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Old 11-02-2010, 09:31 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Vinyl Wrap Instead of Paint?

Has anyone tried vinyl wrap on any of their cars? I was looking into it instead of paint. You can wrap the whole car now and the finish is pretty good. Check it out:

http://picasaweb.google.com/skinzwraps/SkinzWrapsMetallic#5383959411654350882

I am thinking that it could reduce the amount of bodywork required since the vinyl will hide some of the imperfections. I am also thinking the vinyl will be more durable and less susceptible to rock damage (I am planning on tracking the car).
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Old 11-02-2010, 09:47 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I haven't started a build yet, but have been thinking about this as an option. Check out Mequiars product "Wraptivo". Many interesting textures and patterns. Seems to me that the expensive parts of the body work would still need to be done though, no?
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Old 11-02-2010, 09:51 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Try this.

http://www.av8ss.com/gtm_build.htm
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Old 11-02-2010, 11:06 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I thought about doing it, and still might.

3M has a line named Di-Noc which has a model that looks very similar to carbon fiber. I bought a sample book/catalog from these guys for about $20, well worth it. They have a few solid colors that are very glossy...

http://www.idsfinishes.com/index.html

Gallery with automotive installations:
http://picasaweb.google.com/IDSfinis...otiveInstalls#

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Old 11-02-2010, 11:32 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Where did you buy the book? Looks awesome but I need a closer look.
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Old 11-02-2010, 11:38 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Old 11-03-2010, 12:01 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Think again...vinyl wrap still requires good bodywork underneath if you want to get your money's worth. The wrap's thickness is actually less than that of a full-blown paintjob. It will show every dip, wave, jag and judder in the body panel. You would be fooling yourself if you thought otherwise.

Just food for thought.

I'm having trouble finding the link, but there is a company that makes candy and metalflake vinyls.... FLX-Paint and ACI PaintFilm are two examples of REAL PAINT on a vinyl film for wrapping.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JCHRacer;2355986I am thinking that it could reduce the amount of bodywork required since the vinyl will hide some of the imperfections. I am also thinking the vinyl will be more durable and less susceptible to rock damage (I am planning on tracking the car). [/FONT
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Old 11-03-2010, 12:03 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCHRacer View Post
Has anyone tried vinyl wrap on any of their cars? I was looking into it instead of paint. You can wrap the whole car now and the finish is pretty good. Check it out:

http://picasaweb.google.com/skinzwraps/SkinzWrapsMetallic#5383959411654350882

I am thinking that it could reduce the amount of bodywork required since the vinyl will hide some of the imperfections. I am also thinking the vinyl will be more durable and less susceptible to rock damage (I am planning on tracking the car).
I'll have to say. I'm impressed. I snarled my nose at first but it looks good! I wonder how hard it is to install. I have a tough time with window tint.
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Old 11-03-2010, 12:13 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fuzzyjk View Post
Where did you buy the book? Looks awesome but I need a closer look.
This is the book:
http://www.idsfinishes.com/shop/#ecw...product=297799

I don't remember paying $40 for it though, call them and ask if they can give it to you for a better price. If they make you pay full price, it honestly isn't worth it. The reason is that the number of vinyl samples which you could actually use on a vehicle is small, the majority of the samples are architectural prints such as wood, patterns, etc.

You would be better off buying the samples like this:
http://www.idsfinishes.com/shop/#ecw...=0&sort=normal

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kris Mangrum View Post
I'll have to say. I'm impressed. I snarled my nose at first but it looks good! I wonder how hard it is to install. I have a tough time with window tint.
A good install video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Odw8ZQD0gHk

Apparently with a little heat you can stretch it around complex curves/corners.
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Old 11-03-2010, 12:20 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Think again...vinyl wrap still requires good bodywork underneath if you want to get your money's worth. The wrap's thickness is actually less than that of a full-blown paintjob. It will show every dip, wave, jag and judder in the body panel. You would be fooling yourself if you thought otherwise.

Just food for thought.

