Author Topic: No film decal paper  (Read 2792 times)

stevie1556

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #15 on: January 13, 2019, 03:58:09 PM »
I didn't manage to get any more done today, a friend came round unexpectedly and then I managed to lock myself out the house. The issue is my key was in the door lock on the inside so I couldn't use a spare key. On the plus side, my neighbour came out of his house on the phone to the police as he thought someone was trying to break into my house, so at least I now know that he keeps an eye on my place!

Bio77 - with the label removing, I've got 99.9% pure acetone, so hopefully it will remove the toner before it starts eating into the powder coat.

When you say about redoing the labels, did you just soak a new decal in water, apply glue, then line the new decal up perfectly over the original decal? Did that work quite well? Did it cause any ridges on the transferred toner or anything?

With the way that you've done yours, I did mine a different way. After applying the decal to the enclosure, I didn't dry them with a hair drier, instead I put them in the oven at approximately 100'C (Google says that works out to be 212'F) for 10 minutes. When the enclosure had cooled down I then removed the decal.

With the decal, did it leave any marks on the enclosure from where it was? And did you use bare, spray painted or powder coated? Have you got any pictures of your results as well?

I've just looked at the instructions again and it says 10-20 minutes in the oven so maybe they needed slightly longer. I'll try that, and also the technique that you did and I'll post my results. I've got a fair few bits to do over the next few days but I'll try and fit it in somewhere.

Bio77

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #16 on: January 14, 2019, 01:06:07 PM »
I tried two enclosures this weekend.  Small sample size, so, I'll need to replicate my results to say for sure.

First enclosure was powder coated.  I applied the label steps 1-6.  I did not use a hair dryer, instead, I let it sit overnight.  When I removed the film, the main graphic was perfectly set.  Medium text (~14-18 pt) was partially set (like your pictures).  Small text (~10-12 pt) didn't transfer.  The instructions said acetone would remove the ink.  I tried with the nail polish remover, it didn't work well.  I used some 400 grit sand paper with the NP remover and it became a gummy mess.  I did not try the re-applying technique I recommended, but I believe this would have worked.  Good news is that when the label works the graphics are really on there.

Second enclosure was plain.  I sanded and polished it first.  I applied the label, used the hair dryer.  After a thorough drying on the high setting (enclosure was hot) I peeled up the corner of the film and noticed that the small text was not transferring from the film to the enclosure, so, a smoothed it bad in place.  Next, I placed it in the toaster oven at 250 F for 30 minutes.  When it cooled, I removed the film, everything transferred, even small text.  I have worked with polished enclosures in the past and regular waterslide does not stick well to the surface.  So, I was pretty impressed with this one.

I'd try the acetone on your least favorite part to see if it works.  Let us know if it does, maybe I can still salvage my botched enclosure. 

stevie1556

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #17 on: January 15, 2019, 04:23:06 AM »
Thanks for the more info there.

With the powder coating and acetone, I know it's a lot more resistant then spray paint but still need to be a bit careful with it. If you've used sandpaper, then it probably needs fully stripping before it can be reused properly. I've had enclosures soaking in acetone for 24 hours and the powder coat in still a complete PITA to remove (Although it's completely messed up by then). If you look on eBay you can find 99.9% pure acetone quite cheaply that should work better then nail polish remover, although make sure you wear gloves, when I didn't my nails were trashed and were breaking just by looking at them.

That's good that it's worked so well for the polished enclosure, although I'm surprised the normal water slide decals didn't work too well. The instructions say to dry it using a hair drier, microwave or oven, so I used the oven, I may try the hair drier method next though, especially if it gave you great results.

I've come up with a theory on why the imprint of the plastic part of the decal is in the paint, and that's because the paint had started melting slightly in the oven. The powder I use is done at 180'C, and the instructions say to use 100'C, but like I said in an earlier post, I think the over was set just slightly higher then that. Maybe putting the enclosure back in the oven after the decal is removed will solve that issue, I'm not sure but I'll try it, and I'm also going to set the ovens using the thermometer that I've got rather then the dial on the oven as that doesn't make 100'C clear on it.

Most likely tomorrow, I'm going to try the above improvements, putting a decal on top of one that didn't transfer right and removing a decal, just to see which method is best for re-applying them.

Also, one point of interest, I had 5 enclosures and their base plates in the oven for 10 mins, and all came out near great. I then had 5 enclosures and 10 base plates in the oven for 10 minutes, and on those ones the transfers weren't very good, especially on the base plates. I'm going to try 5 enclourses and 5 base plates for 10-15mins at a set 100'C and see if that makes improvements.

