Steps In Wrapping A Vehicle

Full van wraps range from $4000 to $6000 installed.  Let’s discuss the steps involved in producing a wrap, as well as the process of installation.

graphic design color swatches

Design & Layout

The first step for a vehicle wrap is to digitally fit the design to the make and model vehicle that it will be applied to.  We custom fit the wrap to each panel of the vehicle, and use a separate perforated vinyl for the windows.  Our designers must ensure that the design elements fit together seamlessly along the curves of the vehicle once applied.  We usually request photos of your vehicle to double check that the wrap will fit perfectly.  We also ensure that the colors print true to the design, and make any adjustments to our files before it goes to print.

Print & Lamination

We use premium 3M wrap film 1080 vinyl for all of our vehicle wraps, as well as original OEM ink on our Mimaki JV33 printers for consistent, vibrant color.  After the vinyl is printed, it must be cured for at least 24 hours before it goes into lamination.  The laminate we use for every vehicle wrap is a clear film 3M 8519 overlay laminate.  A laminate is key to the longevity of your wrap, as it protects from UV rays that will fade the color, and protect against scratches and scuffs.

Wrap Prep and Placement

Vehicle Prep & Placement

When the vinyl is ready to be installed, the vehicle is prepped inside our climate controlled wrap shop.  The temperature must be kept constant, as vinyl will not conform and adhere properly if it is too hot or too cold.  An enclosed bay ensures that dust and tiny debris particles don’t get caught underneath the wrap.  Every inch of the vehicle must be prepped by cleaning with alcohol, and dried with lint free paper towels.  Some areas are primed to add extra adhesion strength.  Each wrap panel is then taped to the vehicle to verify size and placement before the application begins.

Wrap Installation

Wrap Installation

When properly installed, a wrap on a vehicle should look like paint.  Our 3M installers are highly trained, and able to conform the vinyl around moulding, rivets, and window frames for a flawless finish.  Sometimes exterior items will be removed before the wrap application.  We discuss any exterior prep and removal before proceeding.  The vinyl is carefully smoothed and formed to the curves of the vehicle with special tools and heat guns.  Wrapping is very labor intensive.  It takes approximately 16 man hours to properly wrap a van.

Courtyard Van Wrap

Finished Product

From start to finish, a van wrap takes about 24 man hours to achieve.  A team of 6 people participates in every wrap, from design to production to installation.  So, the cost of the wrap is largely due to the amount of specialized labor that goes into the process.  Signworks began as a wrap company, and our 35 years of experience has taught us that you can’t cut corners and get a good, lasting results.  A wrap is an investment, so you want to be sure your wrap looks great and lasts for years.  Read How To Compare Vehicle Wrap Quotes to find out what to look for when comparing wrap quotes.