I'm having trouble finding the link, but there is a company that makes candy and metalflake vinyls.... FLX-Paint and ACI PaintFilm are two examples of REAL PAINT on a vinyl film for wrapping.
Thickness:
3M DI-NOC: 0.2159mm (0.0085in)
Sign Vinyl: 0.0889mm (0.0035in)

Not sure how thick a 2-stage paint (base & clear) would be, but judging by the thickness of the sample I have, it's pretty thick. That along with a pattern such as carbon fiber instead of just a straight gloss would more than likely hide any surface imperfections pretty good. At least for a "race car" like the OP is asking about.

I would agree though that at least blocking and sanding the car is a good idea. Then maybe spray it with primer that way you have something beneath the vinyl.
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Old 11-03-2010, 12:45 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Here's an article they did on it in Hot Rod last year: http://www.hotrod.com/techarticles/b...rap/index.html
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Old 11-03-2010, 05:31 PM   #12 (permalink)
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An average 2-stage paint job is around .030"...roughly 10X thicker than sign vinyl and 3X thicker than DI-NOC. If you think that will cover up any imperfections in body work, you are smoking crack.

Vinyl performs the exact same function as paint...why would you think that bodywork would affect it any differently?

Carbon-fiber is a stronger material than fiberglass, but that doesn't mean you can build a sloppier mold and take advantage of that material strength. Generally speaking, a mold for a CF part has to be 2-3X better prepped & reinforced to take full advantage of the more expensive material. Does that mean there aren't people turning out cheap CF parts? Of course there are, but if you know what is required to make good parts you won't be buying them.

Same thing applies to get the best bang for your buck with vinyl. Cheap out on the body prep and you have a very expensive "wall-paper" hanging on your car. All that does is serve as a poor example for people in regards to vinyl wraps.

Anybody who is properly trained in vinyl wraps (not a hack out for a fast buck) will tell you that body prep is still important for a nice finished result. The finish can only be as good as the underlying surface allows!!!

This is a point I cannot reiterate ENOUGH.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adrian1281 View Post
Thickness:
3M DI-NOC: 0.2159mm (0.0085in)
Sign Vinyl: 0.0889mm (0.0035in)

Not sure how thick a 2-stage paint (base & clear) would be, but judging by the thickness of the sample I have, it's pretty thick. That along with a pattern such as carbon fiber instead of just a straight gloss would more than likely hide any surface imperfections pretty good. At least for a "race car" like the OP is asking about.

I would agree though that at least blocking and sanding the car is a good idea. Then maybe spray it with primer that way you have something beneath the vinyl.
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Old 11-03-2010, 08:46 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Mark is planning on offering this for the G3F. Pick a color scheme and pattern and it will come rolled up with the kit ready to apply.
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Old 11-03-2010, 09:45 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Good idea. Just no one do the Hello Kitty wrap.
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Old 11-03-2010, 09:52 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Sooooo. From the comments and reading some more from the given links I learned:
  • No reduction in body work prep (and cost)....the film will not hide imperfections....the Hot Rod article said that 200 grit sanding marks could be seen through the film.
  • The film is more expensive than shooting a single color with paint.
  • The film is less expensive than shooting a custom, multi-color paint job.
  • The film is easily replaced....sections or entire car.
I think the conclusion is that it only makes sense if you are doing a complicated paint job or expect to have periodic paint damage (wheel to wheel racing).

I would like to hear from someone who has actually used the stuff to confirm.
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Old 11-03-2010, 10:17 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I have done it. If your going heavy on graphics or if you were doing a specialty film like the carbon, it would be worth it. If your just going with a solid color it would be easier and probably cheaper to paint.
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Old 11-03-2010, 10:23 PM   #17 (permalink)
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BTW - Mark says $500 for the vinyl wrap and $500 for the install, not $3500 + many hours.
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Old 11-03-2010, 11:36 PM   #18 (permalink)
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For a race car - yes.
For a street car - no.

For amount of time and effort put into one of these cars dont skimp on the paint.
It will look like your car is covered in a giant sticker and wont have that depth of field gloss like a true clear coat paint job does that has been wet sanded and buffed properly
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Old 11-04-2010, 12:15 AM   #19 (permalink)
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As Bill said, this is something Mark Smith was discussing as an option for the G3F folks. I have a brand new Mustang GT that I'm hoping to keep in great condition for a number of years. I just looked into vinyl wrap today as a way to protect the paint, especially as the car is outside until my next move (2+ years). The quotes I got for a plain Jane wrap were from $1950-3000. That didn't include any fancy graphics. (Thought I might get blue racing stripes in the vinyl before I commit to painting them on the car.) Way too much money for a big sticker.

