If you are at the stage of purchasing a heat press for any garment of gift printing process which includes dye sublimation, vinyl, laser or inkjet transfer, pre-made transfers/decals, direct to garment printing, and if you are just entering the business, then this guide is for you. At this website, you will get detailed information of the function of the heat press machines.
There are two major type or styles of heat presses, namely: swing away and clamshell. These are the most common available choices of a floated machine. The rotary presses are also another available type, but these are wide format heat presses and they always more expensive and are usually used for pressing fabric in large quantity.
Clamshell heat presses will open up like a clam, like an oyster shell for instance.
Swing away presses opens vertically and then like the name implies, swings away.
Meaning that with swing away, the top platen is vertically raised up with the platen remaining parallel with the bottom table, and then so as to get to the bottom of the table, the top platen is swung to the side and around the back. Garment printers always favor clam presses because they require less operator effort and they also make production speed faster with slightly less physical user effort that is required as with swing away presses.
Maximum substrate thickness
According to history, clamshells have a major restriction which is its max thickness. This is not necessarily the case now, however, that depends on the clamshell in question. For instance, the Stahls Hotronix presses can take up to 3.2cm thick items. Just over one and a quarter inches, which is way thicker than they would generally expect with a clamshell, which is more than enough for most of the blanks.
If you have a particular requirement that you want to press into most especially thick items, however, some but not all swing away presses may give you more in terms of maximum thickness.