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Suggestions Chrome for cut vinyl truck lettering - anything new?

Discussion in 'Materials' started by Reveal1, Aug 26, 2020.

  1. Reveal1

    Reveal1 Active Member

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    Nov 7, 2010
    Cape Girardeau, MO
    We do very little cut vinyl here, and it's been 4 years since we've done any lettering in chrome. Any recommendations on a durable chrome for truck lettering? Does such a thing exist? Last experience was Oracal 351 (2 yr.) and Rtape Vinyl EFX ( 3 year) After a search, it doesn't seem much has changed. I thought about Avery wrap vinyl in chrome , but wasn't sure how it would work for contour cut and it's 3 year. Recommendations?
     
  2. unclebun

    unclebun Very Active Member

    Avery has a chrome cut vinyl that is rated for 3 years outdoors. It's what we use because it seems to have the lowest degree of problems. But chrome vinyl is all the same. It sucks to cut and handle. It veins. It's stiff and your cutter blade will scratch it while moving from place to place. If it bends too much it turns white. It fades to white after a couple of years (or less) outdoors. It's horrible to remove and clean up. And customers still ask for it.
     
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  3. Reveal1

    Reveal1 Active Member

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    Cape Girardeau, MO
    Afraid that was the case. I was thinking of laminating the chrome to removable air egress like 40c to make it easier to apply and remove. Ever tried that? Also wondering if the chrome could be laminated to reduce scratching and improve UV. I guess the result would be some thick, expensive, and hard to cut material.
     
  4. De.signs Nanaimo

    De.signs Nanaimo Member

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    I use the Avery wrapping film for this fairly often, I did this #7 in two pieces with my 24" plotter, and I have used leftovers for smaller cut jobs as well. The trailer is now over three years old and no complaints from the owner yet and I do his companies vehicle decals currently so he has every chance to mention any issues.[​IMG]
     
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  5. Reveal1

    Reveal1 Active Member

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    Cape Girardeau, MO
    Like that idea - would be air egress.
     
  6. JDubz

    JDubz New Member

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    Aug 20, 2020
    Orcutt, CA
    Chrome vinyl sucks, if you can even call it vinyl; seems more like a tin material. The stuff is hard on plotter blades, hard to weed, not flexible, tears easy and scratches easy. Looks like De.signs has the best option for you.
     
  7. Lindsey

    Lindsey Not A New Member

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    Canada
    I sometimes laminate the Avery Chrome (SF100 Series) onto Avery SC950 vinyls (usually white or black), to help make removal easier later on down the road. It also allows me the choice to apply wet if I need to.
     
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  8. Mark Van Dillen

    Mark Van Dillen New Member

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    Foristell, MO
    We use FDC brand that is rated at 3 years durable. Buy it at R&J in St. Louis, MO. Excellent product that holds up w/no complaints.
     
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  9. KatePhillips

    KatePhillips Member

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    Halifax NS
    I've used a 3M 1080 and haven't had an issue - except when we forgot to take the front film off before cutting letters. That was a mistake. Not cheap though, since it's a cast wrap film.
     
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  10. Billct2

    Billct2 Major Contributor

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    New England
    We use the R Tape FX (but now I think it's owned by someone else). We apply clear over it with a little trap. Holds up OK. But the client always gets my standard spiel, "It's hard to read, doesn't last, scratches easy.."
     
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  11. spectrum maine

    spectrum maine Member

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    biddeford, maine


    The Best Chrome I ever used is the gerber deluxe chrome 5-7 years no problem
     
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  12. Nifty Pixy

    Nifty Pixy Nifty Pixy Designs

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    Jun 24, 2020
    Bowmanville
    Hi I use smf Select Marking Films the distributor in Ontario is TCT graphics and 2 other locations. Their special effects vinyl is supposed to last 5 years outdoors. I laminate it with their clear laminates and work fine for me. Toronto 1-877-675-6690 Calgary 1-888561-5038 Vancouver 1-877-277-0045
    Christine
     
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  13. Reveal1

    Reveal1 Active Member

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    Cape Girardeau, MO
    Thanks all; appreciate the different ideas. Thought I was missing some new breakthrough product or process that I should have known about. Sounds like chrome is still a challenge, but several of you have suggested some workarounds and other products to try, which I appreciate. A lot more productive than discussing COVID in the Chit-chat section.
     
  14. AGCharlotte

    AGCharlotte Member

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    351 is more of an interior grade vinyl. Maybe look at Avery SF100 or 3M 2080?
     
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  15. Pixels Are Bad Mmmkay?

    Pixels Are Bad Mmmkay? Very Active Member

    We offer our customers two options...

    Griff Polychrome. Reasonable chrome appearance with an orange peel texture. This is a polyester chrome film for use on flat surfaces only. Durability is rated at 5 years. Costs less than most cast vinyl, so it's a nice option for economy applications. We always apply this option over a regular cast vinyl for ease of removability.

    Convex chrome. This is the closest thing to actual chrome on the market, at least from what I've ever seen. It looks like real chrome with no orange peel and a mirror finish. It's so glassy, they make prison mirrors with it. It can be applied to slight complex curves and is rated 5-7 years outdoors. It has a protective cover sheet that is a royal PITA to separate from the chrome film itself. It tears easily and great care must be taken to weed. It costs literally ten times the cost of cast vinyl. However, the looks match the price. The stuff is absolutely stunning, and if your customer doesn't mind paying the premium, it really is an amazing option.

    I'll see if I can dig up a photo to post, but I may have to wait until Monday when I get back to the office.
     
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  16. Reveal1

    Reveal1 Active Member

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    Nov 7, 2010
    Cape Girardeau, MO
    Thanks - looking forward to seeing a pic if you have it.
     
  17. Jburns

    Jburns Premium Subscriber

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    Denver
    I have heard of some chrome vinyl when removed- paint comes with it-- so highly recommend a base cast vinyl first.
     
  18. MikePro

    MikePro Major Contributor

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    Racine, WI
    if i want to add longevity to any chrome/gold/specialefx vinyl I intend to throw outdoors....I'll laminate with a cast gloss vinyl.
    it still won't make it last forever, BUT i have plenty of gold/chrome graphics that still look brand-new after 3yrs outdoors and the original longevity of the vinyl was listed for 6months outdoors.

    edited to add: you can laminate with any cast laminate, but gloss or optically-clear is the best for allowing the special effects/chrome/gold shine-thru.
     
  19. Pixels Are Bad Mmmkay?

    Pixels Are Bad Mmmkay? Very Active Member

    The truck photos I found were from 20 feet away so they don't do the product much justice, but I took these pics this morning to show a comparison. I don't even have to explain which is which. It's like a night and day difference.
     

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