Silkscreening your Boat

Project date: 2008

While it might be hard to consider this a boat improvement project, who doesn’t like to show off their boat’s name?


Fortunately, there is an easy method of making silkscreen projects, by using a process known as PhotoEz.  Imagine the look on your guest’s faces when you present each of them a T-Shirt for your next evening cruise.

1. Design your artwork with your favorite graphics program (mine is Microsoft Paint), then make an ink-jet print .  For a small complicated design such as this, it may be necessary to trace over the print with a Sharpie, so that any thin lines are really black.  This is important as the exposure step might cause loss of thin details.



2. With the print over the PhotoEz media in a contact print holder, expose the media under bright sun for around 4 minutes. 


3. Develop the PhotoEz media by placing in a sink under running water.  After about 10 minutes, the areas that were not exposed to the sunlight will be washed away, creating a stencil.  After allowing the stencil to dry,expose again to the sunlight for about 10 minutes.  This netralizes any remaining photo-sensitive material on the stencil.


4. When dry, place the stencil down on the T-Shirt or other item you want to silkscreen, and with the appropriate ink, force the ink through the stencil with a squeegee.  Practice makes perfect here, and you may wish to practice on a scrap piece of material.


 5. Immediately remove the stencil and wash with water.  The stencil is reusable dozens of times as long as you use water soluble ink.  Follow any directions on the ink container for heat-sizing the design with an iron.

I am sure you can think of many other ideas for this application. For instance, the silkscreen template is etch solution proof, so why not use some glass etching cream, such as "Armour Etch" and make some custom drink glasses, or even that bland mirror hanging in the head.

Resources: (source for supplies you will need, including PhotoEz, contact holder, inks). Glass etching cream.


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