Is Stencil Roll Cleaning Material All The Same?
Unfortunately not. The industry standard for Stencil Roll Cleaning Material is Hydroentangled Polyester Cellulose. It sounds a mouthful but in simple terms Polyester and Cellulose (wood pulp for those who prefer that term) fibres are knitted together using high pressure jets, NO GLUE. Cheap material use short fibres that unravel. Better materials, such as Sontara® that we use in our rolls, use long fibres that knit together and stay together.
Very Cheap Stencil Rolls
There are some very cheap rolls on the market using material from the Far East that is not Hydroentangled. This is produced using Polyester and binder (glue). These seem to offer a great deal to customers, who doesn’t love a bargain, but as with many bargains the quality is affected. The binder can disintegrate when solvents are used in the cleaning process and so fibres start to come loose and shed onto boards.
The other issue with binder heavy material is that to clean effectively you need space between the fibres to pick up the dirt off the stencil. When the space is full of binder the surface becomes smooth and so fails to “pick up”. A cleaning material that doesn’t clean is not really worth having no matter how cheap it is, is it? Long fibred, Hydroentangled material has gaps in its structure that pick up and hold the dirt.
Quality of Stencil Roll Cleaning Material
When looking to buy Stencil Cleaning Rolls the quality of the material has to be the starting point. Anything else is a path to increased fibre shedding, poor cleaning and so inevitably increased failure rates and extra machine downtime as you need to clean your machine more. Is that really a cost saving or just a false economy?
Our advice – When sourcing Stencil Cleaning Roll Material always look for brands that supply Polyester Cellulose, Hydroentangled rolls.