Re-Transfer card printing is similar to Direct-to-Card, except it involves a carrier layer which is hot rolled (laminated) onto the card. In this process the print head heats and transfers the ribbon in a mirror image of the require printing onto a clear film (re-transfer film). The film is made from polyester and is a near perfect receptor, which means all required ink is transferred for a crisp, bright, rich image. The re-transfer film is then rolled onto the card via a heated rubber roller. The give in the rubber ensures, bumps, grooves and depressions are no issue as the film is laid down faithfully onto the card.
Over the Edge: The final product can be of a much wider variety of cards including PET and ABS, and as the printed image is designed to be larger than the card the printing is often called “over the edge” as there are no white space between the printing and the edge of the card.
Print Quality: The controlled print surface allows a near press print quality for most designs, particularly with photos and logos, and the re-transfer process ensures blemishes and deletions due to dust or uneven surfaces are overcome.
Print Heads: Since the print head does not come in contact with the card, it has a much lower risk of being damaged. Many card printer manufacturers offer a lifetime warranty on the print head because of the printing mechanics.
Cost: Due to the inclusion of an additional film and the more advanced engineering and design, Re-Transfer Printers are more expensive to purchase, and to run, but often the trade off is worth the end result.
Speed: Because re-transfer printing is a two step process it is often slower to produce cards.
Size: Re-Transfer printers need the additional room to allow for the re-transfer process, in addition they build up a lot of heat and are usually larger than direct to card printers.
That being said, re-transfer printing is faster, cheaper and smaller than ever before and any historically framed.
See our range of Re-transfer card printers – Here PPC RTP Card Printers