Phew, That was a lot easier than I thought it would be. I just finished putting on my new ArcticFx Graphics kit and it looks great. When a buddy encouraged me to get sticker kit from ArcticFx Graphics , my first thoughts were 'Fine, but how am I going to put that on without messing it up, I can't do that...or can I?' So I decided to drop over one night and give my buddy a hand installing a kit on his new SledAddicts RMK Assault. It was alot easier than I expected and after we finished the job I felt confident I could do this on my own anytime.
When you think about it, custom graphics kits are a great way to personalize your sled and for $200 to $300 bucks you can make your sled look pretty awesome and unique. The whole idea seems to be really catching on and more people are into a custom look these days. I think this is very important, no different than the choice of music you like or clothes you wear. Your snowmobile's look could be a reflection of your personality or riding style. Do you want a clean, straight line look?, or an edgy darker type of style? It's all about you, and ArcticFxGraphics.com has every look imaginable.
Custom IQ RMK Point Blank SledAddicts.com Kit
First up, the tools you'll need; a heat gun, a spray bottle, some solvent/glue remover, clean shop towels/rags, bright lighting, and your ArcticFx Graphics sticker kit. It's highly recommended to use the ArcticFx Application Kit which is a cheap investment, but it's not necessary.
Here's how we did it;
1) Clean those panels!
Depending on the sled you may have to remove your hood/panels. Some stock stickers come off easier than others. When I did my Rev, this involved popping off the panels and then stripping/cleaning them clean as new. We used an acetone based cleaner, any brand will do, and will retail for $5-10 per bottle, enough to do 3-4 sleds. These chemical cleaners are harsh, so be sure to wear protective gloves and eyewear and work in a well ventilated area. I also used a heat gun. You can grab one of these for $20 at Canadian Tire. By slowly heating any old stickers, they should lift off much easier, even with your bare hands, no scraper required. It is crucial that you remove not only dirt/oil residue, but also any old glue from previous stickers.
2) Use some water
This was a really nice tip from a buddy of mine. Once the panels are cleaned and dried, grab any old spare bottle (we used an old eye glasses cleaner bottle) fill with clean water, and apply a very thin even layer over the intended area before applying your sticker. This step is critical, and you will want to focus on alignment of this sticker to the adjacent stickers that make up the kit. If you make a mistake here, its best to pull the sticker off, and reapply it in the best position. The application of a little water will disolve the glue just enough to allow the critical 'wiggly room' that you'll need to slide that sticker around enough to get that perfect fit. You'll be amazed at how this works. If you do apply a little too much water, wipe off all excess water on the back of the sticker and the panel with a cloth and apply just enough heat to activate the glue and re-apply the sticker. Just be careful with the heat, you could melt that sticker if your not paying attention.
3) Squeeze and Dry
Once the sticker is in place, slowly, carefully, push the sticker onto the panel using your clean, dry hand until you have the most accurate alignment. I found using the side of my hand/palm works best. Start at the middle of the sticker, and work out towards the edge, pushing the water outward. This is the part that takes the most time. You may have to readjust the sticker a number of times, but that's fine, the water will allow for that, until you get it perfect. Any 'bubbles' or 'creases' can be pushed out completely if you take the time and push them out slowly. This is also the place where you can use your dryer. By warming the sticker, you can get both better pliability to work out the bubbles/wrinkles and better adhesiveness for the finished product. Having a second set of hands really helps too.
4) Finishing Touch-ups
Once the sticker is in place, and you are completely satisfied with it's location/alignment, use the heat gun to slowly warm the sticker all over and follow up with your hand to rub out all the little imperfections and creases. Carefully warming the sticker will actually reactivate the glue and allow it to mold it slightly around curves and vents, allowing you to do the fine detail alignment. Let it cool on it's own, and voila! There are usually a number of extra ArcticFx stickers included with each kit, and thay are great to test these steps and get comfortable with the process before you attempt the bigger parts of the kit.
Add a little bit of patience, and that's essentially it.
I highly recommend following this technique for any sticker kit application you may have and I recommend ArcticFX Graphics kits. Visit them at ArcticFxGraphics.com and order yours today.
Until next time, safe riding.
This Article is proudly sponsored by ArcticFxGraphics.com