Mesh is sold by the number of threads per inch. So 110 mesh has 110 threads per linear inch. 180 mesh has 180 threads per linear inch. So the thread diameter at 180 would be smaller than 110.
At each mesh count manufacturers typically offer about 3 versions. So there could be 3 different 110 mesh counts. The difference between the three is the diameter. The largest diameter thread would have the smallest hole through which ink passes to create your image. By contrast, the smallest diameter allows the most ink to pass through the mesh. The diameters are designated by suffix letters like HD and T.
All mesh is made outside of North America. They do not conform to any standard. That means the mesh count of one manufacturer might not match that of another. Consistent print quality requires using the same mesh from the same source.
There are so-called LE or long elongation mesh products and mesh that is not LE. The mesh is polyester. LE mesh is made from a different resin that relaxes less than mesh that is not LE mesh. LE mesh typically costs slightly more, but that difference is more than made up in time savings tensioning and re-tensioning. At R Jennings Mfg. we only use LE mesh for that reason.
These monofilament meshes, such as 110 and 180, are not to be confused with multi-filament mesh. Multi-filament mesh is designated with XX. So there is 6XX, 10XX and so forth. Multi-filament mesh should not be used in screen printing, because they do not produce an equal quality image compared to monofilament.
Mesh is sold as white or dyed. The dye could be yellow, orange or similar color. The purpose of dye is to absorb the light of the exposure unit rather than allowing the light rays to refract, or reflect, off of white threads. Dyed mesh costs slightly more than white mesh, and takes noticeably longer to expose. The advantage of dyed mesh is important when exposing half tone dots and fine details, but a waste of money for large text, spot colors or any image where fine details do not make a difference in the final product.
Mesh is produced in a variety of roll widths, such as 45”, 52” and 60”. At R Jennings Mfg we only purchase 52”, because half of 52, or 26” results in the least amount of waste when converting that roll to pieces for screens. Mesh should always be purchased by the piece by small shops. Here is an example of why. If you order one yard (36” x 52”) to put mesh in frames with an outside diameter (O.D.) of 21” x 23”, you want pieces 24” x 26”. The yield would be two pieces, plus scrap of 12” by 52”. If, by contract, you order 3 pieces you receive one yard in 3 pieces, or 50% more mesh that you can use.
Mesh should always be torn, not cut. The mesh can be cut for say one inch to start the tear, but not cut the width or length of the roll. The reason is mesh tears along a thread line so that the piece will be square against the frame. Mesh that is cut will not be square and much more difficult to get into a screen square to the frame.
All products are 100% Made in USA, except mesh. No mesh is made in USA. There is NO Odor from any products we sell, or risk to children and pets. All products are green. The greatest health hazard is spray adhesive, but we offer Double Tape which eliminates spray adhesive, costs less, produces better print quality and allows you to print faster. We can tell you how to reduce your electric bill, sales taxes and more. We will help you improve your business.
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