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Sawgrass Printers

You can create your graphic using the Creative Studio software from Sawgrass, which includes both free clipart designs and the ability to buy more. Or you can get something custom-designed by a company that specializes in taking your idea and turning it into a graphic ...

Sawgrass printers are consumer, pro-summer, and business-friendly sublimation ink printers.  There are three models available, each designed to allow business owners to create custom products of all sorts.

Here we give a comparison and synopsis of each model along with current pricing.  Each printer has unique features that are best suited for different customers.  So let’s dive in.

Sawgrass SG500 Printer

The Sawgrass SG500 printer costs $599.00 for just the printer, but keep in mind you’ll need ink cartridges, papers, and heat press just like with any one of these dedicated sublimation printers.

It’s an 8.5” x 11” printer, just like most home color printers.  Easy to use, the printer lets you get a good foothold in the industry, with a low-risk return on investment.  This printer is an industry leader and is a “no brainer” for virtually anyone wanting to get started.

Sawgrass SG1000 Printer

The cost for this more significant, 11” x 17” model is $1,549 plus all the same things you’ll need to get started with the SG500. Just larger versions of each.

The majority of people getting into the custom t-shirt business end up choosing the Sawgrass SG1000 sublimation printer because you can both get larger prints, AND you can print two or more designs on one sheet of paper. Printing 2 – 8×10” designs on one sheet is very handy if you plan to sell more than one custom item at a time.

It’s an 8.5” x 11” printer, just like most home color printers.  Easy to use, the printer lets you get a good foothold in the industry, with a low-risk return on investment.  This printer is an industry leader and is a “no brainer” for virtually anyone wanting to get started.

Sawgrass Virtuoso VJ628

This printer is a clearly commercial device. Bigger, stronger, and better build all around, the price is right around $4,449, and it prints up to 25”!

You’ll want the Sawgrass VJ628 large format sublimation printer if you need very high resolution, high color accuracy prints. It uses eight colors to produce some truly beautiful images and enormous sizes. Think printing photo panels, textiles for print and cut, or just high-volume t-shirt designs.

It’s an 8.5” x 11” printer, just like most home color printers.  Easy to use, the printer lets you get a good foothold in the industry, with a low-risk return on investment.  This printer is an industry leader and is a “no brainer” for virtually anyone wanting to get started.

How do Sublimation Printers Work?

#1First, you start with a Graphic or Picture

You can create your graphic using the Creative Studio software from Sawgrass, which includes both free clipart designs and the ability to buy more.

Or you can get something custom-designed by a company that specializes in taking your idea and turning it into a graphic you can print – like a logo or custom event design – like Coldesi-Graphics.com.

Use CorelDraw or Photoshop or Canva or whatever your graphic software of choice too.

Lastly, you can simply take a family photo and get it ready to print.

#2Send it to one of the Sawgrass Printers

The SG1000 11” x 17” printer or the SG500 for the standard-sized paper will work great. They work just like a regular color printer hooked up to your computer, so this is the simplest part.

The Sawgrass sublimation printers use special ink just for sublimation called SubliJet HD or SubliJet UHD. And the paper that’s designed specifically for sublimation printing too. But don’t worry, it’s not complicated at all!

#3Heat Press it to your “substrate”

If you’re new to customization, a heat press is a kind of commercial iron that applies both heat and pressure to an object. Most heat presses are designed to press on flats, like a t-shirt or coaster or tile, but there are specialty ones that work on coffee mugs and more.

That’s what a “substrate” is – it’s basically whatever you’re printing on. It can be a coffee mug, a coaster, a bag, a facemask, etc. By far, the most common “substrate” is a blank t-shirt.

Those 3 steps are really all it takes! Here’s a great demonstration of creating a custom mug using the Sawgrass SG1000, SubliJet inks, and some blank sublimation mugs from Colman and Company:

What Can You Make with Sawgrass Printers?

That’s easy! The more complex question to answer would be what CAN’T you make.

Here is a shortlist of the most popular sublimation items:

One thing you might notice is how “sublimation” mugs are specified. You cannot just pick up a coffee mug or stone tile locally and customize them with sublimation.

Do I need special “Sublimation Blanks”?

Sublimation is a technical term that means changing from one state to another – like a solid to a gas.

What it refers to in this case is that the image/link on the transfer sheet is heated and pressed, it turns into a gas. And that gas bonds to the shirt.

You can think of it like the image is melted into the fibers or the surface.

But you can’t “melt” cotton, right? It just burns or catches fire! And the same goes with a ceramic coffee mug.

So you can only apply sublimation transfers to something synthetic, like polyester fabric (or blends). Or to specially treated coffee mugs that have had an invisible layer of polyester added.

The only thing you need to remember about all of that is that sublimation doesn’t work on everything. You should check and look for special sublimation blanks.

Vapor Apparel is a great example of blank t-shirts and other garments designed explicitly for sublimation printers like the ones by Sawgrass.

Sublimation Printing at Home with Sawgrass Printers

These printers are PERFECT for home-based businesses. Or at least the SG500 and SG1000 are.

Your entire business can consist of a Sawgrass printer, a heat press, your computer, and a closet to store your sublimation blanks in, even if you add a mug press.

The custom t-shirts and promotional items made with this arrangement sell for the same price as bigger, more expensive systems. It’s VERY profitable!

Here’s a look at how to make custom koozies – do you see anything that wouldn’t fit in a back bedroom or that unused den?

How much does it Cost to start a Sublimation T-Shirt Business?

Including the SG500 Sawgrass printer, an economical but suitable quality heat-press, and all the supplies you’ll need to get started, you’ll spend about $1,499. That includes a few t-shirts, tote bags, and mousepads to practice on.

That’s a great home-based business starter kit. You’ll just be limited to that smaller design size.

The more professional bundle contains the SG1000 11” x 17” printer, a 16” x 20” heat-press, AND a mug press to let you do custom mugs. For serious startups that want to be in the business of custom t-shirts and promo products, this is the way to go! The price is $4,299, but you may be able to finance it for as low as $116/month.

Just to put the monthly payment into perspective, most people make $10-15 in profit per custom t-shirt. If you sell 10 of those per month, your monthly payment is covered.

Is a Sawgrass Printer right for you?

There has got to be a printer that fits both your budget and your entrepreneurial dreams! Prices from $500 to $5000, prints from 8.5×11 to 25” and a world of potential products you can make… your business is in there! Contact us below to learn more.

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