We promised you more top tips and handy hints so here they are. 

This blog is about preparing your screen and coating it with photo emulsion prior to exposure.

Making great screens isn't rocket science, or expensive. 

Getting great results and perfect prints comes down to following procedures, proper preparation, set up and limiting variables.

Have all the right equipment and materials ready to use. Do procedures in the right order and everything will come together.

 

Pulling ink through an exposed screen

Preparing and coating screens. 

A smooth blemish free emulsion coating makes for much easier exposure and wash out. Details will hold better and prints will be sharper as the coating will be more even.

If you are having problems with your Photo Emulsion such as it not coating well on the screen, fish eyes and blemishes in the coat then it is most likely a poorly prepared screen. 

Degreasing your screen is really important!

A clean degreased screen means the emulsion will adhere to the mesh better. 

New screens must be degreased as well. 

This means it will not break down as easily and ultimately last longer. Using a Mesh Prep / Degrease before you start is the answer.  Mesh Prep will remove any grease, dust and dirt that may be on the screen.  Its surprising how dirty the cleanest looking screen can be! 

Use a soft sponge and a bit of mesh prep and wipe it all over both sides of the screen. 

Rinse off really well.

When you think you have washed off all the degreaser, rinse it again until there's no bubbles. Do this on both sides as the degreaser / mesh prep gets right in the mesh. 

Let it dry in a clean dust free place. The same place you are going to leave it to dry once its coated is perfect.  It must be fully dry, so be patient. 

Top tip: Water this degreaser down a bit. Its very concentrated.

Scoop Coaters

Scoop coaters are the easiest way of getting the emulsion on to your screen.
Evenly applied emulsion will be smoother, expose evenly and cut down on wastage. You can save the excess and put it back in the pot.

Tip: Keep the edge of your scoop coater in good condition for a nice even application, its stops the emulsion being streaky on the screen and protects the mesh.  Wipe it out soon after using so you don't have to scrub it later on. 

 

NEXT STEP: How to coat your screen with Photo Emulsion

 

How to screenprintHow to start a clothing brandScreen printingScreen printing framesScreen printing hacksScreen printing how toScreen printing kitsScreen printing tipsScreen printing tips & tricks