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Bike Decals Reproduction/DIY

Old 11-30-11, 09:30 AM
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GordoTrek
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Bike Decals Reproduction/DIY

So im currently rebuilding my bike (trek 930), just got it powdercoated
was looking for trek decals to reapply, i went to velocals,and ebay but was wondering if anybody had any luck with doing it yourself or know of any tips that might work??

i want to get a similar style decal to the original ones, doesn't have to exact, but similar would do

thoughts?
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Old 11-30-11, 09:46 AM
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Have you contacted Trek? Some makers (Litespeed for one) offer replacement decals for some of their bikes. They may not go back too many years but you may be able to get something suitable. There are companies that duplicate any style and type of bike decal but they aren't cheap.
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Old 11-30-11, 10:01 AM
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Did you scan the original decals? That's a great place to start. Otherwise, how proficient are you with drawing programs? I made some very basic decals with MS Word's WordArt and MS Paint, but of course there are many better programs available.

Paper - beldecal.com. When I made some a few years ago the starter kit was a good buy.
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Old 11-30-11, 01:48 PM
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I have done myself a few things but the main problem is not making them, the problem are the colors. U can get good quality laser decal paper but no laser printer I know it prints white for example, so if your stuff needs white then u have a problem. The other issue is that probably u will need to clear the decals or they will crack or brake.

Second option, get them cut in vinyl. Like 30 bucks i guess but always heard is less. The guys I quoted wanted 30 bucks for a 8.5x11 sheet cut with whatever is inside. Then u can apply them or use them to paint over it.

The beldecal system (video) can be used with any decal paper, the problem is the way they apply the image to the decal, I wish i could do that for cheap at home, i mean for less than 20 bucks. That way u can apply any color and the thing probably wont fade ever because of the nature of the ink used. One day i guess..

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Old 11-30-11, 01:57 PM
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...or just have a metal trek headbadge made. go decal-less.

ive never seen a reproduction decal set look all that great in person.
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Old 11-30-11, 05:20 PM
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Those guys are pretty good.
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Old 11-30-11, 05:28 PM
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Originally Posted by tru View Post
...ive never seen a reproduction decal set look all that great in person.
Yeah, I felt the same way. That's why we made sure our LOTUS decals were indistinguishable from the originals. True ink-transfer decals really need to be printed on a commercial/professional level, which usually requires some investment in a quantity run. Our decals are perfect, like jewelry for your bike.
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Old 11-30-11, 07:07 PM
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Inkjet decal paper is available here:
https://www.decalpaper.com/

I haven't tried it myself but I want to make up some vintage decals for my car and I was going to try this approach.
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Old 11-30-11, 07:28 PM
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I run a sign shop, and have been a graphic designer for over 20 years. I'd be glad to help you with decals. PM me if I can help...
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Old 11-30-11, 09:53 PM
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I was looking on ebay and I see there are vendors that have both clear and white backed decal paper available for use with inkjet printing.
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Old 11-30-11, 10:43 PM
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IAMcosmo... by any chance did you do the stickers for 611 bicycles from roanoke??
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Old 11-30-11, 11:00 PM
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No, I'm not sure who does his. I've only met him once at the NAHBS in Richmond a couple years ago. He only lives a couple blocks from me though.
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Old 11-30-11, 11:34 PM
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Originally Posted by ultraman6970 View Post
I have done myself a few things but the main problem is not making them, the problem are the colors. U can get good quality laser decal paper but no laser printer I know it prints white for example, so if your stuff needs white then u have a problem. The other issue is that probably u will need to clear the decals or they will crack or brake.
I have had excellent results on white background with clear laser waterslide decal paper. If you need to work on colored or black background you need to use white decal paper, otherwise the background will show through.
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Old 11-30-11, 11:40 PM
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Cool... I'll ask you a few things later then, because I'm kind'a diy guy for somethings.

THanks again I was figured that one out long time ago but is always a PITA to cut, put the white then the transparent over the top and make it look good.

