How Wilflex Compares

To be honest, I’m normally not that excited about plastisol ink but OMG (and I normally would not use OMG in a blog post)!! The first time I visited PolyOne in Georgia they printed out swatches of our current inks and their ink side by side and asked me which one was ours. I pointed out our Ryopaques with 100% accuracy on all of the swatches presented because I knew the rougher hand, feel, and fibrillation that our product typically provided. From that point forward, Wilflex’s ink chemistry has not once disappointed.

We worked with Wilflex to formulate products that could hit the price points and quantities our customers were used to. To make sure everything came together properly we tested these products at Ryonet and with our R&D partner, Denver Print House. The consistency, quality, production friendliness, and end result of Wilflex inks were hands down superior to anything we’ve tried in the past. Alongside Wilflex’s RIO mixing system, Process inks, Special Effects, Top Score athletic inks, and PC (Pigment Concentrate) Epic series of plastisol, we developed a brand new line of ink called LAVA. Lava matches the colors of our current RyOpaque inks but performs like the rest of the Wilflex’s amazing products. We also developed our new high volume white and black inks with Lava chemistry. These are the inks that make up 85% of a shop’s volume and come in at the same affordable price of our current products. These high volume movers are:

Lava Low Bleed White (Previously Ryonet White)

Lava Meteor White (Previously Green Galaxy Meteor White)

Lava Black (Previously Ryonet Black and Green Galaxy Black Matter)

What does this mean for your screen printing shop’s production? In order to understand this hands on, we had our sales and success team members do split fountain (side by side in the same screen) comparison tests of our three most popular inks. We looked at the inks in seven different ways and the results were amazing! Here is the criteria for our test:

1. Ink in the bucket. What did you observe in the bucket?
2. Screen performance. How did the ink flow in the screen and release from the mesh?
3. Fibrillation and matte. Matte down, how did the ink matte down the fibers of the garments
4. Flash Time. How quickly does the ink flash?
5. Opacity. How does it look after one pass? Then how does it look after flash and second hit?
6. Build up. How much does the ink build up on the squeegee and on the back of the screen?
7. Hand/feel. How does the ink feel on the garment?

Check out this awesome comparison video we did!

Overall, our comparisons and our partner’s testing confirmed the superior quality, performance, and results of the new Wilflex product. In fact, a lot of the characteristics that draw me towards water based are evident in the Wilflex product! Particularly in the way the ink sheers so easily from the mesh, how it feels on the garment, and how easy it is to clean up. As you can see from the split fountain test, the Wilflex Lava is formulated to leave a much softer hand/feel on the garment, softer than any plastisol ink I have seen to date. This stuff will leave your customers happier and coming back!

Change is never easy and it took a long time for both Ryonet and Wilflex to decide to make this happen, but the reasons behind our decision are self evident in the results experienced above. Having an ink that not only helps screen printers save time on press and use less ink, but also results in a better quality product for your customer should, by all reasonable expectations, help you be more successful. And your success is our success! Still, change can be difficult.i As our company and your shop navigate through this transition, we want you to know that your best interest is our number one goal and we want to make it as easy as possible for you, without affecting your production or your customer’s. This change to Wilflex is an exciting step in a new direction and we’re stoked to be on this journey with you!

Look out for our post tomorrow that will cover many of the hard hitting questions surrounding this transition.

Ryonet white vs Lava Low Bleed

AND if you’d like to dive even further into our team’s comparison, check out these written results from our sales and success team members:

Lava Low Bleed vs. Ryonet White

Brad Potter’s notes:

In bucket:
WF has a better matte look to it.
WF holds shape better.
WF is creamier.
WF holds on spatula.

Screen performance:
WF floods with ease. IC grabs a little, and is inconsistent.
WF has better matted finish.
WF clears all ink through mesh with one pass.

WF was superior. Couldn’t see fiber through one pass with WF.

Matte down of garment:
WF was better with one pass compared to two passes with IC.

Flash time:
WF had better feel with the 5 second flash time with less tackiness.

Build up:
Huge difference on the buildup on squeegee. WF rolled with ease staying at bottom of blade while IC would push up the blade.

WF had the softest hand.
WF almost eliminates any fibrillation.

Nick Wood’s notes:

In bucket:
Ryonet White- Thicker than the Wilflex for sure, when I ran the ink knife through the ink, the ink quickly folded in on itself.
Wilflex- More of a “marshmallow cream” texture. Still fairly thick, but easy to pick up on the ink knife. Maintained its structure when cut in bucket.

Screen performance:
Let me preface this question with: I tried to be as fair as possible.
Ryonet White- this released terribly. It was hard to flood and hung in the mesh on everyone’s prints. Far more fibrous on all shirts.
Wilflex- released perfectly. No pigment was left in mesh at all. Double stroke with a good amount of pressure.

Fibrillation and matte down:
Ryonet White- not good at all. Every print pulled had fibers. From Dark garments to light, it was all the same.
Wilflex- matted the fibers like it should. First pass was less opaque than the IC BUT the IC had zero matte down. In fact it was quite the opposite.

Flash Time:
Ryonet White- 5 second flash, dry to the “thumb” test. But very tacky, like the ink had stretch built into the ink.
Wilflex- 5 second flash, dry to the “thumb” test. Not tacky whatsoever.

Ryonet White- opacity was actually better than the Wilflex BUT that was at the expense of the fibers standing up. PFP both the WilFlex and IC were both stark white.
Wilflex- first pass before the flash was less bright than the IC, after flashed both whites were nice and bright. The WilFlex had a much nicer hand meaning, less thick and more of a matte finish. The IC was still slightly shiny.

