Prepare to be AMAZED!

Hydrographics.  Ever heard of it?  I hadn’t until recently.  Graphics we all know, but hydro – doesn’t that mean water?  This process of applying graphics to non flat objects is something out of a science fiction movie.  Basically – water transfer printing.  Sounds weird right?

Wikipedia explains it as:

Hydrographics, also known as immersion printingwater transfer printingwater transfer imaging, or cubic printing, is a method of applying printed designs to three-dimensional objects.[1] The hydrographic process can be used on metal, plastic, glass, hard woods, and various other materials. In the process, the substrate piece to be printed is pre-treated and a base coat material is applied. A polyvinyl alcohol film is gravure-printed with the graphic image to be transferred, and is then floated on the surface of a vat of water.[2] An activator chemical is sprayed on the film to dissolve it into a liquid and activate a bonding agent. The piece is then lowered into the vat, through the floating ink layer, which wraps around and adheres to it.[3] After removing the piece from the water, a top coat is applied to protect the design. With multiple dippings, hydrographics printing can achieve full 360° coverage of the part surface, including small crevices.[4] [5]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrographics_(printing)

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From an overview and in text form, it’s still pretty hard to understand what this means.  Printing via water immersion didn’t make sense to me, so I jumped on over to YouTube for further detail.  Check out some of the great videos I found there.

 

Pretty cool right?!  Anyone out there have experience in this? I would love to hear more - is it as easy as they make it seem?

 

 

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