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What to measure to when doing a wrap.

Discussion in 'Vehicle Wraps' started by WrapperX, Apr 14, 2010.

  1. WrapperX

    WrapperX Active Member

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    When doing vehicle wraps, cars, trucks, vans, ANY and ALL wraps, what do you guys and gals measure to. Do you prefer lettering and imagery to be horizontal to the eye via a level or do you measure to body lines and contours? Do you change your technique depending on the vehicles or do you stick to one certain style and that be it?

    I ask because we just did a van, and although the graphics and lettering look great and ARE straight via a level, at certain angles and with a closer look, they seem to be crooked due to the body lines of the van moving at a downward angle rear to front.

    For this job, its already done and did. And the customer hasn't mentioned anything so its not a deal breaker. But we, my office, has had this debate since we started doing wraps 3 years ago. Just wanted to get your professional opinions. Thanks
     
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  2. J Hill Designs

    J Hill Designs Major Contributor

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    I don't do wraps, but any vehicle graphics are placed visually, not with a level
     
  3. WrapperX

    WrapperX Active Member

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    So you follow the body lines?
     
  4. WhiskeyDreamer

    WhiskeyDreamer Professional Snow Ninja

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    i do any vehicle visually too...each vehicle is different, and NO i don't go off body lines....going with the curves of the vehicle will (most of the time) cause the lettering to looked like it's either going up or downhill...

    what i usually do (if i'm doing the doors of a pickup) is tack the graphic onto the door, center in side to side, then make it level with the bottom of the door...now i step back ten or twenty feet and see if it "looks" right....if not, i adjust and step back again...
     
  5. J Hill Designs

    J Hill Designs Major Contributor

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    mostly...I let my eye be the judge...(mind you, just cut vinyl mostly, so you can tape it up and step back) but yeah never a level, usually body lines
     
  6. smdgrfx

    smdgrfx Member

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    for vans, we usually back up and see what looks good. On the front doors, we typically stick with the body lines. Unless they are way off...
     
  7. WrapperX

    WrapperX Active Member

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    This is great! LOL Seems we are not the only ones in disagreement with technique. Seems like everyone has their own method. This only strengthens my position on this issue, at least in my office - I feel that if it "looks good" then it is good. And thats the best I can put out there when it comes to questioning the straightness of imagery/lettering. I just wanted to know if I was way out of line by making that kind of call or if there was a uniformed agreement that I was unaware of.
     
  8. weaselboogie

    weaselboogie Very Active Member

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    NEVER use a level... There are so many factors that could be off. Would you still use a level if you installed the graphics while the vehicle was on a hill? And if on a level, are you positive that it's perfectly flat? The only way to verify that is if it was surveyed. Are all the tires the same type of tire and are they ALL inflated to the exact same PSI? Are all the shocks and struts calibrated to the same level? Is the vehicle empty? A loaded van could lower the *** end 4 inches or more.

    A lot of times there's a body line that may start out curved and go flat, but these are hard to be trusted. I've never had a vehicle that didn't have some sort of true straight line..... It may be a bit hard to find sometimes, but its usually there, be it the bottom of the door or maybe the bottom of a window.
     
  9. threeputt

    threeputt Very Active Member

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    Think about this:

    When lettering is applied to a vehicle and it doesn't look "level", why do you think that is?

    Apparently your eye (this may be sub-conscious even) is seeing a dominant body line that it has decided is the final judge of what is "level" and against which all applied lettering will be measured.

    Go with it and it'll look "level", go against it and it looks off.

    Simple.
     
  10. threads1

    threads1 Member

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    First, you have to level the vehicle with some really large shims, then....
     
  11. signage

    signage Major Contributor

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    You measure the vehicle first, then the printed graphic, then.....
     
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