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Media Matters With Vehicle Wraps

Suppliers Share Their Most Popular Products

by Melissa Tetreault

This is part of an exclusive online series. Part 3 of 4.

With the highlighted excitement over vehicle wrap graphics, media manufacturers are busy satisfying the demand. Companies like 3M Commercial Graphics, Arlon Graphic Films, Avery Dennison Graphics, MACtac, and Oracal USA are all offering durable products that suggest a long-term investment for any sign shop customer.

Promoting A Model Family
3M’s flagship product line, 3M Controltac Plus Graphic Film with Comply Adhesive Series IJ180C is what Tim Boxeth, marketing supervisor, defines as, "the industry standard". The film features a 3M patented pressure activated adhesive so if an installer needs to re-apply the graphic they can. Boxeth comments, "People tend to migrate toward the 180C family. They can use it short term and long term. You can use it on a variety of printers."

One of the benefits of choosing a 3M product is the rugged testing the company puts all of their materials through. "We want to make sure our materials are compatible with other inks and that way we can offer that performance guarantee to customers," explains Boxeth.

John McKenzie, CEO of Motorsports Designs, Inc., uses the 180C family because of the its "ease of use, durability, and availability. All these factors are part of the package for providing the best service and the best products to our customers."

Targeting the Market
"Designed specifically for the vehicle graphic market, Arlon Graphic Films’ most popular media lines are the DPF 6000 and the 3220 Crystal Laminate," shares Gabriel Maxwell, product manager. The DPF 6000 is a conformable cast film with positionable adhesive, allowing for installation to go smoothly.

Additionally, the company offers a variety of products that complement their vehicle wrap line. One such product is the DPF 40 WF One Way View Graphics Window Film. The film is useful for those customers that want to cover the windows of the vehicle being wrapped.

Easy as 1, 2, 3
Avery Dennison Graphics Division promotes its Easy Apply media line thanks to air egress technology, which allows the vinyl to avoid any chance of damaging. Tiffany Witham, senior marketing manager of the business development group, says, "we proliferate the Easy Apply product line because of its ease of use, easy to apply, easy to remove."

Easy Apply media is put through accelerated weathering testing to ensure that it can stand up to the five-year guarantee. Additionally, Avery offers a Performance Level Guarantee, which is a second level warranty. Witham explains, "we go out and test with all the popular printers and inks on the market."

Weather is a major component when it comes to choosing the proper media for Avery end user Brad Bergamo of Paramount Promotions, Inc. He uses Avery’s Cast EZ vinyl because of, "its conformability without cracking in cold temperatures."

Bubble Free
This past Spring, MACtac announced the IMAGin JT5900 Bubble Free Digital Series, which offers an air release technology that helps with a smooth installation process. The microstructure adhesive in the vinyl prevents air bubbles from forming. The product is unique because of its very smooth, very white surface. There is no pattern show through because of the adhesive vinyl.

Jennifer Payne, graphics product manager at MACtac, explains, "the product is a little different than our competitors products so people have to learn the little nuances about it. The first time they use it they struggle a bit, but if they are a good applicator, they come back and they tell us that the product is great and they love how it goes down."

MACtac offers a mass warranted system so if they offer a laminate with the vinyl they will warrant it for the life of the vinyl. Additionally, if MACtac has a customer that is going to do a fleet of trucks and they want a custom warranty then they will do that with them.

Just Like Paint
Oracal USA has an abundance of products under their belt. David Grant, marketing manager, says, "Oracal USA markets a wide range of products suitable for partial and complete vehicle wraps. Our most popular wrapping products include ORAJET 3951 Professional Wrapping Film, ORAJET 3551RA Fleet Wrapping Film, ORACAL Series 870 Wrapping Cast, and ORAGUARD 290 Premium Cast Laminating Film."

Just recently Oracal released the ORAJET 3551RA with RapidAir Technology. The product features a RapidAir line, which reduces bubbles and creases during installation. According to Grant, this makes it ideal for flat, corrugated, and riveted surfaces because of the advanced air-release liner in the product.

The company offers a comprehensive printed image warranty known at the ORALIFE Component System Warranty. The system provides up to seven-year protection for printed images using both Oracal media and laminates.

Highet Kräcker Design’s Trevor Kräcker prefers Oracal because of the application and the finish. "So many people tell us it looks like it was painted on, they love it," relays Kracker.

Part 4 of this Q series on Vehicle Wraps will feature a roundup of the various printers that specialize in wide format machines used to print vehicle wraps.

Click here to read A New Spin on Marketing, Part 1 of this exclusive Q Series.
Click here to read Designing for the Masses, Part 2 of this exclusive Q Series.

Aug2006, Digital Output

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