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Saturday, February 24, 2024

Evolution of Terry Towel Printing with DyStar’s Jettex® Digital Inks

This article provides information about the application of DyStar´s broad range of Jettex® reactive and vat inks, as well as DyStar’s selected Sera® process auxiliaries for digital printing.

In the ever-evolving landscape of textile printing, Digital Printing of terry towels will become an important printing process in the future. The ever-increasing demand for personalized textiles and customized designs is driving this transformation, all while reducing costs. Unlike conventional printing methods where production of shorter runs is associated with high costs, digital printing offers a more efficient solution. This is achieved through the use of 4 to 8 inks that can seamlessly deliver the desired color schemes without the need for separate applications.

Moreover, digital printing introduces the flexibility to change designs at any time, as there are almost no setup times involved. This agility enhances production capacity and reduces the overall energy consumption and the intensity of labour required to achieve the desired results.

Elevating Quality and Efficiency for Terry Towel Printing
Now, let us explore how DyStar’s Jettex® inks and Sera® process auxiliaries complement this digital printing evolution in the terry towel industry. These innovative solutions offer a pathway to unrivalled quality, customization, and colorfastness, all while optimizing efficiency and reducing production costs.

Common terry towels are made primarily from 100% cotton fiber. The textured surface of these towels, often velour, is characterized by its high density and short pile. On the flip side, a loop pile enhances drying efficiency, which may be either white or colored by the use of dyed yarn in the construction of the towel. To ensure optimal print quality, the fabric must be well-pretreated for printing. In this respect, mercerization is a highly recommended process for high-quality towels that can achieve vibrant colors and superior moisture absorption.

DyStar will be introducing two different printing processes suitable for Terry Towel printing.

Reactive Printing Process with Jettex® R inks
Jettex® R, the reactive inks for industrial digital textile printing, are known for their reliable printing performance, high reproducibility, and their suitability for cotton, viscose and silk material. Moreover, the inks are available for various printheads used in industrial printing.

As mentioned earlier, for Digital Reactive Printing, a preparation phase is required and it can be applied via different equipment in an “Offline” or “Inline (wet in wet)” process.

The preparation usually contains anti-migration agents, alkaline, urea, and a wetting agent to adjust the penetration and the required sharpness in printing. With the above preparation in place, Jettex R can now be printed.

Fixation can be done either via a conventional steaming process, hot air, or overheated steam fixation. Finally, a wash-off is necessary to remove the unfixed dye from the fabric and to achieve the required fastness properties.

Application Process: “Offline” vs. “Inline”
“Offline”                                                                                 “Inline”

Application of preparationApplication of preparation
Drying with moderate temperatureDigital printing with Jettex R inks
Digital printing with Jettex R inksFixation with overheated steam or hot air
Drying with moderate temperatureWash-off process
Fixation with saturated steam 
Wash-off process 
For best results, it is recommended to add the selected Sera® process auxiliaries during the preparation, washing and finishing process.

Vat Printing Process with Jettex® Vat inks
Jettex® Vat inks, with their superior fastness performance, make it a highly desired digital printingprocess for terry towels. This is particularly true for the “Hospitality” market, which demands the highest levels of colorfastness, shorter production runs, and customization options.

Here’s an insight into the application process of Jettex® Vat inks, complemented by Sera® auxiliary process chemicals. Depending on available equipment, a 2 or 3-phase process can be implemented.In both processes, preparation and wash-off are always necessary.

Application Process

“3 Phases”                                                                             “2 Phases”

Application of preparationApplication of preparation
Drying with moderate temperatureDigital printing with Jettex Vat inks
Digital printing with Jettex Vat inksDrying with moderate temperature
Drying with moderate temperaturePadding and steaming  
Padding and steamingWash-off process
Wash-off process 
For best results, it is recommended to add the selected Sera® process auxiliaries during the preparation, washing and finishing process.

For both Jettex R and Jettex Vat inks, the inclusion of selected Sera® process auxiliaries is strongly recommended. The quantity of chemicals required for preparation is intimately linked to various fabric parameters. These include the fabric weight, surface pile height, surface density, and wet pick-up behavior.

Striking the right balance ensures optimum penetration without any unwanted coloration of the fabric’s reverse side.

In conclusion, the digital printing evolution is sweeping across the world of terry towels, and DyStar’s Jettex® inks, coupled with the smart use of Sera® process auxiliaries, offer a pathway to unmatched quality, customization, and excellent fastness performance. As we navigate the exciting landscape of digital textile printing, the future is indeed bright, and it is waiting to be printed on your terry towels.

Jettex and Sera are registered trademarks of DyStar Colours Distribution GmbH, DE.

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