If Mark finds a way to get them for $500, more power to him. It would probably make some sense at that point. Otherwise, I'm pretty sure I could get a decent paint job for $3000, as you would have to have the body work done prior to the wrap or paint.
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Old 11-04-2010, 02:42 AM   #20 (permalink)
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I've been watching the Wraptivo guys here at SEMA the last two days and it's a pretty cool product. WAY more pliable then I expected and if properly done it's very difficult to tell it's not paint. There is a satin silver BMW M3 in their booth that is just awesome! If you've ever considered a satin finish the wrap is definitely the way to go. Real satin finish paint can't be buffed, polished, etc. because it becomes glossy. This wrap is very durable, and maintains the satin finish quality. The guys here say it runs $2-3,000 to do a complete car. I agree that it DOES show finish imperfections though, so the base finish will have to be at least ready for paint. (400 - 600 wet sanded)
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Old 11-04-2010, 01:09 PM   #21 (permalink)
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I have a buddy that just did this to his corvette drag car. It is very impressive looking. He has a ton of graphics and if you think there is no depth just because it is a wrap then you are nuts. If he hadn't told me it was a wrap I wouldn't have known. I think he ended up in the the $1500 range total. It is very nice but I don't think there is anything out there that could let you get away from properly prepping the body.
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Old 11-04-2010, 03:12 PM   #22 (permalink)
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I've read all of the above posts, but I can't open some of the links (I'm at work). Do any of them mention life expectancy of the wrap? That would be my concern.

Last month I went to a local outdoor car show, and a local company had a H3 Hummer and a Toyota FJ Cruiser wrapped in all kinds of gaudy graphics. I commented "not bad" if it was in a solid or metallic color. They said they could do that. But then another bystander mentioned that it only last a year or two, and that it was worse than window tint to remove. Any truth to that?
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Old 11-04-2010, 03:27 PM   #23 (permalink)
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The hot rod article says 5 years, and it peals off clean except the seams where you use glue. That takes a little more work but I get the impression it comes off.
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Old 11-05-2010, 09:15 PM   #24 (permalink)
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I saw a lot of fancy cars wrapped up this last couple days at SEMA. As noted by others, lots of graphics and it looks good and makes sense, but the just satin cars looked like they were unfinished to me, or like the paint on the truck out in my back yard that I "let go". Not my style at all. I much prefer the deep gloss paints, especially on show cars. The HOK, and PPG booths were AWESOME!
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Old 11-06-2010, 06:27 PM   #25 (permalink)
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I m ay be building another GTM and if I do it will be more track orientated and wrapped. I agree with the previous post that put it simply: Race car-wrap, street car-paint. Seeing I will be adding all of my sponsors logos and having a design company design the "paint" scheme, then wrapping is the way I plan on going.
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Old 11-06-2010, 11:49 PM   #26 (permalink)
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I think people are forgetting that there are also PAINT vinyl wraps...the paint-vinyl comes on a roll like normal vinyl, but consists of three layers...a vinyl substrate, production-quality gloss paint, topped by an actual clearcoat. These are available in candies, metalflakes, pearls and other styles of paint.

http://www.flxpaint.com/

I've seen these in person and they are beautiful. They are installed just like a normal vinyl wrap. With some dedicated searching, you can find just about ANY paint style & color to suit your tastes IN A VINYL WRAP.

Street car or race car...
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Old 11-07-2010, 12:27 AM   #27 (permalink)
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These wraps for the size you would need for a GTM are going to run around $3000 for a basic color scheme installed and trust me the average guy doesn't have the equipment or skill to install it themselves!
I talked to many different wrap vendors at the SEMA show this week, I learned from all of them that there will be a problem removing a wrap from a car with anything but an OEM paint job. The wrap has a reputation of pealing a custom clear coated paint job off the car if removed.
On a scale from 1 to 10 with a nice paint job from Ken Pike or Jeff Miller being a 10 then the best wrap surface is a 5 at best unless your 10 feet away from it.
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