Q: Stripe Material
Inyour expert opinion what is the best way to replace the H.O. stripes?? Obviously they are available in all catalogs as decals as original. Do the decals hold up? I have also heard people say to apply the decal prior to the clearcoat on a new paint job to also preserve the stripe, I have also heard of painting them on.
A: I dont know what the others are using for material… Ive seen some piss poor copies of HO stripes but wont get into that here. I do know that the factory used 3M Scotchcal vinyl. 3M is in my opinion still the best thing going 35 years later. I still have the orginal Sprint stripes on my 1967 Tempest Sprint, and it hasn’t had the best of care (My wife once scrubbed the car with soft scrubb) They are weathered and scratched but it is testament to the abuse that good vinyl will take.
3M now has a high performance vinyl with a UV coating built into it. I wouldnt advise clear coating over the stripe as the vinyl will expand and contract at a different rate than the metal and paint. This would then promote cracking under the clear and would make a real big mess when trying to repair/replace any portion of the stripes.
As for the idea to extend the life of well kept vinyl, how much longer would you expect? BTW these arent decals they are vinyl appliques (just a fancy word for stripes). As for the painting of the stripes in lieu of vinyl, thats your choice. I will tell you that the 3M vinyl is only 2 mils thick and paint at that thickness is almost transparent. You also wont get the crisp detail and edges with a paint on job vs a die cut vinyl stripe.
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Content last modified: January 5, 2014 at 8:48 pm