Customs: Small-Run Sticker service?

Discussion in 'Creative General Discussion' started by Kouri, Jul 11, 2011.

  1. Kouri

    Kouri kupo

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    Iv'e been sitting around the sign shop thinking about how to make use of some of the spare materials we have sitting about. Long story short, was thinking about starting up a service where you guys can get a set of stickers for cheap that'd be hard to come by otherwise.

    Things coming to mind would be carbon fiber stripes for DotM Bumblebee or maybe something weird, like a set of purple and black flames for your Shattered-Glass Movie-verse Prime or something. Exact color matching would be a bit difficult, and, for the time being, something as time-intensive as a full set of stickers for Fort Max would be out of the question, but I'm way open to suggestions.

    For now, what with the DotM just coming out, I'll be working on replacement BB stripes and a set of flames that can be scaled to the different Optimus figures. The carbon fiber would be printed on high-performance vinyl.

    We can laminateprinted stickers to prevent scratching and fading, but it'd make the material a bit thicker, so you may just want to clear with your preferred method. Things like the Op Flames would be done in single-color vinyl that wouldn't fade, but you would be able to ask for a custom-printed color or gradient if you needed it.

    So yeah, longest story short, just asking about the interest in such an endeavor before I go and spend all the time. I'm talking lots about DotM stuff, but I could design/cut/print for just about anything I can get measurements on. Wouldn't need to be very large orders, if it's something simple I don't mind a one-off project.
     
  2. hthrun

    hthrun Show accuracy's overrated

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    I'd definitely be interested in any stickers that Reprolabels doesn't cover....
     
  3. destrongerlupus

    destrongerlupus #MoreSawBoss

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    Are you available for doing the design work as well? There's a TON of stuff I'd love to see happen. Diaclone-badges spring to top of mind...
     
  4. Kouri

    Kouri kupo

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    I'm plenty used to design. Heck, with a clear picture and some measurements, I could probably replicate a sticker sheet from way back.

    Only two limits, really.

    (1) We've got a great printer, but nothing for white or metal inks. We can print on white or clear materials though.

    (2) There's a limit to how small can cut details into the solid color vinyl, but most things that small could just be printed anywho.

    Hoping to have some sample up by the end of the week.
     
  5. Tigertrack

    Tigertrack Back In The Game!

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    I'd like to see transparent stickers done for Starscreams Ghost.
    I also need a set of stickers for the KO Mini-Seekers as well.
     
  6. Kouri

    Kouri kupo

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    Mm, printing purple onto clear vinyl'd be no problem. I might already have the vector files for the Decepticon emblem. I'd need sizes for those though.

    Speaking of emblems, I'm having trouble finding a clear shot of those Diaclone badges you mentioned. Mind tossing some reference over PM?
     
  7. Insane Galvatron

    Insane Galvatron is not insane. Really!

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    Can you print white on clear stickers or waterslide decals? I can scan some NASCAR decals and resize them to fit either the deluxe or human alliance wreckers. That way we can make our own custom wreckers with other NASCAR drivers paint schemes.
     
  8. Kouri

    Kouri kupo

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    Our printer's basic CMYK. No white or metallic inks. Not currently setup for waterslide decals. All we've got in stock for printing material are gloss white vinyl, matte white vinyl, clear vinyl, gloss white banner, and some garment transfer material.

    I'd be willing to experiment with small white lettering cut out of white vinyl. Essentially it would be a set of individually cut white letters. They'd be lifted as a set via a transfer material (think really low-tac tape) and applied as one single sticker. Transfer peels off and leaves the letters behind. That small, though, and you'd probably want to clear over the letters to prevent peeling a few months later.
     
  9. Tigertrack

    Tigertrack Back In The Game!

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    Hey again, I've got two requests. I am doing some WST customs using Sideswipe and Red-Alert and make them into Clampdown and Deepcover. I need some WST sized stickers for those figures. Any possibility of doing so?
     
  10. Kouri

    Kouri kupo

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    Replicating the Clampdown and Deepcover stickers shouldn't be too much of an issue. Had to tackle Deep's door sticker today, in fact. The problem is getting everything to fit. I can see about copying the designs, so long as you can give me exact measurements for what you need. I'll be running some tests to see how small our printer can print while keeping detail.

    Anywho, showing off a bit since we had some clear material to spare.

    [​IMG]

    Forgive any errors with the Autobot and Decepticon emblems. I left my files on another computer and had to look up vectors online right quick. The ones here are half-inch each way. But yes, I mentioned clear material, soooo:

    [​IMG]

    I'll try and get some samples on the gloss white for tomorrow while I work on Bumble's new stripes.

    Big note on these stickers, though. They're a good deal different from paper stickers: a bit trickier to apply, but much much more durable. The clear material, especially, will pick up any fingerprints if you touch the back while applying, but I'd send everything you would need to apply without a problem.

    Also, the machine -will- automatically cut the stickers after printing. I didn't bother here since it was just a test, but you can rest assured I won't be making any of you handcut these.
     

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    Last edited: Jul 14, 2011
  11. Tigertrack

    Tigertrack Back In The Game!

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    Hmmm, I'm not sure what the size would need to be. Perhaps I can send you my extra WST Tigertrack for sizing? I've got two extra WST Tigertracks that I purchased just for the weapons. I can send you one for sizing up the Clampdown and Deepcover stickers. PM me with details.
     
  12. destrongerlupus

    destrongerlupus #MoreSawBoss

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    These look so brilliant! As for measurements, I'm personally looking to plaster these on a BUNCH of diaclone-classics-customs including Powered Convoy, so a variety of saaayyy, 1/8, 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, and 1" labels on however big a sheet you want to throw together would make *Me* happy, others might want something more specific to suit repro-replacement needs or what have you...
     
