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  • Car License Plate Styles – 3D and gel?

  • Bryce Glen

    Member
    January 5, 2020 at 12:46 pm

    Hi. I work in a shop which produces car number plates (all above board) using the cheap and simple laser print on transparent film, roller onto sticky acrylic method.

    I’m noticing more and more cars sporting the new ‘3D’ style plates, as well as the gel ones.
    I’ve no clue about these, so I’m looking for a guide to how these are made, any advice /sources for information and supplies. The 3D (as in the acrylic block lettering which protrudes several millimeters) look real smart and there’s clearly a market for it.

    I’ll send an email to my current supplier for the plates too, but any advice from the hivemind is appreciated :thumbsup:

    (And apologies if this finds itself in the wrong forum section)

  • Kevin Mahoney

    Member
    January 5, 2020 at 1:35 pm

    The ones I’ve seen are just laser cut black acrylic sometimes backed with identical sized fluorescent acrylic colours. Available on eBay or supplied by anyone local to you with a laser cutter

  • Bernard Gallagher

    Member
    January 5, 2020 at 2:08 pm

    Where are you based??

    We sell loads of the 3d Gels. We were making them in-house but because of demand we just out source the making of the digits now. Good margin on them & easy made. Only problem we have is you have to carry a large stock of digits & depending on regs you can run out of them very quick.

    We have looked at carbon & 4d but it’s more stock to carry & 99% of customers are happy with the gels.

  • Bryce Glen

    Member
    January 5, 2020 at 3:01 pm

    I’m in Scotland. How are the gel ones made, if not outsourced? Prefer to keep whatever I feasibly can in-house, unexpected demand notwithstanding.

    quote Kevin Mahoney:

    The ones I’ve seen are just laser cut black acrylic sometimes backed with identical sized fluorescent acrylic colours. Available on eBay or supplied by anyone local to you with a laser cutter

    The reason I’m asking is partly because I had already intended to get a laser cutter (and better CNC Engraver) for the shop for other notions, and then it dawned that this would be a seamless product line to add.

    I’ll need to learn how the letters are stuck, best practice for ensuring legal character spacing, what the best base plate is (metal or the better quality acrylic ones than the basic type I currently use) etc. It’s all new to me.

  • Tommy Egan

    Member
    February 14, 2020 at 7:45 am

    Off topic but can anyone help me with thermal transfer printer.

    Don’t want to buy from Tenants/Best Plates/Jephsons etc.

    Does anyone know if I buy one off the shelf or online will it work with the correct ribbon to print on reflective?

    Thinking of going for a TSC TTP 243.

    I am a registered number plate supplier.

    Using OKI C511 at the moment, non modified and the density of print is not great.

  • Martin Oxenham

    Member
    February 16, 2020 at 2:45 pm

    The 4D ones are made from Laser cut Perspex and come with an adhesive on the back. You print onto the films as normal, make the plate then stick the numbers onto the printed digits. I use an OKI C531 The firmware is altered by Tennants to get the denser colour. If you try printing in colour mode instead of Black & White, you may get a better colour.
    The settings I use for Black in colour mode Is:
    C 75
    M 68
    Y 67
    K 90

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