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Alumigraphics Install Trick

Discussion in 'Installation Equipment & Techniques' started by TeamOutlaw, Aug 9, 2019.

  1. TeamOutlaw

    TeamOutlaw Member

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    We are about to install our 2nd large (14'H x 50'W) block wall mural at the local university football stadium utilizing the Alumigraphics product. Last year I was AMAZED at how well this film prints / installs / looks! However...pushing the film into EVERY SINGLE mortar line was both tedious, difficult and somewhat painful on the fingers.

    We found that using the rubber coated handle end of a rubber roller tool fit the mortar lines perfectly...but after a few hours of running mortar lines the rubber would eventually wear off and then the aluminum handle would begin to scratch the film.

    Long story short...we're trying to find a a new trick / tool for running mortar lines before we embark on this project again. Anyone encountered this and found a good solution!? TIA
     

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    Last edited: Aug 9, 2019
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  2. tim99

    tim99 Member

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    we use the roam roller off an old weight lifting set on the end of a small paint roller. seems to work well for us and hasn't worn out. https://www.walmart.com/ip/CAP-PU-Foam-Roller-set-Replacement-Parts-for-Exercise-Machine/834862739?wmlspartner=wlpa&selectedSellerId=14328&adid=22222222227143092896&wl0=&wl1=g&wl2=c&wl3=253415341580&wl4=pla-415975916773&wl5=9029098&wl6=&wl7=&wl8=&wl9=pla&wl10=118786940&wl11=online&wl12=834862739&veh=sem
    if there is a gym around you they will probably give you some old ones. you got to push kinda hard to get it in the small lines but its better than using fingers.
     
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  3. fozzie

    fozzie Member

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    have used alumagraphics and really like it. nothing as big as yours. tim99 thanks for advice.

    question? do you do anything to seal the edges. alumagraphics is easy to pick at and lift. some of our clients have had issues with the public
    picking at and lifting the edges.
     
  4. TeamOutlaw

    TeamOutlaw Member

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    You use that roller to apply the film...or to push the indented mortar lines in!?

    We are looking for a "tool" that will fit in the actual mortar lines to push them in. A finger fits perfectly...but after HOURS of doing that you have no skin left! Lol Applying to the face of the brick only requires a squeegee and rubber roller...the MORTAR lines are the pain!
     
  5. TeamOutlaw

    TeamOutlaw Member

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    We don't seal the edges. Mainly because so far the graphics have been in areas with limited public access. And, if adhered properly...it takes some picking to get an edge loose so hasn't been a concern thus far
     
  6. flyplainsdrifta

    flyplainsdrifta Active Member

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    could use some electrical conduit wrapped in like foam or somethin? im just sitting here looking at my fingers thinking what could work. or just coil a piece of rigid wrapped 3/8 thick wire and just roll it in
     
  7. MI Bearcat

    MI Bearcat Member

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    I believe Yellow Tools has a foam roller that works. At a conference I attended, 3M had a demonstration applying outdoor graphics to brick and they were using a roller that fit into the mortar lines along with a heat gun.
     
  8. tim99

    tim99 Member

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    we just use that to push the material into the lines we have 2 of them one pretty wide and we cut the other one smaller for thinner lines. its pretty easy to cut with a razor blade to the width your looking for
     
  9. equippaint

    equippaint Very Active Member

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    What about a caulking tool like they sell at home depot?
     
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  10. GAC05

    GAC05 Major Contributor

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  11. petepaz

    petepaz Major Contributor

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    grab your kids roller blades...haha fellers has some 3m roller tools that would work for that but they are not cheap. if you are doing enough of this it will pay for itself in the long run (just tack a couple extra dollars on the job)
     
  12. bannertime

    bannertime Very Active Member

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    When using Alumigraphics Smooth we use a cotton installers glove to run our fingers down the lines. You can do two areas at once pretty easily. We also do it on Alumigraphics Grip but typically end up using the edge of a hard rubber roller we got from Lowes or instead of sliding across we press into the groves with a "knife hand."
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2019
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  13. fresh

    fresh Very Active Member

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  14. flyplainsdrifta

    flyplainsdrifta Active Member

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    honestly inline wheels may be perfect for this. throw a pair of bearings in the wheel, affix it to a paint roller and boom. just need to find the right profile wheel.
     
  15. Wesley Powell

    Wesley Powell Account Rep

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    We did a large wall similar to this at a local university and used 3M's TSA-4 Two-Handed Textured Surface Applicator. It is a little pricey but definitely worth it in walls like this.
     
  16. The Big Squeegee

    The Big Squeegee Major Contributor

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  17. Andy D

    Andy D Very Active Member

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    Seems like this would work well. I think the center is a hard plastic or rubber:


    [​IMG]
     
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  18. JBurton

    JBurton Signtologist

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    +1 on the TSA-4 from 3m. If it's warm enough outside, you can stretch 3m 1080 across a set of louvers and use the TSA-4 to actually form the vinyl to them. Don't know what the roller is made from, but it's obvious there is some black magic at work there.
     
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