GRAPHIC KIT INSTALL TIPS

— Boss McKannick gives his advice —

MAKE MY MACHINE LOOK GOOD:

Dear Boss,
I have a Polaris RZR S 1000 that’s a couple of years old and it doesn’t look as good as it used to. I’m thinking about sprucing up its appearance with a graphics kit of some kind. I’ve been hearing a lot about wraps. Is this something I could install myself, or does a professional business have to do it? What would you suggest for a guy like me with average mechanical skills?

Eric Harrington
Glendale, CA


Well, Eric, some of the graphics kits are meant for do-it-yourself installation and others are advertised as recommended for professional installation. On the DIY kits, the hoods and doors, because they are mostly flat with few curves, present few problems.

The surface must be absolutely clean, and expect to re-position the vinyl several times until you get the alignment just right. Fenders are harder due to the curving nature of the plastic. I would think that using pre-cut graphics will be easier than purchasing a roll of vinyl and cutting it yourself for a beginner. Old plastic like yours needs to be cleaned with carburetor cleaner, which will not only degrease but dull the finish in preparation for application of the vinyl.

Only install if the surface temperature is between 60 and 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Your soapy water solution is six drops of soap in a spray bottle and then fill with water. Start with the largest vinyl pieces first, then align the smaller pieces to the large piece, because they are easier to re-position. Use a blow dryer, not a heat gun, because you are not removing house paint! And, you don’t want to melt a hole in the vinyl.

Use the blow dryer to shape the vinyl around the curves and depressions. Squeegee out any air bubbles or wrinkles (the blow dryer can sometimes help here too). Leave your creation for a day to allow the vinyl to set up and fully adhere. Remember to send us before and after photos! 

E-mail your questions to “Dialed-In” at [email protected]

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