• Shadow nightmare

    Posted by Jill on July 2, 2002 at 5:59 pm

    I use signlab, when I do my text then apply a block shadow,weld & apply reg marks it never seems to line up properly, even if I put it together letter by letter the text never seems to fit to the shadow resulting in a small gap between shadow and text which shows the van colour and looks awful.
    What am I doing wrong?

    Mike Brown replied 21 years, 11 months ago 4 Members · 8 Replies
  • 8 Replies
  • Brian Hays

    July 2, 2002 at 6:16 pm

    I don’t think you are doing anything wrong, it will never match exactly if the text has been welded. Maybe you could add a small outline to the block shadow, or have a small space between the shadow & the text. Often it looks better one of those ways anyway.

  • Andrew Blackett

    July 2, 2002 at 6:18 pm

    i take it jill, that you’re just using the basic weld function??
    I just did this one and it looks Ok to me:

    does yours look ok on screen? what we used to do, before I discovered clear app. tape and when I wasn’t too good at vinyl (no comments required thanks 😉 ) We used to cut the whole thing in say the text colour (cut the shadow as well) weed as normal then remove the shadow pieces. Then cut the shadow in the other colour, and put the whole thing together on the release paper of the first colour, kind of like a jigsaw. It may be worth doing a couple of tests of this to see if its something wrong in the setup of signlab, or whether your just being very un-lucky!


  • Brian Hays

    July 2, 2002 at 6:26 pm

    The straight bits will be ok it’s the curves that cause problems 🙄

  • Brian Hays

    July 2, 2002 at 6:27 pm

    Like these maybe Jill……….

  • Andrew Blackett

    July 2, 2002 at 6:27 pm

    with what brian, the weld or my jigsaw method??

    I used that for about 2 1/2 years without any problems 😉


  • Brian Hays

    July 2, 2002 at 6:29 pm

    When you weld the curves rarely match 100% Andy, it depends on the font, the size & stuff though.

  • Jill

    July 2, 2002 at 7:27 pm

    I use basic weld but on screen after I get little hair line out lines between text and shadow as if the whole thing has moved after welding.I will try your method Andy, it is usualy e’s and a’s like Brian said anything curvy.



  • Mike Brown

    July 2, 2002 at 9:39 pm


    the answer is…don’t weld!

    If I understand you correctly you’re creating a shadow to compliment some text then selecting them both and performing a ‘std’ weld and then having problems re-aligning them on the vehicle or sign…

    This is known as ‘in-laying’ and whilst it is used in a few situations – this is not usually one of them. The vinyl is so thin that it’ll change shape slightly just from the pressure of your squeegee and it’s very difficult to match the pieces up!

    Do this…

    decide on your text…

    create the shadow to go with it…

    DON’T weld them …just seperate them on screen and cut each in the chosen colour.

    Apply the shadow and then (preferably using transparent application tape – so you can see what you’re doing!) apply the text directly over the top – NO GAPS!

    As Brian said – sometimes a visual gap around the text is another quite normal alternative and can look attractive as the gap colour adds ‘another’ feature to the text in question…to get this effect do this:

    Select both the text and shadow on screen. Next, click on the weld button down the left hand side and out will pop the weld options. Then, click on the last option (far right with the letters ‘IL’). This is the In-Lay weld option.

    Another box will appear that depicts the media (another name for the panel) and the different coloured vinyls that will be placed on it – remember this is shown in cross section. So our example depicts the media with, first down – the dark green shadow followed by the lighter green text on top. Choose what gap you want between the text and shadow in the box marked ‘bleed distance’ (notice the negative value -3mm) and then click OK.

    Alternatively you could ‘surround’ the text by extending the shadow around it…this is simply an option shown as ‘oultine’ during the normal block shadow process…this too would be cut without welding and then applied so as to leave dark green showing around the text.

    Hope that helps…anything else just ask! 😉

    more soon

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