1. #1
    mike021
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Question Protection for Vinyl Lettering?

    Hello
    took delivery of our new engine today, and it's big. it hits low lying brances and leaves. Anyone know of a good protecting agent or a heavy duty wax that will keep it from easily being scratched or take them off good? Thanx for the help.

    ------------------
    Norwood Fire Co. No. 1
    http://www.nfco1.freeservers.com

  2. #2
    Dalmatian90
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    As a lead (i.e. don't try this until someone who knows verifies it & what to use!)...

    When our trucks are gold-leafed, the gold leaf is protected under a layer of varnish -- kinda acts like a layer of clearcoat to protect what's underneath.

    Maybe check with a local sign shop what they do for commercial rigs they paint/letter?

  3. #3
    TCFD12
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Dalmation90, I think you misunderstood the question. I believe Mike is asking about Vinyl lettering - not Painted Gold Leaf. What some manufacturers call "Smart Gold".

    Mike,
    We have had the Vinyl style gold leaf (fake) on our trucks for a number of years now and have not had any problems with tree branches scratching the lettering. We use nothing on ours but plain wax. It's usually a careless firefighter that scratches the letters.

    I'm not sure if yours are the same, but ours already have a clear vinyl over the "fake" gold leaf letters. I doubt that the trees will give you any problems.

    Also, the reason many manufacturers use this is that is much cheaper to use and replace. I have seen very few trucks laterly with "real" gold leaf.

  4. #4
    Dalmatian90
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Nope, understood.

    Was just wondering if something like a varnish would give it a protective clearcoat -- but now that you mentioned it, I do remember our vinyl lettering/decals have had a protective clear vinyl put over them too.

    I've also wondered how expensive it would be to clearcoat paint the diamond plate! (oh well, probably would take away it's "good grip"...but those Weatherguard aluminum toolboxes with clearcoat sure look nice even after a few years!


  5. #5
    TCFD12
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    We we wondering about the diamond plate also. Parade season is upon us and keeping the diamond plate clean is a pain in the you know what. The problem I think is exactly what you said, plus I think that clear coat would only bring out more imperfections.

  6. #6
    mike021
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Thanks for all the replies. Unfortunatly we have a lot of low tree and sticks. And with a truck coming down the street at 10'8" unfortunatly hitting a branch or two is a fact of life and sometimes can't be avoided. We have the top compartments in the rear also so it's a giant box pretty much. I will check into the clearcoat stuff. Our ladder truck has the real goldleafing and that is about to get the coating on it. Thanx for all the help.

    ------------------
    Norwood Fire Co. No. 1
    http://www.nfco1.freeservers.com

  7. #7
    M1NFD
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    As for the vynal lettering, try using a clearcoat paint. I wouldnt use varnish as you will notice a color difference as varnish as a yellow tint to it. If the vynal is reflective,(scotchlite) anything you put on it will make it less reflective, like wax. As far as the diamondplate, our department has both steel and aluminum. For the steel we paint it with rustoleum aluminum paint, for the aluminum, we use a #7 rubbing compound and tons of elbow grease and terrycloth towels and it shines the aluminum right up. Good luck

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