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'[OT]: Leveling surface'
2002\08\09@101158 by Josh Koffman

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Hi all. I have a few cases similar to:
www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?itemnumber=39196
The surfaces are aluminum, but with a sort of textured surface. I would
like to put some stickers (decals) on these cases, but I am having
trouble getting things to stick to the non flat surface. Any ideas of
what I could do? I was thinking about getting some 5 minute epoxy,
spreading a thin layer on the case to even out the bumps, then pressing
the sticker into the epoxy. It should work, but I'm worried I won't be
able to contain the epoxy, it will spread wider than the sticker, and
then look ugly. Any other ideas?

Thanks,

Josh
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2002\08\09@101759 by Sid Weaver

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In a message dated 08/09/2002 10:13:14 Eastern Daylight Time,
.....listsjoshKILLspamspam@spam@3MTMP.COM writes:


{Quote hidden}

Josh, go to your drugstore and buy a roll of "Mounting Tape"  This stuff is
incredibly sticky and incredibly strong.  Comes in 1/2" widths, which is the
size of the Avery 5667 label.  Works for me.

Sid

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2002\08\09@102655 by llile

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Get ahold of some VHB Very High Bond double sided foam tape from 3M.  You
can buy little dabs of this from Radio Shark, probably larger rolls from
Grainger, McMaster, and many others.  It's not cheap in big rolls, but you
can probably buy small quantities.  It will stick to anything, cut it to
shape around your label and apply.  The foam will adhere to a rough
surface.  Sticks immediately, bond strength increases for a day. After 24
hours, you will not be able to get it off without destroying it.  The
thinnest grade should do.

This is not your hardware store double sided tape.  That stuff is for
sticking notes to refrigerators.

This stuff is often used to mount printed circuit boards.  A 1/8" thick
piece is stuck to the bottom of the PCB, right over the component leads
lumps and all, then slapped onto the inside of a case.  We used it in a
steam iron.  In a hot, wet environment sticking to slick plastic, it never
comes off.



-- Lawrence Lile
Senior Project Engineer
Toastmaster, Inc.
Division of Salton, Inc.
573-446-5661 voice
573-446-5676 fax




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       Subject:        [OT]: Leveling surface


Hi all. I have a few cases similar to:
www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?itemnumber=39196
The surfaces are aluminum, but with a sort of textured surface. I would
like to put some stickers (decals) on these cases, but I am having
trouble getting things to stick to the non flat surface. Any ideas of
what I could do? I was thinking about getting some 5 minute epoxy,
spreading a thin layer on the case to even out the bumps, then pressing
the sticker into the epoxy. It should work, but I'm worried I won't be
able to contain the epoxy, it will spread wider than the sticker, and
then look ugly. Any other ideas?

Thanks,

Josh
--
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completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete
fools.
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2002\08\09@103034 by Pic Dude

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W.r.t. mounting tape, get the 3M stuff with the red "cover".
That stuff is pain to get off.  The scotch stuff is not as
sticky.  Use some alcohol-based cleaner on the surface, and
if you *really* want it to stick, lightly sand that area on
the case.

Cheers,
-Neil.



> {Original Message removed}

2002\08\09@115046 by Matt Pobursky

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We used to use the 3M stuff to attach cable mounts to a medical device
used in the operating room. I have seen a technician swing the approx.
5lb. monitor around his head by it's attached 6' cable and not separate
itself.

We affectionately called this adhesive "Gorilla Grip"...

;-)

Matt Pobursky

Maximum Performance Systems

On Fri, 9 Aug 2002 09:28:18 -0500, Pic Dude wrote:
>W.r.t. mounting tape, get the 3M stuff with the red "cover".
>That stuff is pain to get off.  The scotch stuff is not as sticky.
>Use some alcohol-based cleaner on the surface, and if you *really
>* want it to stick, lightly sand that area on the case.
>
>Cheers, -Neil.

