What is Dye Sublimation?

What is dye sublimation heat transfer technology?

Customise t-shirts using dye sublimation technologyDye sublimation is a method of applying an image to specially coated ceramics, metals and polyester fabric.

Dye sublimation ink (refered to in some digital decorating circles as infusible ink) is unique in its ability to convert from a solid to a gas without going through a liquid form. The conversion is initiated by heat and controlled with pressure and time. The high temperature - from a heat transfer press - opens the pores of the polymer and allows the gas to enter. When the temperature drops, the pores close and the gas reverts to a solid state. The print then becomes part of the polymer.

Hard items including ceramics and metals require a special coating to accept the dye sublimation/infusible inks. However, you do not need any coating on 100% polyester items such as mouse mats and 100% polyester fabric. We stock a wide range of pre-coated sublimation imprintables and t-shirts.

Our high-quality dye sublimation inks are made especially for digital decoration and has excellent colour brightness and produces brilliantly crisp transfers.

See our extensive range of dye sublimation supplies

Easy as 1-2-3

  • 1 Prepare

    Design your artwork on a computer

  • 2 Print

    Print out the artwork onto dye sublimation paper using dye sublimation ink

  • 3 Press

    Use a heat press to transfer the image onto your substrate

How do I sublimate a photo mug or flat product

What do I need for dye sublimation?

You will require a Computer, Software, ChromaBlast Paper, ChromaBlast Transfer Printer, Heat Transfer Press. Optional items include a Scanner and/or Digital Camera

How do I make money from dye sublimation?

Dye sublimation provides an exciting revenue stream for your business. The process is quick and simple enough for one-off jobs and there is equipment available for long production runs.

Depending on the substrate, transfers can usually be printed in under a minute while pressing times range from as low as 45 seconds up to 4 - 7 minutes for dense materials.

Margins on personalised products can range from 100% to more than 1000% depending on the quality and novelty of the printed product.

Knowing your local market is very important. Health clubs and gyms love the sublimation shirts. Professional service organisations are always looking for unique promotional gift ideas for their clients. Stubby Coolers, bar runners or drink bottles for sporting clubs. Mugs are a perennial best seller particularly with a special photo, logo or phrase.

What is the return on investment with a sublimation solution?

Using the below points as an example you can potentially break even after just 3 months!

  • Printing Solution: Beginner Starter Kit
  • Printing: 2 mugs a day for 5 days every week
  • Sell Price: $25.00 each
Break even after just 3 months

* Estimates only and does not take into account your personal situation, overhead expenses and other variable costs. Please conduct your own calculations.

How much money can I make from a sublimation printer?

Enjoy healthy margins on personalised products! Below is a selection of products showing the approximate production costs and your sell price.

Selling Price Gross Profit Margin % Markup %
Product Production Cost Lowest Highest Lowest Highest Lowest Highest Lowest Highest
Coffee Mugs  $3.02  $15.00  $30.00  $11.98  $26.98 79.9% 89.9% 497% 993%
Stubby Cooler - Collapsible  $2.38  $9.00  $26.00  $6.62  $23.62 73.6% 90.8% 378% 1092%
Tote Bags  $2.95  $13.00  $29.00  $10.05  $26.05 77.3% 89.8% 441% 983%
Mouse Mat  $2.61  $15.00  $25.00  $12.39  $22.39 82.6% 89.6% 575% 958%
Coasters - Set of 4  $3.86  $20.00  $25.00  $16.14  $21.14 80.7% 84.6% 518% 648%
Name Badge  $1.30  $8.00  $20.00  $6.70  $18.70 83.8% 93.5% 615% 1538%
Photo Panel - 20x25cm  $8.18  $30.00  $80.00  $21.82  $71.82 72.7% 89.8% 367% 978%
Plaque - 18x22cm  $6.92  $20.00  $45.00  $13.08  $38.08 65.4% 84.6% 289% 650%
Key Ring  $1.50  $7.00  $15.00  $5.50  $13.50 78.6% 90.0% 467% 1000%
Photo Slate - 12x22cm  $7.35  $20.00  $50.00  $12.65  $42.65 63.3% 85.3% 272% 680%
Stainless Steel Drink Bottles  $7.85  $25.00  $30.00  $17.15  $22.15 68.6% 73.8% 318% 382%
Truckers Caps  $3.20  $16.00  $26.00  $12.80  $22.80 80.0% 87.7% 500% 813%

Pricing and calculations are correct at time of publishing based on research conducted by GJS and are subject to change without notice. Production costs will vary based on your printer, coverage and volume of stock you purchase in. Please conduct your own research.

Is adding sublimation to your business right for you?

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