More on laserjet transparency transfers

pmace

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I have a laserjet toner based printer copier. I want to use transparency film to transfer since I can see through it.
I have used UV cure adhesive (nail polish) which works fine but is gummy to cut through. I tried Loctite thread locker which also works but is flaky when cutting (have to use primer on anything but steel).
You need something sticky on the base metal to capture the image from the transparency. Obvious solution is damar varnish thinned with vm&p naptha (lighter fluid) and spread out in a thin layer. When partially dried it’s really sticky but not too sticky that it grabs the transparency.
Now, how to get the image loose from the transparency film? Acetone is a great solvent for the toner and doesn’t leave a residue. Too much smears the image. The solution I came up with is to soak the film in acetone (image side up) for a few minutes then take it out and let it dry for a minute or two. The toner is now loosened from the film but still stays in place. Place image side down on the damar varnish and burnish. Toner stays in the varnish and film comes away pretty clean. Dust with talcum powder to eliminate stickiness of varnish and go to work. Not gummy and not flaky.
Just be careful with fingerprints. Damar is not soluable in acetone so if you have it on your fingers and it gets on the image before you soak it it won’t soften and transfer.
As always your mileage may vary.
 

mitch

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#2
"Damar is not soluble in acetone"?

i use acetone to clean damar varnish off metal all the time...
 

tdelewis

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One thing to remember about using transfers is that the more junk you put on your work the more dirt and junk you are cutting as well. It can get messy. There is more info about transfers on this forum you could spend most of the day reading them all.
 

pmace

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"Damar is not soluble in acetone"?

i use acetone to clean damar varnish off metal all the time...
I’m sure it does. The failures I’ve had are either not letting the varnish dry enough to be strong enough to pull the image off of the film or getting a fingerprint contaminated with varnish on the image side of the film. For some reason that little bit of varnish prevents the acetone from softening the toner in that area.
 

pmace

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One thing to remember about using transfers is that the more junk you put on your work the more dirt and junk you are cutting as well. It can get messy. There is more info about transfers on this forum you could spend most of the day reading them all.
You’re right. Everyone has their secret recipe. In my case I have a toner based printer and don’t want to buy an inkjet just for transfers. Plus I want to use transparency film so I can see through it.
I’m not saying this is the best method for everyone but it’s cheap and uses stuff everyone has on hand. It’s better than the other methods I’ve been using so I thought I’d share it. I agree, the less junk you have to fight with on the metal the better.
 

dave gibson

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#6
The best transfer I've seen was done on a laser printer, print on paper, transfer with acetone. Super clear with no gummy mess. I'll eventually find one in a thrift shop.
 

pmace

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The best transfer I've seen was done on a laser printer, print on paper, transfer with acetone. Super clear with no gummy mess. I'll eventually find one in a thrift shop.
I like that method too when I can get the paper to fit the piece so it lines up right. Transparency film is great because you can see through it.
I’ve been working on a piece all morning and the damar varnish has not gotten gummy at all. You don’t even know it’s there. I’m trying to cut outside of the line but as always I wander into it. Half of the line stays put and the other half goes with the chip. With my other methods the whole thing would peel off or shatter. A little talcum powder cures any tendancy for your hand to stick to the work.
 

mitch

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#8
i use the laser with plain paper method and yes, it often requires some pretty creative tricks to get it registered/positioned exactly where you want it.

in general, i usually flip it over on a lightbox and draw a few key guide lines in pencil to mark some edges, screw holes, existing lettering, whatever is available on the part in question. then i use a hole punch to nip out windows at key points along those lines. when i apply the transfer i line up the pencil lines on the metal thru the windows.
 

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