Painting on Metal Panels


In this article I will share with you what I learned from master painters, Sal Cabrera and Bill Riedel, as well as explain the step-by-step process that I used in painting on a metal panel. For this story, I will be painting a cow skull, which is a popular artistic motif in the world of automotive artists and pinstripers. Read more

How to Dome Vinyl Graphics


Because metalized vinyl's exude an opulent aura, these eye-catching films are a popular choice in the design and manufacture of OEM emblems and trim. What’s more, their attractive and luxurious appeal complements the appearance of high-ticket products, such as RV vehicles and marine craft. Read more

Overlaying VinylEfx® with Oracal Transparent Films


The colored films in the RTape Decorative Series VinylEfx® films are absolutely beautiful. The trouble is the dyes used in manufacturing the different hues are not durable outside. Dyes never are. So what do you do if you want a patterned metalized vinyl in blue or red or green Read more

Testing for Outgassing


Outgassing refers to the release of a gas from some type of material. Natural materials, such as plywood, can outgas vapors as the glues used in its manufacturing cure. Just about any synthetic substance will outgas, too. The list of synthetic materials includes paint, polycarbonate and fiberglass. Read more

Adhesion to Powder Coated Paints


Adhesion failures of pressure sensitive materials, such as labels, decorative films, foam tapes and graphic panels, to powder coated substrates are quite common. Just as there are several reasons for these failures, there are several steps that the fabricator can take to avoid these problems. Read more

HotMask® Polyester Transfer Tapes


To transfer a print and cut heat transfer applique from its carrier to the garment you should use a polyester HotMask® transfer tape. While many shop owners have used paper application tape to transfer printed heat transfer appliques, you are much better off using the right product for the application. Read more

Tips on Buying a Digital Printer


When you are buying any digital printer, here are some things that you should consider, especially if you are a first time buyer............................. Read more

Using SuperFrog's Frog Juice


For years I have recommended edge sealing the RTape VinylEfx® films with SuperFrog’s Frog Juice, which is an acrylic enamel automotive grade clear coat. While it is great for protecting vinyl graphics, you can also use it for other applications, such as clear coating digital prints and even gold leaf. Read more

Color Trends


Popularity of colors among designers and consumers can vary from year to year. To keep pace with color trends, vinyl film manufacturers and paint companies try to gauge changes in the marketplace. Colors from the world of fashion and interior décor have impacted color selection in the automotive market and in corporate graphics. Read more

Why Use a Heavyweight Paper Application Tape


When I started in the vinyl graphics industry more than thirty years ago, there was no such thing as lighter standard weight application tape that is generally used in the sign industry. The only tapes that were used were the heavyweight premium grade premasks. Today many sign makers have never even used these premium grade tapes. They don’t know what they are missing. Read more

Laminating Application Tape and HotMask


How you apply an application tape to a vinyl graphic or a HotMask™ transfer tape to a printed heat transfer applique can affect the appearance of the finished product. If you get wrinkles or bubbles in the paper application tape, I can just about guarantee that you will get wrinkles and bubbles in the applied vinyl. Read more

Shop Saftey Plan


In some cases, your employees will not recognize the hazards in your shop or on the jobsite. Your responsibility is to educate your people about these hazards, such as those posed by contact with solvents or other hazardous materials. If your employees are exposed to hazardous fumes, vapors, dusts, etc. over OSHA's permissible exposure limits (as stated on the MSDS), you must take the following steps............. Read more

Selecting the Right Premask for the Job


As a leading manufacturer of premasks, application tape and surface protection maskings, RTape has developed several products for screen print and digital print applications. The four premasks and prespacing tapes listed below are in stock and are available in the most commonly used roll widths. Read more

Arlon's DPF 8000


Many shops, which have printed wall murals in which the ink bleeds to the edge of the panel, have experienced edge curl issues with a variety of vinyl films. For permanent wall graphics applications, I would consider using Arlon’s DPF 8000 film. DPF 8000 is a 3.5 mil (90 micron) satin white calendered vinyl, designed for long term indoor and outdoor applications. It features an aggressive, permanent pressure-sensitive adhesive that sticks to those “hard-to-stick-to” surfaces.
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