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2002\08\09@195327 by Jinx

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> what I could do? I was thinking about getting some
> 5 minute epoxy,

Epoxy will be too brittle and inflexible, and weak if the two
components aren't in a stoichiometric ratio (ie chemically
equal parts of reactants). Use double-sided tape or a
flexible contact adhesive like Ados F2

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2002\08\09@202237 by Pic Dude

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5-minute epoxy is usually more flexible than
"real" epoxy, so it may actually work.  But
I can see it being a nightmare to put on and
not make a mess of.

Alternate solution -- take the case to one of
those paintless dent repair places and tell
them you have all those dents in the rectangle
that the sticker will go on.... :-)

Cheers,
-Neil.




> {Original Message removed}

2002\08\09@210715 by Jinx

face picon face
> 5-minute epoxy is usually more flexible than
> "real" epoxy, so it may actually work.  But
> I can see it being a nightmare to put on and
> not make a mess of.

The trick with epoxy is the bonding surfaces. Epoxy itself
is tough but if it hasn't got a good grip or ingress into the
surfaces then the overall bond is not strong. When I use
it, especially on metal,  I mess up the surfaces with coarse
grit sandpaper and/or a centrepunch and/or drill small holes
to make epoxy "pegs" in the final bond. As you say though,
tacky epoxy fingerprints means you need to keep the turps
handy. Over time, vibration and thermal expansion of the
metal gets the better of the epoxy's grip. It seems more
appropriate, in my experience anyway, to use epoxy like
solder, in that the bond is better if it's three-dimensional
rather than surface only, and the epoxy to some extent or
other surrounds parts in the joint. OTOH I've found contact
adhesives are a pretty good for permanent surface bonds
for a lot of materials that epoxy just won't stick to, especially
plastics

> Alternate solution -- take the case to one of
> those paintless dent repair places and tell
> them you have all those dents in the rectangle
> that the sticker will go on.... :-)

And while one guy's tapping out the dents there's another
tapping his head, rolling his eyes and making "cuckoo"
sounds in Josh's general direction

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2002\08\09@211441 by Pic Dude

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True -- a rough surface is a must.

The other trick with epoxy is not wanting it to
stick somewhere -- then it will stick there
and remain forever! :-)

Cheers,
-Neil.



> {Original Message removed}

2002\08\10@035351 by Peter L. Peres

picon face
On Fri, 9 Aug 2002, Josh Koffman wrote:

>Hi all. I have a few cases similar to:
>www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?itemnumber=39196
>The surfaces are aluminum, but with a sort of textured surface. I would
>like to put some stickers (decals) on these cases, but I am having
>trouble getting things to stick to the non flat surface. Any ideas of
>what I could do? I was thinking about getting some 5 minute epoxy,

Silk screen or mask + paint gun (air brush) works fine here. Do not expect
the result to look even. Use a large mask, large lettering etc. From a
distance it looks great.

>spreading a thin layer on the case to even out the bumps, then pressing
>the sticker into the epoxy. It should work, but I'm worried I won't be
>able to contain the epoxy, it will spread wider than the sticker, and
>then look ugly. Any other ideas?

Peter

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2002\08\12@103716 by llile

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I have seen really good looking custom decals on people's elesctonics
cases/enclosures.  Even one-off's can look pretty professional with these.
Where are they obtained?  Can any corner printing shop do these, or do
you ahve to special order them?  Is there an outfit that can do custom
silkscreens for this purpose?

Obviously PC board mfrs do silkscreens for PC board art, which us one-off
labs never mess around with.  I wonder how they get them made?

