Arlon SLX+ reviews please?Posted by Martyn Heath on September 4, 2023 at 1:43 pm
Is anyone using Arlon SLX+?
From what I can see it should have more grab and have better fitting flexibility with regard to air temperatures?
MemberSeptember 4, 2023 at 2:08 pm
I was under the impression that the point of the material was to have less grab, be movable until you lock it and heat it.
If you’re having bother, make sure the client hasn’t used any kind of ceramic coating, or shampoo with some derivative in it. You’ll never make it stick!
MemberSeptember 4, 2023 at 4:28 pm
I havnt used the film yet hugh but looking at placing an order. I thought it was near impossible to have less grab than the standard slx?
AdministratorSeptember 4, 2023 at 10:58 pm
I could be “wrong” Martyn. But I think SLX+ is a slightly higher initial tack or has a faster bonding time than standard SLX.
I will try to explain…
I am an old-school vinyl installer and I prefer a slightly higher adhesive tack when working with “complex” wraps. It doesn’t make wrapping any easier, but it does give me peace of mind knowing where I am putting it, will stay there!
Along comes super cast vinyls with fancy adhesive systems making it very easy for most folk to install. Vinyls like Avery Supreme, 3Ms range with its control-tac system and more. Next Arlon arrived with their SLX.
SLX does have a very low tack and its repositioning ability is excellent, but almost too easy!
Now, anyone who has installed regular vinyl on a cool van surface will know it doesn’t stick just as easily as it would on a warm surface. so it gives you an easier time installing…
This is because the cold surface stiffens the adhesive, and it repels its adhesion!
Now back to SLX. it has very little tack, moves about easily blah blah…
What do you think would happen if you took this ultra-low tack vinyl and put it on a cold surface?
I would say it wouldn’t stick very well at all. However, that’s NOT the vinyl’s fault…
If the wrap is installed in the correct working environment, correct room temperature etc. then you will have zero problems. and that is not just the spec of Arlon. Any wrap should be installed to the manufacturer’s spec to avoid any kind of failure.
However, you will also know, that in real-world situations, it is not always possible to install in bright-lit temperature-controlled rooms. most of the time vinyl installers are given a corner in a car sales garage and asked to fit there, or in a big warehouse etc etc i am sure you get the picture.
Back to SLX PLUS+
As I said at the start, “I think” Arlon identified this possible issue and now gives its customers the option of the original SLX or SLX PLus+ with slightly more tack and/or faster bonding for working in lower temperature environments.
For the record, I haven’t tried SLX Plus+ but I have used and tested SLX and regularly use Arlon 6000XRP.
I would advise asking your sales rep for more clarity on the differences, Martyn.
One thing to remember, and I think this applies to most wrapping vinyls these days. But if you are only doing a single-part wrap or vehicle, you can buy in 15m – 25m and 50m print and lam kits.
MemberSeptember 5, 2023 at 4:04 am
“SLX+ is a slightly higher initial tack or has a faster bonding time than standard SLX.”
this is exactly my thoughts as well, and saying that it would be more practical to use especially as you rarely in a temperature-controlled 18c workshop to fit the jobs.
Funny you mentioned the part roll, This is exactly why I am looking at SLX+ as I can get a 15m bundle from Ireland “Walsh graphics”. This is not available out here in Finland, my wrap options are avery and 3m which are full rolls and pricey. Another option is Mactac JT 10700 xr which I can get by the metre but I’m still undecided on how good the film is as people rarely seem to use it.
My thoughts were that SLX is a household name.
This is for my own van btw.
MemberSeptember 5, 2023 at 6:06 am
Its good vinyl. It’s the only wrap vinyl I’ve used for few years now.
MemberSeptember 5, 2023 at 7:59 am
I got my first roll of SLX a couple of weeks ago, only because my supplier had run out of 3M 180
1. It was a hundred bucks cheaper for the kit than 3m180
2. It prints well. I have an ongoing job to install giant decals on either side of these monster seed drill machines.The decals are mostly black. 100% black on the HP printer is an insipid grey-brown, so I print these things in “register colour” which consists of 100% of all of CMYK, perhaps the heaviest ink load possible on this machine. I use maximum heat, with full inter pass delay, in order to get this flood of ink to dry properly, which gives the most beautiful black I have seen on any printer.
