Vehicle signage is prepared, printed, and cut on the plotter machine if necessary, before being sent to the installation team. Graphics are provided on a backing paper and covered by a layer of application tape.
The first step is to meticulously clean the vehicle to remove all dust, grime, wax or oil, before leaving the vehicle to dry thoroughly.
The following step is to correctly position the graphic. The installer needs to measure up the spacing according to the plans provided by the designer and reposition the graphic slightly if necessary. Each different vehicle will need custom adjustments made and for this reason the graphics are temporarily held onto the vehicle by magnets to keep them in place but also allow for modification.
Once a final position is decided upon, the graphics can be taped into place.
Ideally decals should be applied indoors at a temperature ranging between 10-32 degrees Celsius (with an optimum temperature of 20-25 degrees.). Too hot and the vinyl sticker can be too pliable, resulting in overly-sticky, stretched letters and forms. Alternatively, too cold, could mean that the vinyl membrane is not stretchy enough or could have adhesion issues.
The vinyl application direction must be decided upon in advance, depending on the size, form and placement. The backing paper is removed, bit by bit, and a squeegee is used to secure the sticker to the substrate. Care must be taken to ensure all bubbles are removed from each form and that no part of the sticker hits the substrate prematurely.
Once the decal is securely attached, the application tape can be removed. The Installer must be careful not to remove the newly placed image in the process.
If the image or text runs over two panels, the vinyl can be cut once the entire graphic has been placed. In this case the vinyl should be cut flush with the edge of each panel which will mean making two careful incisions in either side, taking extreme care not to cut or damage the vehicle.