Build up:
Ryonet White- Not good at all. I had a shadowed print on the IC side as I had to KILL the pressure to clear. Buildup on the back of the screen and squeegee was noticeable.
Wilflex- since this cleared perfectly the build up on the back of the stencil was nonexistent. The IC rode up on the blade. The Wilflex did the exact opposite.

Hand/feel on the garment:
Ryonet White- Decent hand, but even when dried the ink seemed tacky and sticky. Plus the ink was “shiny”.
Wilflex- Very soft hand, perfect amount of matte. Also it’s important to note I think that was on a 110 mesh. Not bad at all!!!

Lava Meteor White vs. Green Galaxy Meteor White

Hannah Rightmire’s notes:

In bucket:
A) The Meteor white was brighter, and thick at first. Once mixed for a while, it became easier to work with.
B) Wilflex looked a little more matte right off the bat, and was thicker to begin with than the other ink, but once it was stirred, it was creamier.

Screen performance:
A) Huge difference, the previous meteor was not consistent, when the squeegee passed over, was a little streaky on the screen.
B) Wilflex was a clean print all the way through and very opaque nice coverage.

Fibrillation and matte down:
A) Previous was thicker and did not lay down the fibers of the garment giving it a rougher texture look and feel.
B) The Wilflex did an amazing job at laying down the fibers of the garment and had a much better hand, look/feel and a better “high quality” print.

Flash Time:
A) The previous was still slightly tacky when flashed.
B) The Wilflex actually cured faster, and cooled down quicker-had less heat retention, which would be a great selling point to speed up production for print flash prints.

A) The previous was opaque and covered well after one pass but did not pass through the mesh as well as wilflex and took a second pass to look as opaque
B) The Wilflex was opaque and had better coverage however the previous printed better with the poly blend we were working with (much easier to see the pros of Wilflex inks on the cotton garments).

Build up:
A) Build up was higher with previous ink.
B) Build up was minimal with Wilflex and easier to clear screen with less work with one pass (hope that makes sense).

Hand/feel on the garment:
This was an obvious night and day difference when looking at the cotton garments that were printed, however on the poly blend we were working with, there was some dye migration that affected the look, and the hand was about the same (in my opinion) on the poly blend. However on the cotton garments the hand was VERY different. The Wilflex performed better all around giving a softer hand with better coverage. Excited to see what our customers are saying.

Kaitlyn Ingram’s notes:

In bucket:
Previous: As thick as you would expect a white to be. A little more ‘clumpy.’ Drops off the spatula after several seconds of clinging. Does not ‘flow.’
Wilflex: Uniform, ‘taffy’ like look and consistency out of the bucket. Still as thick as you would expect a white ink to be. Has more of a definite flow coming off the spatula.

Screen performance:
Previous: Bright, almost ‘artificial’ warm cream-white color. Can be smoothed down onto screen, but not as easily. Floods with a fair amount of consistency, but tends to skip and stutter when actually pushing ink onto shirt.
Wilflex: Smooths onto screen very easily. ‘Genuine,’ cooler white color. Very consistent flood. Smooth and easy push with the squeegee.

Fibrillation and matte down:
Previous: More fibers are visible, giving the ink a rougher look and feel.
Wilflex: Far smoother look on the shirt, almost no fibers visible through the ink.

Flash Time:
Previous: Longer flash time, and was still tackier when flash was complete.
Wilflex: Much shorter flash time, and less tacky when flash was complete.

Previous: After one pass, has fairly good coverage but some of the shirt still shows through. Good opacity after flash + two passes.
Wilflex: Good, solid opacity after first pass. Very opaque and vivid after flash two passes.

Build up:
Previous: Builds up fairly quickly, climbing up the squeegee.
Wilflex: There is a small amount of build up, but not enough that it needs to be scraped down often, if at all.

Hand/feel on the garment:
Previous: Thicker, typical ‘plastisol’ feel.
Wilflex: Smooth, almost water based soft hand.

Lava Black vs. Ryonet Black

Elizabeth Moody’s notes:

In bucket:
Both inks are the same viscosity starting out, but once agitated and stirred, Ryonet Black has a peanut butter consistency and the Wilflex Lava Black was more of a pudding feel. You can really tell when trying to push the goop scoop back in the bucket. Wilflex ends up being a much creamier/thinner feeling.
Screen performance:
Wilflex inks floods easier and lays ink down on the garment with better coverage compared to IC. Floods the screen very well and doesn’t require too much force.

The opacity was the same – but it did take extra passes to get the Ryonet Black to the True BLACK color. It was really apparent with just one pass. That initial lay down of the black was the real WOW. The Ryonet black you could still see the shirt through the ink very well – it was more of a tinted gray and patchy whereas the Wilflex Lava was already a charcoal gray almost could get away with just the one pass.

Fibrillation and matte down:
Wilflex lays down ink a lot more consistently compared to Ryonet Black – IC lays down a thicker base of ink. The thickness is visible in the Ryonet Black but with the Wilflex ink you can actually see that it is smoother.

Flash Time:
Ryonet Black turns out tackier compared to Wilflex after getting flashed for 10 seconds. Since they are black they both ended up being shiny after the Flash – The Ryonet Black seemed to cool down quicker as well.

Build up:
Ryonet Black builds up more on the squeegee and the back of the screen compared to Wilflex. Even after 2 shirts you could see the difference on the back of the squeegee.

Hand/feel on the garment:
Wilflex has better coverage while still being able a to lay down a thin layer of ink giving it a softer hand/feel compared to Ryonet Black. Ryonet Black had a rougher feel to it, rigid like. Wilflex – very smooth much more like water based and nowhere near as thick.

Thanks for reading!


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