If you’re thinking of buying a t-shirt heat press machine, keep in mind that you have to have an idea of the common types of heat presses in the market. Otherwise, it will be so easy to make a mistake and you’ll end up buying the wrong machine for the right kind of job.
It’s easy to understand that you’ll be using heat press to transfer a vinyl design onto a shirt. But you have to realize that t-shirt heat presses come with different types, too. And choosing the right type of heat press machine depends on your resources and the types of circumstances you’re facing.
The first step is to know the types of heat presses out there. The most common types of heat presses are clamshell and swing-away.
A clamshell heat press machine is like a giant toaster heater.
Normally you would put the bread in the middle of the toaster and close the machine to heat both sides. The same concept applies in operating the best clamshell heat press machine. You put the shirt at the bottom of the open clamshell press, then apply the vinyl t-shirt design on thermal transfer paper. Next, press down and close the clamshell heat press. The heat press will apply heat for about twenty seconds, and once you open it, you already have yourself a nice-looking shirt. Pretty straight forward.
A swing-away heat press operates exactly the same way; it swings away to apply heat.
Pay Attention to Size
Most people who venture into the t-shirt printing business assume that a t-shirt heat press is a one-size-fits-all affair. Absolutely not. You have to realize that this business has to cater to all different sizes of shirts. Don’t limit yourself in just printing on only the four most common shirt sizes: small, medium, large and extra large. If you do this, you’ll be limiting your business unnecessarily.
As much as we have to admit it, there is an obesity epidemic gripping the United States; more and more people are developing out-sized physiques. Regardless if it’s a good or a bad development is besides the point. The point is that the increasing percentage of your target market prefers extra large or extra-extra large shirts. In fact, there are even shirts that are extra-extra-EXTRA large.
Make sure that your t-shirt printing business is flexible enough to cater to all your customers. Buying a heat press that can accommodate over-sized t-shirts is definitely a step towards the right direction.
Go With the Trusted Brand
Since a lot of heat presses are made in China, don’t easily jump into a conclusion that all presses are the same after trying just one press machine. Absolutely wrong. There is such a thing as a trusted brand. Do your research. Pay attention to durability, a long track record of great customer service, and as well as ironclad warranties.
If you do your research right, the best choice will quickly stand out.
Make Sure that Your Heat Press Has the Right Timer
It’s really important to pay attention to timing. You don’t want to have the heat press applying heat for an extra long period of time. After all, you’re not in the business of burning shirts. Unfortunately, there are still heat press machines that are setup with manual timer. What could go wrong with everything? Unless you keep your eyes peeled while the shirt is heating up, you’re probably much better-off with a digital timer.
Anything that makes sound is definitely much better than a silent timer. Also, figure out whether the timer has a pressure adjustment system and a temperature gauge.
Keep all these factors in mind because they determine the success of how you operate your machine, and how it produces high quality product.
Finally, pay full attention to weight, voltage, and warranty of the heat press. The last thing you want is a heat press that consumes a lot of electricity. If this happens, a huge chunk of your profit margin might just melt down due to your electricity cost.
It’s really important to buy a heat press from a retailer.
The reason why I insist on buying a heat press from a retailer is because they often have an after-sales support benefits. After-sales support is crucial because anything could go wrong. You want peace of mind when you’re dealing with a retailer so you can get the necessary replacement parts; or if need be, you can get your machine completely replaced.
Keep these factors in mind because if you leave any of these things out, you might regret it. You need to have enough information in front of you so you can make a well-informed decision.
Make no mistake about it, buying any kind of business equipment is an investment. Research wisely so you can get the most return for every hard-earned dollar you invest in your business equipment.