Face masks are booming right now. To cater to the current market, printers are offering face masks, giving the option to personalize them. While fulfilling face mask orders does help sustain a business, it won't completely replace the revenue other print jobs had brought in. If your business is printing on masks, but doesn't have the funds for a fancy face mask platen, Adam Funderburg of Brainless Tees created a DIY face mask platen and explains how to build the platen in their video.
WHAT YOU NEED:
- Sleeve platen
- Door hinges
- Hand-held jigsaw
- Squeegee blade
- Rubber Bands
- Platen template
- Spider Web Spray
Watch the video. Adam gives a great, step-by-step instruction for building the platen and he shares suggestions to make it even better. The DIY face mask platen will work for ROQ or Riley Hopkins Presses. Adam said that as long as you understand how a jacket hold down platen works, you'll be able to make the face mask platen without difficulty. Most important step Adam wants printers to do is placing the squeegee blade on the platen before placing the holding device.
If you don't have the time to make a face mask platen, check out the Action Engineering Dual Face Mask Platen or the Single Face Mask Platen. Please note that the dual platen was made specifically for the Allmask™ whereas the single mask platen is able to print universally, or specifically for either flat-fitted or form-fitted masks.
Adam started printing face masks out of necessity. Business dropped dramatically when the pandemic hit. Days after the screen printing market crashed, Ryan Moor reached out to Adam about creating face masks.
"Ryan shocked me with how quickly he saw where the market was going," Adam said. "He saw around a corner. That was pretty awesome."
Adam wasn't convinced on the idea when Ryan first brought it up to him. As orders for the Allmask™ started to pour in, Adam decided to print on face masks as well to help sustain his business. To print on the masks, he needed a platen; therefore, the DIY face mask platen was born.
The idea for the face mask platen stemmed from the concept of a jacket hold down platen. It only needed to be smaller. Action Engineering launched their new face mask platens the day he was fitting his makeshift platens to his press.
"It made me kinda happy to see it," Adam said. "It was not identical, but the concept was very similar."
Brainless Tees provides a variety of cloth face masks. They do offer Allmasks™. They also offer 85 Polyester/15 Spandex face masks as well. The shop recently got children sizes for face masks and soon, they'll have bamboo fabric masks for people with sensitive skin.
Adam believes cloth face masks are going to stay around for awhile. When states start lifting some restrictions, Adam believes people who are carpenters, electricians, plumbers, etc. will be some of the first allowed to go back to work. They'll need face masks for safety precautions.
"Getting dialed in with a reliable source for masks and getting yourself used to printing on masks is probably going to be super helpful," Adam said.
ADAM FUNDERBURG OF BRAINLESS TEES
Adam's screen printing journey began in 2010. His curiosity brought him to the craft. Deciding it was fun and a profitable endeavor, he dove in.
Based in Vancouver, WA (just a few blocks away from the headquarters of Ryonet), Brainless Tees started in Adam's garage. After bouncing from a few different spaces, the shop now resides in a 2,000 sq. ft building. The two-man shop runs a ROQ and a Riley Hopkins 300 6x4. The Riley Hopkins is pretty special. Adam powder-coated it black and inscribed Ryonet, Riley Hopkins, BT, and Bitchin in 22 carat gold. I am serious. It's legit.
The shop prints for local businesses and schools' sport programs. To set themselves apart, they offer more than screen printing. For businesses, Brainless Tees provides convenience. The shop has an app where businesses can pop in whenever to order what they need. No emails, no punishments for repeat orders, solely just convenience. For schools, the Washington shop offers a marketing and promotions package where they create videos, social media posts, customized emails, and a schedule.
That's not all. On his website, customers can set up virtual appointments where Adam uses cameras in his showroom to show what they got, then they can drive down and see what they want. If customers decide to come in, he can have the items ready to go to make the meeting more efficient. Going above and beyond the standard product and services of a print shop makes his shop stand out from the rest.
Do what you can to stand out from your competition and make a difference in your community. Find a face mask supplier, make a platen, and get back to printing.
Surprise! There's the 22 carat gold logo.