How do you attach a vinyl film to a car?
If you ever have a desire to add personality to your car, and you do not have enough money for airbrushing, a vinyl film can help.
If you ever have a desire to add individuality to your car, and you do not have enough money for airbrushing, a vinyl film can help. It can be used to change a car’s color or decorate the body with images. In addition, the vinyl film provides additional protection for the paint coating.
Types of vinyl films
According to the method of manufacture:
- Calandized – a film for quick wrapping of the car. It is named due to the manufacturing technology in a calendering machine, where special rollers (calandas) transform the raw material into the desired material. The thickness of such film is 70 microns and more, on order it is made thinner – from 55 microns. The process of making such a film resembles making pizza dough – when heated it is elastic and soft, easily stretched, but in the end it shrinks to its original size. Therefore, for gluing the whole car, especially in the folds, this material is not suitable. The calandized film is used for sticking patterns and advertising slogans for 2-3 years. Then the film is replaced, it is removed without effort.
- Cast films are more suitable for complete car wrapping. The cast films are more elastic and have minimal shrinkage even at high temperatures. The standard thickness of this film is 50-65 microns, but there are also 35 microns and 80 microns. The film fits well to the bends of the body, so it looks like a “second skin” of the car. The lifetime of a cast film is five-six years, but it is more expensive than the Kalandized one.
As for their interaction with the light:
- Reflective – reflects the outside light of street lamps, headlights, shop windows and other light sources due to the alkyd polymer and glass microbeads as a part of the reflective layer. Such a film is heavier than the ordinary vinyl one. It is used for road signs and advertising structures.
- Light accumulating – it glows in the dark due to luminescence effect. Even with repeated use the material does not lose its phosphorescent properties.
By color texture:
- Glossy – iridescent color scheme with glitter;
- Matte – presented in different color tones, no glitter, looks very prestigious and elegant;
- Transparent – anti-gravel film without colors and shades, designed to protect the car paintwork;
- Chameleon – the film shimmering depending on the angle of view;
- Graphic – a film with graphic patterns;
- Texture – a film that resembles the texture of materials (wood, gold, leather, this includes carbon).
The choice of “vinyl” on the car
Also, when choosing a vinyl film, pay attention to the adhesive backing. Cheap film has a low-quality adhesive on it. The fast adhesiveness of the film creates inconvenience in the fact that you need to apply it correctly at once, because you can not peel and move it, the film will be already spoiled. Manufacturers have eliminated this problem by using a special adhesive composition on the film in microcapsules. To finally stick the film, you need to apply light pressure on it, the capsule bursts and glues the film to the surface.
Film gluing on the car
If you’ve seen the videos or watched the film on your car, you’ll think it’s easy. In fact, if you are inexperienced, it is risky to take on this job, you will ruin more than one piece of film. But if you are determined, then the procedure is as follows:
- Choose a well-lit room, clean and draught-free, so that no dust or lint gets under the film and no bubbles form.
- Wash the car and degrease and dry the place for the film
- Prepare the tools (office knife, dry rags, squeegee, sprayer, which is mixed with water and detergent, masking tape and industrial hair dryer, in a pinch an ordinary one will do).
- Determine the exact location of the film on the body, with the help of masking tape make marks.
- Then comes the stage of removing the white base, the main thing is not to stick the film between each other, so you will need an assistant.
- Now spray the place with soapy water, it will help to correct the irregularities and get rid of the air under the film.
- Apply the film neatly to the prepared place with a rubber mallet, while drying and heating with a hair dryer, just do not overheat. Motions are made as when gluing wallpaper – from the middle to the edges. At this stage there may be folds, try to smooth them out lightly, without turning off the hair dryer.
- Dry the film with still hot air and leave it for 10-15 minutes. After that, remove the mounting film at a sharp angle.
- Use a felt rake to go over the surface of the film, kicking out any soapy water and bubbles.
- The last step is to carefully wipe it with a rag or dry it with a hair dryer.
After all the procedures, leave your car to “rest” in a warm place for 24 hours and only then drive it. If you would like to wrap the whole car, and not just a part of it, it is better to take help from specialists.
Useful Tips for Decorating with Film:
- Wash your car after wrapping in a week, not earlier;
- Use non-abrasive detergents;
- Do not wash your car with a hose, because the jet can cut the film;
- Do not visit the car washes with full automatic (with big brushes), such brushes catch the edges of the film.
If you value the beauty of your car, following the recommendations, the vinyl film will serve for a long time, emphasizing the individuality of the car and protecting its paintwork from external influences.
