You want to go a step higher in the world of sublimation. Already tried it on mugs, hoodies, T-Shirts, keychains, and drinkware. Thinking about using any different material this time? Then do not waste any other second to learn “How to Sublimate on Wood?”. Let us remind that sublimation is a process that uses heat to transfer special inked prints to the desired object. This can be done on wooden pieces as easily as on any other product.
Wood is considered as a most decent piece of decoration in this modern world. A house without intricate wooden pieces seems incomplete. Just imagine, the phrase “Home Sweet Home” print on plywood and hanging on your front door. A motivation quote above your study table will be a beautiful addition to your room. Replace your conventional frames with the sublimated wooden pieces. Instead, you can start your home-based or online business by selling these innovative items. To start with a business, you have to learn the skill thoroughly to extricate yourself from doing any blunder. The whole experience is annotated below.
Before heading further here is some important information about sublimation in woods. The polyester coating is a must for sublimation. There are many ways to add polyester. You can either use polymer coating or you can use such sheets on which they have polyester already. We have a wonderful technique for you to handle this problem. The magical element is present in our material list so, let’s have look at that.
Everything mentioned in the following is easily accessible: (Links attached for ease)
- Sublimation Printer
- Sublimation Paper
- Butcher paper
- Heat-resistant Tape
- Heat-resistant Gloves
- MDF Board (Ready Cut Piece)
- Powerful Heat Press
- White paint
- Lamination Pouch
You can get the MDF board from any store which is already cut in different sizes. Pick your desired size. You can also make them cut into any shape other than square. But for the first try select a square piece for your convenience. As the wooden piece is without any polymer coating so here is our magical element for that purpose. The lamination pouch will serve that function.
Wooden planks need greater pressure so high power heat press machines are recommended. You can take high pressure and larger heat press because wood pieces can be larger than T-Shirts or any other product.
Making the MDF Board ready for Sublimation:
You cannot just simply print your picture on wood. Your wood blanks need to get ready before any other step.
First of all, apply 2 or more coats of white paint on the wood. If you do not want the white background of your print then you can select a full-size image that will not show your white wooden base. Printing the whole wood can be the best option otherwise white seems good for every print.
Moving forward to laminating the board. Take out the lamination pouch from your gathered material. Separate its two sheets. Cut it according to your board size. But here is one thing you need to be careful about. Do not cut it fully according to the size of the board.
Cut it in a way so it comes out of the board, but just a little extra. This is because we have to heat press it and when we heat the lamination sheet it shrinks. After the heating process, it shrinks according to the size of the board.
iii. Heat Press:
The final step for making the board ready is to heat press the lamination sheet onto the board. Set the heat press at 365 degrees Fahrenheit for 90 seconds. Set the pressure from medium to firm. Now place the board and lamination sheet. Place a butcher paper on the surface of the heat press. Then wooden plank with painted side upwards.
Place the lamination sheet on the wooden plank while shiny side upwards. This shiny side is made up of polyester resin. This polyester will help the print to embed nicely on the surface of the wood. Again place butcher paper over it. Right after ninety seconds, your wood is all ready for sublimation.
Setting out the print:
Many prints get dim when printed on a wooden surface. So choose the graphic having this in your mind. Make sure to slightly edit the selected image. While editing makes the resolution and clarity high. Set the contrast high too. This will enhance your image and it will not get dim after sublimation. Now mirror the image by flipping it horizontally.
Check your graphic dimension according to the wooden piece. If you want your board fully covered with the picture then print should be a bit larger than the board. After all the editing, send it to the printer for printing on the sublimation paper.
Taping the print on the board:
Satisfy yourself with the colors of your printout. Then place the MDF board on the printed paper. Put it in a manner that the laminated side touches the printed side of sublimation paper. Tape the paper from all the edges. It is all set to get sublimated after getting in the heat press.
Just 90 seconds more and your wood will get sublimated. Put a butcher in the heat press. Place MDF board while the tapped print on the upside. Again put butcher paper on top of it. Set 365 degrees Fahrenheit for 90 seconds. Open up the heat press and take out your triumph.
Do not forget to wear your heat-resistant gloves because it will be so hot. Tape out by using any tweezers or any sharp thing. Check out the amazing colors of your print on the MDF board. Now you are all set to make some more wonderful designs.
Print your aesthetic captures on wooden pieces and hang them by your wall. Decorate your room with this new method. You have all the instruments with you, start an online business, and get a raise in your income. This skill can make you earn your pocket money yourself.
In short, this article is all about sublimating on wood. Demand for wooden decor pieces is increasing. This is the age of social media where people inspire each other. Looking at the printed wood blanks makes you wonder about its manufacturing. Printing was done on them by sublimation. So, this article is here as your guide. It sums up all the techniques and skills used to make a product like this.
Before ending this article, here is a brief review of every step. Making the MDF board ready for sublimation is the first step after collecting all the required material. The board needs to be painted, laminated and heat pressed. After that, you can select your desired image and edit it according to the requirements. Make the picture bright, clear, and vibrant.
Then convert your soft image into the hard form on sublimation paper. As the wood and the print is ready so, put the wood on the print. Tape it through all the edges. Make sure that there are no wrinkles. As a final step get it into the heat press. Your amazing masterpiece is ready. Best of luck with your piece.