Screen Printing Mesh 101: How To Choose

Screen printing plays an important role in the world of printing. Mesh is an essential element for screen printing. Screen mesh carries the dye or pigments element and with the variation and quality of screen mesh your screen printing design will form onto your fabric surface.

Screen printing mesh refers to a substance that is used to print any thickness of ink upon the material surface. Mesh is generally made of silk, woven synthetic such as polyester, nylon thread. Mesh could be classified by its count, and a high count can give a high-quality resolution of printing.

In many cases, we get confused about the scale for screen printing. So, we have to select different counts of screen mesh based on the appropriate screen print and quality requirements.

In today’s article, we will show you how to choose a screen-printing mesh and what kind of mesh you will choose for screen printing, and why.

In screen printing accessories, printing mesh is the core element for screen printing. Screen printing relies on its mesh property and the quality of the print is relying on the quality and count of screen mesh.

Screen printing mesh

Mesh is a fixed open cloth screen that is tight and spreads around the frame of screen printing.

You can’t get your screen for screen printing directly; you have to make and customize your screen with mesh counts selection. Mesh is important to give the design the resolution required.

Most of the case silkscreen is used for screen printing, but woven nylon and polyester thread are also used for screen printing.

Screen mesh for screen printing

With the help of a screen-printing machine, you have to place the design on the fabric by passing the medium which is mesh. In the meantime, when you put different proportions and different quality of color ink on the screen, it will give you the resolution as the design of printing requires.

Things you have to consider about mesh selection

  • Your design color and view
  • The type of chemical dye is using 
  • Printed material 
  • Quantity of printing mesh for design 

To complete a successful screen printing you need to know the quality of the ink used inside it as well as have an inadequate idea about screen printing.

Things you have to consider about mesh selection

Different types of screen-printing meshwork differently on materials such as for tight and hard surfaces need a mesh with less count and again when you want to screen clothes it will require more count of mesh. So, you need to know your screen mesh selection for the material.

The best mesh count for screen printing

Mess count refers to the number of synthetic thread (Polyester/Nylon) or silk thread that has passed through a square inch area and the area it has accumulated.

For instance, 120 mesh screen means 120 threads have crossed over per square inch area. Higher the mesh fabric count, higher the quality of printing, finer the holes of the screen, and sharp the edge of printing.

The best mesh count for screen printing

In general mesh, counts are available within 30 to 280 mesh. Counts are used for all measurements such as home customization to industrial purposes.

150 to 200 count mesh is the ideal balance of finer mesh.

For the textile printing section, mesh count is the first step to start printing.

Different types of mesh count for screen printing and their use

Understanding the mesh count with diameter is necessary to screen printing for printing. The screen printing frame itself holds the mesh and the ink if it is water-based or plastisol then the mesh count is so important to insert the ink to the fabric surface.

types of mesh count

Prints made with fine cross-section counts frequently have a lot milder hand feel than prints made the most of with a screen mesh. In any case, the drawback of this is that the restricted ink store isn’t as splendid or energetic of a picture.

75 to 100 Mesh count

This count of mesh contains large holes. Printing of fading quality in a large area, this kind of mesh is used. For example, jute sack or big tent to print.

The ink should be high density because the space of threads is huge comparatively. You can use plastisol ink here.

Besides, that glitter ink can be used on fabric with low count mesh, because of the ink’s high density.

110 to 170 Mesh count

Thread diameter is considered here as the average length and printing quality of screen printing. You can use mesh fabric here for standard fabric printing. Little dilute and light ink can be used here.

For thicker fabric or dye-absorbed material, you can use that count of screen mesh.

180 to 240 Mesh count

This is the best version of the screen-printing mesh. Its ink and transferability are quite high. Again, on a fabric surface with the best resolution, you can use 195 to 210 count mesh.

High resolution on knit fabric is the common requirement for screen print. Thinner ink is required for a high count mesh. Water ink is mostly used as a dye for screen printing coloration of 180 to 240 mesh count.

Screen Right Mesh Size

As you already know, the mesh size of a screen printing mesh refers to the number of threads per inch that the mesh is made of. A higher mesh count means that there are more threads per inch, and a lower mesh count means that there are fewer threads per inch.

Screen Right Mesh Size

When choosing a mesh size for screen printing, it is important to consider the type of image that you are trying to print, as well as the thickness of the ink that you will be using. This is important to consider because the size of the openings in the screen will determine the amount of detail that can be printed onto the substrate. A screen with a high mesh count will be able to print finer details, while a screen with a low mesh count will be better for printing larger areas of ink.

For example: if you are printing a very detailed image, you will need to use a mesh with a higher thread count so that all of the tiny details of the image can be transferred onto the substrate. If you are printing with thicker ink, you will need to use a mesh with a lower thread count.

Screen frame & screen printing mesh

There is no definitive answer when it comes to the mesh size for screen printing, as it will vary depending on the size of the screen frame that you are using.

However, a good rule of thumb is to use a mesh size that is about one-third the width of the screen frame. This will ensure that you have a tight weave that will produce a high-quality print.

Screen frame type

Screen frame type

There are a few different types of screen printing screen mesh frames, each with its own advantages. You can choose from depending on your needs. The most common type is the wood frame, which is sturdy, the old type, and easy to work with.

Aluminum frames are also popular, as they’re lightweight and don’t warp as easily as wood. Finally, there are steel frames, which are the strongest option but can be difficult to maneuver. Nowadays plastic or polymer frames are available too.

Why mesh is necessary?

Without mesh, you cannot think about screen printing. This could be referred to as the core element of screen printing.

You can’t complete your screen printing process without mesh. Mesh count will give you the quality of printing. While you are thinking of printing garments, those are already costly, so you will not take such risk of ruining your garments.

A high mesh count will give excellent quality screen printing. By attaching to the screen frame, it also can give an exact printing formation on the specific area.


Last but not least, you can’t think about screen printing without mesh. The better the quality of your mesh count the finer your screen printing. In many cases, you have to change the type of mesh because of the material you are printing. If you want to use heavy ink you need to use a hole with good diameter mesh and again when you use water-based ink to use liquid type ink then you have to use higher count mesh. By using it, you can protect the design in your printing.

When you need to explore the subtle colors of different multicolors inside a design, you have to use a high count mesh in your screen printing frame to give them a perfect production. This article discusses in detail all the issues and uses and requirements. We hope you will benefit from these and know its necessary for future use. You will get the success of screen printing.

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