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Homemade Decals ?
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 Posted: Fri Nov 8th, 2019 07:00 pm
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Tom Ward
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I'm building a model of a 100 year old air compressor,
based on some photos I got from the net. 

I'm using my 3D-printer to make the parts. 

The photos show a very nicely done,
hand painted manufacturers name on the side of the tank,
and I'd like to reproduce that with a decal. 

I plan to clean up the image using Photoshop,
to get rid of the glare on the sign. 

I don't know how to go about making a decal from the photo though. 
Any suggestions? 

I did look around this forum for ideas,
but didn't see anything.

- Tom





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 Posted: Fri Nov 8th, 2019 09:13 pm
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Sean W.
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Hi Tom,

I believe what I've seen people have a lot of success with,
is printing the desired design out and sanding the paper down thin,
until all you have left is the ink and just a little diluted white glue to put it on the model.

Good luck!




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 Posted: Fri Nov 8th, 2019 11:07 pm
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Tom Ward
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OK Sean.  Thanks. 

I'll give that a try.

Tom


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 Posted: Fri Nov 8th, 2019 11:47 pm
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slateworks
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Tom

The simple way is to print your final photo on to water-slide decal paper such as this:

Waterslide Decal Printing Paper

Follow the instructions regarding "sealing" and it works fine.


The signs on Updah's buildings, for example the gas station,
were all done like this using an inkjet printer.







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Doug

Updah Creek http://www.freerails.com/view_topic.php?id=7457&forum_id=4&page=1
My Flickr albums https://www.flickr.com/photos/33431492@N04/albums
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 Posted: Sat Nov 9th, 2019 09:51 am
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Tom Ward
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Doug - That looks perfect! 

Just what I was looking for. 

Muchas gracias.

- Tom


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 Posted: Sat Nov 9th, 2019 12:45 pm
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slateworks
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Glad to help.






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Doug

Updah Creek http://www.freerails.com/view_topic.php?id=7457&forum_id=4&page=1
My Flickr albums https://www.flickr.com/photos/33431492@N04/albums
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 Posted: Sun Nov 10th, 2019 11:44 am
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Steven B
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Tom, I too concur with Doug.  

I've made many watersilde decals, with both laser jet and inkjet printers. 
They work very nicely. 

The only problem that I have had,
was on the clear decal sheets they are a bit translucent,
and you may have to put more than one on. 

The white film, when trimmed, will leave a white "ring" around the edge. 
I have fixed that with either weathering or paint around the edges.  

Use the sealer and they will not run. 

Keep up the great work.




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 Posted: Sun Nov 10th, 2019 12:16 pm
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Tom Ward
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Thanks Steven.

I ordered a set of the clear decal papers but was unsure about the white ones. 
Thanks for the advice on that. 

I'm working in Photoshop to clean up the photo I'll be using for the air compressor,
and have plans to make some decals for the boiler washout system I'm building also. 

- Tom


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 Posted: Sun Nov 10th, 2019 02:52 pm
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slateworks
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Tom

You're right to use the clear version,
as it does not leave a white ring around the decal.

Any "edge" that might appear when the decal is laid,
can be eased out with gentle brushing of MicroSol

Make sure the surface you apply the deal to is glossy rather than matt,
as this helps with adhesion as does a light brushing with MicroSet.

I use Klear floor polish
(I still have a bottle of the "old" recipe, which I believe is better than the latest!)
on the local area that the decal is to be attached to for this purpose.




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Updah Creek http://www.freerails.com/view_topic.php?id=7457&forum_id=4&page=1
My Flickr albums https://www.flickr.com/photos/33431492@N04/albums
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 Posted: Mon Nov 11th, 2019 09:47 pm
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Tom Harbin
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Tom,

It hasn't been mentioned in this thread
(or at least I missed it if it was),
but standard printers do not "print" white.

Your image has some fairly intricate white in it.

The hobbyist solutions for white artwork include:

- Printing on clear decal sheet and painting the area behind the decal area white.

- Printing with a white (ghost) cartridge on a laser printer,
  I've read reports of great down to worthless, so hard to say how good it is.

- Printing on an ALPS Micro-Dry printer.
  (obsolete and hard to get but used by many custom low-volume decal makers).

- Print on white decal paper and trim very tightly.

- Print on regular paper and sand thin.

I'm sure there are others I don't know about.
 
In looking at the image you want to print,
and at the fine quality of the 3D-printed compressor you designed,
I would be tempted to try a two-part decal.

Print the "ORO" and the "AIR COMPRESSORS" ribbon on white decal paper,
and trim it very closely, then print the red scroll outline on clear paper.

I bought an ALPS over 20 years ago (before we thought of using them for decals),
and I still have it, but I've never printed decals with it.
I have all of the supplies for printing decals, just no skill.

There are a number of custom decal makers out there that use them.
If it is something you plan to do on more than a casual level,
it may be worth hunting one up.

Tom

 

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