Sign & Digital Graphics

November '17

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46 • November 2017 • S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S WRAPS DIGITAL GRAPHICS Sample Print Once we've received final approval from the customer we like to do a sample print, on our wrap media, for the cus- tomer to approve prior to production. This step can be skipped if the customer has ordered a wrap before, but any other wrap projects should have a sample print for the customer to sign off on. On our checklist we also note when the customer was contacted to come in to approve the sample print. Once they do come in we make a note of that date as well. Again this keeps track of the timing of the customer response. Install Calendar Sometimes our wrap job installations aren't scheduled until they're further along in the production process, but we try to get them scheduled once the customer approves the sample print. We know that output, drying time and pro- duction will typically take three days so we'll schedule our vehicles accordingly. We use Google Calendar for our scheduling so that it can be accessed from any computer. A customer can be added to the calendar at the front counter or from any desk and it updates the calendar for everyone. This eliminates overbook- ing wraps on any particular day. We use this same calendar to track when a staff member will be out of the office on another install, on vacation or at another appointment as well so this can be taken into account while scheduling. Using an online calendar also allows us to log in from home if we need access to the schedule after hours. Print Setup In our shop the person designing the wrap also sets up the approved artwork for output. Every wrap is unique and there are different obstacles and approaches that will ensure the wrap can be installed quicker and with better results. The panel setup will completely change how the installers apply the graphics. If it's a box truck we'll typically do vertical panels. If it's a smaller car or the bed of a pickup truck we'll typically do one large horizontal panel. If we're trying to go as seamless as possible then we manually setup each panel to fall over existing body lines that we can trim and tuck to. It's important that designers under- stand the installation process so that they're able to anticipate the best way to setup the wrap panels for the most effi- cient install. Unless it's a straightforward install, the designer should meet with an installer to gather their thoughts on the panel setup until they're able to figure it out on their own. Output In our shop our setup panels are RIPed through Roland VersaWorks Dual. We try to import and RIP all the panels in a job prior to printing the first panel. We find that having the panels already RIPed makes the output more efficient, elimi- nating any cool down and re-heating of the printer between panels. We always print an entire side of a vehicle on the same day to avoid any pos- sible color shift from one day to the next. Our RIP software has an estimated print time so we're able to monitor how long each panel will take to print and we can plan accordingly. Once the panels have finished print- ing we take the roll of printed media and hang it on a drying rack. We use vinyl wall racks so that the printed rolls can hang to dry and we don't have to worry about them being knocked over or unrolling while standing up to dry. Printed media should dry a full 24 hours before lamination. On some installs we're able to setup our print panels within our rip software. By pre-ripping multiple files, and tracking print times, we make sure that we're printing a complete side on the same day.

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