How to stick vinyl? Vinyl wrapping instructions
Vinyl wrapping on the car or its parts, it is not difficult, but it requires attentiveness and persistence, so we recommend you to read this manual till the end!
So! You have bought the long-awaited carbon or matte film to spruce up your baby and took a friend or two, in general, you decided to begin.
But first, a word of caution!
— Do not let the backing of the film get wet, otherwise there will be problems with its removal. — Don’t heat the film with a hair dryer for too long, or it will just melt.
Where do I glue carbon fiber?
– If you are gluing vinyl on the street, take into account a couple of important factors: the weather should be windy (there could be many different foreign objects under the film), the temperature should be at least +20C (this is the minimum temperature recommended by the manufacturer when installing the film on the car. At lower temperatures the film may just not stick or fall off after a while. A garage or an enclosed space is an optimal place with a temperature of +20C or higher.
Things you need when applying the film:
The film itself. A clean, shiny washed and degreased car. An assistant, if the film is large. A dry rag. A box cutter. Sprayer with water and detergent added in proportion of 1:10 (FERY is the best). – only if you glue the film without channels! An industrial hair dryer, or in a pinch a regular hair dryer. Painting tape.
So, let’s start gluing:
The following describes how to glue vinyl for beginners.
So, your car is clean and shiny! Wipe the intended place of application with a weak solution of degreasing agent, such as degreaser or white spirit. Having determined the exact location of the vinyl film, using assistants, apply, without taking off the film and without tearing off the assembly, adjust the film to the place of gluing, make appropriate marks of “geographical location” on the car film with masking tape. It is desirable to pay more attention to this stage of measuring. So, measure, put, twist, in general choose the optimal place for the future location of vinyl. Also keep in mind that moldings and irregularities in the design can make it very difficult! Now carefully remove the backing (white paper). It is easier to do this on a flat surface with helpers. Take care that in the process of separation, the film does not miraculously stick to itself! You should end up with a film with an adhesive backing on it. FOR FILM WITHOUT CHANNELS: Next, take a sprayer and water the place of gluing. How much you ask, – yes as much as you want, but so that every mm of the surface was treated with a soapy solution. PLAIN WATER IS NOT GOOD! Soapy water allows you to adjust the location of the sticker and get rid of air bubbles under the vinyl! By the way, remember! Do not get the base (white paper) wet, or you’ll have trouble separating it from the sticker itself! Item 3 and 4 are interchangeable. The main thing that before you go to the next point, the place for pasting the car was well sprayed with a soapy solution! THE MOST IMPORTANT POINT! Put the sticker on the car, evenly press it with a rubber mallet, drying and heating with a hairdryer. START IN THE MIDDLE TOWARD THE EDGES. If there are any surface irregularities or moldings, don’t try to roll the whole film at once. Just roll the central part of the film, which goes along the flat spot, leaving the edges of the film not rolled. The rest of the film can be rolled later, from the middle of the film to the edges, by heating and stretching the film with a hair dryer, not letting bubbles and folds form. If a crease forms, you can carefully peel back that part of the vinyl and roll it again by heating the film with a hair dryer, thus getting rid of the crease. At the transitions and ribs, the film may be stretched tight and not apply well. In this case, heat the film a little more and stretch it out on the surface. Finally you have managed to roll the whole surface! Congratulations! Now blow-dry everything with a hair dryer and leave it for about 15 minutes. FOR FILM WITHOUT CHANNELS: Once you have the vinyl on the machine, take the felt blade and carefully go over the entire surface of the film again, kicking out any remaining soapy water and bubbles. If for some reason a few bubbles remain, you can get rid of them by heating with a hair dryer, piercing with a needle and pressing against the car. Smaller bubbles will disappear on their own after drying for a couple of weeks. And at the end cut off all the excess of the film, and the edges, by heating with a hair dryer, bending, glue. ALL! Now you have to wipe the place gently with a rag or just dry it with a hair dryer. Now you have to leave the car for 24 hours to “cure” everything. After 24 hours, check the entire surface of the film, and if necessary, go over it again with a felt trowel. THEN IT IS NOT RECOMMENDED TO WASH THE CAR WITHIN A WEEK. There is also a “dry” method of applying the film to the car body, but it is not fundamentally different from the “wet” method, except that a soapy solution is not applied.Removing the film from the surface of the body. Remove the sticker with a hair dryer at a sharp angle. Remains of the adhesive are washed off with white spirit.