-- Lawrence Lile
Senior Project Engineer
Toastmaster, Inc.
Division of Salton, Inc.
573-446-5661 voice
573-446-5676 fax




"Peter L. Peres" <RemoveMEplpspamTakeThisOuTACTCOM.CO.IL>
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       Subject:        Re: [OT]: Leveling surface


On Fri, 9 Aug 2002, Josh Koffman wrote:

>Hi all. I have a few cases similar to:
>www.harborfreight.com/cpi/ctaf/Displayitem.taf?itemnumber=39196
>The surfaces are aluminum, but with a sort of textured surface. I would
>like to put some stickers (decals) on these cases, but I am having
>trouble getting things to stick to the non flat surface. Any ideas of
>what I could do? I was thinking about getting some 5 minute epoxy,

Silk screen or mask + paint gun (air brush) works fine here. Do not expect
the result to look even. Use a large mask, large lettering etc. From a
distance it looks great.

>spreading a thin layer on the case to even out the bumps, then pressing
>the sticker into the epoxy. It should work, but I'm worried I won't be
>able to contain the epoxy, it will spread wider than the sticker, and
>then look ugly. Any other ideas?

Peter

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2002\08\12@112143 by Doug Hemingway

picon face
Micro-Mark (http://www.micromark.com) has decal sheets that you can run through
your printer.  They have them for both laser and inkjet printers, and
both clear and white backgrounds.  Really dresses up a project! (like
the commercial says, "put some lipstick on this pig!" <G>)

--Doug Hemingway

RemoveMEllileEraseMEspamEraseMESALTONUSA.COM wrote:
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2002\08\12@113540 by Dale Botkin

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Lawrence,

I have seen dry-transfer sheets with all kinds of words, markings, scales,
etc. that produce very nice results.  I'm looking for a source now, in
fact, so i can make a new front face for a transceiver I got used and
pretty well hacked up.  Radio Shack carried them once upon a time, but no
more of course.  If I find a source I'll post it here.

You can slso buy silkscreen kits at your local art supply store.  I had
one that you could use a photosensitive emulsion and expose the silkscreen
just like a PCB.  Never actually used it, but it looked relatively simple.
So simple, in fact, that I seem to recall the developer for the exposed
emulsion was water.

Dale
---
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Fusistance is retile.
Your ass will be laminated.

On Mon, 12 Aug 2002 RemoveMEllilespam_OUTspamKILLspamSALTONUSA.COM wrote:

> I have seen really good looking custom decals on people's elesctonics
> cases/enclosures.  Even one-off's can look pretty professional with these.
>  Where are they obtained?  Can any corner printing shop do these, or do
> you ahve to special order them?  Is there an outfit that can do custom
> silkscreens for this purpose?

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2002\08\12@115354 by Dale Botkin

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www.oselectronics.com/ose_p74.htm
http://www.abra-electronics.com/catalog/chemicals/k58b.html

Here they are.  Unfortunately no detailed list of what's in each set.  I
have looked with no success for the manufacturer to find detailed images
or listings.

Dale
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Fusistance is retile.
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2002\08\12@120031 by Spehro Pefhany

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At 10:35 AM 8/12/02 -0500, you wrote:

>You can slso buy silkscreen kits at your local art supply store.  I had
>one that you could use a photosensitive emulsion and expose the silkscreen
>just like a PCB.  Never actually used it, but it looked relatively simple.
>So simple, in fact, that I seem to recall the developer for the exposed
>emulsion was water.

That's correct. You do need good contact between the film and emulsion to
get fine lettering to come out well. Usually a vacuum frame is used, but
it's possible to just use foam rubber etc.

The printing process itself is messy and takes a bit of practice, and the
screen drying out while fiddling can be very frustrating for beginners.
I usually waste a lot of paper every time I get things going.

You can have the screens made (we do), but the cost is around US75-100
so a bit much for a one-off (though we do use them for important one-offs).
Beware that there are silk screen makers who do a nice professional job
and a much larger number of others who do hack jobs for T-shirts etc.
If they can do "halftones" they will be good enough, if you get a deer-in-
the-headlights look from that word, then move on. Any large city will have
a couple of the good ones, and scores of the not-so-good-ones.

