Boat Name Application
Applying your vinyl boat name is simple if you follow some basic guidelines. All surfaces must be clean and dust free, and application must be at a minimum temperature of 5 C.
Painted surfaces should be allowed to dry for at least 5 days after painting, as paint continues to give off solvents whilst hardening, which can become trapped under the vinyl causing bubbling. The vinyl is sandwiched between a paper layer of transfer tape and a wax layer of backing. When it arrives, flatten it out in a warm room.
Have the following items handy:
- Mild soapy water in a spray bottle or mister (1 or 2 drops in a pint of water)
- A piece of hard plastic (‘squeegee’ can be supplied)
- Masking tape
- Tape measure
- Pair of scissors
Now apply your vinyl:
- To get the vinyl straight, start with a piece of the tape on one corner and place the graphics (with the backing still on) where you think it should go. Bring the other top corner into position and secure it with another piece of tape. Use a tape measure to make sure it is level. Stand back and take a moment to look at it’s position, change it now if necessary. Double check measurements, and be certain this is exactly where you want the graphics to be.
- ‘Hinge’ the graphic along the top straight edge with a long piece of tape (half on the top transfer paper and half on the substrate (eg boat surface).
- If the graphic is very long, you may want to cut it up between the letters, so you are working on a smaller section at a time. After making cuts, you can flip back the graphic to remove each section of wax paper, and everything else stays in place.
- Spray a little of the soapy water solution on the surface to which the vinyl is to be applied. Only use a little. Peel back the backing paper, and expose the sticky side of the graphic.
- Holding the free edge tautly, just off the surface, work the squeegee firmly over the surface, working from the ‘hinge’ downwards, starting in the centre and working out towards the edges. If you have cut the graphic into sections, repeat until all the vinyl is firmly in position. Give the vinyl another firm smoothing with the squeegee.
- Finish by removing the masking tape, then, after leaving for at least 30 minutes, peel back the transfer tape very slowly, close to the surface of the lettering. If necessary, assist the lettering to stay in place with the squeegee. Press out any obvious water, small water bubbles will evaporate away over the next few days.
You can always try, particularly if you have done this before, to apply ‘dry’ following the above steps. You will need to be more confident with the positioning of the graphic – there is no room for error, and you risk trapping air bubbles.
However, the dry method is quicker, and results in a firmer initial bonding of the graphics.
NB Any bubbles, dry or wet application, can be removed by piercing with a pin. Ease out the air/water and smooth again carefully with the edge of the squeegee.