If you are looking to add a heat press to your craft room, consider the HTVRont heat press. This machine is easy to use, compact, and has automatic features that make the craft process a breeze.
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Thanks to HTVRont for sending me this machine to use and review, all opinions are my own. View my full disclosure policy here.
What is a heat press and why do I need one?
A heat press is a designed to help apply a design to a blank such as a t-shirt, tote bag or piece of wood. The machine does so with the combination of evenly applied heat and pressure.
This type of machine is ideal for a crafter who works with HTV, iron on or sublimation on a regular basis. The alternative to a large machine like this one is a hand operated heat press or household iron.
If you are a small business owner and make custom shirts, bags or signs in bulk using sublimation or HTV then a heat press is definitely something you want to consider.
How do you choose a heat press?
There are many options on the market, here are a few questions to ask when considering your purchase.
- What will you be using this for?
- Do you want automatic features?
- What size do you need? Both the size of your space and the items you will be pressing.
- What temperature and time settings are important to you?
Heat presses, designed to be used in your home, range in price from $250 to well over $1000. They come in a wide range of sizes and some even press your materials automatically.
Each press can heat up to a specific temperature, which is important depending on what materials you are using.
HTVRont machine overview?
Let’s talk about the brand new HTVRont auto press machine. This machine measures 21 inches deep from front to back including the handle, 16 inches wide and 13 inches tall when open. It sits nicely on a small set of drawers in my office.
The pressing area is 15 x 15 which is a good size to press most common items used in crafting.
It’s sleek and well designed and comes in 2 colors, I received the white model which blends in perfectly with my other machines.
It has a small screen on the front with a few simple buttons. The overall operation is relatively simple once you understand what each button controls.
When you plug in the heat press and push the power button it begins to heat up and heats up quickly.
Be sure to watch the video to see more in depth how this machine from HTVRont works.
- Power – turn the machine on and off. The machine will heat to the default of 210 degrees F.
- Temperature (thermometer) – press this button to set the temperature, then use the arrow keys to adjust it up or down.
- Time (clock) – press this button to set the time, then use the arrow keys to adjust it up or down.
- Plus and minus keys – allows you to adjust the time and temperature.
- Start button, this has the R – when it is green the machine is ready to press. Push the drawer in all the way then push start to activate.
- Mode (circle button with arrows) – Preset time and temperature settings
- Custom (round star button) – Set custom modes
- Auto (button with A) – when pressed, the machine will activate when you push in the drawer without having to press start.
The drawer pulls all the way out making it easy to place your blanks on the mat without touching the heating plate. The mat is attached to the base with elastic straps.
This is an auto press which means when you push in the drawer and hit the start button the machine does the pressing on it’s own. The pressure is determined by the materials on the mat and cannot be altered.
Create a shirt with iron on
Let’s make a t-shirt with HTV. I cut a cute design from a few different types of HTVRont Heat transfer vinyl. The first step is turning on and heating up the heat press. The recommended settings for this type of iron on is 305-320 degrees for 10-15 seconds. Set the machine to the correct temperature and time.
First, press the shirt to remove any wrinkles creating a clean flat surface for the HTV.
Layout each piece of the design and cover with the included teflon sheet. You can also use parchment paper to protect the design, but always use a barrier between the HTV and the top heating element.
To ensure proper placement you can use this t-shirt ruler guide to help line up the design on the shirt.
Push in the drawer, press start and let the machine do the work.
When the process is complete, the top plate will raise and you can pull out the drawer. Remove the teflon sheet and let the HTV cool. Most HTV is cool peel, meaning if you pull while hot it will distort the design.
Pull off the backing and this shirt is done!
Thoughts on the HTVRont auto press
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This is my first heat press. Prior to this machine I have used the Cricut EasyPress in a few different sizes as well as a household iron. Any type of heat and manual pressure will help you create a custom shirt or accessory, but a heat press takes the effort and guesswork out of the process.
Things I love
- The sleek look and color of this machine blends perfectly with my carft room and the size is ideal for any home crafter.
- The automatic pressing allows me to step away and let the machine do the work ensuring the perfect press every time.
- The size of the pressing area is 15×15, big enough for every project I’ve tried so far. I don’t have to move anything around like I would with the EasyPress or iron.
- The top plate lifts straight up and the drawer pulls out, versus a typical heat press in which the top pulls up and hovers over your hands as you arrange the material.
- Price! I am all for a good quality machine that comes in at a great price. Most crafters, those not selling a product, don’t want to spend $500 or more on a machine for a hobby.
- The maximum temperature on this machine is 410 degrees F, which may not be hot enough for some materials.
- The maximum time is 99 seconds, which isn’t long enough for Cricut infusible ink, this means I have to run the press twice to complete the project.
- You cannot alter the pressure of the press. So far this hasn’t been an issue for me. As long as my material is flat and even it presses perfectly. But this may be an issue if you project requires a lot of pressure.
If you are looking to upgrade from an EasyPress or iron I highly encourage you to check out the HTVRont Auto Heat Press. It’s ideal for home crafters and small business owners and will help you take your projects to the next level.
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