DIY printable water slide decals?

Discussion in 'General Modeling' started by DarthMut, Oct 25, 2004.

  1. DarthMut

    DarthMut New Member

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    I was wondering if you can buy special computer printing paper for making your own water slide decals. Does anyone know of a brand or has experience with decals this way?

    Thanks!

    H.
     
  2. Sandcrawler Guy

    Sandcrawler Guy New Member

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    I've tried it before - and as of about 18 months ago, it didn't work very well.

    First, one type of paper I used didn't accept the ink well - it seemed to "bead up" and smear.

    Another type seemed to take the ink OK, but after I sprayed it with fixative and applied the decal, it looked OK, but a problem occurred if there were any sharp details on the model.

    The problem is that inkjet ink is not as flexible as commercial decal ink. The ink would "break" along sharp lines or details, and you would get a break in the color.

    Now, things may have gotten better in the last year and a half, but that was my experience with waterslide inkjet decals.

    Sorry I can't give you specifics in terms of brand names of paper, but that was my experience in general.

    Rob
     
  3. DarthMut

    DarthMut New Member

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    </SPAN><TABLE BORDER=0 ALIGN=CENTER WIDTH=85%><TR><TD CLASS=$row_color>
    Sandcrawler Guy wrote:
    <HR></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS=$row_color>
    The ink would "break" along sharp lines or details, and you would get a break in the color.
    </TD></TR><TR><TD><HR></TD></TR></TABLE><SPAN CLASS=$row_color>

    So if the surface would be just a flat surface it would work fine?
     
  4. Mycroft Holmes

    Mycroft Holmes Well-Known Member

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    You have to get or get someone who has an ALPs printer. I've done water sldie decals for many kits. My friend also. PM me with what you are looking to do.


    M
     
  5. DarthMut

    DarthMut New Member

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    </SPAN><TABLE BORDER=0 ALIGN=CENTER WIDTH=85%><TR><TD CLASS=$row_color>
    the millennium group wrote:
    <HR></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS=$row_color>
    You have to get or get someone who has an ALPs printer. </TD></TR><TR><TD><HR></TD></TR></TABLE><SPAN CLASS=$row_color>

    A particular ALPS model or any ALPs printer? Which one do you have or recommend? What sets them apart from other brands?
     
  6. turok96

    turok96 Well-Known Member

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    Probably not an inkjet printer, but maybe a laser printer will work.
     
  7. Wolvster1

    Wolvster1 Sr Member Gone but not forgotten.

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    I've been making my own decal's
    now for 2 year's... With the newer
    types of paper out there you don't
    " have " to have an Alp's printer.

    I just use an HP inkjet for my
    printing need's... [​IMG]

    You just need one that has a GOOD resolution
    for printing. I print mine at 2400 X 1200
    and get great result's ! What also is very much
    need is a GOOD Paint program if your making up
    somethign from SCRATCH ! The less "jaggies" in
    an image to print the better! [​IMG]


    BTW, the BEST paper I have found for
    this is here..


    http://www.bare-metal.com/


    EXPERTS-CHOICE™ DECAL FILM SHEETS

    I have used the many different types and
    THIS paper is the best for actually
    " HOLDING " onto the ink after it's printed !

    You need to spray the paper after the ink has
    dried to seal the image TO the paper. The amount
    of spray you put on it will determine the
    decal's "thickness" and how well it goes
    over curves on a model.
     
  8. Sandcrawler Guy

    Sandcrawler Guy New Member

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    If the surface was flat, it should be OK. I'd get several different types of decal paper and see which works best. Some recommend using a Krylon clear fixative, others have their own proprietary fixative.

    My biggest problem was decaling over details.

    Rob
     
  9. DarthMut

    DarthMut New Member

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    </SPAN><TABLE BORDER=0 ALIGN=CENTER WIDTH=85%><TR><TD CLASS=$row_color>
    Wolvster1 wrote:
    <HR></TD></TR><TR><TD CLASS=$row_color>
    http://www.bare-metal.com/


    EXPERTS-CHOICE™ DECAL FILM SHEETS
    </TD></TR><TR><TD><HR></TD></TR></TABLE><SPAN CLASS=$row_color>

    Wolvster, what an interesting website! Thanks a lot for the link!
     
  10. Mycroft Holmes

    Mycroft Holmes Well-Known Member

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    930
    Sorry but the ALPS is a dyesub printer. Continuous tone and thermal transfer. Inkjets can do them but with limited success. Companies like Federation Models sell examples of ALPS printed decals. You can print foils, metallics and colors with the ALPS.
    ALPS MD series does the job. The MD-5000 runs around $600.00 and does photo printing and all the other goodies you would expect from a dyesub printer.


    M
     
  11. sawduster

    sawduster Well-Known Member

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    Just to clear up a point, the Alps 5000 can be a dye sub printer with the upgrade. Usually it's not and you don't need the upgrade to print decals. I've been printing decals for the last two years or more on a MD5000. Down side is Alps can no longer sell them in the US due to a contract with Epson so you have to find one on the secondary market. I have bought two on ebay. Alps will still repair them for a $350 flat charge. Inks seem to still be easily available.

    When making decals which will be put on a dark surfce it is necessary to print a white layer first then your colors over it otherwise they will disappear when applied. And yes, the Alps does print white.

    As mentioned previously, the Alps also prints silver and gold metallic and gold and silver foil. Metallic colors are available but I haven't used them. There are also primer coats and finish coats depending on the print job.

    The printer is not fast as the paper is required to pass through the printer once for each color printed. Regular color requires 4 passes once each for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black.

    Vector based graphics work best, no pixelation. I use Adobe Illustrator.
    Don C.
     
  12. Docking Bay 93

    Docking Bay 93 New Member

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    Ummm, I have an Alps, and I don't think I'm ever going to use it again. I used to be a graphics pro, but gave it up, and don't see ever getting the ink ribbon carts anymore, much less the paper. I just have little to no use for it.

    PM me if you're interested.

    -E
     

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