dry mount press and smoke at 350 degrees?
I have been using my dry mount press in the 200 degree range for a while, happily and with no problems. Then my little girl wanted to make a T-shirt (iron-on thing). So it was finally time to look into the thermostat that would only allow the press to reach about 250 degrees...
Easy(?) to adjust and it did finally reach the 350 degrees that is indicated on the thermostat as the high temperature. Oddly enough, just when it reached 350, it started to smoke and smelled a bit like burning rubber... I turned it off and aired out the house
So, I thought I'd bring it up here for input as I don't know all that much about presses. This is a '200' model (Burke & James made by Seal). It says 350 on the thermostat but can it really go that high? Has anyone else had a problem at high temps with smoke? Can that pad handle it?
I know temps like this are high for photo purposes but the iron-on sheets say 375 degrees. And when I measured the houshold iron at the setting they recommended (I had to make that T-shirt), it did reach close to 375. Has anyone run their presses at temps like this?
Any ideas or thought gratefully accepted...
Was the smoke emanating from the platen or from the wiring? If it was from the platen then it was probably from adhesive that may have contaminated the surface. If that was the case then the platen should probably be cleaned before any more photographic applications.
If your press does not have a thermometer to monitor temperature, there is no guarantee that the press did not exceed the desired temperature of 350 degrees. Thermostats do go out of calibration. The best way to check calibration is with a digital surface test thermometer or in lieu of that I believe that Seal used to make an indicator tape.
I don't know if the pad can handle 350 degrees.
I have never had occasion or the desire to heat my dry mount press to that temperature.
It was the thermostat that I had to "recalibrate" in order to reach this temperature, so yes it does have one. I monitored the temp with a digital thermometer that seem accurate enough for what I was doing.
The smoke was mostly from the platen/pad. Hard to know whcih in this first run in a darkened room and being suprised...
I first noticed a little bit of smoke, turned it off, then opened up the press. When the pad/platen were exposed, a huge amount of smoke came out. So I doubt this is an internal problem.
I would agree about dirt and glue if not for the rubber smell. Who knows? The unit is marked for 350 so I supposed it's designed to go that high? Presses are in genral use for making t-shirts so this isn't something very strange.
Maybe my mistake was heating it up closed? I do temp checks with the thermometer inserted between the platen and pad. In the 200 degree range, that's been no problem. Tomorrow, I'll try heating it up again but open this time to see what happens. At least I'll be able to tell which was smoking, the platen or the pad. The platen does look very clean and shiny but there could be years of smoooth accumulation on it.
Worse comes to worse, I could always fabricat a pad out of felt or something that can easily take the high temps. Or I could burn out the press comepletely...
It's all worth it for a little girls T-shirt ;-)