Christina Lu

Christina Lu

Overseas Sales Director and Co-Founder of KASU Laser, 12+ Years Textile and Fabric Laser Cutting Machine Expert.

Contents

Is Laser Cutting Digital Printed Fabric A Good Business?

Laser cutting digital printed fabric business is becoming quite popular. But is it perfect for you? Well, you’re about to find out.

Answer: Yes, it is a good business, but you must lay a solid groundwork to ensure its success. As long as your country has a relatively mature manufacturing base for sewing products, then you can get started on research about the digital printing or dye-sublimation market.

Also, there is a tendency that fabric digital printing applications will get more popular. If this happens, it will be worth your time to do more research about this business. On the plus side, workshop with digital fabric cutting machines is a very low-entry level bluesea business.

Therefore, you don’t need a lot of money to get started. Also, the technical requirements are low with little competition and high demand in the market. All this works together to your advantage.

So, if you would love to know more about how you can get started on your own, here are some more details of the background market research you need to help you start your own business.

Fabric Digital Printing (Dye Sublimation) Is Getting More Popular

Digital fabric printing came around in the late 1980s and has since revolutionized the textile and fashion design industries. However, with the rise of dye sublimation printing in the 90s, their relevance went up several notches. Today, this printing method is excellent for our ever-evolving consumer market, especially as it can be used on both fabric and non-fabric items. For example, dye sublimation printing is ideal for plastic, glass, cell phone cases, vinyl, polyester, photograph printing, and home décor items.
KASU LASER DYE SUBLIMATION
Garment & Apparel
KASU LASER DYE SUBLIMATION MASK AND ACCESSORIES
Accessories
KASU LASER APPLICATION SPORTSWEAR
Sportswear & Ads

Why Is Opening A Laser Cutting Workshop For Fabric Digital Printing A Good Business?

✮ Rising market demand

There is currently a high demand for digitally printed sewing products in today’s market. To meet the rising demand, there needs to be an increase in print and cut production. And that’s where you come in. You can be sure that there will be no dull moment as people will keep demanding your services.

✮ Much higher working efficiency

Compared to traditional processes, which consume money and have low efficiency, a laser-cutting workshop will bridge that gap. Generally, one digital fabric cutting machine can replace 7-8 traditional cutting workers with scissors.

✮ Smoother workflow - first print, then cut

Opening a laser cutting workshop for digital fabric printing is a great business because it makes the entire workflow smoother. In addition, the calendar heat press machine now has a faster speed.

The innovative production method in today’s clime is to roll the fabric print first before cutting. Check this to understand more about the smooth “first sublimation, then laser cut” working flow

Digital printing on its own is quite complicated. However, it becomes much easier with the laser cutting entry point.

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How To Start Your Own Business?

✮ Start by local market investigation

You can’t start any business without some local market survey to understand exactly what you’re getting into. This research will explain what the business is all about and what you would need to get started.

But this is much different from the broader investigation. For example, your local investigation should determine if the locals are willing to outsource the laser cutting part of your fabric business.

When you know that they can outsource this part, you should investigate how much they would pay for the cutting workers. You should have a rough idea of the budget to ensure that you won’t be paying way more than you can afford.

KASU LASER Client Factory 1

If you do not price this right, you will be running your fabric business at a loss, and no one wants that. Also, check for their working efficiency and how much they are willing to pay to outsource their pieces.

Efficiency is what lets you know your daily production capacity. If you’re able to get at least 500 pieces of digital printed sportswear cutting businesses on average daily, then you can move on to the next step.

After the investigation, there are some key things to put in place before you can start operation.

KASU LASER Client Factory 3

✮ Register company

Understand the local laws and register your company with the right agency. Here’s why this is super important. Ignorance is no excuse in law, and going against the rules given by your locality could result in getting your business shut down indefinitely.

Also, a properly registered business will gain access to many perks for business owners, which may come around while running your company.

✮ Calculate main investment needed

The next important question you should ask yourself is how much money you will need to prepare to start your laser cutting digitally printed fabric business. Knowing your level of investment will determine how much profit or loss you make in this business.

Firstly, you should factor in the cost of workshop rent, electricity, and factory environmental certification. All these are recurrent expenditures, meaning that you would have to pay for them periodically. Therefore, a good knowledge of these expenses will help you plan your running costs better in the long run.

Secondly, how much operator salary is enough? You want to make sure that you don’t underpay or overpay your workers. Underpaying could get you in trouble with the authorities while overpaying will definitely hurt your business.

To know how much operators in your area get on average, you would have to carry out some research and ask around from other workshop owners. This will guide you on the choice of operator salary.

Finally, here comes one of the most important parts of your fabric business, and that is the machine itself. Everything else becomes useless if the machines don’t function as they should.

You would have to find out the amount you would need to invest in the machines and consumables. How to find an affordable and reliable laser cutter supplier in China? You can press this button to understand more details. 

