How to Start a Silk Screen Printing Business
Almost everywhere you look, there is very good chance that you will see something that was silk screened. From the crazy messages or pictures on T-shirts, to the company logo printed on a company ballpen, to branded bags. Silk screen is the most versatile printing technology.
Silk screen printing is the process of printing text or images by passing ink through a fine material or screen that contains a pattern. You can start at home with minimal capital or you can buy automated machines that cost millions if you want to go big time fast.
Here are the basic steps in starting a silk screen printing business:
• Look for a suitable location. This may be your home or a rented space. Just remember that a larger place will make it a lot easier to make ink dry. There must be a sink and strong water supply so that you can wash out the ink from your equipment.
• Business Registration. Get a business name from the Department of Trade if you plan to be a sole proprietor, or go to the Securities and Exchange Commission if you want to be a corporation. Then get a barangay clearance before proceeding to City hall to get your business permit. After this, you must register with the Bureau of Internal Revenue and have your receipts printed. While some people skip the registration process, they may find it difficult to sell to companies who demand receipts.
• Get to know the silk screen printing process. Even if you will not be the one to do the actual screen printing, it is important that you understand the process so that you will be able to supervise your employees. One of the most important things to know is to learn what type of ink to use for different materials like cotton, vinyl, silk, wood, ceramics, etc.
• Determine the market you want to focus on. Although there are countless things you can silk screen, the biggest market is in T-shirts.
• Obtain the needed equipment. For start-ups, the basics are the screen fabric, aluminium or wood frame, emulsion scoop coater, screen printing inks, squeegee bar, emulsion chemical and remover, exposing unit, pressurized hose, and an emulsion rack. You will also be needing a computer with suitable software for image manipulation and creating designs.
• Learn how to cost your service. Compute all the costs incurred so that you can set your profit margin accurately, and price with a profit. What are often overlooked are the overhead costs.
• Market your silk screen printing service. Personally approach potential buyers of your service. Some of the best places to sell your services are schools and sellers of corporate giveaways that would rather outsource the printing.
The silkscreen printing business offers an excellent opportunity for ambitious entrepreneurs with limited capital. There are many other things you need to know about silk screen printing, but it would be wise to first get training on the business.
BusinessCoach, Inc., a leading business seminar provider, conducts seminars on how to start this venture. Click here to view details of the seminar: Starting a Silk Screen Printing Business»
*Originally published by the Manila Bulletin. Written by Ruben Anlacan, Jr. (President, BusinessCoach, Inc.) All rights reserved. May not be reproduced or copied without express written permission of the copyright holders.
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