Volume 17, Issue 5- September/October 2013


Architectural Division

Did You Know …

84.5% of specialty graphics companies say window displays, including those that require window film, are the second most common product type among specialty graphics producers?

*SGIA’s 2012 Market Trends and Product Specialties Survey Report

How Do You...
Land storefront/retail jobs?

Brian Timm, president of Tint America in Billerica, Mass., tells us his secret to landing storefront and retail jobs.

Most of our company’s storefront leads come from referrals, online searches or our website. I feel that the dreaded “cold call” marketing plan creates an awkward feeling just speaking about it. I prefer to seize an opportunity when it presents itself. I like to to put my Einstein cap on and become a cold educator to the under-educated in regards to the latest and greatest advances in the window film universe.

Teaching the Trade

A typical exchange with one of my “students” may go like this:

“Hello, I just finished one of my advanced yodeling classes nearby and was on my way to grab a dunkbucks iced frap latté. I noticed the chocolate melting in the display case; your red leather couch was half pink or your employee wearing sunglasses while working the register.”

You get the picture. Here is your opportunity to cold educate. Inform them of the virtually clear films on the market that can reduce X percent of ultraviolet (UV) rays and heat while allowing a wonderful view from inside and outside the store. Educate them on the security films available on the market or the variety of decorative films available. Tell them about tax credits (if available), energy savings and typical payback periods, then ask if they would like to see some samples. “I should have some in the Pacer, let me check.”

Go the Extra Mile

If they like, you could measure the windows and maybe put a sample up (a complete window is best). Tell them about the meters available that prove performance and discuss the value (price) when it is convenient.

Remember to dress nice, smile, pop a breath mint and be confident. You are selling, I mean, educating “students” about one of the greatest products in the world! Our product is able to virtually stop UV rays that are hurling towards earth at 186,000 miles a second and can even keep a little bit of chocolate from melting in a display case.

How Do You…
Best install PPF?

Jeff Henderson, manager of Auto Trim Design of the Mid South in Memphis, Tenn., and PPF demo installer for the Nano-Fusion PPF line, tells us his secret to best installing PPF.

Balancing Act

Proper PPF installation begins with the installer paying close attention to his surroundings, especially the temperature at which the product will be installed. This is crucial because of the variety of locations and temperatures.

The application mixture is a 32 oz. spray bottle filled with water and two to three quarter-inch sized drops of baby shampoo. Additionally, a separate 32 oz. bottle fill with 70 percent water and 30 percent isopropyl alcohol (70 percent solution). Too much baby shampoo will result in a very slippery install while too little results in too tacky of an install. Noting the temperature will help you to adjust for extremes in weather and location.

Bumper to Bumper

Bumper applications are challenging. Areas where there are tight turns around headlights, fog lights and lower grille areas are where installers become frustrated. Repeatedly spraying the film may saturate the adhesive with baby shampoo and water, and alcohol, to the point that the adhesive can no longer adhere. Visually, it has a milky white faded appearance.

Do a fingertip touch test. Carefully and gently lift the PPF away from the surface of the vehicle, then touch the adhesive side of the PPF to see if it is tacky. If it is not tacky (and it should be) hold it away from the vehicle surface and blow a series of short breaths until the adhesive is tacky.

Deep Depression

Recessed areas and contours on vehicle hoods, fenders and bumpers can also be a challenge.

Spray recessed areas with the alcohol mixture and tuck the PPF into the area first. Then proceed to stretch the film to cover the other areas. Surrounding areas which often protrude outward or are flat can easily be tacked into place with a squeegee.

The Right Stuff

One more crucial step: use the proper tools. For a flat-surfaced hood without any extreme ridges or body lines, use a much stiffer squeegee to extract all of the solution and leave no water bubbles. For a bumper or mirrors, a softer, more flexible squeegee affords greater conformability.

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