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CLEAR FILM that is archival, pigment inkjet compatible, and in of itself can be a final product? Is there such a thing?

problem: I've been calling art stores as well as photography stores, paper stores, film manufacturers, printer companies -- nobody seems to know if there is such a thing as printing onto clear plastic film as a final product. Everyone says their products are meant for transferring or negatives etc. (I tried printing on non-coated Mylar D, and the ink just beads off.)

goal: What I have been creating are art pieces on clear transfer film and selling them. I print on them, I paint on them, I apply reflective & dichroic materials on them, and layer them on top of each other; I manipulate the art pieces in every interesting way I possibly can. My collectors and potential clients want to be assured that my pieces will have a long lasting quality to them. I want to be able to give all of the correct information rather than "I don't know".

my materials: I use a canon ipf8400 with archival fine art pigment inks. I just need a clear film that is also archival. Or something as close as possible to being the most durable, long lasting material available that is inkjet compatible. There has to be something out there? Or at least a protective clear spray or finish? I can't be the only one interested in creating artwork with transparent qualities? I have been using transfer film, 4ml thick. Does anyone have any tips at all to help me think in the right direction? 

question: Is there such a thing as a Clear Film that is archival, pigment inkjet compatible, and in of itself can be a final product? Or what is the closest I can possibly get to that?

Wired_Mist1 year ago

Maybe this?

https://www.instructables.com/id/Professional-Looki...

Use a Color Laser printer (or any copying shop) to print your Design onto a Overhead Transparency !

Just be sure to mirror the design so when you look at it through the protective plastic it will look right. You will then need to glue something to the back of it to keep the toner from scraping off. Maybe use two sheets and some clear glue for see throuh?

I go against my usual judgement here and assume this is a real question and not the first step of a spam round.

Printing on tansparent film is no problem anymore with ink jets.
But as you already noticed it is next to impossible to find information on the product itself in terms of UV stability, staying soft and flexible or discoloration.
Photo paper is often the best choice for a long lasting impression but useless as you need it to be transparent.

A bit of background info:
The foil consists of several layers.
1. The actual foil.
2. A layer to bond to a semi "soakable" material.
3. The soakable layer to take the ink.
4. A finnishing layer that partially bond with the ink to help fixing it place.

In most cases you can see and feel the "right" side as is a bit rough and looks less glossy.
Check the transperacy films made by HP and maybe contact them in regards to expected life time.

In my days of daily experiments I tried glass sheets with mixed results.
One of my rinters had a drawer for printing on DVD's directly and I misused it to feed thin glass shetts into the printer.
The actual print medium on it was several layers of gum arabic solution as used for making your own acrylic paint.
Gum arabic dissolves good in water but very bad in alcohol, so not every ink worked as expected as the alcohol based ones would not soak into the gum.
But it might be worth a test on your end, even if you just try a drop directly from the ink tank with a paint brush.