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Material for car wash interior

Discussion in 'Digital Printing' started by mark in tx, Oct 29, 2009.

  1. mark in tx

    mark in tx Very Active Member

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    Oct 25, 2005
    Harker Heights, Texas
    Has anyone ever printed for the interior of an automated carwash?

    I'm wondering if floor vinyl and laminate would be expensive overkill, or would controltac and laminate be sufficient?

    Or something else?

    Thanks
     
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  2. omgsideburns

    omgsideburns Very Active Member

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    It just has to stand up to water... I think anything should handle it. There really isn't that much soap being sprayed around in those things.
     
  3. Steve Werner

    Steve Werner Member

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    The material needs to stand up to the chemicals associated with car wash interiors, which would be soaps, mild solvents, and other chemicals. I have a customer that does quite a bit of that work for a car wash unit manufacturer. The most important thing is making sure the adhesive can stand up to the chemicals and having an overlaminate.
     
  4. Just Another Sign Guy

    Just Another Sign Guy Very Active Member

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    i have a client that is a nationwide chain of carwashes and a client that manufactures automated carwash systems.

    no issues with regular everday materials unless your signs are going to be subjected to undiluted concentrates and there is no reason they should be.

    the signs in the 'tunnel' we usually do second surface on the clear fixtures which are all sealed because of electrical components.

    all signs outside of the 'tunnel' print and laminate...even have some short term promo stuff that is at the entry to the 'tunnel' that is commonly not laminated and have no issues and i have a facility that i check at least every 2 weeks.
     
  5. Mosh

    Mosh Major Contributor

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    Same here, we print car-wash signs second surface on clear Lexan. We do print labels for the coin op part, we just print and laminate oracal 3551. No problems yet. Most of them get changed out every 2-3 years anyway.
     
  6. mark in tx

    mark in tx Very Active Member

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    Let me clarify a bit, I'm not talking about the smaller signs mounted on the wall, I'm talking about a mural to cover the walls entirely.
     
  7. Just Another Sign Guy

    Just Another Sign Guy Very Active Member

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    i have signs up in carwashes that are 8' X 32' that are laminated vinyl prints on dibond panels that have no issues. again the only concern i would have would be if the signs are in an area where they could come in contact with concentrated chemicals.

    i have provided sample after sample after sample for a carwash manufacturing company to abuse and the only failure they had was with concentrated chemicals.

    on another note related to carwashes we have had adhesion problems on site because of the waxes and silicone in the tire gloss chemicals in areas where those are sprayed and there is 'mist' so we have found it is better to send an assembled sign rather than vinyl for application on site.

    if that is a concern i would definitely apply your prints to dibond panels or something similar...in fact i would prefer to cover the wall in panels rather than apply to the wall if that is an option...i would sleep much better at night.
     
  8. mark in tx

    mark in tx Very Active Member

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    Thanks Dan.

    I figured chemicals would be the biggest problem. They specifically mentioned being able to clean tar off the walls that gets thrown up from the spray.

    I'm really starting to think a painted mural with a clear coat is going to live longer.
     
  9. Just Another Sign Guy

    Just Another Sign Guy Very Active Member

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    that statement about tar off the walls scares me. is this a commercial truck car wash? or a passenger vehicle 'tunnel' type operation or something different like a u-spray?

    because in the tunnel type nothing is really thrown anywhere from the spray but downward and recycled/reclaimed as it is engineered as an inverted U with angled sprayers (i've spent way too much time at carwashes the last 2 yrs looking at these) so if material is being flung on the walls i am scared and would have BIG concerns just like you do.

    i would still opt for dibond or the like panels with applied laminated prints.
     
  10. mark in tx

    mark in tx Very Active Member

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    It is a tunnel type car wash, with automated spray. The walls inside are actually already panelled with that same material used for showers, so at least its not block and mortar.
    But, I have yet to find out exactly what they use for cleaning the walls.

    This is a brand new carwash, and with a high end target market and look.
    Hell, they have a double sided, full color, full motion EMC pole sign with all the trimmings.

    They really do go and clean the tunnel every morning, clean the vacuum stations, and sweep the lot every day.
     
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