Sign & Digital Graphics

2015 WRAPS

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112 I WRAPS I 2015 - F i l m S e l e c t i o n - B y m o l ly W a t e r S H ow do you define a wrap? When I started in the wide- format digital business nearly 18 years ago, a wrap was very specific to vehicles. Most wraps were done on semitrailers using a smooth adhesive (non-air egress) film. There were other vehicles being wrapped also—mostly buses, box trucks and vans. Most, if not all, of these wraps were for commercial advertisements and not for personal customization of a vehicle. Graphics were mostly screen printed in those days and the digital printing revolution was just getting started. Early on, in the late 1990s, digital printers were priced in the range of $250,000 - $500,000, so the market was still relatively small and focused on fleets. Enter Air Egress It seems that the "wrap" market really started booming after digital printing gained popularity with the advent of low-production outdoor-durable wide- format digital printers that were offered in the $30,000 range. That allowed smaller print shops into the game. Later, air egress adhesive film technology—which incorporates air channels built into the film's adhesive layer to minimize bubbles during installation—helped to really revolutionize the wrap market. These new "wrap films" made professional installers faster, and made novice installers much better. The next thing we knew, commercial vehicle wraps were much more common on the road. We also started to see some custom wraps on personal cars. molly Waters is a Technical Specialist for the Graphics Solutions division of Avery Dennison. Finding the Finest Film T o o l s & E q u i p m E n T Knowing film characteristics can help you choose the right film for the job

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