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how do i go about cutting vinyl to a shape please?

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Post Sat Dec 13, 2008 10:02 pm

how do i go about cutting vinyl to a shape please?

Hi there, was wondering if anyone could point me in the right direction.

I need to put a design on the rear side windows of a car, will cover about half the window. Only thing is- how do I get it to fit the shape of the window?

the only thing I can think of is to apply the vinyl on the window - then cut around the border, but I presume it would scratch the glass.

I cant make a template of the window and draw over it, because I don't have a big enough scanner to get it on my computer.


What is the professional way to do this?
And if you were me, what would you do?
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Post Sat Dec 13, 2008 10:07 pm

Do you not have a plotter?
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Post Sat Dec 13, 2008 10:15 pm

Re: Cutting vinyl to shape?!?

MichaelThomas wrote:Hi there, was wondering if anyone could point me in the right direction.

I need to put a design on the rear side windows of a car, will cover about half the window. Only thing is- how do I get it to fit the shape of the window?

the only thing I can think of is to apply the vinyl on the window - then cut around the border, but I presume it would scratch the glass.

I cant make a template of the window and draw over it, because I don't have a big enough scanner to get it on my computer.


What is the professional way to do this?
And if you were me, what would you do?


Get somebody that knows what they are doing? Has done it before? (!)

You can quite easily score the vinyl once applied to the glass. There is no need to go so deep with a scalpel so as to scratch the glass.

And the rear window is NOT flat so forget about your scanner however big it is.
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Post Sat Dec 13, 2008 10:27 pm

Get somebody that knows what they are doing? Has done it before?
lol!! Gotta learn at some point.

I do have a plotter, but my windows aren't square, I cant just measure them, I'll have to draw around a template or something (which I cant get onto my computer without a scanner big enough).

Its the rear side windows that I'm doing, so the curve on it is minimal. I reckon scoring is the way to go then!

thanks for your help!
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Post Sat Dec 13, 2008 10:35 pm

Draw intersecting lines across your template scan each quarter of the template, then over lap the lines & you will have your template on screen

Kev
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Post Sat Dec 13, 2008 10:37 pm

MichaelThomas wrote:
Get somebody that knows what they are doing? Has done it before?
lol!! Gotta learn at some point.

I do have a plotter, but my windows aren't square, I cant just measure them, I'll have to draw around a template or something (which I cant get onto my computer without a scanner big enough).

Its the rear side windows that I'm doing, so the curve on it is minimal. I reckon scoring is the way to go then!

thanks for your help!


Practice on your own window. It really is not difficult. Make sure you have a sharp scalpel!
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Post Sat Dec 13, 2008 10:48 pm

Its my window its for :P
If someone asked me to do it for their car - I would refuse at this point because I haven't had any practice to know I can do a good job of it.

I'll use a fresh scalpel blade tomorrow morning and give it a try with some offcuts first.

Also - Kev, Thanks for the scanning advice, thats a smart tip!
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Post Sat Dec 13, 2008 10:50 pm

Make sure to post some pics up.
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Post Sat Dec 13, 2008 10:54 pm

If you don't see any pics - you'll know it didn't go well, haha.
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Post Mon Dec 15, 2008 7:40 pm

MichaelThomas wrote:Its my window its for :P
If someone asked me to do it for their car - I would refuse at this point because I haven't had any practice to know I can do a good job of it.

I'll use a fresh scalpel blade tomorrow morning and give it a try with some offcuts first.

Also - Kev, Thanks for the scanning advice, thats a smart tip!


A sharp new blade should not scratch the glass, as window tinters cut film on glass all the time. (Its paintwork you have to worry about)

If its a large image even the small curve of a side window can cause fingers in the shape. Can either stretch the vinyl or with some makes it is possible to shrink the fingers like window film to get it to lay flat. Only trial and error will tell.

good luck
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Post Mon Dec 15, 2008 10:06 pm

Bearing that in mind - how do people cut around doors for example?
Surely theres no safe way to cut over paintwork?
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Post Mon Dec 15, 2008 10:13 pm

It is safe to cut on the vehicle, but you need to know how, and be confident. Cutting around doors, is just a matter of angling the edge of the blade away from the paint, so as not to dig in, but with practice you can even cut on the paint.

Go to your local bodyshop, and ask for some damaged car or van wings and doors (they usually just bin them anyway)
and have a go

Peter
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Post Mon Dec 15, 2008 10:15 pm

whoops, wrong thread :oops: :oops:
Last edited by Harry Cleary on Mon Dec 15, 2008 11:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post Mon Dec 15, 2008 10:33 pm

There's some nice ways of producing these sort of images now..... :D
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Post Mon Dec 15, 2008 11:47 pm

Easy way to get stuff like this on the computer is to take a picture square on then import that into your software. Once that's done you can resize it to what ever size it needs to be.
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Post Mon Dec 15, 2008 11:48 pm

I made signs to fit my mondeo estate rear side windows using forex board,
I made the template for the signs using lining paper and masking tape which I then transferred to the forex board and cut it out using a jig saw, the signs can be removed easily when not using the car for work.
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Post Tue Dec 16, 2008 1:20 am

Good tip Peter - I've just contacted a local bloke to see If I can nick some car parts off him.

John - sorry for being stupid, but what is forex board?
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Post Tue Dec 16, 2008 10:03 pm

Forex Classic boards are perfect for a range of signage, flat & flexible a bit like foam boards but can be used interior or exterior
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Post Tue Dec 16, 2008 10:06 pm

Hand cut, and hand paint jobbie is it ?

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