125C and takes about 5 minutes to reach temperature.
Cut foam core to approximately 1-2 inches larger than your print.
Cut dry mount tissue slightly larger than the print, but no bigger than the foam core.
Cut the insulation paper LARGER than the foam core.
 
Align everthing so that the dry mount tissue extends beyond all four sides of the print, and that the foam core extends slightly beyond, or equal to, the foam core. Then place the insulation paper so that it covers, and extends beyond, the entire stack. The order is ( from bottom to top ) - Foam, Dry Mount Tissue, Print, Insulation Paper.
 
Firmly grab the entire stack so the alignment doesn't slip, and place it in the press. I start using one corner and break the print into four grids.
 
Close the press. I set mine with a light tension so that the foam doesn't get crushed. I leave my press closed for 2 minutes.
 
Repeat this process until all areas of the print have been "pressed".
 
Trim using a fresh blade. DONE!