Best regards,

Spehro Pefhany --"it's the network..."            "The Journey is the reward"
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2002\08\12@122050 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>I have seen really good looking custom decals on people's elesctonics
>cases/enclosures.  Even one-off's can look pretty professional with these.
> Where are they obtained?  Can any corner printing shop do these, or do
>you ahve to special order them?  Is there an outfit that can do custom
>silkscreens for this purpose?
>
>Obviously PC board mfrs do silkscreens for PC board art, which us one-off
>labs never mess around with.  I wonder how they get them made?

There is another process known 'loosely' as "tampon printing". I have seen
this done, and the way it works is to have a brass sheet with the desired
design etched into the surface using a chemical milling or etching process.
The depth of the etch determines how much paint is applied to each printing.
The paint is deposited in the etched plate using a wipe process similar to
that used to squeeze the paint through a silkscreen. A soft rubber pad is
then pressed onto the plate to pick up the paint, and then pressed onto the
item to be printed. If necessary a second print is done. The machinery I saw
doing this was producing model railway wagons, and the printing is that fine
you needed a magnifying glass to read it, but it was all there. The paint
being used was a water based paint, which was quick enough drying that the
machine could do a second imprint of the same pattern in the 10-15 seconds
it took the machine to cycle the plate back, load it with paint, have the
pad pick up the paint, and cycle the body back for printing.

The rubber pad is pressed onto the work, not rolled in any way, so they had
various shaped pads according to the area they needed to cover for each
printing. Apart from some experimentation to get the etch depth of the plate
correct, and to find a suitable pad, this struck me as a viable one-off
printing system, for doing very small runs of one's and two's if necessary.

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2002\08\13@100509 by Josh Koffman

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Just an update. Thanks to all for their suggestions, but before I went
out and bought double stick tape, I decided to have one more go at it,
and I think I have a solution. It's another 3M product - Super 77 spray
adhesive. I think it's thick enough on the back of the sticker to fill
in the divots in the case. The only tricky part is getting the stickers
to lie properly so i can spray them. They like to curl up sometimes :)

Thanks,

Josh

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2002\08\13@101439 by Pic Dude

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3M Super 77 is excellent stuff, but I'd be wary of using it
for a sticker.  It's really contact cement in a can.  When
it's sprayed, it's very "stringy" and has an uneven surface,
so the sticker will not be smooth. You might work around it
a bit by spraying it from closer than they say.  This will
give you slightly smoother surface, but will take more time
to tack.

Depending on the material, you might be able to hold the
sticker with some Play Doh or equiv so that you can spray
the other side.

Cheers,
-Neil.





> {Original Message removed}

2002\08\13@121134 by Peter L. Peres

picon face
On Mon, 12 Aug 2002 RemoveMEllileKILLspamspamSALTONUSA.COM wrote:

>I have seen really good looking custom decals on people's elesctonics
>cases/enclosures.  Even one-off's can look pretty professional with these.
> Where are they obtained?  Can any corner printing shop do these, or do
>you ahve to special order them?  Is there an outfit that can do custom
>silkscreens for this purpose?

You can order custom decals in ones assuming you have the artwork. Most
better print shops will do them. For 'cool' graphic artists etc try your
nearest tattoo saloon etc. They usually know where to find talented
people. The prices for ones are steep but in quantity they are very cheap
(for decals).

>Obviously PC board mfrs do silkscreens for PC board art, which us one-off
>labs never mess around with.  I wonder how they get them made?

There are several methods. One involves offset printing the design in
negative onto fine mesh screen stretched in a frame. The ink will cure (in
an oven) and you have a silk screen ready to use. Another uses
photographical methods as we know them, I have never seen it used. The
coated material is the screen itself and after exposure the developer
removes exposed parts leaving bare screen where the traces are to be. Then
the thing is cured (by heat I presume) and used. The curing makes the
opaque parts of the screen oblivious to solvents in the masking ink.