The vinyl takes the ink well, and doesnt curl during the drying process.
3. When you laminate it it seems to remain silvery for a few days, but once it flattens out it is beautiful and rich. The 3m doesnt really silver at all.
4. As has been said already, the initial stick is very weak, to the point I thought there was something wrong with it, and its super easy to repostion, but with a bit of heat and some elbow grease it seems to go down okay. Its early days and I havent had any complaints, yet.
5. The vinyl/laminate combo appears to be quite a lot thinner than the 3M I am used to, but it seems to take stretching in its stride.
Overall Im happy with it. I Might make this permanent, since Im saving decent money on each roll.
MemberSeptember 5, 2023 at 9:05 am
Arlon SLX is my go to wrap vinyl.
I’ve not used the SLX+ but from what I understand Rob’s description is correct.
There’s a number of other manufacturers bringing media media out that they claim to be comparable to SLX… which should speak volumes. The prices I’ve been quoted for these, aren’t significant enough to move from SLX.
Until recently I printed on the Roland using solvent inks, and the material does perform much better/differently when printed on the Latex, it certainly has more ‘flite’.
MemberSeptember 5, 2023 at 12:50 pm
Thanks for the info guys. I will pull the trigger on the order and find out for myself 👍
MemberSeptember 7, 2023 at 4:42 pm
@MartynHeath what printer are you using?
I did my first van wrap using SLX printed out HP Latex, and it was a different material (in a good way)
If using solvent inks, make sure it out gasses fully.
MemberSeptember 8, 2023 at 4:55 am
i am running an old mutoh 1614 which your unable to get the slx profile for. I use avery 1105 for my wrap materials and yes i think this affects how the vinyl performs.
I leave my prints for 72hrs before laminating
MemberSeptember 8, 2023 at 4:57 am
It’s a good film and prints well, so MD5 or your Avery profile will probably be right.
AdministratorSeptember 11, 2023 at 10:59 pm
72 Hrs is plenty Martyn, but make sure plenty of air can get at them.
Also, if you have them sitting on their side. rotate the side it’s sitting on every 12 hours or so.
By that I mean, stand it on opposite sides, then turn it over occasionally.
Different inks affect vinyl differently, most noticeable is Wrapping materials because most rely on how they perform to install them. In particular the adhesive, but also the vinyl film itself.
If you don’t have the correct profile, try others as David suggested. Some generic profiles work a treat, while others can be a minefield. do some small test prints up the width of the roll and let them dry. have a play and see if any noticeable difference. its always better to waste a couple of feet of vinyl than do a full print run and end up screaming throughout the whole installation. 🤣
best of luck mate.
MemberSeptember 12, 2023 at 9:01 am
MemberSeptember 13, 2023 at 6:26 pm
We use SLX+ by default on all wraps – tried everything and left it to the team to decide which they preferred / performed the best – they all wanted SLX+.
I seem to recall there a multiple laminates to go with it though, albeit can’t remember the differences, sure they are all gloss but possibly different thicknesses / performance characteristics – you are best checking with your supplier.
AdministratorSeptember 15, 2023 at 1:45 am
You have reminded me something about the laminate options too, David. And like you, I cannot remember either! 🤔
This is going to bug me now. 🧐🤣
MemberSeptember 14, 2023 at 5:29 pm
We use Arlon SLX for all printed wraps, have done for about 2 years now.
I love it. It does have an inital low tack and is easy to fit but as long as it’s installed at correct temperature it’s fine. I have today printed 30metres of SLX + this is for a trailer wrap that I am installing next week.
First time that I will have fitted the plus version so I’ll see how it goes.
This particular trailer, although flat, has a lot of frames and the cutomer wanted them wrapped in the same pattern.
Possibly overkill for this particular job but the owner wanted a high end product so….
I will feed back if people are interested.
Incidently, I use Arlon Premium Colour change wherever I can too.
I personally think Arlon have really got it together with their products.
AdministratorSeptember 15, 2023 at 1:50 am
I will feed back if people are interested.
Please do, Tim. I enjoy hearing what others think of different vinyl materials and why.
It also makes great reading for people googling subjects like this and finding experienced people giving educated views and opinions. 👍
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