Originally Posted by IAmCosmo View Post
No, I'm not sure who does his. I've only met him once at the NAHBS in Richmond a couple years ago. He only lives a couple blocks from me though.
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Old 12-01-11, 12:27 PM
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You could try this route: https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread...=#post12403425
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Old 12-01-11, 12:45 PM
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For any of you interested, we can work from any kind of file, and we can print on white, clear, or any color of vinyl. We can print, cut, or print + cut. We can't match PMS colors though because of the nature of the foils used to print, but we can get very close. We can also print in metallic and reflective chrome or gold.

We use either a Gerber Edge or a Summa DC4sx.
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Old 12-01-11, 12:57 PM
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Darn u have good stuff.... thanks
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Old 12-02-11, 03:47 AM
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Here's my response from Specialized about getting some new decals for my rockhopper:

HI,

Sorry we do not carry any decals, a good graphics company will be able to reproduce the standard graphics.

Many thanks
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Old 12-02-11, 10:33 AM
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I'd be glad to help. I just did a bunch of Specialized graphics not too long ago. In fact, I have logos for most of the well-known bike brands already. Any that I don't have can be recreated without much hassle.

I need to get some pics together. We're working on a web site, but as this sign/decal company is an offshoot of an offset printing company, printing takes priority, so who knows when we'll get to it...
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Old 12-07-11, 10:36 PM
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I have ordered and received some inkjet decal paper (both white and clear). I'll post some pics of my results soon in case anyone is interested.
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Old 12-08-11, 03:07 AM
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I'd certainly like to see the outcome
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Old 12-12-11, 05:28 PM
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OK, well I did some quick, small, window decals for my sports car. I purchased the decal film off of ebay. I went with the 5 sheets of white and 5 sheets clear assortment. If you are doing decals on bikes I would recommend getting the assortment as well. If the bike is a dark base color then you will have to use the white backing paper. If the bike is a light color you can get by with the clear.

The decals I did on the side screens of my car are a special case. They are printed in reverse on the clear film, and then painted over with white paint. This is so that the decal can be applied on the inside of the window. BTW, I found a youtube video describing this method.

For normal decals you spray clear acrylic lacquer over the decals after you print them. You can also spray additional clear lacquer over them after they have been applied to the bike.

Couple other tips.

The instructions indicated that you should set the printer for photo paper. I discovered that this laid down too much ink and the ink bled a little. So I just used the normal setting.

Also, you have to lay out all your decals on a single sheet. It would be unwise to feed paper with previous regions cut out. So you have to plan wisely otherwise you will waste the decal paper.

Everything worked out well. Very happy with the results. In my opinion this is a perfect method for reproducing original bike decals.
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Old 12-12-11, 05:37 PM
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Originally Posted by brokencase View Post
Very happy with the results. In my opinion this is a perfect method for reproducing original bike decals.
Nice job on your decals. (Technically, stickers, but that's okay).

I'm assuming you printed them on self-adhesive paper or vinyl?

Some considerations that need to be taken into account before using them on a bicycle would be durability if they get wet and UV durability. Also, thickness of the decal paper may be a concern to some some DIY paper/vinyls are thick and can kind of make for an unsatisfactory appearance on a bicycle.
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Old 12-12-11, 08:11 PM
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Snydermann, They are water slide decals, not stickers. You didn't read the earlier part of the thread but that is understandable. Your concerns about UV are justified. The instructions call for using clear acrylic lacquer to seal it after the inkjet printing. On a bike it might be worth experimenting with different clear coats to get better UV protection. When I bought the lacquer I noticed that Rustoleum was selling a new clear coat with UV protection. It might be worth trying. I think the most UV durable would be as I have done here where the clear sheet is painted with the white paint and the decal is protected because it is on the inside of the plexi-glass.
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Old 12-13-11, 05:24 AM
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I like these from Rivendell:



https://www.rivbike.com/product-p/m11.htm
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