Jesse J Heap & Son, Inc. Located in Irvington, NJ
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Custom Printing on Game Table Tops

Every wonder how casinos are able to imprint their logos and pictures on the various gaming tables? Or have you every been at a friends house who has a custom blackjack table top imprinted with his favorite band or sports team? Often times these vivid graphics are done using dye-sublimation.

Dye-sublimation is the process of transferring images onto polyester materials. It's a two step process - specially formulated "sublimation inks" are first transferred to regular paper using a computer and a RIP software package. The paper is then taken to a heat transfer press which uses heat (usually around 400F) to transfer the image from the paper to the substrate. When printing onto blackjack or poker table tops the substrate would be the polyester fabric felt. The process is called sublimation because the inks are converted to directly to gas and are chemically bonded with the fabric felt.

Dye-sublimation can produce durable images that are well suited for the stress that gaming tables typically undergo from all the hand traffic. And since the ink deeply penetrates the felt, it does not alter the feel of the felt and is smooth to touch. The process is ideal for short-run customized orders. It is currently used extensively for printing customized Soccer, Basketball, Lacrosse, and Hockey uniforms as well as Cyclewear, Leotards, Promotional T-shirts, etc

As with any approach there are some challenges to keep in mind. First off, dye sublimation does not work well on dark substrates - lighter color felt typically produces better results. Also the substrate should contain a mix of polyester in order for the sublimation inks to properly bond to the fabric.

More information on the sublimation process is available in our total solution sublimation FAQ section. We sell a variety of sublimation products including sawgrass sublimation inks, AIT Heat Transfer Presses, Sublimation roll paper, and large format inkjet printers.