  13. destrongerlupus

    destrongerlupus #MoreSawBoss

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    I'd probably throw down for a sheet of 'Bot and 'Con labels too, and depending on your pricing if you can compete with a logo-assort like, *ahem* this or even just wahatever you thought looked cool/fun from *ahem* here I'd definitely support you!

    I suppose it all depends on how the economics slice out, but a *slightly* more PITA to deal with product supporting a friend at a cheaper price would override my usual loyalty to the fine fine folks at you-know-where.

    Just sayin'

    Or if you'd just prefer to do really small sheets of specific-requests, I'd be all over that too, whatever will make your workflow easier :) 
     
  14. Kouri

    Kouri kupo

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    I'll get back to you guys on cost as soon as I can. I just need to be able to cover the cost of starting up the printer and any material used up, so I'd probably have to wait for a few orders to stack up. I only tested today because there was other work going out.

    As far as sizes, I need to test some more to see how small the machine will accurately print and cut. Our max printable area is just under 53", so anything under that is doable. Solid color vinyls will be limited to under 29". I somehow doubt, though, that we'll reach those limits, unless someone wants to throw some graphics on the car (s)he drives.

    Speaking of graphics, these are high quality materials you wouldn't find normally for stickers. Even the ink for printing is guaranteed for 2-3 years unlaminated in the Florida sun and weather, so they should hold up just fine in a collection.

    Still, I do aim for competitive pricing, and I don't see something like an assorted faction sheet costing over $10. I'll probably charge a premium for design work, though stickers after that will be discounted plenty.

    Also, since I'm whipping these up on-demand, don't worry about having to order a pre-determined size or set. It takes all of two minutes to re-type sizes and group projects together, so it wouldn't be a problem to order something like three Autobot emblems at 3/8", a square foot of 1/32 carbon fiber, a 24" Decepticon emblem for the roof of your car, and a few WST upgrades. I'll probably end up charging by the total square footage, not by how many stickers you're asking.

    Tigertrack, I'll hit you up for info later on, but that sounds doable. I think we can work out a reasonable deal, but I just need to get to bed right now.
     
  15. destrongerlupus

    destrongerlupus #MoreSawBoss

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    Sounds great! Subscribing to the thread to stay in the loop, as ever you are THE MAN, always great ideas from you!

    D/L
     
  16. Superquad7

    Superquad7 We're only human. Super Mod

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    I think if you're going to have trouble color matching, my best advice would be to make labels that don't need color matching. Racing stripes (as you mentioned) would be a good idea. Keep us posted!
     
  17. Insane Galvatron

    Insane Galvatron is not insane. Really!

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    You know, I might be willing to try that. If you print all the other colors on white, but then have each letter and sponsor decal cut right along it's edges, that could work. Heck, maybe better than waterslide because you don't have a clear sticker covering the shiny paint between the letters and decals. If you still want to try, PM me your email address as well as the specs you need the scan to be. I'll scan my NASCAR decal sheet, resize it, and email it to you. If it works well, I'll probably buy several sets in several sizes. I'll start buying up all the wreckers I can find for customs. :D 
     
  18. Kouri

    Kouri kupo

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    I should probably clarify on the color matching issue.

    First off is the pre-colored vinyl material. I don't know how clear I've been about this previously, but not everything has to be printed.

    [​IMG]

    Those're all rolls of sticker material. This vinyl is basically a sheet of colored plastic with adhesive on back. The advantage of this material is you don't really have to worry about the color fading or scratching off. You're basically layering another piece of plastic over your figure. We also get material in that would be impossible to replicate via printing such as brushed metal or reflective colors. The downside is the relatively smaller color selection and lack of detail. We can only cut so small and you can only lay one color at a time.

    Below I've some examples using solid red and white vinyl. The Autobot insignia was a test that wasn't meant for this figure, but I figured I'd toss it on for laughs. I think the image does show, however, how well vinyl graphics hug onto details. The Nobody insignia on the DS is pretty straight-forward, but through planning ahead we were able to save on material and incorporate the DS's black coloring into the design.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Our other option is the printing vinyl material, available in clear, gloss white, and matte white. If a sticker needs lots of detail, needs to be small, and/or needs to match a color, this is the material of choice.

    I -can- match colors. Heck, we keep a color chart on the wall of every major color our printer puts out:

    [​IMG]

    The issue is I need to know what color it is I'm matching to. You can come to me and say "Hey, I need such and such design, and it has to match the pink on G1 Double Punch." You know what? I'd love to help you. Really, I would. However, I've got no way of knowing which pink that is. I'm sure most of you guys don't have a PMS book hanging around or a Roland chart strapped to your wall.

    If it's vital to get something matched, though, I'm willing to work with you. If there's a small piece you can send me to match, I'll throw it up on the chart and get the color. I'll mail the piece back with the stickers. Or, if you've got a really big project coming up, I'm willing to send out a Roland chart on the material(s) you need printed on at cost, and we'll work out things from there.

    I'm trying to keep prices down on the stickers themselves, but do keep in mind that I'll have to charge extra for intensive design work for something new. Once the design's completed, though, the same sticker can be ordered again, even in other colors, for just the price of the stickers.

    Anything else?
     

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  19. Insane Galvatron

    Insane Galvatron is not insane. Really!

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    Can you do what I was asking about? No design work or color matching cause I can send a scan of an existing waterelide sheet. All you'd have to do is maybe tell the machine where to cut. Just need to know what type of image file you need.
     
  20. Tigertrack

    Tigertrack Back In The Game!

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    Fortunately for me, all I need is Clampdowns black police-graphics, and Deepcovers gold badges. The rest I can get from Repro.
     

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