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Steam removal compared to Flame removal

Discussion in 'General Signmaking Topics' started by kirkbedtelyon, Feb 4, 2010.

  1. kirkbedtelyon

    kirkbedtelyon Member

    Nov 28, 2005
    Gaylord, MI
    We install / remove bus advertising (using 3M180C) and I've consistently used a weed burner to heat/remove the vinyl but I'm always a little nervous about using an open flame for safety reasons.

    The beauty with the flame - You can heat a 4' x 4' area quickly and pull off the vinyl fast.

    I'm thinking about switching to steam but I'm wondering how much more time it will take to remove vinyl using steam instead of the flame.

    Have any of you used both? Your comments would be appreciated! Kirk
  2. Steve G.

    Steve G. Member

    I use a wagner steamer most of the time. During a typical removal, i let the 8 x 11 pad set on the vinyl for 10 seconds. The vinyl is then ready for removal. If you can remove the vinyl with one hand, you can heat as you pull.

    I'd figure on heating that size area for that long...

    I don't think it's the fastest method, but it is the least frustrating for me.
  3. gabagoo

    gabagoo Major Contributor

    Oct 10, 2006
    Vaughan, Ontario
    I will use steam as well at times. I have the Wagner as well, but accidently the pad broke off and I then inserted the end piece of a pen into the hose which created pressure and resulted in a cool steam stream you might say that I can direct right where I want. The only issue I find with using steam is that it can at times really seperate the glue from the vinyl so you could get large amounts of adhesive to deal with afterwards.

    What I do like about steam is that unlike a heat gun which can burn your fingers, the steam is wet and the effect is not as nearly as painful lol

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