Originally Posted by SilkkyBrew
I don't know much about screenprinting in general, but is there ANY way to remove screenprint from glass bottles so you can reuse them? paint thinner? anything? I don't even know what screenprint is honestly... I've searched yahoo and the forum for how to remove screenprint and nothing...
I know a bit about screenprinting...
That ink is going to be a solvent based (oil / rubber based) ink, which is heat cured to the bottle.
You should be able to remove it with acetone or lacquer thinner. Simple paint thinner won't be enough.
You can probably buy a quart of the stuff at any hardware store - it ought to be enough to clean your bottles.
HOWEVER - these are toxic chemicals, and if it were my call, I wouldn't want them anywhere near comsumables. Now, between the 2, acetone dries much faster and is theoretically less harmful (it will feel cold like rubbing alcohol does when you get it on your hands - even through gloves due to the high evaporation rate). The disadvantage of this is that you end up using more to counteract how quickly it dries.
If it were me, I'd cap the bottles filled with water, to keep fumes and residues from getting inside your bottles. Buy some heavy, solvent proof gloves (not just disposable latex - HEAVY ones - thicker than dish washing gloves if you can find them). I'd tell you to wear a mask but this stuff goes through anything, so unless you have a respirator that blocks solvents, you might as well wear nothing.
In open air, with a breeze if possible, use an old towel torn into pieces to saturate the bottle fronts. It should immediately bleed and run. You'll want probably 3 rags with solvent, each cleaning more and more, and a fourth to wipe them clean with. Try not to pour solvent into grass, onto pavement, or anywhere that will lead into your water table or sewer run off. Don't be sloppy with this, and don't soak them in a bath of solvent. You'll probably eat through the rubber on the crown caps and lose your seal.
After they're clean and shiny again, let them air dry in the sun to allow as much solvent to evaporate. If you leave them for an hour and come back and smell them you should be able to tell if it's evaporated or not.
Finally, soak them in HOT soapy water, the kind of soap that removes grease and oil from dishes. You want nothing to do with acetone by the time your beer meets the bottles. Rinsing twice would be better. Three, better still.
That should hopefully work.
Want to do a quick test to see if this will work at all? Dip a q-tip into your wife or girlfriend's nail polish remover and swab your bottle. If it comes off with color on the cotton swab, you're in luck.
Also, want to see how screenprinting works? Youtube has the answers. This video shows making a screen and printing a shirt. There are rigs for bottles, mugs and glasses, as well as hats, shirts, and just about anything you can imagine.