Top positive review
So far, so good!
September 2, 2016
I use this in conjunction with my Cricut Explore. It is a heavy duty item and you can definitely tell when you pick it up. So far, I've only made t-shirts for fun but may eventually put a few pieces up online. I was using a home iron before and was simply not getting good results. I made shirts for myself that I really liked but the vinyl would start to peel off after one wear, I got frustrated and splurged on this.
This is definitely a lot less effort (with an iron, you have to put a TON of pressure on the vinyl and hold each spot for 10-15 seconds), all you do is clamp it down (low effort) and wait for 10-15 seconds. It is way easier to figure out where the middle point is with your shirt vs doing it on an ironing board. 15 x 15 is a good size, I can do everything from size women's XS to men's XXL and cover the almost entire chest area. I'd say the max you could do would be a men's XXL before you would want to consider a press with bigger plates. I have been able to use this to fix the shirts that I made with an iron (even after I washed those iron on shirts), and it worked perfectly- no peeling! So far, I've washed my shirts 4 times in the washing machine and haven't seen any peeling. This press does come with a heat protective sheet which I would recommend using. I use Siser EasyWeed and am very happy with the results, but it is quite expensive.
Because of it's weight, I would say it is not a very portable item, which means I would not plan on taking this out and putting it away when I'm done. It's too much work and tends to scratch surfaces very easily. I would recommend finding a permanent home for this if you are getting one. I have mine on one of those big Husky tool chests with a handle you can push around. I just wheel it back into the closet when I don't need it, and wheel it out when I want to use it. The drawers are perfect for storing vinyl/ blank t-shirts too!
Word of caution: open the windows when you use this, as there is a very pungent chemical smell when you first start using. I didn't open the windows when I first started and it stunk up the house. I did not feel sick so I don't think it's toxic, but still...very unpleasant. The good news is that the smell will go away with time- each time you use it, it will be a little less intense.
Update (10/1/2016): Some people are saying they are not receiving the original PowerPress they ordered. I can't speak for anyone else but I took a picture of the PowerPress logo on mine. I also added some pictures of shirts that I made. Not sure why the photos are showing up sideways on Amazon when they are showing up in the normal rotation on my computer.
Update (10/10/2016): After about 8-10 washes, the vinyl is starting to wrinkle, but they are not peeling. This is because I'm too lazy to turn my shirts inside out. If you iron the shirts or put it back in the heat press, the wrinkles will go away and it should look like new again.