The plastics on today's motocross bikes have more angles, curves, and contours than ever before. This can make applying your new graphics kit somewhat tricky. to help ensure that your graphics go on easily look their best, and to help them last as long as possible we've compiled the following list of tricks and tips:
1) WASH YOUR PLASTICS!
If you've already been riding with your plastics on the bike then it's probably a no brainer that you need to clean away any dirt or mud from them prior to applying new graphics. However, did you know that you should also wash brand new plastics before applying graphics? The reason is that the plastics manufacturers use an oil in their molds in order to keep the plastics from sticking to the mold during production. It's likely that some of this oil may be leftover on your new plastics. We recommend cleaning the plastics with soap and water, then finishing with rubbing alcohol.
2) match the graphics to your bike
Before starting the application, take a moment to inventory all pieces of your graphics kit and be sure that you know where each piece goes. As mentioned before, today's bikes have lots of angles and contours which sometimes necessitate producing a graphic component in multiple parts. For example, a front fender graphic for a 2021 Honda CRF450R will be comprised of four pieces.
3) start easy
We recommend starting the graphics application with a small, simple, or flat part of the bike. Depending on the bike, the front number plate could be a great starting point. Regardless where you choose to begin, starting with a simpler part allows you to get a feel for applying the graphics material without the stress of trying to conform the graphic around one of the more complex parts.
4) line it up
No matter the part you are applying to, line the graphic up as best you can with the part. In addition to the perimeter of the part, make sure that any cut outs, bolts holes, etc. match up. Trimming the backing paper close to the edge of the graphic (without cutting the graphic) may be helpful.
5) take your time
Once you've lined the graphic up to the part, choose an edge or corner of the graphic and peel back the backing paper slightly. Start by applying this exposed portion to the plastic, then slowly continue peeling away the backing paper while applying more of the graphic, working your fingers back and forth across the top of the graphic. Though all of Inspire's graphics are produced with air release technology, applying them slowly using the method described above will help to ensure that any trapped air can escape easily, leaving your graphics bubble free.
6) trim if needed
All of Inspire's graphic kits should fit OEM plastics precisely, however if for some reason you ended up slightly off in the placement of the graphic, use a razor knife and trim the excess graphic material back to the edge of the plastic. This will help eliminate any area where your pants, boots, etc. could snag the graphic and begin pulling it away from the plastic.
All of our custom Jersey I.D. kits have been designed for easily application by yourself at home. We recommend using a heat press as it will maintain a consistent amount of pressure across the whole surface, however a regular laundry iron will work also:
1 - To begin, lay your jersey out on a flat surface, being sure to smooth out any wrinkles.
2 - Before removing the protective backing paper, it may be helpful to lay the I.D. kit on your jersey to see how you would like to position it.
3 - When you are ready to proceed, go ahead and remove the protective backing paper. The jersey I.D. will remain behind, attached to the clear plastic cover sheet.
4 - You will notice that one side of the plastic cover sheet (the side that has your name and number) is somewhat tacky. This is normal and will help to keep your name and number in the correct location until it is adhered to the jersey. Lay the plastic cover sheet on your the jersey, sticky side down. Another indicator that you have placed the I.D. kit correctly is that your name and number will read correctly; besides having the sticky side up, your name and number will appear backwards if placed with the wrong side against the jersey.
5 - Once the I.D. kit has been placed on the jersey you are ready to go. If you are using a heat press to adhere the I.D. continue on to step #6. If you are using an iron, please skip to step #8.
6 - (If using a heat press) Allow the heat press to warm up to 305 degrees Fahrenheit. Once the press has reached this temperature, place your jersey on the bottom place of the press, then close the press with firm pressure for 15 seconds.
7 - Once the 15 seconds are up, remove your jersey from the press and remove the plastic cover sheet; this may be done either while hot, or later after allowing it to cool. With the plastic cover removed, you're now good to go!
8 - (If using an iron) Set the temperature to 305 degrees. If your iron does not have specific temperature settings, set it for 'Cotton'. Before beginning, make sure that there is no water in the iron.
9 - Lay a towel across the I.D. kit (to protect your iron), and beginning at one end of the I.D. kit press the iron down for 15 seconds. Once the 15 seconds have elapsed, move the iron over to the next portion of the I.D. and again press the iron down on top of it for 15 seconds; it is okay if you overlap slightly onto the prior section of the I.D. that you already pressed.
10 - Continue pressing across the I.D. kit in the fashion described in step #9 until you have covered the entirety of the I.D. kit. Once the entire graphic has been pressed, remove the towel and slowly start to peel back the plastic cover sheet. If at any spot the name and number graphic starts to peel away with the cover sheet, carefully place the cover sheet back down, re-cover with the towel and press that spot again. If done correctly the plastic cover sheet should peel away easily and cleanly.
All of our decals are die cut, meaning that the decal may be comprised of many individual pieces. To keep each of those pieces in their proper location (and to save you from applying them individually) your decal is comprised of three layers with a layer of application tape over the front, backing paper in the rear, and the decal sandwiched in between. To apply your decal:
1 - Make sure that the surface you are applying to is clean and free of any dust or moisture
2 - Starting at one side of the decal peel back a portion of the backing paper and fold it behind the decal. This will expose a portion of the front application tape; the decal should remain fixed to this front layer.
3 - Being careful to avoid sticking the exposed adhesive to the surface you are applying to, place the decal against the surface and adjust its location and position if needed.
4 - Once the decal is positioned to your liking, press the exposed adhesive to the surface fixing the decal in place. With a portion of the decal now attached, grab hold of the folded portion of the backing paper and slowly begin peeling it away from the decal. As you peel away the backing, simultaneously run your fingers back and forth across the surface of the decal, fixing it to the surface as you go.
5 - With the backing paper now removed and the decal fully fixed to the surface, you may slowly remove the application tape from the front. The decal should remain behind, but if any part of the decal begins to peel away with the application tape, carefully lay the application tape back down against the surface and again rub your fingers back and forth until the decal is affixed to the surface.