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SpeedPro Faces Sharp Angles of Slingshot Wrap

The Lake County franchise couldn't cut corners with this challenge.

SpeedPro Imaging Lake County is no stranger to working with BBQ’d Productions, a full service barbeque joint in Third Lake, Illinois. “We’ve done several wraps for this client before this, which included a Ford F-250 pickup truck and a 16 by 20-foot trailer,” says Brian Finfrock, marketing and production assistant. “So, we were naturally [the client’s] go-to graphics company.”

When the client came to pick up his most recent trailer wrap from the shop, he told Finfrock he had a new project in mind. “And sure enough, a week later, he rolls up in the Slingshot and tells us, ‘I want no red to show,’” says Finfrock. The Slingshot – a three-wheeled motorcycle – would be the latest promotional vehicle for the restaurant and catering company.

SpeedPro wasn’t surprised by such a request. The print shop averages four full wraps and six to eight partial wraps a month in their 2800-square-foot studio that includes an open production area/office space and a climate-controlled vehicle bay in the back for installations.

This particular project began with SpeedPro photographing the vehicle and recording measurements of the areas that would be wrapped with media – one of the most challenging aspects of the projects, says Finfrock, due to the “varying sharp angles of the body and inside console and dash ... This also made it challenging for the installer because there was hardly a flat surface to work on. Several hours were spent on the design layout.”

A template was created and brought to scale in Illustrator, then photos of the design were made to scale and superimposed onto the body of the Slingshot for proofing. After approval, it was time for production. The wrap was printed in sections on Avery MPI 1005 cast vinyl and laminated with Avery DOL 1360 cast laminate with the shop’s Roland SolJet Pro III XJ-740. One hundred and twenty square feet of material was used, and approximately 73 square feet of surface area was wrapped. The overlays, such as the logos and various other ornaments, were printed on 3M reflective vinyl, laminated with optically clear film, and contour cut on a Graphtec plotter before application.

Finfrock says his installer used his typical vehicle installation equipment – squeegee, blade, tape, etc. – but because the body of the Slingshot is made of hard plastic, a torch had to be used very carefully.

The project, from design to install, was completed within five days.

Lately, Finfrock says SpeedPro has received a spate of requests for partial to full solid color changes. Recently, a customer came to the shop with an orange Dodge Challenger SRT8, wanting a full color change wrap to protect the finish. “Not only was the color about the same as the original, but he also wanted lightning bolts spread over the entire body of the car starting from the roof,” says Finfrock. “This was a fully customized design/print project that involved a lot of preproduction, planning, and careful installation in order to keep everything consistent throughout.”

For more, check out this symbolically wrapped Jeep Wrangler and this wood-mimicking van wrap.

View more from this Big Picture issue