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laminate straight away or wait for the print to de-gas?

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Phillip Jhonson

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Post Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:34 pm

laminate straight away or wait for the print to de-gas?

do you guys laminate straight away or wait for the print to de-gas?/laminate after 12 hours??

also what are the potential problems of laminating straight away. I am looking to apply film laminate on to just over 2 meter vehicle wrap panels as wet application.

Any advice??

Cheers
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Jamie Wood

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 12:09 am

We usually try to allow 24 hours for outgassing, as per manufacturer's
instructions. It's not always possible, so I try to gauge it on ink coverage. If
simple text, I give it a minimum of 4-5 hours, if solid colours, then a minimum
of 12 hours. This is one of the reasons that I think print and cut machines are
less suitable for our needs than separate machines, as you have to take the job
off the machine to gas out anyway. Be interesting to hear other people's take
on this.
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Matty Goodwin

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 12:16 am

Hi!
Why do you need to laminate straight away? If you no the jobs coming up why can't you let the print degas before laminating?

Are you really wrapping wet? See previous threads!
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John Childs

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 12:25 am

Totally agree with Jamie, although some really heavy coverage stuff we prefer to leave for forty eight hours.

Matt, I think Philip means he is going to laminate wet, rather than apply to a vehicle. I guess because he'll be doing it by hand rather than with a laminator.

Whilst I've got your attention, I've been trying to call you. Have you been getting the messages?
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Matty Goodwin

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 12:29 am

I stand corrected..... :oops:
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Shane Drew

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 1:53 am

The advice here is good.

Remember though that digital prints dry with air flow not evaporation.

I've built a 400mm x 400mm tube with a raised floor and an exhaust fan blowing air from the top down over the print. I use it if a need to laminate later on the day.

Have it wound outward loosely, and he constant air flow over the print will buy you a fair amount of time to be able to laminate it later.

Run you finger over the print while it is in the tube, and when you can't notice a difference between the feel of the printed area and the non printed area, it is safe to assume that it will be ok to laminate.

hope that helps
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Robert Lambie

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 1:58 am

laminating premature is always a gamble. but something NOT even worth risking when vehicle wrapping. its a totally different ball game altogether.

if you are talking about vehicle wrapping...
*leave laminating a "minimum" of 24hrs to out-gas, but best to leave them 48hrs.
*during the drying time make sure the vinyl is hung shortest by its length.
i.e. if the panel is 40inches x 80inches it should be hung with the drop of 40inches, (on its side)
*solvent is heavier than air and instead of evaporating it falls/drops. so if you lay a print face up on a table. the solvent will pass down through the vinyl and make the vinyl become very elasticated. the adhesive will also become tacky/gooey until the vinyl has been properly out-gased.
*if you sit the print coiled up loose on its side on the floor. this "will" allow it to dry quicker. however, at the base of the vinyl the solvent cannot drop away from the print so you will find the bottom of the coiled vinyl will take much longer to dry out than further up the vinyl. so best to levitate the vinyl even if just 6 inches or more from the ground. (hope that makes sense)

if you do not have a laminator and you need to apply the lamination by hand, wet, then so be it... but i really would leave the prints another two to three days after laminating wet because i recon you could easily end up with delamination of the laminate where you stretch the vinyl into a recessed area.

jamie, i know where you are coming from mate and agree to an extent, but the majority of print-cut jobs our machine does is stickers and labels. very seldom do they require laminate.
we did a repeat job a few weeks back,for about the 3rd time now and its roughly £10,000 worth of printed reflective vinyl, contour cut to form templates of vehicles. none are laminated... the machine just kept printed and cutting whilst we got on with other work. only reloading when the vinyl log ws spent.
vehicle wraps, truck wraps etc are all rectangular prints. take it out the printer, laminate then trim up with a straight edge and knife.
the only time we need to reload the printer after lamination is if there is large printed logos or graphics.
at least thats what i have found the past 5-6 years we have had our print and cut machine.
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Robert Lambie

