Painting Flames

And Other Uses for Application Tape.

Protecting and transferring vinyl graphics aren’t the only uses for application tape. Here are some other uses for paper application tapes.

1. High tack application tapes, such as RTape 4075, are also used by painters and artists as a paint mask for custom painting of motor cycles, cars and trucks. Here’s how. The painter often will lay out his design with 3M #471 blue striping tape or #218 fine line tape. Or he will draw his design and pounce the pattern directly onto the application tape. See the photos of artist Alan Johnson below. Alan is known worldwide for his work in decorating classic cars.


Photo courtesy of Alan Johnson.

After the fine line tape is applied, application tape is squeegeed over the top of the design. Using a #11 blade and a sharp Xacto® knife, the painter cuts through the paper tape directly over the blue tape. The blue tape prevents accidental cutting into the customer paint job. Experience painters, such as Alan Johnson, shown in the photos have developed the skill to just cut through the paper and do not need fine line tape. In addition to their skill, a sharp blade is critical.


Photo courtesy of Alan Johnson.

The area that will be painted is then weeded and then either sprayed or airbrushed.


Photo courtesy of Alan Johnson

Immediately after painting, the paper application tape is removed and the flames are pinstriped.


Photo courtesy of Alan Johnson.

2. Low tack paper application tape is also is used as a surface protection masking for acrylic and polycarbonate sheet. An advantage of using paper masking versus a film is that the plastics fabricator can draw the layout on the paper.

3. In the metal polishing industry, low tack paper application tapes are used as a surface protection masking for steel and aluminum. Following application to the polished metal, the sheets can then be laser cut. The paper masking will adhere securely to the metal sheet during the cutting operation.



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