The following instructions for installation are included with all orders.

Preparing the surface
As with any substrate, all aircraft surfaces are considered contaminated until they are properly cleaned.  Our three-step process must be followed before you can apply the graphics.

  1. Saturate a clean paper towel with a solvent approved by local EPA regulations (VM&P naphtha) and wipe the surface to remove any contaminates such as silicone, chalk or adhesives.
  2. Dry the surface with a lint-free paper towel before the solvent evaporates.
  3. Spray the surface with Isopropyl Alcohol and immediately dry the surface with clean dry towel. This should remove any residue remaining from the cleaning solvent.

Temperature considerations
When working with aircraft, it’s best to apply vinyl graphic products when the air and application temperatures are above 50°F and below 100°F.

Surfaces may be artificially heated when air and application surface temperatures are below the minimum requirements. You can use portable heater, heat lamps, hot water or steam. If hot water or steam is used, however, the surface must be dried thoroughly before application.

Preparing to apply the graphic
After properly cleaning the area surrounding application surface, spray a light mist of Pro-Bond to each rivet head to enhance the bond and minimize tenting over the vinyl graphic.

Special attention should be paid to all rivets. Additional prep work is needed in order to get the adhesive to set up and bind to the surface properly.

Next, position the vinyl graphic in place on the aircraft with masking tape, or application tape. As an aid for aligning and registering the graphic on the surface prior to application, make register marks on the side edge of the surface with a lead pencil, a non-permanent marking pen, or small pieces of masking tape.

After proper positioning, remove the liner. Layback one half of the vinyl graphic against the aircraft and remove the liner by sharply flicking the graphic edge toward the face of the graphic with the ball of the thumb or a fingernail.

A small bend at a corner or edge will cause the liner to separate from the graphic. Pull the liner away in a continuous motion at a 180° angle. Duchinsky warns to always remove the liner from the vinyl graphic rather than the vinyl graphic from the liner.

Applying the vinyl graphic
Align the vinyl graphic to the register marks and tack it to the surface with thumb pressure at the corners. (For larger graphics, use one or more additional tack points along top edge.)

Using a felt squeegee, begin application at the vertical center of the vinyl graphic and apply all the way to one edge. Then, return to center with overlapping strokes and repeat the procedure applying to the opposite edge.

Avoid bubbles and wrinkles in the vinyl graphic at all costs. [Bubbles and wrinkles allow some tenting of the vinyl.] DO NOT squeegee vinyl down around rivets until paper masking has been removed.

Removing the masking
Mist the application masking with a water solution. Then allow this to soak for a minimum of two minutes. This will release the bond between the application masking and the face of the vinyl graphic. Then, remove the application masking from the face of the vinyl graphic by pulling masking back upon itself – always at a 180° angle.

Next, use the air release tool to puncture the graphic several times around the rivet head, then warm the vinyl graphic and form the vinyl over the rivet with a felt squeegee.

Inspect the graphic in the flat areas for air bubbles. To eliminate these bubbles, puncture the graphic at one end of the bubble with an air release tool and press out entrapped air with a felt squeegee moving towards the puncture.

When the entire graphic has been applied, re-squeegee the entire graphic using a felt squeegee.