It is no secret that disc golf is enjoying the heights of fame, with the fandom increasing speedily all across the globe. People not only find it an exciting way of spending their leisure time, but are of the view that the game brings them closer to family, friends, and nature in the most fascinating ways.
Although art and disc golf are poles apart, artistic disc golf enthusiasts have brought them closer than ever. Bringing new and exciting ideas to create one of the most beautiful discs by dyeing them has left all of us awestruck.
If you want to add art to your discs, by dipping them in colours or dyeing them with beautiful patterns, you’ve come to the right place. This blog post will walk you through the basics of disc dyeing, bringing you tips and tricks to create some of the most beautiful designs on your golf discs.
Which Discs to Use for Disc Dyeing?
Yes, you read it right, not all discs can be dyed, and to customize your discs with patterns and designs, you need specific discs made out of a particular material. Opaque and transparent discs are the ones commonly used to create customized golf discs.
Another important aspect you must consider is the colour of the base disc. If you use a white disc, your pattern and colours will appear more vibrant and bright. On the other hand, colourful discs won’t appear as bright when compared.
Materials: You Need to Dye Your Discs
Disc Golf Discs
The disc is the most important material, therefore, you should not overlook the material you are using for dyeing. If you want to achieve a vibrant, bright, and colourful end-product, it’s important to use a transparent, or white disc, so the colours appear bright.
A Clean Disc Yields Beautiful Patterns
Clean your disc by rubbing the dirt and dust off using soap or detergent. Rub gently with a sponge and rinse with water to wash away the soap.
Measuring Cups and Spoons
To get precision and accuracy, you need to be precise with your ingredients. Mixing the liquids and the dye powder in the right amounts will leave you with the perfect dyeing material.
Dyeing Medium – Fleotrol
Fleotrol is the most commonly used dyeing medium to custom-dye disc golf discs. You can easily find it over the counter from home improvement stores, and big departmental stores selling DIY stuff.
The dye comes in powder form, which is then mixed with medium Fleotrol. You can get different dye sets from the stores, these sets come in six-colour, and twelve-colour packages. You can buy the one that suits your design or the pattern you want to make on your discs.
Bonus Material: Silicon Oil
Silicon oil is mixed with Fleotrol for advanced disc customizations. It is not recommended for beginners, however, if you have prior disc dyeing experience, you can use silicon oil to get more complex designs.
Silicon oil is mixed with the dyeing medium, Fleotrol. It bubbles up the mixture of the dye, and the reaction between the silicon oil and Fleotrol helps you in creating complex patterns and designs.
Plastic Cups or Squirt Bottles
You can mix your dye powder with the dyeing medium in plastic bottles or cups. Make sure you buy sufficient cups, as each colour will be mixed in a different cup.
Dyeing Tray or Pan
Your disc pan is basically where you will create your design. So, you will want a round tray/pan, slightly bigger than your disc, so that you can soak it easily.
Make sure your pain is leak-proof, you’d not want to spill your dye mixture all over the floor. If you want to buy a dyeing pan, a Teflon-coated pan is the best choice. You can use it over and over to create different designs on different discs.
Heating speeds up the dyeing process, therefore, a heat lamp becomes an important part of your disc dyeing venture. It is a fact that you can use any heating medium to cover this step, even your oven, but you must not overlook the fact that it will leave your oven and ultimately your kitchen with fumes of chemicals that will end up in your food.
So, ovens are not the best option, and heat lamps on the other hand are not that expensive. You can get one for yourself from the home improvement stores.
Step-by-Step Guide to Dye Your Disc Golf Discs
Start by cleaning your disc with soap and a sponge to wash away the dirt and dust from your discs. It is not necessary to always use a new disc for dyeing, you can use your old discs, you just have to clean them properly.
What Exactly Do You Want to Paint On Your Disc?
It is important to plan your design and colour scheme beforehand. This not only helps you in saving your dyes, as you only mix colours that you truly want on your disc but gives you an idea of how your end-product will look like.
Though anyone with or without knowledge of colours and colour schemes can dye discs, you must have the know-how of the colour wheel. It will save you from mixing the wrong colours, otherwise, you’ll end up having blacks and browns only.
Get your Dye Ready
- You have to mix your dye powder with the dyeing medium and in the very right amounts,
- A 1.5mg of dye colour powder needs 60ml of dyeing medium.
- Measure Fleotrol in a measuring flask, and put it in the plastic cup. Repeat the process for measuring the dye powder.
- Give it a good mix, until there are no clumps of the dry powder, and an even mixture is created. It usually takes a minute and a half.
- Repeat the process to create different colours in separate plastic cups.
Get the Dye Bed Ready
Gently pour fleotrol (not your dye mixture, just clean Fleotrol) on your dyeing pan or tray. Make sure that you do this process carefully avoiding air bubbles.
Pull the Dye
- The dye is pulled to create patterns and swirls and to bring variety to the design.
- After you have poured your dye mixture on the dyeing pan, gently lay a plastic wrap on the dyeing bed.
- Gently pull the plastic wrap to create the swirls and patterns. You can also move the dyeing pan or try in different directions to flow the dyeing mixture to get the desired pattern.
Blowtorch Your Dye Surface
A blowtorch is used immediately over the dyed surface to remove the air pockets and bubbles created on the surface. This step is conducted right after you’ve completed the design of your disc.
Make sure you do not linger in the flame, as Fleotrol is combustible, and you don’t want hazards.
Transfer your Design to Your Disc Golf Disc
Hold your golf disc carefully from the rim without folding your fingers around it.
Carefully and gently stamp your disc with the dyeing tray. Now this step needs your attention and care, pressing the disc hard into your dyeing pan will smudge the design and you will not get the design you wanted.
You can only press your disc if the surface is not covered with the dye. Even then, minimal pressure should be used, so that the design is not smeared.
Heat the Disc
The last and final step to dyeing your disc is heating it. Bring your disc under your heat lamp, and maintain a distance of 46cm between the plate and the lamp.
Heat your discs for four hours max. Heating it too much will not get you a brighter design, instead, the colours will turn brownish or blackish if the time exceeds too much.
Finish it Off By Washing it With Soap and Water
Finish your disc dyeing venture by washing away the unwanted fleotrol and dye.
Do NOT wash your dyed discs in sinks and wash basins, fleotrol can clog the drains.
Common Mistakes To Avoid
Beginners are prone to making mistakes, especially if they are not accustomed to colour schemes and creating designs.
Ending Up with the Browns
Novice dyers often end up creating browns when mixing colours. Do not mix the complimentary colours and you’ll not end up with browns
Reusing Dye Beds Several Times
Once you dye a disc, not all the dye from the dyeing bed is used, some are still left. Using the same dyeing beds, again and again, can smear your designs.
Over to You!
Dyeing disc golf discs is an exciting way of making disc golf more fun than ever. No expertise is required to dye your discs, however, you need some knowledge of the colours and colour schemes.
Using the right dyeing bed, dyeing, medium, and the right discs is the key to acing the dyeing game!