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Vinyl Stipe Installation Question

2426 Views 14 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  Fryguy_pa
I am in the lovely process of installing my Baltimore Street Mods vinyl stripe kit and had a question.

I am having a tough time doing the vinyl on the front bumper. The curves there are crazy! Just wondering if anyone out there can give me some pointers on how to do this. The great people at BSM are going to send me another front bumper kit, so I am looking for ideas.

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It is hard. I placed and smoothed a little bit at a time starting from the top, if it is real wet it will not stick. I also used a hairdryer to heat up the vinyl a bit.

I have the Baltimore kit as well. I was a bit dissapointed in the rear as it is 3 pieces, the overlap looks a bit crappy up close, and it wasn't cut to well around the rear emblem, and the rear plate.
One guy on TMS that I PM'd said that once you have them overlapped, take a sharp razorblade and carefully cut the overlap in the middle. If you cut it right, you should be able to toss the overlapping pieces and have an almost invisible seam. May try that on the rear tomorrow.

My stripes are bright red, what did you choose? Black?
I got a set of White. So it will be White on Silver...
I had my vinyl stripes done at a professional vinyl shop. If you look close you can see that there are seams on the cuves of the front bumber and trunk lid. Not noticable to a regular glance, but if you feel and look they overlapped the vinyl and created seams. They told me (along with some other vinyl people) that the vinyl is not really meant to bend that much and a seam is needed

I have the same problem with the fronts as well. I'm also waiting for a set of replacements from BSM (they should be here today). Rob at BSM recommended attaching the top first, letting it dry, and then continuing to work down. He also mentioned that some people were cutting them to help get them to lay right.

I have black stripes, and I found that the seam at the rear is hard to see unless you're right on top of it (and the car is really clean). If people are planning to "show" the car, then a painted stripe is more appropriate. By the way, how many bubbles do you have?
I found that the rear bumper was the hardest, especially the very lowest lip below the license plate, and is where I still have a couple bubbles.
I have a pretty good gap between the stripe and the rear emblem. My instructions said to use 2" wide tape, with the decal 1/8" off the tape, but the instructions on the web site say to use 1-1/2" tape. What does your instructions say?
I'm the creative director in a sign shop, so let me add my $.02--

Good quality vinyl can be stretched and molded to curves, but there are limits. Heating it with a hairdryer can help a lot, and a heat gun is even better. once it's hot and formed to shape (and stuck down), spray it with cold water to help set the shape and reduce later shrinkage. Squeegy with a fair bit of pressure to force water out and break the micro capsules in the adhesive. A couple drops of soap in the water can help break surface tension and reduce bubbles.
Seams - all vinyl shrinks over time, so don't cut the overlap back enough that the vinyl "butts" end to end. Eventually, you will have a slight space where the vinyl receded. Having said that, top end materials don't shrink much, and it can take years. If the vinyl is top end, 1/8 inch should be good.

Hope That helps.
Took mine to a Vinyl Graphics installer. Cost around $150 to have installed. Call your local FD and find out who does theirs. Mine came out flawless in white. Check it out:smoke:


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Finished it up today, well except for the front bumper. Here are some pics.
The stripes may not be 100% perfect, but they are close enough for me.

As for bubbles, I do not know yet as it is currently sitting in the sun to dry as per the instructions. From what I can tell, there are not too many in the vinyl. Where I have seen a few is right where you wrap around an edge. Hopefully those go away soon.


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Looks really good !! Nifty color choice.:) happy are you guys with the quality of the stripes,,,im lookin to get some for my car and the site you got them from is the cheapest ive seen them for.... thanks...
I cannot complain about the quality of the Vinyl, it is the 3M stuff. It is easy to work with, very forgiving, and looks really good. And to say that they will go out of their way for you if you have a problem, is an understatement!

If you do order from BSM, tell them you saw it here.
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