Screen Making 101: Degrease Your Screen
To ensure the highest stencil quality, you need to start with a screen that is free of grease, oil and dirt. Chromaline's new line of Integrated Screen Chemistry (iSC) chemicals includes three degreasers to choose from, but first let's learn about how and why degreasing your screen is an important step in the screen making process.
Degreasing a Screen for Screen Printing
ALL screens must be degreased prior to applying emulsion or capillary film. Always. No exceptions. Whether you have a brand new mesh or you just finished printing and reclaiming, degrease your screen. Degreasing is important to get your screen clean so that you can coat your stencil properly. If there is grease, oil or dirt left on the screen, they can cause the emulsion to separate and may cause premature screen breakdown.
Degrease A Screen in Four Simple Steps
1. Wet the screen.
2. Apply the degreaser.
3. Scrub both sides of the screen with a brush until the degreaser starts to foam.
4. Rinse both sides of the screen and dry.
Note: After you degrease your screen, do NOT touch the mesh with your hands as this will transfer skin oil onto your screen. Keep your screen in a clean, dry environment after degreasing until you are ready to use it.
What Brush Should I Use To Degrease My Screen?
The best brush to use for degreasing your screen is one that is all plastic. If your brush has metal on it, eventually that metal will rust and cause issues when degreasing your screen. Keep a dedicated brush that you use only for degreasing and nothing else. Rinse your brush with water before degreasing just in case other chemicals have accidentally got on the brush
DO NOT use woven scrub pads. The small fibers break loose and find themselves stuck into the mesh. When using liquid emulsions, these fibers create weak spots in the stencil, can cause pinholes, and can interfere with fine details.
Which Degreaser Should I Use To Degrease My Screen?
Chromaline has three degreasers in our new line of iSC screen making chemicals. Which one you choose will depend on your needs.
Chroma/Wet iSC is a powerful detergent, degreaser and adhesion promotor. It helps to eliminate fisheyes and streaks during coating. Chroma/Wet optimizes resolution, promotes adhesion and increases stencil life. This is our most popular degreaser.
Degreaser LF iSC is a low foaming 10-to-1 concentrated wetting agent and degreaser that is 100% biodegradable. Degreaser LF also optimizes resolution, promotes adhesion, and increases stencil life, but because it is low foaming it is ideal for use in automated machines.
Degreaser 260 iSC is a multi-purpose, concentrated citrus product that does the job of three products in one. This non-abrasive, water-based formula degreases new and used mesh and removes unwanted residue. As a nonflammable ink degrader, it emulsifies inks for easy water removal before reclaiming. Finally, it is a safe, non-caustic screen dehazer that will not deteriorate the mesh and will not burn skin or clothing.
Contact Chromaline Today
If you have any further questions about degreasing a screen for screen printing, please contact us today.