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Signmaking FAQ's

Signmaking FAQ's
Help & Advise - Signmaking Frequently discussed signmaking related topics



Mottling of coloured vinyl

This takes the form of a blotchy orange peel type appearance in the material and is caused by increased winding tension and therefore pressure put onto the plastizer in the manufacturing process, which has the effect that it gets progressively worse towards the roll core. Mottling is easily removed by gently heating the affected areas with a hairdryer or loosening the material on its core and leaving it near a radiator for an hour or so.

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Vinyl not releasing from its backing liner

It is sometimes easy to assume that the application tape is too low tack to remove the cut and weeded text / graphics however this rarely the case.

More often than not the reason for this problem comes down to excessive cutting blade pressure, which scores into the backing liner. The best way of checking is by peeling back some cut graphics and checking that the blade has only just marked the backing liner and that there is no scoring into the liner. Now check the reverse of the backing liner to check there are no visible impressions of the cut path coming through. If this is visible you need to reduce the cutting pressure incrementally and produce a number of test cuts to acheive the optimum pressure. Once this has been done the graphics should lift away easily.

The best method of removal instead of pulling the application tape away from the surface of the graphics is to turn the graphics over and remove the backing liner away from the adhesive side.

Please note that each type of material will require you to perform this test cut routine to ensure optimum cutting pressure. Thicker materials such as fluorescents and reflectives as well as some polyester films generally require greater pressure than standard vinyls while thinner materials such as cast vinyls will require less pressure. It may also be neccessary to change the cutting blade for one with a greater angle for sandblast vinyls, reflectives and fluorescents as well as flock materials.

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Vinyl peeling, cracking or edge lifting

The most important factor here is selecting the most suitable film for the job and remembering that although cast vinyl can be worked into channels and recesses as well as around compound curves using heat calenderd vinyl should applied onto these areas without putting the film under any stress.

It is important to promote the initial adhesive contact to ensure that graphics do not lift or peel. Surfaces should be cleaned, dried and wiped with Isopropyl alcohol before any graphics are applied. In cold conditions it is best to apply heat after application to further enhance the bond.

Flexible pvc such as the type used to make banners contain higher levels of plasticizer which migrate through the pvc over time and can cause any applied graphics to distort. It is important to use a flexible vinyl such the Banner Vinyls

When applying lettering to the sides of tankers and other vehicles transporting aggresive liquids such as fuel or solvents we advise that the edges should be sealed with a protective varnish.

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