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Thread: Question about double layer vinyl graphics

  1. #1
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    Question about double layer vinyl graphics

    I'm involved in a project where we are applying a black vinyl graphic. We then apply a slightly smaller gold vinyl graphic on top. The effect of course is a gold graphic with a black border. A cursory search of the internet leads me to believe that most graphic printers could do the alignment for us and we would just be applying one piece of vinyl that is already both thicknesses. Is the cost of such a double thick graphic that much more than two singles? Or am I completely misunderstanding the whole topic?

  2. #2
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    A shop with large format printer could print and cut it for you, but the cost will be more than your method, and not last as long as applying the black to the substrate, then the gold on top. This does not work well with less opaque top colors such as Primrose Yellow, which darkens when on black. Alignment is easy. What I have always done is to include two + marks spaced apart depending on the size of the graphics, in a heavy font like Arial Bold close to but above the graphic. Then include thm when you cut each color. After taping, cut the gold horizontally at the top edge of the + + and apply so that they are on top of the black + +. The peel the alignment marks off. After 10+ years of practice I usually didn't even bother with alignment marks, and could eyeball it with most graphics.



    Sammamish, WA

    Epilog Legend 24TT 45W, had a sign business for 17 years, now just doing laser work on the side.

    "One only needs two tools in life: WD-40 to make things go, and duct tape to make them stop." G. Weilacher

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  3. #3
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    Joe, thanks for the reply. Sorry to be so long in getting back to this, been dealing with a kidney stone. Let me see if I understand you. Our black layer consists of the peeloff backing, the black vinyl and the protective overlay. The gold layer is similiar. We have been applying the black to the substrate and then peeling off the protective overlay and then applying the gold on top of the black. Are you saying that the gold should be applied to the black first? Jim

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Mackell View Post
    Joe, thanks for the reply. Sorry to be so long in getting back to this, been dealing with a kidney stone. Let me see if I understand you. Our black layer consists of the peeloff backing, the black vinyl and the protective overlay. The gold layer is similiar. We have been applying the black to the substrate and then peeling off the protective overlay and then applying the gold on top of the black. Are you saying that the gold should be applied to the black first? Jim
    You can do it either way, on the substrate or off. If we have the job in house, we tend to do it on the substrate, but some times people order multi color items and we have to deliver the ready to apply decal to them, so we have to do it off the substrate.

    Now, we just print the colors, laminate, then cut it and we're done.

    Hope you managed with the kidney stone okay.
    Lasers : Trotec Speedy 300 75W, Trotec Speedy 300 80W, Galvo Fiber Laser 20W
    Printers : Mimaki UJF-6042 UV Flatbed Printer , HP Designjet L26500 61" Wide Format Latex Printer, Summa S140-T 48" Vinyl Plotter
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    Real name Steve but that name was taken on the forum. Used Middle name. Call me Steve or Scott, doesn't matter.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Shepherd View Post
    Now, we just print the colors, laminate, then cut it and we're done.
    Showoff
    Hi-Tec Designs, LLC -- Owner (and self-proclaimed LED guru )

    Trotec 80W Speedy 300 laser w/everything
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Shepherd View Post
    You can do it either way, on the substrate or off. If we have the job in house, we tend to do it on the substrate, but some times people order multi color items and we have to deliver the ready to apply decal to them, so we have to do it off the substrate. Now, we just print the colors, laminate, then cut it and we're done. Hope you managed with the kidney stone okay.
    Scott, thanks for the reply. Since this is something entirely new to me I want to be sure I understand what you mean. When you say, "Now, we just print the colors, laminate, then cut it and we're done." does that mean you (as the printer) are applying color 2 on top of color 1 and then I (the ultimate customer who is dealing with the substrate) apply the resulting double thick decal? Kidney stones can be fun if you're fond of ER visits, IV drugs and lasers being inserted into places you shudder to think about! But all seems to be well now. Jim

