What Is Sublimation Printing?
Sublimation printing, also referred to as dye sublimation printing, is a printing method for transferring images onto a substrate (usually a cloth material such as polyester). Sublimation refers to a process where a substance moves from a solid to a gas state without ever being in a liquid state. Sublimation printing normally involves the use of a digital printer to produce mirrored images on paper that has been specially coated with a transfer material.
A dye-sublimation printer (or dye-sub printer) is a computer printer which employs a printing process that uses heat to transfer dye onto medium materials such as a plastic card, paper, or fabric. The sublimation name is applied because the dye transitions between the solid and gas states without going through a liquid stage. Many consumer and professional dye-sublimation printers are designed and used for producing photographic prints.
Most dye-sublimation printers use CMYO (Cyan Magenta Yellow Overcoating) colors, which differs from the more recognised CMYK colors in that the black dye is eliminated in favour of a clear overcoating. This overcoating (which has numerous names depending on the manufacturer) is also stored on the ribbon and is effectively a thin laminate which protects the print from discoloration from UV light and the air, while also rendering the print water-resistant.
Evolving technology means that there is now a number of printing techniques available to the textile industry.  Therefore we thought it would be appropriate to blog about what these techniques are, what advantages they have, and also what restricitons can apply.

Sublimation printing, also known as heat transfer or paper print, it is one of the most popular processes in the industry due to the following advantages.
  • No screen set up costs
  • No minimums (d
  • epending on producer)
  • Ease in creating panel prints due to small press machines
  • Highly detailed prints can be achieve
  • d
Unlike screen printing, the detail which can be achieved in sublimation printing artwork is unlimited.  Basicaly, the artwork is printed onto paper first, then transfered onto fabric using a heat process. 
Common Questions?
1. What is the sublimation ink system?
Known as CIS or Bulk Ink System, it is a sublimation ink kit designed to fit a certain model of printer and is supported by softwar
e to calibrate colour settings.
2. How Does Sublimation Printing Work?
Inside a dye-sublimation printer, is a long roll of transparent film that resembles sheets of red, blue, yellow, and gray coloured cellophane stuck together end to end. The print head heats up as it passes over the film, causing the dyes to vaporize and permeate the glossy surface of the paper before they return to solid form
The Thermal Head
• In a sublimation printer, there is a thermal printing head. This head heats up and moves over a ribbon of colored dye.
• The heat from the thermal printing head causes the atoms of the dye in the ribbon to excite. The amount of energy from the heat exceeds the amount of energy needed for the dye to move from the solid phase to the liquid phase, and the dye turns directly to gas (sublimates).
• The transfer paper typically is placed into a heat press with the substrate and exposed to temperatures from 350 to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. This allows the ink and transfer material to move into the gas state.
Ink Transfer
• Once the ink and transfer material are in a gas state, they permeate the fibers of the substrate material.
Ink Bonding
• When the heat is removed from the transfer paper and substrate, the ink that has permeated the substrate fibers solidifies and is locked permanently into place by the transfer material.
• Assuming the procedure has been performed correctly, the image should never be subject to deterioration beyond that of the substrate itself.
Other Methods
• There is an alternate method for dye sublimation printing where the ink is applied directly to a substrate that has been coated. Ink bonding is achieved by exposing the fabric to heat.