Installing New Graphics or Backgrounds
Since everybodyís at home, bored, trying to put on their new
graphics, I thought Iíd write some tips. First, let me explain something about
graphic companies. The guy who runs Factory FX is the guy who used to run
N-style. N-style uses so much 3M product they now have their own logo on the
back. They also have a guarantee that their numbers will stay stuck. Iím not
sticking up for one company or another, these are just the facts I know. One
Industries was started by Danny Dobey, who used to do phone sales at JT racing. 100% was the first company to have pre-printed backgrounds for factory Honda. Now there are lots of different companies that do that. Some of these
pre-printed backgrounds are very difficult to install. Graphics and backgrounds
wonít stick if you donít follow the right steps.
1. Make sure your plastic is not cold - that is very important.
2. Wash your hands, so when you touch the back of your sticker, no dirt will be left behind.
3. If your plastic is new, lightly scuff the area with fine steel wool or Scotchbrite pad. (SOS pad will also work.)
4. This is the most important step in successful graphic or background application: prepare the area where you are going to install the sticker. Clean the area with contact cleaner, Windex or rubbing alcohol. The oil on the plastic will not allow the glue on the sticker to stick to the plastic. This includes the oil from your hands. So, if you touch you plastic clean the spot you touched.
5. Take your time!!! Align your sticker to the place you are going to install it. Donít just peel off the all of the backing at once. Try just peeling off a little at a time. Start small and work your way to the whole thing. **NOTE** Press lightly while installing the graphic. A lot of companies use pressure sensitive adhesive. So make sure you like what you see before you press too hard.
6. Step number five will help eliminate the chance of air bubbles, but if you do get an air bubble, use a small needle and prick the side of the bubble and work the air out of the bubble. If you do it right,. nobody will ever know.
7. After installing your graphics you need to let them sit for at least 24 hours prior to riding with them. This allows you to check for spots that didnít stick and allows the glue to set up.
8. If you have any areas that didnít stick or you had a problem with the graphic following the curve of the plastic, use a heat gun or hair dryer to heat up the vinyl. It will allow you to stretch and mold into these places. Be careful not to over heat the vinyl, it will melt or burn. It could get ugly. So take your time!!!! I hope these tips will help everybody in the quest of a good looking race bike.
Thank you for all the support.
Support your local shop, so they can support you and the sport you love.