When I am not dancing, I am sewing. Its my jam. I tend to shy away from other craft projects. Secretly, I have always wished I could do craft, and be really good at it. I have always admired people who can make things from paper, or paint, or decorate useful objects. So when I was asked if I was interested in reviewing the HTVRont Auto Tumbler Heat Press, I thought “Why not! How hard can it be? The machine does it all for you anyway!” And so began four weeks of anxiety …


The machine

The HTVRont Auto Tumbler Heat Press is sleek and compact, comes in white or teal, and is surprisingly light. It has a user-friendly interface making it accessible even for beginners like me. When plugged in and powered on at the wall, the power button on the machine will flash on and off until you press it to start. The buttons are very easy to use. Next to the power on button, there are two buttons – one for temperature and one for time. On the other side of the LED display screen there are two more buttons used to adjust (up or down) the temperature and time. The temperature goes up to 390 degrees Fahrenheit (you’ll need to convert from Celsius) and the time goes up to 600 seconds. On the far right of the machine, there is a start/stop button that glows red in the stop function and turns green when started. The machine can accommodate straight sided mugs and tumblers, so be sure to check when you are purchasing tumblers for printing that they are not tapered at the bottom. As far as accessibility goes, the machine is easy to navigate.

Clean, clear user interface. Buttons are easy to use, a good size, and LED screen is easy to read.



Included with the machine are a pair of heat resistant gloves, a roll of heat resistant tape, as well as an instruction booklet. I found the gloves to be just a little too small, but they did the job. The instruction booklet was very light on for information, and this was where my anxiety started!

Heat press, gloves, heat resistant tape and instruction manual.


Using the HTVRont Auto Tumbler Heat Press & stuff the instruction booklet doesn’t tell you!

I have friends with other machines that press images and text on to clothing, so I assumed that I could simply buy the materials needed for this craft project. Oh how wrong I was! The instruction booklet only tells you how to operate the Auto Tumbler Heat Press, it doesn’t tell you what you need for your project. After shopping around in bricks and mortar craft stores it became apparent that I needed more information on the materials I needed to actually start creating. I availed myself of YouTube tutorials and joined various Facebook HTVRont Auto Tumbler Heat Press groups and found them to be a veritable font of knowledge.

Firstly, I discovered that you cannot simply print in colour from a normal printer. You will need to use sublimation ink for the images you want to have transferred to the tumbler. After more research I discovered that you cannot put sublimation ink into any old printer. You can hack an Epson Ecotank printer or you will need to purchase a printer designed to work with sublimation ink. You also need to use sublimation paper. You cannot use ordinary copy paper. I didn’t want to invest that heavily into a craft project that may or may not be to my liking, so my product testing stalled at this point.

After more research I discovered that you can email images to companies who specialise in printing in sublimation ink, and I quickly availed myself of that service. It’ll cost you around $20 for an A3 sized sheet with multiple images.

Next I found out that you cannot print onto any old tumbler – I needed to purchase sublimation blank tumblers. More fruitless craft store searching led me to more online purchasing. I was able to grab two 20 oz sublimation blank tumblers for $24 plus postage. HTVRont sell sublimation blanks too if you want to stay within brand.


The making

You will need to know the measurements of the tumbler you want to print on. This is important as you need to size your image appropriately so it fits the tumbler for printing. You can purchase images online – I helped myself to free images for this review – save the image to a pdf and send to your printer service.

Now wrap the printed image around your tumbler. This is where the heat resistant tape comes in. Ensure that the image is taped along the length of the paper, and around the mouth and base of the tumbler securely.

Tumbler wrapped with sublimation image, and taped along length and at mouth and base of tumbler.


I then placed the image wrapped tumbler inside a sheet of butchers paper to enable getting it into and out of the very hot machine with ease. Even with the gloves on it gets really very hot! The machine closes around the tumbler automatically, and opens when finished, so at this point there is nothing that I need to do.

Set the timer and heat setting according to the instruction manual. I noticed that on the tutorials and in the online group chats people adjusted these times and heat settings until they found what worked for them. Some crafters also turned the tumblers halfway during the time, and reported that it gave them better coverage. I only had two tumblers so didn’t have opportunity to experiment with heat and time settings. I did experiment with taping methods though.


The results

The first tumbler I did wasn’t too bad. Around the mouth and the base of the tumbler there was some ‘ghosting’ (image not fully developed/faded in appearance), so I tried taping the image to the tumbler differently for the second try. Unfortunately the results weren’t much better. Where the image did take well to the tumbler, the colours were vibrant and glossy.

This is where it became apparent to me that this type of craft project is expensive. Whilst the two tumblers I did were satisfactory, I wouldn’t be comfortable giving them as gifts as they were not perfect, and they certainly couldn’t be sold commercially with the obvious image ‘ghosting’. I’d need to experiment many more times until I hit upon the right taping method and heating & timing settings until I got a perfect print. At $12 a tumbler that experimentation begins to add up.


‘Ghosting’ apparent around the mouth and the base of the tumbler.

Final thoughts

Once I figured out the materials and resources I needed to undertake a sublimation project, using the machine was fairly straightforward. If you were a confident crafter I imagine you’d get immense pleasure out of using the HTVRont Auto Tumbler Heat Press – especially if you weren’t afraid to experiment until you got the results you desired. The machine is a good size which I imagine would make for easy storage in your craft room. Finally, now that I know where to source resources online, accessing things for your projects is quite simple. There is a great deal of variety in images for printing, and finding tumblers, mugs or glass jars to sublimate is quick and easy. You can purchase the HTVRont Auto Tumber Heat Press from online for $389. A solid investment if you are a hard core crafter! For me though … I think I’ll stick with sewing!

DRN would like to thank HTVRont for providing the review unit.


HTVRont Auto Tumbler Heat Press, 2 x 20 oz sublimation tumblers, sublimation prints, heat gloves and heat resistant tape, instruction manual.


Product specifications


  • 13*11*6.3in (328*278*160mm)


  • Weight:9.48lbs (4.3kg)
  • Input Voltage:220V~50Hz/120~60Hz
  • Power Consumption: 600W


  • Auto Tumbler Heat Press x1
  • Heat-resistant Gloves x1 pair
  • Heat-resistant Tape x1 roll