heat transfer vinyl

Term of the Week: Carrier Sheet

Each week Printwear turns to industry experts to learn more about the terms used in the apparel and apparel decoration industry, as well as the business realm. Contact Printwear's digital content editor, Alexandria Arroyo, if you're interested in the opportunity to be featured. 

The carrier sheet of a heat transfer vinyl does not impact the finished product but is integral in how the material performs from a production standpoint. A sticky carrier, low-tack carrier, and non-sticky carrier are three basic levels.

A sticky carrier is optimal for cutting fine detail. This allows a weeding operator to keep small details such as the dot of an “i” where it needs to be or put it back if it is accidentally weeded.

A low-tack carrier allows for some control of fine details while allowing the benefit of easily stacking and separating cut pieces and moving them throughout the shop.

A non-sticky carrier boasts the benefit of fast weeding, but, traditionally, is not available in a hot or warm peel, which compromises some of the benefits in heat application. Most sticky carriers allow for a hot or warm peel.

Source: Josh Ellsworth, Zach Ellsworth