Any Tips Before I Buy Heat Press
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46 posts in this topic

On 11/23/2020 at 7:25 AM, littledoom said:

Hi all, I plan to buy a heat press. I there anything I should make sure to look for or avoid when buying a press for comics online? Thanks in advance

Practice on stuff you don't care about. Please. :eek:

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My understanding is that the zillions of inexpensive t-shirt heat presses that also say "comic books" in the descriptions (and sometimes they try to charge $100 extra for the same press when they say "comic book") are inadequate for pressing comics.

 

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The key to pressing a comic is to remember this formula.  It’s 13 minutes per page at 325-350.  Any warmer and you risk drying the pages out.  So a 22 page book takes around 286 minutes or almost five hours.  A 64 page golden age book will take 832 minutes or almost fourteen hours.  You have to consider the page count.  
 

Remember to multitask and while the book is pressing that is when you can work on things like cranberry sauce, potatoes and vegetables.  

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4 hours ago, littledoom said:

Any actual pointers on purchasing press machine? not on the process.. I'm shopping

This one here is an actual pointer about purchasing a press machine.

9 hours ago, mrwoogieman said:

Buying a ball and glove does not a Major-Leaguer make.

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13 hours ago, Robot Man said:

:facepalm:   In all due respect, I think you have a LOT of research to do before you consider this. It is a fairly complex procedure with many factors. I doubt many pressers are going to give away their secrets too easily...

After you buy a press, the next step is going to your LCS and buy at least 1000 junk 25 cent books to practice on. If you are lucky, you’ll only destroy about half of them. Hopefully by press #900 you’ll be good enough to break even on the damage you fix versus the damage you make!

Edited by Timely
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4 hours ago, littledoom said:

Any actual pointers on purchasing press machine?

So, no then. Doesn't look like it.

I can say, having worked as a picture framer for 15-odd years, buy one that is designed for use with artwork, paper, etc, rather than one designed for t-shirts, linen, heat transfer, etc. 

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you want to obtain a Seal press.

Make sure it works, the top metal platen is in good condition, and the temperature is adjustable.

I use mine for pressing artwork all the time, can be used for dry mounting art/photos to card or foam core and yes to press comics.

The 210 pictured here is a perfect size.

 

heat press.jpg

Edited by Artboy99
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1 hour ago, Timely said:

After you buy a press, the next step is going to your LCS and buy at least 1000 junk 25 cent books to practice on. If you are lucky, you’ll only destroy about half of them. Hopefully by press #900 you’ll be good enough to break even on the damage you fix versus the damage you make!

This is how the hundreds of people pressing books learned.

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43 minutes ago, Artboy99 said:

you want to obtain a Seal press.

Make sure it works, the top metal platen is in good condition, and the temperature is adjustable.

I use mine for pressing artwork all the time, can be used for dry mounting art/photos to card or foam core and yes to press comics.

The 210 pictured here is a perfect size.

 

heat press.jpg

does this hook up to the electrical accessory outlet in the car?

i think there may be a market for mobile pressing services.

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52 minutes ago, wilbil said:

does this hook up to the electrical accessory outlet in the car?

i think there may be a market for mobile pressing services.

you know I never tried, but you are on to something!

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The fact that a pressing thread in CG stayed this civil for two pages truly shows how things have changed around here.

My advice on pressing, whenever I'm asked, is the same: don't. Let the pros do it, if you must. There were a couple of local guys I used to buy from, and then I found out they were pressing their own books. So that ended that! 

If you feel like you have to do it yourself, there was a very long thread in Modern a couple/few years back where Larry was experimenting with the process, and whatever one's thoughts on pressing (or Larry, for that matter) may be, I found it interesting to read. I'd never actually act on any of the information, but it was interesting stuff. The local guys I know use a t-shirt press, but most of the others I've talked to seem to favor a photo matte press, like Artboy mentioned above.  And the pros? Well, they're not talking, and why should they? But yes, if you truly, absolutely must do this, buy it new, so you know it's clean and working properly, and be prepared to pay through the nose for it. My actual tip would be to look locally, maybe local camera/photo shops, or even framing/hobby stores, may have the ability to order it for you, so you can at least save on the shipping. These things are heavy as mess.

And has been mentioned, be prepared to ruin hundreds of books before you figure out what you're doing.  

Have fun!

Don't do it!

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14 minutes ago, Artboy99 said:

you know I never tried, but you are on to something!

it crossed my mind, seeing that you have a relatively new vehicle with the support system for accessories (dashboard and shifter reveal).

i had a similar situation, where i wanted to use electric scopes on the fly, that have standard voltage plugs. i went to rock auto and bought the conversion adapter, $30-50.

i use it all the time. i can also plug in my power tools, pumps, etc., also.

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oh, and i cut a piece of 3/4" cabinet quality plywood that fits under the protector mat, and just pull it out and put on top when i want a sturdy level surface. i keep a bag of 1/4" and 1/8" plastic shims in the car so if i need to level, easily accomplished. i can see that working fine for your press.

anyway, send all royalties by mail. pm for address.(thumbsu

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15 hours ago, JazzMan said:

If you are really wanting to get the ins and outs of pressing, you should start by reading this book.  It ultimately is a bunch of trial and error and this at least gives you guidance so you don't make the same egregious mistakes and adjust your process.

Comic Book CPR

I believe a CBCS forum member wrote this, and iirc he got a lot of praise from people who wanted to try it out. 

 

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