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Mackell View Post
    Scott, thanks for the reply. Since this is something entirely new to me I want to be sure I understand what you mean. When you say, "Now, we just print the colors, laminate, then cut it and we're done." does that mean you (as the printer) are applying color 2 on top of color 1 and then I (the ultimate customer who is dealing with the substrate) apply the resulting double thick decal? Kidney stones can be fun if you're fond of ER visits, IV drugs and lasers being inserted into places you shudder to think about! But all seems to be well now. Jim
    Jim, all colors are printed on a single layer of print receptive white vinyl. Then you run it through a laminator which puts a clear, protective coating over the entire sheet. Next it goes to the plotter, where the individual shapes are cut out, all at one time. You just remove all the waste that's not part of your graphic and you're all set.

    As you can see, the print has registration marks and a bar code. The plotter reads those and knows where to cut. It cuts out around all the places you want cut.

    Here's something coming off the printer and then the end result :

    RVA Sheet.jpgRVA.jpg

    p.s. I feel your pain. Did the kidney stone thing 2 months ago. Forget water boarding people for info, just give them a kidney stone, they'll talk
    Last edited by Scott Shepherd; 07-12-2014 at 2:07 PM.
    Lasers : Trotec Speedy 300 75W, Trotec Speedy 300 80W, Galvo Fiber Laser 20W
    Printers : Mimaki UJF-6042 UV Flatbed Printer , HP Designjet L26500 61" Wide Format Latex Printer, Summa S140-T 48" Vinyl Plotter
    Router : ShopBot 48" x 96" CNC Router Rotary Engravers : (2) Xenetech XOT 16 x 25 Rotary Engravers

    Real name Steve but that name was taken on the forum. Used Middle name. Call me Steve or Scott, doesn't matter.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Mackell View Post
    Scott, thanks for the reply. Since this is something entirely new to me I want to be sure I understand what you mean. When you say, "Now, we just print the colors, laminate, then cut it and we're done." does that mean you (as the printer) are applying color 2 on top of color 1 and then I (the ultimate customer who is dealing with the substrate) apply the resulting double thick decal? Kidney stones can be fun if you're fond of ER visits, IV drugs and lasers being inserted into places you shudder to think about! But all seems to be well now. Jim
    Steve has recently taken possession of a new toy in his shop which allows him to do decals in a print-on-demand fashion(think giant inkjet)... us mere mortals must layer single-color sheets.
    Hi-Tec Designs, LLC -- Owner (and self-proclaimed LED guru )

    Trotec 80W Speedy 300 laser w/everything
    CAMaster Stinger CNC (25" x 36" x 5")
    USCutter 24" LaserPoint Vinyl Cutter
    Jet JWBS-18QT-3 18", 3HP bandsaw
    Robust Beauty 25"x52" wood lathe w/everything
    Jet BD-920W 9"x20" metal lathe
    Delta 18-900L 18" drill press

    Flame Polisher (ooooh, FIRE!)
    Freeware: InkScape, Paint.NET, DoubleCAD XT
    Paidware: Wacom Intuos4 (Large), CorelDRAW X5

  9. #9
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    Scott, Dan and Joe, thank you all for taking the time to educate me.
    - - - - - - - - - - - - -
    Jim Mackell
    Arundel, ME

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Mackell View Post
    Are you saying that the gold should be applied to the black first? Jim
    No, I recommend they way you are doing it. It's easier to apply it without air bubbles if both are applied to the substrate.



    Sammamish, WA

    Epilog Legend 24TT 45W, had a sign business for 17 years, now just doing laser work on the side.

    "One only needs two tools in life: WD-40 to make things go, and duct tape to make them stop." G. Weilacher

    "The handyman's secret weapon - Duct Tape" R. Green

  11. #11
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    I too had a kidney stone, 22 years ago and I remember it well. There is no pain that can compare, including ruptured appendix which I have also had.



    Sammamish, WA

    Epilog Legend 24TT 45W, had a sign business for 17 years, now just doing laser work on the side.

    "One only needs two tools in life: WD-40 to make things go, and duct tape to make them stop." G. Weilacher

    "The handyman's secret weapon - Duct Tape" R. Green

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