There are also large opening screens (called stencils I think), which are
made by laser cutting or etching (FeCl3 works fine with Al). Those are the
kind you use with an airbrush.

Peter

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2002\08\13@233443 by Anand Dhuru

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> I have seen really good looking custom decals on people's elesctonics
> cases/enclosures.  Even one-off's can look pretty professional with these.
>  Where are they obtained?  Can any corner printing shop do these, or do
> you ahve to special order them?  Is there an outfit that can do custom
> silkscreens for this purpose?
>

For one-off (or small quantity) decals, I've had a fair bit of success with
this; draw your artwork in a graphics package (I use Corel), and print it
out real size. Then just get the printout laminated at a stationary shop or
bureau , and punch holes wherever required for switches, LED holders,
mounting screws etc. In fact, if you have 7-segment displays on the panel as
well, just cut out the artwork BEFORE laminating, glue a small piece of red
(or green, depending on the display color) gelatin paper on it on the back,
and THEN laminate the sheet. Extremely inexpensive, and almost professional
looking!

Anand Dhuru

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2002\08\14@101735 by Josh Koffman

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Actually, I think the uneven surface is what helps it to work well in
this application. I think the thickness and goopiness (technical terms)
allow it to fill in some of the divots in case and adhere. When I apply
the sticker, I smooth it out a bit so it ends up looking just fine. Good
idea about the play-doh

Thanks,

Josh
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completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete
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Pic Dude wrote:
{Quote hidden}

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2002\08\14@134730 by Peter L. Peres

picon face
On Wed, 14 Aug 2002, Josh Koffman wrote:

>Actually, I think the uneven surface is what helps it to work well in
>this application. I think the thickness and goopiness (technical terms)
>allow it to fill in some of the divots in case and adhere. When I apply
>the sticker, I smooth it out a bit so it ends up looking just fine. Good
>idea about the play-doh

There is BluTack for that. Form Bostik I think.

Peter

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2002\08\14@152235 by Peter L. Peres

picon face
On Tue, 13 Aug 2002, Anand Dhuru wrote:

>> I have seen really good looking custom decals on people's elesctonics
>> cases/enclosures.  Even one-off's can look pretty professional with these.
>>  Where are they obtained?  Can any corner printing shop do these, or do
>> you ahve to special order them?  Is there an outfit that can do custom
>> silkscreens for this purpose?
>>
>
>For one-off (or small quantity) decals, I've had a fair bit of success with
>this; draw your artwork in a graphics package (I use Corel), and print it
>out real size. Then just get the printout laminated at a stationary shop or
>bureau , and punch holes wherever required for switches, LED holders,
>mounting screws etc. In fact, if you have 7-segment displays on the panel as
>well, just cut out the artwork BEFORE laminating, glue a small piece of red
>(or green, depending on the display color) gelatin paper on it on the back,
>and THEN laminate the sheet. Extremely inexpensive, and almost professional
>looking!

I've used this too and I came up with a scheme to make sure that the hole
edges are waterproof. For this make the holes larger than necessary and
then punch the small holes. This and a thin printed sheet make sure that
the lamination is closed airtight on each hole. I've also printed panel
art on foil and used it as is with spray-on glue (printed side inside) or
laminated.

Peter

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2002\08\14@175640 by Nelson Hochberg

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I print onto clear labels available at different sizes from office supply
stores then apply the labels on my enclosures/panels.  Use MEK then alcohol
to clean the surface before applying and they will not come off.

Nelson
TakeThisOuTnelsonKILLspamspamspamnosuffering.com
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> I have seen really good looking custom decals on people's elesctonics
> cases/enclosures.  Even one-off's can look pretty professional with these.
>  Where are they obtained?  Can any corner printing shop do these, or do
> you ahve to special order them?  Is there an outfit that can do custom
> silkscreens for this purpose?
>

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