Using perfectear tape for silkscreen masking?

I see a lot of people use a vinyl cutter to make silkscreen masks.

Meanwhile, I recently was reading @evansd2’s post on the cheapest masking tape, and then checking out the specs on perfectear plus, and noticed it mentions using it as a mask for screen printing.

Does anyone have experience with using the lasercutter to cut the tape and then using it to transfer itself over onto a screenprinting frame for masking? It’d be much cheaper than using vinyl for the task if it works well.


Although I have never transferred the tape to a silkscreen, I cut masking tape all the time for masking glaze designs on pottery. Just tape it to a scrap of board. Cut the design - just use the setting for the board and let the Glowforge cut right through. Then remove the cut tape and place where you want it. I actually reassemble the puzzle pieces of scrap board, cover with masking tape to hold them together and cut again. I can use one scrap of board 3+ times.

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i don’t think that would be particularly effective. The adhesive strength of the cut mask layer needs to be stronger than the adhesive strength of the transfer tape, so that it stays stuck down while peeling the masking away. If you were cutting a mask from transfer tape and then trying to lay another layer down to use for the transfer, I would imagine that the tape-on-tape bond would be stronger than the tape-on–silkscreen bond.

When they mention the transfer tape being used as masking for silkscreening, I think it is used to block out larger solid areas of the screen, and not as a detailed/cut part of the design.


Or perhaps a simple design that can be lifted and placed as one piece.

I guess that’s possible, but I’ve never seen it used as such. I dug through some old screens from my nieghbor Joe, and found the way I have seen transfer tape used as a silkscreen mask: The screen has the design for both the front and back of the shirt. The (small) front logo was masked first, while the back was being printed. After the (large) back panel had been printed, the mask was removed from the small logo, and the larger logo was masked. Note that the wide section of transfer paper/masking is additionally secured with blue painter’s tape… Joe did not trust the transfer tape to stay by itself.


Freezer paper is worth looking at. Search the forum for it, or check out youtube for the crafsman’s freezer paper tutorial (and others).

Seems the consensus is that the tape alone is a no-go … maybe I will start with the tried and true (vinyl) and then experiment with other materials.

Do not cut regular vinyls with the laser. Creates corrosive chlorine gas.


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