Wraps Hit the Water
One End User Leaves Land
by Melissa Tetreault
3 of a 4 Part Series
Lund Grafx Works, based in Salt Lake City, UT, is a relatively new company with about 90 percent of its business in vehicle wraps. Installations range from the smallest vehicle to the more bulky—a bus, boat, cement truck, or even garbage truck.
Established in 2005, the company is housed in a 6,000-square-foot space that holds their production, print, and installation departments. Additionally, they have a separate location that holds their entire design department. Between the two buildings there are nine employees that collaborate on design, installation, and finishing for vehicle wrap projects.
A is for Application
The family run business involves three brothers and Bryan Lund, the oldest, has been involved in vehicle wrapping for the last 13 years. Lund is so familiar with the science of wrapping he admits that his experience extends before actual media for wraps existed. At the time, a lot of that media had to be hand cut to create the outcome the client was looking for.
Today, Lund says that Lund Grafx Works uses MACtac vehicle wrap media 100 percent. The Lund family is attracted to MACtac because it is user friendly and very forgiving. Although, Lund does admit there is a trick to installing MACtac products successfully—you need heat to put the vinyl down right.
Installing, regardless of what vinyl you use, is a trick in itself and coinciding with that is the finishing process. Lund believes his employees’ talents shine during the install and finishing processes and that is what makes Lund Grafx Works so successful. "Anyone can lay down vinyl, finishing is a whole other process. Cutting is hard. You have to fine line everything underneath then lay the wrap on the top so you don’t cut into the paint of the car."
When recruiting employees Lund says he doesn’t look for an experienced or certified installer. Instead, he looks for someone who has an eye for design and is willing to learn. In his mind the design process is closely related to application. Before a design is created he has his art department look at the car to decipher where break lines are—that way everything in the design flows from the hood to the trunk.
Lund Grafx Works’ employees’ past experiences have led to tackling a range of vehicles including such awkward shaped items as garbage trucks. This past Summer the company tackled its biggest project to date—two houseboats.
Using MACtac vinyl, Lund took a crew of five people for a week to Lake Powell, UT and wrapped two entire houseboats. This included both boats’ command bridges, which created another level of difficulty in that not all surfaces were flat.
The entire project, from wrap to design, cost 17,000 dollars, whereas if the owners had done what they originally wanted, re-paint the boats, it would have cost them 20 to 30,000 dollars.
Lund has traveled down to the lake several times over the summer to check out how the boats are holding up. Despite the fact that they will not know for sure until they take them out of the water this Fall, from what he has noticed they are doing well. It helps that they used Pro Show, a 12-mil laminate, over the wrap that is "virtually indestructible." It is so tough you can’t even cut it with a knife, according to Lund. They used it on the doors and others areas of the boat that appeared as though they needed to be structurally supported. "The laminate acts like a barrier, its tough but you can’t see it," explains Lund.
He is quick to point out that boat wraps, even regular boats and not just houseboats, are pretty neglected in the industry, making them even more challenging to wrap. "There aren’t very many boat templates available for purchase, so you have to create them on your own." Even so, "Boat wraps are lucrative and enjoyable," shares Lund, and another great vehicle wrap option for the ever-growing industry.
Depending on the success of these two houseboats, Lund will go ahead with another seven pre-paid orders that have come in over the course of the Summer. All signs point toward success with these initial wraps, despite the challenges during the install process and the weather conditions. Luckily, the company is in the process of building a larger production space. It will be finished in November, just in time for this upsurge in business.
Click here to read Part 1 of this exculsive online series, Media That Zooms
Click here to read Part 2 of this exclusive online series, Rolling Into Wraps