Custom Lettering on the Vectrix

by Ben N on May 18, 2015


Yesterday, I was busy running errands, but had the chance to swing by the Milwaukee Makerspace. That’s a hackerspace in Milwaukee, Wisconsin’s Bayview neighborhood.

I wanted to stop in to see if I had left my Solar Death Ray there. I had promised a friend that we would use solar power to burn his shirt during his Kickstarter Campaign, but I must be the world’s worst Mad Scientist, as I managed to misplace it. Sure enough, when I stopped in, I found the three-foot by four-foot lens gathering dust by some of my other equipment.

While I was there, I also wanted to make use of the Silhouette Vinyl Cutter. It’s a small computer-controlled machine (which looks rather like an inkjet printer) that can move a sheet of paper or vinyl back and forth and control a cutting blade side to side. In this way, it can cut any shape on an X-Y axis, including custom graphics for vehicles.

I typed up a simple in the Futura font, loaded up a one foot square piece of self-adhesive vinyl, and pressed “Cut”. The machine started whirring away and zip zap, a minute later, it was finished.

This morning, I applied the graphics to my Vectrix. First, I had to pick the “waste” vinyl from around the lettering. Then, I picked out the middle of the “O”s, “P”, and “g”.

Next, I unrolled a bit of transfer paper – basically just a really wide roll of masking tape. I pressed the letters, face side down, on to the transfer paper, then peeled away the wax-paper backer.

After cleaning the Vectrix, I lined up the graphic on the back of the bike, pressed it into place, rubbed down the lettering, then peeled the transfer paper away.

DONE! Nice, clean, legible lettering that won’t come off.

Now, when I’m off at fuel economy and educational events people will know where to go to check out all my projects!

Til next time, stay charged up,

PS: still playing around with range testing. I can do at least 67 miles per charge. Look for a post on the manual cell balancing system soon!

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1st Mini-Road Trip on the Vectrix
May 29, 2015 at 11:47 am

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