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  • Tanker graphics- things to look out for

    Posted by Martyn Heath on December 14, 2021 at 3:55 pm

    Hi guys, im working on designs at the moment to the customers spec for a large 12m tanker.

    Due to the rounded shape which ive not tackled before, i was wondering if anyone could give any pointers if youve done similar job in the past.

    As always, im on my own on this one so coming up with a game plan is always my no 1 priority.

    What ive been thinking so far is- untaped air release, fitting in 3m sections. squegee through the middle horizontally then tackle north and south of that line. Im guessing if you were to try and squegee vertical all the way you would create a tension line due to the curve??

    Im also looking to get a laser level for this job, ping a line as theres not much to measure off.


    Martyn Heath replied 2 years, 5 months ago 5 Members · 11 Replies
  • 11 Replies
  • RobertLambie

    December 14, 2021 at 8:50 pm

    I have done loads of artic trucks and tankers over the years. Many fully wrapped with others part wrapped or just graphics.

    To get the level you want to find the chassis line and measure up from it. make a mark and move along, and repeat.
    Then, use 50mm masking tape. run the tape along the marks in one continuous line approximately the length your graphic will be.

    What this will do is.
    1, Allow you to stand right back and physically see if you are happy with the level.
    2, It will also let you see if the line will run into any obstacles. (see the attached GAP Tanker schoolboy error)
    this graphic is running straight, but the supports at the front come around an extra 50mm or so higher than the ones at the back.

    You want to run the graphics at the same angle as the tank. running them level will not work. hence why running with the chassis line is the best bet.

    Sometimes you cannot get access to the chassis line to measure from because pipes or cases are mounted to the side. however, these pipes and cases are often run from the chassis line too. so you can measure up from them in the same fashion.

    You are correct about your process.
    Tape the graphics completely into place and work from the middle up using a centre hinge.
    then repeat by taking the lining paper out and working your way down. as shown in the attached illustration.

    Where “you will” struggle. is because you are working alone.
    I would normally have an apprentice holding back the flap of vinyl because as you squeegee the top section down, gravity will want the print to flap down onto the top of the take.
    The times of print i use are only 52inches wide, yours will be 3 metres wide, but much shorter. still, this part will be awkward. so try and allow for this happening.

  • Martyn Heath

    December 15, 2021 at 6:03 am

    Outstanding Rob, thanks very much for your timeπŸ‘

    This is going to be done out of solid vinyl, layered due to the colour match. I was looking to use a wrap film to allow me to strip all the backing off and make it easier for my one pair of hands but then using the same method of working through the middle then up and down. Or would you recommend app taping to hold the shape?

    • This reply was modified 2 years, 6 months ago by  Martyn Heath.
    • This reply was modified 2 years, 6 months ago by  Martyn Heath.
  • Karen White

    December 15, 2021 at 1:24 pm

    loving the big milk tanker rob. the smart car next to it looks tiny! ❀

    • RobertLambie

      December 15, 2021 at 7:10 pm

      Thanks Karen πŸ‘

  • Joe Killeen

    December 15, 2021 at 2:38 pm

    Hi Martyn

    This is a trailer we do alot of and looks a bit like what you are doing, I use a laser level but as Rob said I lock the laser to a straight point on the trailer then raise the laser up the tripod to the start line of the graphic. I set up two sections of my scaffold which makes a platform 5m long.

    In most cases theses tanks are welded together, I use this weld joint to split my graphic.

    It’s all wet applied cad vinyl layered, takes me a full day to do one of these on my own, two sides, rear and the reflective markings.

    Hope this helps in some way.


    • RobertLambie

      December 15, 2021 at 7:09 pm

      Nice looking Tanker, Joe. well done mate!

    • Martyn Heath

      December 16, 2021 at 12:07 pm

      Thats great joe. Thanks for the advice, tanker looks spot on

  • Peter Cassidy

    December 16, 2021 at 10:04 am

    Those three tankers are very nice! πŸ‘

  • Martyn Heath

    December 16, 2021 at 2:54 pm

    Regarding laser levels (which ive been meening to purchase for a while) do they all have the same attributes? Is self leveling best? even tho for this instance and many others you dont want a level line, you want a body line to go from.

    • Joe Killeen

      December 16, 2021 at 6:12 pm

      Hi Martyn

      I think most if not all self level I just made sure I got one that you can lock the laser (turn off self leveling) I think Signgeer do a good one, oh and the green ones are easier to see in all conditions.

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