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 2:00 am

hoy! Mr Drew.... your supposed to be recovering and a bit slow/stiff just now... where did your post come from whilst i was typing? :lol1: :oops: :wink:
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Shane Drew

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 2:16 am

Robert Lambie wrote:hoy! Mr Drew.... your supposed to be recovering and a bit slow/stiff just now... where did your post come from whilst i was typing? :lol1: :oops: :wink:

:lol1: :lol1:
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John Childs

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 7:51 am

Robert Lambie wrote:jamie, i know where you are coming from mate and agree to an extent, but the majority of print-cut jobs our machine does is stickers and labels. very seldom do they require laminate.

And that's why you and I disagree on print and cut. The vast majority of our work requires lamination and contour cutting. :D

Shane, a lot of good stuff there but don't forget that, like concrete, the "drying" of ink is also partly a chemical curing process. No matter how much we heat, or blow air, over prints, that process will happen in it's own sweet time.
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Shane Drew

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 8:16 am

John Childs wrote:And that's why you and I disagree on print and cut. The vast majority of our work requires lamination and contour cutting. :D

Shane, a lot of good stuff there but don't forget that, like concrete, the "drying" of ink is also partly a chemical curing process. No matter how much we heat, or blow air, over prints, that process will happen in it's own sweet time.


fair comment John. I wouldn't suggest it for every job, but only those emergency types that we get from time to time. you can't beat the 'natural' course of events. Like you, 90% of my print and cut is laminated, so proper curing is not something you can fudge unfortunately.
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Neil Kelly

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 12:29 pm

Interesting info hear I like the raised platform with the fan Shane. We are new to the print and cut world and still finding our feet. unfortunately due to bad planning we have laminated within 3 to 4 hours of printing what are the consequences are going to see these jobs back due to failure how long will it take to de-laminate if its going to. Whats the best method solution for gassing out hanging, rolling up, leaving out on the bench was our previous option but reading Robs comments im going to re think this and use an alternative method. Thanks for all the tips guys.

neil..
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John Childs

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 12:51 pm

Neil,

Those are a "how long is a piece of string" question.

You may get away with it if there isn't too much ink density, no excessive stretching, it's environment isn't too extreme, and other factors. As Shane intimates, we've all done it in an emergency, but it is to be avoided as much as possible.

I also look at the customer. If it's a one off local job where, in the event of a problem, you can apologise and have the van back in for repair with little cost, then I'd be more inclined to take a risk. On the other hand, if it's a multiple vehicle job, and they are all spread all across the country, then rectification cost would be prohibitive, so I wouldn't even think about it.

As for drying method, practicality comes into it too. We couldn't hang up prints because sometimes we'd need another unit just to fill with washing lines. That method also increases handling, giving a greater risk of damage. Our practice is to just leave the prints wound loosely onto a roll, store vertically, lifted with a bit of an air gap at the bottom. We use some plastic roll transit protectors screwed to a plank of wood, which gives us about an inch or so of clearance. That's enough if your room is reasonably well ventilated and has some air movement.


As an aside, I see that we both joined UKSB on the same date. Does that make us twins? :D
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Robert Lambie

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Post Fri Apr 02, 2010 3:46 pm

John Childs wrote:
Robert Lambie wrote:jamie, i know where you are coming from mate and agree to an extent, but the majority of print-cut jobs our machine does is stickers and labels. very seldom do they require laminate.

And that's why you and I disagree on print and cut. The vast majority of our work requires lamination and contour cutting. :D


i understand and agree with you john, some times separate print and cut machines do make sense. but you disagreeing with me is down to our lines of work within our trade.
my views and opinions given on a print and cut machine are based on me being an all-round signmaker. where as you specialise solely in vehicle graphics where really you should "always" laminate.
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Neil Kelly

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Post Tue Apr 06, 2010 9:31 am

Thanks John for the tips and invaluable advise Re Twins another 6119 posts from me should make us a little closer :)

neil...

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