Sign & Digital Graphics

April '18

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42 • April 2018 • S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S WRAPS DIGITAL GRAPHICS Pre-Wrap Pre-Planning Time-saving tips for better wrap installations Charity Jackson is co-owner of Visual Horizons Custom Signs based in Modesto, California. She has been in business since 1995, and has worked in the sign industry for more than 25 years. You can visit her website at www.vhsigns.com. B Y C H A R I T Y J A C K S O N Let's Talk Shop me plan the layout and installation back in the computer design stage. This pre-planning saves a lot of time when we actually apply the graphics to the vehicle. Templates We frequently get phone calls from people looking for a rough quote on a wrap. Often with these calls we're working off nothing more than the template for the vehicle until they can bring the vehicle to us. We recently had a customer that we'd previously wrapped a fleet of vehicles for, who was adding two box trucks to their fleet. The company designer sent us vector artwork laid out on a template for the first box truck. We pulled up the same template from Art Station Vehicle Templates and scaled it to size. Using the template we determined the total square footage and gave the customer a quote to get us started. Once they approved the estimate, it was time for us to see the actual box truck to double check measurements, obstacles and the con- dition of the paint. The company sent us photos of the truck for reference before bringing the truck in. At this point we found out there was a door on the passenger side of the box as well as a vent. The rear roll-up door also had a lift gate that blocked the bottom third of the rear graphics. The designer hadn't been told about these obstacles before designing on the template. This was a great example of why it's so important to see a vehicle prior to starting production. Inspection When a vehicle comes in for an inspection we're looking at the condi- tion of the paint and any obstacles that may affect the wrap. We try to print out either photos of the vehicle or a vehicle template before the customer comes in. On these print outs we note the paint condition, if there is any flaking paint or chalky finish, and if there is any rust or other damage that may affect the graphics. T here are so many little things during the wrap installation process that can make your install go faster, with better results. Experience, proper technique and efficient tools all help your actual hands-on installation job go more smoothly. But often the most time-saving steps come well before the vinyl is even printed. Since I'm involved in both the design and installation of many of our wraps, I have a good idea of how the graphics are going to go onto the vehicle. My hands-on experience helps

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