Screen printing team uniforms and jerseys is a great market for silk screen shops. Printing for a youth or adult sports league can mean repeat business. A lot of athletic printing for recreational leagues is a simple 1 or 2 color job.
How to Easily Screen Print Numbers Using Paper Numbering Stencils
These leagues always want the front printed with a logo and the name of the league. A great way to up-sell your services is to put individual numbers on the back. Screen Print Number Stencils are simple and economical paper stencils. It requires no special screen printing machine or device, just some paper numbering stencils.
Screen printing numbers is better and more cost effective than using heat transfer or vinyl numbers. Follow these simple steps for how to screen print numbers on jerseys using paper numbering stencils.
1. Create A Screen
You can use any screen printing frame you already have. For manual printing, a 20” x 24” OD aluminum frame works the best. Many athletic screen printers use a 110 mesh count to help lay a heavier ink deposit onto the shirt.
Expose and wash out a square in your screen. This blank spot will be the “image area” where your screen print number stencil will print. Make sure the image area square is big enough to print the entire number(s) of your stencil. Register your screen to the jersey, center the image area square to where you want your numbers to go.
2. Place the Stencil onto your Garment
Lay the paper number stencil(s) on your garment where you want to screen print the numbers. You can use spacers to help position your numbers evenly.
Bring your screen down and print like you normally would. Congratulations - you’ve just successfully screen printed a number!
It is normal for the paper number stencil to stick to the print side of the screen. If you are printing multiple team jerseys, you can use the screen print number stencil to print all the jerseys of that number. For example, print all your number 10s at once. To switch the number, just peel off the stencil and repeat steps 2 & 3. The paper stencils are designed to be disposed of after use.
The process is the same whether you are doing a 1 digit or 2 digit number. Make sure the image area square is big enough to print two digits. A good tip is to make the image area square large enough for your widest and longest number. You can always use spacers or screen tape to make the area smaller for single digit and child/youth size numbers.
What Size Stencil Should I Use?
There are different size screen print number stencil. The stencil size refers to the length of the number and the width is proportional. Typically, 2” x 4” and 6” are best for youth athletic number printing due to the smaller shirt sizes. For adult uniforms and jerseys, 8”, 10” and 12” give the best look.
Check out the video below to watch how it is done.