Viper 2 Tutorial - Loading the Platens


A. The Viper 2 uses a 4-2-1 platen system

1. In a 4 up configuration, you can put 4 small items or print 4 small prints (such as left chest). Each measures approximately:  7 ¼in X 11in

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2. In a 2 up configuration (using the two plastic adaptors), you can do two standard items or prints (such as a shirt front or back). Each measures approximately:  11in X 16in

Viper 2 Loading Platens2

3. In a 1 up configuration (using the single large plastic adaptor), you can do one very large item or print. This measures approximately:  16in X 24in

Viper 2 Loading Platens3

Note - Make sure the plastic adaptors sit flat, especially in the gaps between the platens (if it does not, you might have to shave the foam down slightly, so they do lay flat).  Always be sure to store the platen, and the plastic adaptors FLAT when not in use, so they don’t become warped.

B. Always lift your platens from the base as shown in the picture below, not from the platens themselves.

Viper 2 Loading Platens4

C. The cork strips, on the bottoms of your platens, helps prevent the platen from slipping on the belt. There is one on each edge of the platen

D. The Teflon tape covers up the screws, so they don’t get stuck on the media sensor switch. There is only one, so you need to load the platen so the Teflon tape is positioned on the side of the machine where the media sensor is located.

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Viper 2 Loading Platens6 Viper 2 Loading Platens7

E. When loading the platens with garments, place the platen on a flat work surface (such as a sturdy table)

1. It is usually not convenient to load the platen while it is on the machine. To be more efficient when running production, it is a good idea to have multiple platens.  You load a set while the other is on the machine printing.

2. When loading a 2 up configuration, the collar goes towards the control panel (away from the side where the Teflon tape is).  For a 1 up or 4 up configuration,  the collar is out towards the front of the machine. This also depends on which way the image is rotated (the software rotates automatically, which is a setting in your media setup)

3. Hold your hand on the shoulder seam, with the outer edges of your fingers running along the outer edges of the platen. This will guide you and help keep the garment straight

4. Slide your hands until the collar is just off the top edge of the platen

5. Make sure the garment appears straight

Note - The key to loading platens is the ability to reproduce the way you loaded the platen, so you get consistent placement of the image on the garment

6. Tuck the collar and the bottom of the shirt, at the same time

a) When tucking, don’t just push the material into the TucLoc (rubber sides).  Instead, use a slight curling motion with your fingers, so the material is smooth and taught, but not stretched.

b) Be sure not to brush the surface of pre treated garments, as this will disturb the surface fibers, thus compromising the quality of your prints

c) Be sure NOT to try tucking the material where there is no TucLoc (the empty space between the platens)

d) All of your excess material gets tucked to the underside of the platen, or on very large garments, tuck material into the TucLoc area

7. Now tuck the two sides in.

Note - Always remember, the print surface must be the highest flattest surface.  We can accomplish this by using different platens and/or by creating “jigs” to elevate the print surface

F. Push the loaded platen slowly into the machine, so the gap sensor is over the beginning edge of the garment. 

1. If you are printing in a 2 up configuration, and you are loading two garments, bring the front edge of the rear platen even with the “Bed Up – Bed Down” button light, which should place the beginning edge of the garment just under the gap sensors, by about ¼ in.

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There are two gap sensors.  The one shown here is the one on the side of the machine away from the control panel.  There is another one opposite this one, on the control panel side.

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Close up of the media height (gap) sensor

G. Hold the “Bed Up” button, which starts out with the light “green”, until the bed (platen) stops rising, and the light turns “red.”

1. Then release the button

H. The bed (platen) will drop down slightly, and the light will turn “green” again

1. If it does NOT, then the platen was not under the gap sensor properly, and you must re-check the height

I. SLOWLY push the platen all the into the machine,  by hand,  so the gap sensor can scan the entire print surface, to find any high spots and to ensure the surface was flat, and that no loose areas are sticking up

J. Then pull the platen back out, SLOWLY, to the front of the machine, so the end of the platen is about ¼ in to ½ in in front of the “media” sensor

K. If the gap sensor was tripped, and the bed (platen) lowered, be sure to re load the garment on the platen (at least fix any loose/high areas), then repeat steps “G” through “K” as necessary.

Note - BEFORE you press the “Bed Load” button on the machine, you must first press the “Layer” button so that it is “lit” blue if you are doing a print with multiple layers, such as in printing a black or color shirt, where you are printing a white underbase layer and a color layer.

L. Then press the “Bed Load” button 

1. This will load the platen into the machine

2. If you get an “error”, turn the power off , pull the platen out, then reload

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M. You can also load the platen closest to the back of the machine, if you are doing a single garment with the 2 up configuration, but that requires changing a setting in your software, so you can “choose” which platen you place the image on, each time you print.

1. Go into the properties of the print queue(s), and under the “general” settings, under the “layout manager”, you would turn on the feature called “Show Import Template Job dialogue”.

2. When you bring in an image to the Rip software, a dialogue box will pop up asking which platen you would like to place the image on.

3. Then do Steps “G”, “H”, and “L” and then print.



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