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In this case, the plasticisers used are short-chain; which means that they do not bind into the film particularly efficiently, thus having a tendency to migrate out of the film and leave it brittle. These films are generally 70 to 80 micron thick and are prone to shrinkage. They are also quite stiff and hard on blade wear. Generally, the films have an expected outdoor life of 3 – 5 years for black and white and 2 – 3 years for colours. They are available in a range of matt and gloss finishes and are economically priced. They are suitable for most internal applications and selective short-term external applications. The films are barely conformable over contours and are recommended for flat-sided applications only.
These are sometimes known as stabilised films or extended life films. The plasticisers used are long-chain, which allows them to bind into the film more efficiently, thus reducing the migratory effect. These films are generally 60 to 80 microns thick and are less prone to shrinkage, typically 50% less than the Monomeric range. They feel softer and in general have an outdoor life expectancy of 7 – 8 years for black and white, 5 – 7 years for colours and 3 years for metallics. These films are primarily available in a gloss finish, although translucent and matt finishes are also obtainable. They are suitable for most external applications, but conformability over complex contours is somewhat limited.
The term “cast” refers to the manufacturing process of this type of vinyl. Making a cast vinyl film is a lot like baking a cake. The vinyl begins with a “recipe” calling for a list of ingredients known as the formulation. These materials are added to a “bowl” or mixing churn in a predetermined order while mixing at specific speed and for a set amount of time to ensure a complete and consistent mixture. This liquid mixture, known as organosol, is then precisely metered or cast onto a moving web known as the casting sheet and is then processed through a series of ovens which allows for the evaporation of solvents. When the solvents are evaporated, a solid “film” is left behind. The film is then wound up in large-diameter rolls for subsequent adhesive coating. The casting sheet determines the texture of the film.
Because the vinyl is cast on the casting sheet in a relaxed state, this material offers very good dimensional stability. This process also allows the film to be very thin (most cast films are 2 mil), which helps with the conformability of the product. Material manufacturers recommend the use of cast films on substrates such as fleets, vehicles, recreational vehicles or boats where the customer wants a “paint-like” finish that will last a long time, usually five to 12 years depending on how the film is processed.
What kind of stickers can we help you with?
How does the metallic stickers work?
Clear, Transparent and See-through stickers
Our clear sticker vinyl comes in gloss and matte. Clear sticker printing is also referred to a see-through stickers or transparent stickers. An ideal example where clear (transparent) sticker printing is used, is inside car windows or a shopfront.
We can print any color onto the clear stickers except for white. Unfortunately we can’t print white, but don’t let that get you down. Our stickers are printed with eco solvent ink which is some of the best ink on the market today. Instead of the white pieces in your artwork being white, it will be see through if you decide to use the clear sticker. If you don want the white to be white, we do have a solution for that as well. We have a white sticker with a white backing that works great for items that should be printed white.