Unveiling the Future: 3D Printing with Sublime Sublimation Techniques

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[Teaching Tech] got an interesting e-mail from [Johan] showing pictures of 3D prints with a dye-sublimated color image on the surface. Normally, we think of dye sublimation as pressing color pictures onto fabric, especially T-shirts. But [Johan] uses a modified Epson inkjet printer and has amazing results, as you can see in the video below.

The printers use separate tanks for ink, which seems to be the key. If you already have an Epson “tank” printer, you are halfway there, but if you don’t have one, a cheap one will set you back less than $200 and maybe even less if you pick one up used.

You have to fill bottles with special dye, of course. You can also use the printer to make things like T-shirts. The idea is to print a dye transfer page and place it on the bed before you start printing. The sublimation dye is activated with heat, and, of course, you are shooting out hot plastic, so the image will transfer to the plastic.

[Teaching Tech] explains the best settings to make it all work. The results look great, and we’re interested to try this ourselves. Transferring bed images is old hat, but this is something else. Beats liar’s color printing.

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