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Fanning the Vehicle-Wrap Flames

(July 2010) posted on Fri Jul 16, 2010

Six projects to help you re-ignite your passion for vehicle graphics.

click an image below to view slideshow

By Jared Smith

After the quote was accepted, we presented a few design options that fit the shape of this rare SUT while representing Suzuki’s brand to company standards. Once the client chose the final design, we output the graphics on our Mimaki JV3 onto 3M IJ180C with 3M 8519 laminate. It was a very cool truck, a fantastic wrap, and a road trip filled with great memories.

• Challenges: Since this was a new vehicle, with an “unreleased” motorcycle ramp, we had to make sure that photos didn’t get out to the public during the project. Even Pastrana didn’t know he was going to get this truck prior to the event.

• Easiest part: Deciding to personally deliver the vehicle hundreds of miles away. (Photo E)

Making a Good Trade
We have a client that specializes in eccentric vehicles—specialty vehicles with models ranging from 1930s roadsters and mini Hummers to golf and utility carts. He approached us at one point and asked if we would like to do some tradeout work. He had such cool stuff we said, “We’re listening.”

Eventually, we were able to strike a good barter deal for graphics for other work, and ended up with this Cart-Rite all-electric two-seater. It features two full-size seats, a stereo, and a bed to haul stuff in; best of all, it’s completely street legal with seat belts, mirrors, turn signals, and a horn.

We knew it needed some graphics, however, so we stared at it for a while until we all agreed to create a mascot. The name Mean Mug just stuck. We decided to brand it in bluemedia colors, make use of the headlights for eyes, and flamed fenders seemed right for it as well.

After a two-minute print on the HP TurboJet to 3M IJ180Cv3 and some 3M 8518 laminate, we had the graphics ready to slap on. Our installers found an opening in the schedule one afternoon and spent an hour or two finishing up our new mascot. Now, Mean Mug drives supplies and clients between our four buildings.

• Challenges: Remembering to plug it in after each use and figuring out how to use Mean Mug on the golf course have been the biggest challenges to date

• Easiest part: This entire project was easy. Since we were the client and the vendor, we could design whatever we wanted; the print took just minutes, and the install was quick and painless.  (Photo F)

Jared Smith is president of bluemedia (, a leading provider of design and printing for use in vehicle, large-format, and environmental applications, in Tempe, Arizona.