Printing your own decals on an inkjet

Has anyone had much success printing waterslide decals on a standard ink jet printer(not an Alps)? I have an HP OfficeJet K60 and some fresh Experts-Choice clear decal film and every time I coat the decal with their decal spray, future , flat or even water, the ink runs and blurs the decal. These are simple decals too, just black NO STEP and NO PUSH stencils in 1/48

I know I know if I want to do decals I ought to get an alps but you can't find them new, leaving only used and refurbs as options, and these are pretty darn simple decals.

Reply to
Jeff Barringer
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Sounds like you have a technique problem. It's quite likely these inks are soluble in just about anything, so you need to shoot the overcoat on them without getting them wet enough to run. Car Guys=AE used to putting down smooth base coats for glossy finishes are more used to this than military modelers, but I suppose you're bright enough to pick it up. =3D;^D

Try misting on very light coats of sealant. By that I mean *very* light. You *do not* have to cover the printing completely, but you

*do* have to keep it as dry as possible. Shooting from a longer distance using as little solvent as possible and fairly high airbrush pressure will have the effect of evaporating most of the solvent from very small droplets that will dry almost as soon as they hit the surface. Let them dry and repeat until you *have* completely coated the surface. This tends to produce a slightly flat surface, but I suspect that's what you want anyway. If not, a heavier topcoat can be sprayed on later.

-- C=2ER. Krieger (Been there; spun that)

Reply to
C.R. Krieger

Ok I tried a few more things and this is what I found worked for me.

I had a spray can of gloss enamel clear laquer. If I stood the can back enough it went on dry enough to be "tacky" but not "wet" and I built up a couple of coats and it seems to lock it in and prevent it from running.

C.R. Krieger wrote:

Reply to
Jeff Barringer

Jeff; I've found that not all inks work on all papers. Some papers take the ink just fine and the ink dries right away. Sometimes the image looks good but a day later it still is liquid and will smear like crazy.

I've had good luck with Epson ink on SuperCal paper. Problems with ink jets are they use pretty thin ink and the lighter colors like yellow don't cover well at all. Small scrip on white base isn't practical.

For printing black, I prefer to use a laser printer that will do at least

600 dpi. Very good for stencils and airliner windows.

Give me a call sometime.


Reply to
Milton Bell

Milton Bell wrote in news:BF4E4951.A296%

I've had reasonable results with my inkjet and SuperCal paper. But what about the so called permanent/durable/waterproof printer inks?


Reply to

Back when I was doing drafting work by hand (before AutoCAD), we used to take our Right of Way purchase maps and fix the otherwise eraseable and watersoluable ink with Krylon Triple Clear. I found out then that a very heavy coat made the Pelikon ink run and my map was shot. Two or three very light coats, on the other hand worked fine.

Reply to
Old Timer

I do not use the fancy inkjet decal paper. I use the regular stuff. I take a printout on plain paper, and the blank decal sheet, and take it to my local copy shop. I then have him copy the printout onto the decal sheet with a color laser printer.

For black and white, I bought a cheap laser printer. Actually, I didn't buy it for decals, I bought it for cheap printout of email and other such stuff- the toner costs are FAR cheaper than inkjet ink, and the printer has paid for itself. But if I need just plain black decals, it works great.

The only problem with the above two methods is that they will not make white decals without a lot of fancy tricks and a lot of work. However, I find I can often avoid needing white printing by various painting tricks.

Reply to
Don Stauffer

I did a test with the Epson durabrite inks some time ago because I don't want to print decals that will fade after just a couple of years: I printed the same artwork with both a standard Epson printer (a stylus photo, non durabrite) and a durabrite one, then put everything on top of my carbox for a month during the summer (so it got direct sunlight for 14-15 hours a day) and while the "standard" ink was really faded, the durabrite seemed almost as new and it sure got more direct sunlight than it'll ever get on my models.

So while standard decals are of course much better and easier to use, I'd say that even inkjet decals can be good, but a little more tricky to print as unless you are placing them over light paint (or you are printing very dark colors) you need to print on a white decal paper and then trim. These inks are also (almost) waterproof, but I'd give them a clear gloss overcoat anyway (as it further protects the inks from UV rays).

My 0.02, and no, I don't work for Epson; just bought their printers.

Reply to


Thanks for the info. I was eyeing one of the Durabrite printers earlier this month for just that reason. I only stopped myself because I still have a good working ALPS. I just want to know that when the day comes and the ribbon cartriges have become no more, or cost more then a custom screen print, that I have options. But speaking of which, do any of you other ALPS owners have a favorite source for the ribbons? I hear there is some woman who has a whole stash of them in her barn that her late husband had bought just before going to Vietnam......

Reply to

"....I hear there is some woman who has a whole stash of them in her barn that her late husband had bought just before going to Vietnam......"

along with his split-window Corvette with only 12 miles on the odometer.

Urban Legends 101

Reply to

:-) I knew someone would get the allusion.

Reply to

"you need to print on a white decal paper

I recently made a mess of the large white T on the tail of the Revell F4U-5 and then managed to drop some super glue onto the red/white bar of the US insignia on one side. I printed these all up on my colour laser printer onto white paper. To get the outlines, I turned a pot of Xtracrylix Gloss Sea Blue upside down and scanned it. I then put a

1.5mm line around everything. This makes the trimming easy and if you stand back only 6 inches you can't see the edge. Might be fun to do on a camo aircraft but worked for my Corsair.
Reply to
David Pennington

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