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How To: Apply a Motocross Graphics Kit
Ever bought a dirt bike graphics kit to freshen up your motocross bike, but been too scared to put it on for fear of destroying it in the process? Listed here are the secrets and techniques we now have been using for years to get graphics on quickly and easily.
What are the options?
The old saying goes there are a number of different ways to skin a cat, which also applies to sticker kits as there isn’t really a proper or unsuitable way to do this. We have now steered the following technique as it has ended up being the easiest way we have now skilled while getting good results, and could be cleaner than another ways involving soapy water to help getting the graphics on straight.
Other options for making use of graphics to the bike utilizing nothing however elbow grease, which can work out fine, but in case you haven’t applied graphics earlier than we wouldn’t advocate it! The downside is the graphics are sticky and not very malleable, so you will have to get them straight the first attempt or you possibly can damage the kit making an attempt to rip them off to get them straight.
One other method is the wet application utilizing soapy water to lubricate the plastics and the sticker kit so you may place the graphics on and slide them around till you have got them within the correct place. The downside is a few believe that regardless that the soapy water dries, there's always soap residue the stays beneath the dust bike graphics kit, compromising the adhesive energy and making the kit more likely to peel off over time.
Step 1: Remove the old graphic kit from areas which you want to apply graphics to, you need a clean and smooth surface for the perfect likelihood of your graphics looking good and staying on. There may be some glue residue left in your plastics which is best to clean off with an alcohol-primarily based cleaner - it's essential to not use any oil-primarily based cleaners, as this can damage the glue after installation.
Step 2: When your bike is clean and dry, take all of your new graphics out of the packaging and work out where each piece needs to go, it will be confusing sometimes with equally shaped dirt bike stickers, so a very good way to recollect is working everything out and then laying them on the ground in the sample which they are going to go onto your bike.
Step three: You are ready to start applying! Select a part of the bike which is smooth and relatively flat in your first try rather than picking a rounded surface which may be tricky, we normally start on the front fender and work our way to the back of the bike from there.
Some individuals like to remove the plastics from the bike to use graphics, however we've discovered that on a full kit, some parts of the bike won’t line up perfectly straight, so keeping the plastics on the bike will help you get everything lining up straighter. Chances are you'll want to remove your seat or sure items of plastic momentarily as some graphics are designed to fold over an edge and stick down on the highest of your fuel tank for instance, which could be harder with your seat still attached.
Start by holding the sticker to the desired location to see how well it will line up and the place you need it to stick. Once you're completely satisfied, peel away a small part of the backing paper so you will have a small section of adhesive exposed. We always find a straight part to start on as when you line the first part up properly the remainder of the sticker should line up accurately with the plastic providing the sticker template is made well.
After getting a small part stuck to the plastic and before you remove the remainder of the sticker backing check to see if the sticker is lining up with the rest of the plastic by holding it down to see the place it lines up. If you are completely happy you might be ready to complete this off, if not you may lift the sticker off and have one other strive until you get it right!
This is the place the heat gun comes into play:
Take your heat gun or hair dryer set on a low setting and use it to warm the motocross graphics up on the edge which is being stuck down, hold the heat gun approximately 30cm from the target as stickers are thin, in order that they don’t need a lot heat earlier than they start to melt - take your time and be careful or you will find yourself with a warped mess!
As you warm the sticker up you'll be able to slowly peel the backing paper off and work the sticker down utilizing your fingers, one can find the sticker is soft because of the heat and can mould to the form of the plastics easily. Because of the warmth, it will probably be less likely to bubble and the sticker can stretch or compress easily and form to the form you want it to.
Keep doing this till the sticker is totally on and you need to have a straight, smooth sticker free from bubbles, and haven't any need to make use of a box cutter to trim the loose parts of your sticker kit.
Repeat this process on each panel however bear in mind a surface which is concave or convex will always be difficult to apply without bubbles, some stickers for these panels come with a small part lower out to allow for an overlap. It's possible you'll need to trim these further so do your greatest and don’t be scared to trim if need be!
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