✮ Marketing and advertising

Every business needs great marketing and advertising strategy. This gets the word out there and encourages people to step into your workshop for their fabric cutting.

Of course, to ensure that you have the right marketing strategy in place, you need to have a sufficient budget that leaves no stone unturned. How much do you think would be enough to let people know that your fabric cutting workshop is the best place for laser cutting services? Take the time to work this out and factor it into your overall expenses.

✮ Loan support

Whether you feel like you have enough money to get your business off the ground, it could definitely benefit from some local government support. A little research will make sure that you don’t miss out on loan support that would help you scale your business faster.

You can start by asking the locals as they would be a reliable source of information. If any of them have benefited from some loan support in the past, that’s a great way to find out. You can also explore the power of the internet where there is sufficient information at your fingertips with the tap of a few buttons.

✮ Purchase the right machine and import

I have edited a very deailed article regarding detailed steps of importing the fabric laser cutting machine from China and and you can click the link to find out all the necessary details.

How To Price?

How much is just enough to charge your clients? This is one question that has taken many businesses to the top and dragged some others down.

Your clients are what will determine how successful your business turns out to be. So, you need to be thorough in calculating your cost.

Do proper research on how much the client will be willing to pay. Of course, this has to be proportional to the productivity of your cutting machine.

And most importantly is understanding their current working flow as well as calculating the cutting cost per piece and then negotiate with your clients. Theoretically, as long as you charge them cheaper than their current expenses, they are willing to outsource.

We take a China sportswear factory for example, whose production is 1,000 sportswear per day.  Following are some figures of this sportswear factory background information.

1. 5 sewn pieces of different shape patterns per sportswear

2. Expect 0.8 meters per sporswear, thus 800 meters of fabric consumption per day

3. 10 working hours per day

4. 300 working days per year

5. One worker cut 120-140 sportswear per day

6. One China manual cutting worker’s average salary per day is 30-40 USD, or 1,000 USD per month.

✮ Manual Cutting Method A: Roll Fabric Calendar Heat Transfer, Cut by Scissors

KASU LASER Traditional Position Cutting Dye Sublimated Sportswear - Scissor 2

Workers needed related to manual cutting:

  1. 8 Cutting worker as one worker can cut about 120-140 sportswear by scissors per day.
  2. QC and Counting: 1 Worker

In total 9 Workers Needed for the cutting process and 0.27USD cutting expenses per sportswear.

cost of cutting per sportswear by manual roll fabric - KASU LASER

✮ Manual Cutting Method B: Multi-layer Plain Fabric Cut, Heat Pressed Piece by Piece

traditional manual cutting sportswear - piece by piece - KASU LASER

Workers needed related to manual cutting:

1. Multi-Layer Plain Fabric Cutting: 1 Worker

2. Calendar Heat Transfer: 4 Workers with 100M/H

3. QC and Counting: 1 Worker

Main problems existed for this operation:

1. Some pieces of cloth easy to roll edge resulting in defective products.

2. The left bobbin and debris of the cutted plain fabric pieces cannot be processed in advance like the wide format cloth. After heat transfer and removing the leftover, white spots result in defective products.

3. Workers need to stand by the machine for all day and will make mistakes sometimes. The above reasons cause an average defective rate of 1%-3%.

4. Backing paper needed, otherwise it will contaminate the transfer machine felt. 

5. More dye sublimation ink and paper needed.

6. Cannot take full advantage of the faster calendar heat transfer machine.

In total 6 Workers Needed for the cutting process and 0.294USD cutting expenses per sportswear.

cost of cutting per sportswear by manual piece by piece- KASU LASER

✮ Purchase the right machine

For a machine that works really fast and delivers the final product with little to no error, clients will be more than willing to pay high for that level of quality.

But, of course, you wouldn’t want to take this pricing too high to avoid discouraging them from having their work done at your workshop.

Generally, a stable running machine is a crucial factor for success in the digital printing fabric business. So, how do you come up with the right price? The standard practice is to charge by the hour. This is helpful because you can get paid according to how much time you put into a job.

However, it’s up to you to determine a profit calculating formula figure that will always work for you and your brand.

Following is a cost sheet of a KASU KD1816-S top camera laser cutting machine cutting sportswear just for your reference (Data all based on China factory average cost).

In total 1 Worker Needed for the cutting process and 0.061USD cutting expenses per sportswear.

cost of cutting per sportswear by KD 1816 top camera laser cutting machine - KASU LASER

After the comparison, you will find out that laser cutting sportswear cost is only about 20% of traditional manual cutting methods and why starting one laser cutting workshop is a good business.

And you can change the blue background data according to your local situation and make the calculation.

You will get a very clear idea how much you should price and how much profit you can earn based on one laser cutter. 

Conclusion

Laser cutting digital printed fabric business is a great way to start your own business with little money. You would also have spare time to spend with family. So, if you need that balance between work and family, starting this business will help you get that and more.

KASU LASER Client Factory 6

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