As I live and work in a winter sports resort, it was always a horror for me when I had made an offer to a customer in summer or autumn and the order confirmation then arrived shortly before the onset of winter or even in the depths of winter with the comment that this project was so important that it had to be realised immediately.
Of course, my comments about the prevailing outside temperatures and the difficulties with bonding work below 10° C usually fell on deaf ears and the pressure was often really built up.
Many advertising companies probably know this problem.
So in recent years I have always been on the lookout for new films that could possibly defuse this bottleneck.
My approach was that it would have to be films with extra-strong adhesive, because although there are now also battery-powered hair dryers for preheating the surfaces, this is rather counterproductive with glass panes if you don't want to constantly have cracked glass panes replaced at the customer.
I had tested a few examples from various manufacturers, but was always not happy with certain parameters:
- too much shrinkage of the film, as it is made on a monomeric basis
- too soft an adhesive, which leaks out at the edges after a short time
- not good for printing
- difficult to plot because of the consistency of the adhesive
- poor removability after application.
An earlier visit to an IGEPA Select trade fair brought me into contact with the company CONTINENTAL GRAFIX and I had filed away the brochures with the portfolio because I found some of the products very interesting.
I wanted to know what had happened in the meantime with this supplier in terms of materials and looked on the website.
There, a new product panoRama X-treme film was described, which should fulfil exactly the requirements I had been looking for so long:
- bondable up to -15° C
- ideal for smooth and rough surfaces
- applicable for low-energy substrates
- minimal shrinkage
- no sticking in the machine
The contact was quickly established and the responsible sales representative offered me to test the product myself. Here I received a small sample roll. This is no problem at all for Continental Grafix, they always try to help.
My test of the panoRama X-treme film
As it often happens, I had planned to test the sample film quickly, but then postponed it to the time between Christmas and the turn of the year due to daily business.
Oberhof had been awarded the Biathlon World Championships and Luge World Championships in 2023 for some time and these were now to be promoted by the Tourist Information Office with the new logo on the windows.
And as always (see the beginning of the article), of course as quickly as possible and before the start of the Biathlon World Cup on the first weekend in January 2022.
So I only had a little time and already an application for it.
The printing was done on an Ecosolvent printer from ROLAND.
Normally I create a separate profile for a new product, but this is a bit time-consuming.
Unfortunately, I didn't have that time in this case, so the sales representative advice to use the Vinyl Glossy profile led to a good result in terms of resolution and colour accuracy.
For the lamination, the in-house product panoRama Protect or panoRama Cast is recommended.
With panoRama Protect I was able to achieve a pleasing result.
Plotting the film
If you want to plot fonts or graphics, as in my case, the film is very suitable for this.
With my Summa Tangential I was able to cut everything correctly and easily without any problems. That was really remarkable!
Due to the short time frame until the start of the Biathlon World Cup and the bad external conditions (snow or sleet, strong wind, high humidity, -2° C) I didn't have much choice for the mounting on the window panes.
Unfortunately, my first attempt without any prior knowledge almost went wrong.
Due to the cold, the humidity and especially the wind, the first graphic almost flew away, as unfortunately my tape for positioning the graphic did not really hold on the cold panes. Some of the guests who had observed this action at the neighbouring snack stand will have thought something of it. I was even offered help, but after applying the first graphic I voluntarily gave up.
This was sobering, of course, and I pondered in the warm company how I could finish this job properly. My strategy was clear: start early, as the wind would come later, and better adhesive tape would bring the result.
The next day was then like a change: at -4° C, sunshine and dry conditions, I was able to stick all the writings, graphics and stickers on the glass panes and it looked good! And I had really earned it ;)
The film has a very good and immediate adhesion and the tape can be easily removed after application without the film peeling off again. That's what I call PERFECT!
My advice here:
- If the application is dry, please apply very slowly and with a hard squeegee so that the risk of bubbles forming is kept as low as possible,
- when outside temperatures are cold, always remember to use a good adhesive tape for these conditions (special adhesive tape).
MY OVERALL ASSESSMENT: Highly recommended and THANK YOU to CONTINENTAL GRAFIX for this product!
Now I can finally be more relaxed during the winter months and with orders that have not yet been realised.
A clear competitive advantage!
I hope to have given all potential users a good direction for their decision.
Michael Schinzel of SCHINZEL-WERBUNG from Oberhof/Thuringia (Austria)