Screen Colour Systems has two screen cleaning ranges, the Aquarius and Industrial ranges. The Aquarius products are safer to use and are less polluting to the environment. All the products in this range have their code number prefaced with the code letters AQ. The second group, must be handled with caution and can be polluting to the environment. This group of products is for the use of experienced screen printers who know how to handle these types of products.
Basic Principles Of Screen Preparation
Screen cleaning and preparation can be divided into four steps. In the case of a new mesh you would only need the final stage, mesh degreasing. The following steps should produce a mesh that is free of any contaminates and ready for the reapplication of your stencil medium. When you have finished your print run you should always clean all ink from the mesh. This will help prevent ghost images in the future. When you are ready to reclaim mesh and remove the stencil, follow the steps below.
High Pressure Washer And Rinsing
Always rinse before high pressure washing the screen. The reason for the rinse phase, it helps prevent any of the stencil and cleaning products getting airborne when you use the high pressure washer. When using the high pressure washer always start at the bottom of the mesh, work the jet across the mesh then up and across again. Working the washer head across and up the mesh is the most effective way of removing stains. Then repeat the process on the other side of the screen starting at the bottom as before.
AQ 950 Bio-Screen
GT 870 General Purpose Cleaner
Remove any dried ink and blocking tape from the mesh and frame edges. Depending on ink type you must wash the ink from the mesh and stencil area with an appropriate cleaner. This will aid the stencil stripper, as the stencil strippers will not dissolve wet or dried ink. The mesh should be dried before starting stage 2.
Aquarius Strip n Clean (AQ 1054)
Aquarius PhotoSolve Gel (AQ 1020)
Next is the stencil removal. We have two products to achieve this. First Aquarius Strip and Clean, this product was developed for use in a dip tank. The Concentrated solution can be reduced with water up to a maximum of 10 to 1 in dip tanks. The Aquarius Strip and Clean can also be brush or padded directly onto the screen, if using this way we recommend a dilution of up 1 to 5 parts of water. When applying Strip n Clean to the screen follow the method below as you would using Aquarius Photo Solve Gel.
The Aquarius PhotoSolve Gel is ready to use, either brush or pad onto both sides of the cleaned screen. The gel needs to be agitated on the screen, this will help it penetrate the old stencil medium. The gel should never be allowed to dry, this will make stencil reclaim more difficult. After five to ten minutes agitate the old stencil, rinse and high pressure wash the old image from the mesh. If any old stencil material remains in the mesh reapply the gel and agitate, leave for another five to ten minutes. The advantage of the gel is its ability to remain on the mesh dissolving the old stencil medium without running to the bottom of the frame. See above for rinsing and high pressure washing technique.
AQ 1008 Aquarius Mesh Cleaner (AQ 1008)
Ghost Buster (GT1039)
The third step maybe required if the mesh is stained or blocked with ink residue, for very bad staining you may have to use our industrial range of cleaning products.
The Aquarius method
You apply Aquarius Mesh Cleaner to both sides of a dry screen, apply it with either pad or brush, agitate mesh cleaner well into mesh. This product will not harm the mesh so can be left on for a couple of hours, then rinse and high pressure wash the screen. See above for rinsing and high pressure washing technique.
The Industrial Method
You apply Ghost Buster Paste to both sides of a wet screen using either pad or brush. This product may harm the mesh, if left on too long, we recommend the paste be left no longer than ten minutes, then rinse and high pressure wash the screen. When using this product it is very important to rinse the ghost buster from the mesh before using the high pressure washer on the mesh.
Aquarius Degreaser (AQ 1003)
Just before coating or applying a stencil film the screen should be degreased. This step will remove any dust or finger prints. Apply the degrease gel to both sides of the screen with pad or brush. Then gently rinse the screen starting at the top of the frame and working down, make certain the frame its self is washed so no drips contaminate the mesh. Then vacuum mesh till completely dry. The screen is now ready for its new stencil.
Sales & Technical Support
Tel: +44 (0)20 8241 2050
Manufacturing And Distribution Centre
19 Deer Park Road
Administration & Accounts
Tel: +44 (0) 20 8287 1666