I'm on call with work tomorrow, so if I'm not called to go in then I'll be trying these again. If great, consistent results can't be achieved, then it's a easy way to label enclosures. That's the only thing that's stopped me building the VFE Rats and I've got a PedalPCB D3lay kit coming today that will need labelling.

stevie1556

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #18 on: January 15, 2019, 02:24:58 PM »
While I'm sitting here putting various label designs onto a couple of sheets ready to take to the print shop in the morning, I've had a thought with the labels, that may have been some of the cause of the bad transfers. They couldn't take the designs on the SD card so they photocopied the ones that I printed. I only used normal plain paper, so the print quality wasn't as good as it could have been. Also, the first sheet got printed on the black and white setting and there was much more toner on the decal sheet then when it was redone on the colour setting (for the black colour at least). I had a quick look at the enclosures earlier, I'm the ones that had more black toner on transferred really well. The back plates transferred well as well. I'm going to get the new labels printed on the black and white setting to see if that helps as well.

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« Last Edit: January 15, 2019, 02:27:51 PM by stevie1556 »

stevie1556

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #19 on: January 17, 2019, 12:56:58 PM »
Ok, I spent the majority of the afternoon in the garage. I tried screen printing, had mixed results. Although I think it's fair to say that I really don't like 2 part catalysed inks! May put that idea on the back burner for now.

Onto the film decals.....

Acetone removes them straight away, although I remember the powder coat being more resistant to it, but unfortunately not this time. Trashed a back plate trying it. However, laying a decal on top of one already there can be done quite easily.

I did 5 enclosures in the oven earlier, they turned out great. Approximately 12 minutes in the oven for them, however, where the film was, you can see it (as per the other enclosures). I've got 2 flood lights attached to the rafters in the garage and I'm not sure if they amplify the issue. I'm going to try clear coating them to see if that covers the issue. My other idea is to dry it with a hair drier (as that shouldn't get hot enough to start melting the powder coat), then remove the film then put them in the oven to harden the toner.

Or maybe I'm just being overly pedantic and worrying over nothing.....

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Bio77

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #20 on: January 17, 2019, 01:44:56 PM »
Is that glue?  Maybe can be cleaned off with alcohol?

stevie1556

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #21 on: January 17, 2019, 03:34:44 PM »
I was rubbing it with isopropyl alcohol. Their videos and instructions say to use alcohol, so it should have worked. I'm going to double check the bottle tomorrow to make sure that I was using the right stuff. Either that or I'll try the vodka as that's alcohol hahahaha.

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Bio77

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #22 on: January 17, 2019, 03:49:58 PM »
It occurred to me, it might be mineral deposits from the water.  Is the water very hard where you are?  Mine is hard, so, I use deionized water to soak all my labels.

If it is, it might come off with some vinegar. Or any other mild acid you have around.

stevie1556

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #23 on: January 17, 2019, 04:06:26 PM »
I just got halfway through writing my message out saying the water tap I used is connected to a water filter as our water here is ridiculously hard, then I remembered I used warm water which is connected to a water softener when it enters the house. Even with the water filter, my coffee machine still clogged up on a regular basis, so I use the bottles water that we get at work for it and it's been fine since (Only saying that to show that even with a filter, the water is hard!). So that could be caused be the salt from the water softener. I'm glad you said about that as it wouldn't have even occurred to me to think that. I'll try some vinegar on it in the next couple of days.

However, the main issue seems to be where the decal has been peeled off affecting the paint (like it's started to melt). I'll try some experiments with the water though. Also, going to try drying one with a hair drier, peel the film off, and then put it in the oven.

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Bio77

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #24 on: January 17, 2019, 06:46:35 PM »
I think that melting effect might also be mineral deposit.  The vinegar should let you know.

Also, the filter won't change the mineral content of the water.  The softener will get rid of the Ca and Mg ions (replaced by sodium), so, using the hot water next time would be better.   But best bet is to get some distilled (deionized) water at the market, It's cheap. 

Bio77

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #25 on: January 19, 2019, 04:35:40 PM »
n=2

I got perfect transfer, no ink on the removed film.  I used the hair dryer and put it in the toaster oven for 35 minutes at 250F.


cooder

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #26 on: January 19, 2019, 08:19:55 PM »
That looks great! Thanks for all the detailed sharing of your process, very helpful!
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Bio77

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #27 on: January 19, 2019, 08:58:34 PM »
Thanks.  It also seems very durable.  I tried scratching it with my finger nail and it doesn't come off.  I normally put 3-5 coats of clear over a waterslide to protect it.  I'm not going put anything on this one and see how it holds up. 

stevie1556

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #28 on: January 20, 2019, 06:54:34 PM »
Wow, that label looks absolutely fantastic! Did you leave the film on when it was in the oven? And did you have any of the paint issues like I've had on those red enclosures?

What circuit are you putting into this enclosure?

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Bio77

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Re: No film decal paper
« Reply #29 on: January 21, 2019, 11:53:05 AM »
Yes, I left the film on.  I blow dried it for a few minutes.  When it seemed pretty dry, I kept blow drying and smoothed any wrinkles flat.  Next, into the oven.  Removed the film after it cooled.  Cleaned with 91% isopropanol. 

This is going to be a tube screamer for a friend of mine.  The box is from Tayda, paint was fine after oven.  Was there any improvement after vinegar? Did you powder coat yourself?