How do you all go on with the outside of the box once your pcb's are ready?
I know there are tons of diffrent ways to execute this and it would be fun to know how and what you're all doing.
I've been planning on doing water slides with inkjet now for a while, can anyone recommend a brand for papers etc or alternatives?
Currently im printing decals at my work as i work with signs and car graphics on a daily basis.
Thing is the machine i got there only prints spot colors and they are beeing printed on vinyl.
Quality is great but they are quite thick and i can't do any detailed graphics really.
I top these off with laser cutted plexiglass that i made a custom order for.
End results usually looks like this:
Awesome! Actually i bought a pack of these like 6 months ago.
When they arrived they were quite "unflat" or how to say it haha.
Haven't had a printer up untill now and they're not going through the printer becuase of that, they get stuck. I did get one through but the print quality was horrible. i tried applying it to a raw alu finished box, let it cure over night and when i woke up it had curled away from the box and had no adhesive at all.
Although i have read through the comments on the seller and it actually has great reviews, might be i got a bad batch so a week ago i reordered the same thing...
But tell me how it goes and what setting you use on the printer etc!
I've never had a 'bad batch' and i've bought from various sellers and often go for the cheapest. The bad quality prints I used to get was from the software so that might be worth checking (I use Magix graphic designer) Also printer settings, make sure it's set to photo and glossy paper.
Make sure you're aware of the two types of waterslide paper too.
Transparent for applying on light coulours
White for applying on darker colours.
Here are three boxes i finished with water slide decals. Had them printed on a very good laser colour printer which I no longer have access to, have since bought a few inkjet paper to try with my home printer but haven't had a go yet, quite skeptical though...
Also had some printed on vinyl but it doesn't achieve the same sharpness the waterslide decals yeld and the image can be slightly pixelated at closer inspection. My SHO was finished with one of those labels, can take a close up photo for comparison if anyone cares.
Well after pretty much ruining the first box I tried I've managed to get the second one pretty much as I intended it to be. With the first one I followed the instructions from the pack which included putting the thing in an oven for 10 minutes. Most people would have the common sense to ignore such an instruction, but not me. To cut a long story short the paint melted in the oven and caused the decal to shrink up, luckily I noticed the problem before paint dripped everywhere and ruined the oven. Decals - 1, Rick - 0.
This time I threw the instruction in the bin and just went for it. The decal paper doesn't seem to like being printed on so it works best if you set the printer settings to 'Best photo quality' and paper settings as 'glossy/premium', I found that the ink just didn't dry no matter how long I left it for as it doesn't seem to sink into the paper, so after an hour I misted it with Rustoleum 'Crystal Clear', like dodido said I used just enough to give it a smooth coat. I used a hair dryer to cure the clear paint then left it for 30 mins, after that it was good to use.
Doing the waterslide is actually really easy, leave the decal in warm water for 30 secs and then line it up with the top of the box and pull the paper out from underneath, again like dodido said there's plenty of time to get it into place and I used a piece of card to smooth out any air bubbles. After leaving it to dry out for a few hours I gave it a couple of coats of the Crystal Clear and left it overnight. It's not the most detailed decal but I only wanted something simple for this one:
Looks really good to me, actually i got my new batch of those 20pcs for £10 of ebay in the mail today!
those ones had a glossy finish compared to the old pack from the same store on ebay, those were dull and i never managed to print on them no matter what settings.
this new pack is flat when in the plastic bag they shipped in but just a minute outside of the pack the paper has curled pretty badly. chopped a A4 into 3 pieces and manually set the printer setting for the sizes.
first one got stuck due to the curliness of it and i thought, sigh.. here we go again.
secend went better after i tried to make it more straight by hand before putting it into the printer.
i goes through the printer without any issues. setting where glossy photo paper and color set to best/high.
results is suberb, really sharp edges. haven't had the chance to clearcoat it yet but will do tomorrow as well as apply it to a white box. did you have any issues with the paper twisting and curling like crazy?
The first sheet I took out to look at did curl up after it'd been out for a couple of minutes, after that I only took it out of the pack when I was ready to print. I think you're right about the moisture dodido, when I put mine in the water bath it curled up straight away and I had to smooth it out.
So tonight i made my first real attempt at these water slides for £10, 20pcs A4.
Clearcoated it this morning before i got of to work, applied it to the pedal after i got home.
Really satisfied with the result! And yeah, i think it has to do with humidity.. lets hope it gets better when its warmer outside!
heres the result anyway, now this only need a few runs of clearcoat!
Question is tho, then to drill the holes? Im guessing after the clearcoat....
I generally drill the holes before applying the decal, I've tried dealing first and clear coating but only succeeded in ripping it back off again when drilling. I've found it best to print a drill template first, then drill then decal, the drill holes make it easier to squeeze out any trapped air or water. Then a few clear coats and cut the holes out with a very sharp craft knife.
If it wasn't for this website I would definitely have a life.
Yeah I drilled the enclosures first too, definitely makes it easier to get rid of any bubbles. I found an easy way to get rid of the decal covering the holes was to cut a cross in the one then use a circular file to gently remove the excess, it gave me a nice clean hole.