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Damn sun

Discussion in 'Newbie Forum' started by Mark H, Dec 5, 2018.

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  1. Mark H

    Mark H Member

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    Berea, Ohio
    As I get more requests for exterior signs (MaxMetal, PVC, aluminum etc) I'm finding that printing it on my UV flatbed is what I would prefer to do but unless it is laminated it is going to fade in 18 months. I'm told that even laminated I'll only get 3-5 years. My question is, where do I get a good UV laminate and can it be hand applied without bubbles.

    Thanks,
    Mark
     
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  2. Gino

    Gino Major Contributor

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    Most laminates will only give ya an additional.... maybe a year to 18 months, if you're lucky. Unless they're very small, I would only use a laminator, not even a BS is good for this from a flatbed. The ink will lift off quite easily, according to what substrate you using.

    Check your lamps and make sure they have a good life to them, otherwise, only tell people they are short-term exterior durable.
     
  3. Brandon708

    Brandon708 Very Active Member

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    the best cast laminates are a real pain in the butt to laminate by hand beceause how thin it is. The cheaper laminate crap is easier to apply because its thicker. If your laminating UV prints you are going to run into the issue of the raised ink catching bubbles and enhancing the copy. I would use a matte laminate if laminating UV prints. I also would suggest 3M cast laminates.
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  4. SignStudent

    SignStudent Member

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    I know next to nothing about UV printing but have you tried looking to see if there's a liquid laminate you can brush or spray on?
     
  5. Sindex Printing

    Sindex Printing Member

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    Sparks
    For the harsh environment signs I took them to an auto body shop and had them clearcoat them and the are still look good today and they have been up for about 6 years
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
    • Informative Informative x 1
  6. visual800

    visual800 Very Active Member

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    we only use direct print to substrate for real estate signs. nothing in a more professional long term sign. All of my signs are bascoat/clearcoat OR sprayed with latex and vinyl lettering on top of that
     
  7. DerbyCitySignGuy

    DerbyCitySignGuy Active Member

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    Marabu makes liquid laminates that can be put over UV prints. The VUTEk printers using "their" ink (Nazdar makes it) actually hold up really well. We've found that with average exposure, you can reasonably expect about 3-5 years before the sign starts to fade significantly. Even coating it, I wouldn't tell a customer more than five years.

    If the sign is getting a lot of sun exposure, you're going to get 18 months if you're lucky. UV radiation is killer (literally and figuratively).
     
  8. SightLine

    SightLine Very Active Member

    Dam Son.jpg

    Some sort of liquid clear as mentioned..... Sprayed or rolled on.
     
  9. Mark H

    Mark H Member

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    Berea, Ohio
    I like this option. I have a job mounting 6 panels printed on MaxMetal to a\the wall of a building facing east so it will get a lot of sun, what do you think?
     
  10. Mark H

    Mark H Member

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    Jan 4, 2018
    Berea, Ohio
    When we are talking fade, how much? 50% on a navy blue & red
     
  11. Gino

    Gino Major Contributor

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    Facing East is no problem, especially you being in Ohio. This time of the year, the sun is practically non-existent in the morning hours. By the time it's a little high in the sky, it's already past your face of the building. In the summer, it's only a problem for maybe 2 or 3 hours, then, it will be directly above you and again, doing relatively no harm to your sign facing East. The really only problem is/are signs basically facing south and somewhat southwest.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  12. DerbyCitySignGuy

    DerbyCitySignGuy Active Member

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    After about four years being exposed less than half of the day, a yellow and blue sign faded about 30-40%. It was still legible and didn't look bad, but the customer wanted to replace it. It probably could have stayed up another year or two. That was just UV direct print with Nazdar inks, no laminate. That was way longer than I initially told the customer (it was supposed to be temporary).

    The Marabu stuff only seems to extend the life of prints about a year or so. I would imagine a clear coat from an auto body shop is going to be the "best" option for longevity if your customer is willing to pay for it.
     
  13. Sindex Printing

    Sindex Printing Member

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    Sparks
    Just make sure the shop uses quality materials and stands behind their work
     
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