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Emergency Repairs: Better Than Duct Tape!


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We've all more than likely broken a window or had something come loose while 4x4ing or just on a long road trip. Here's something I started carrying in my emergency kit a couple years ago:




It's vinyl for a cutter/plotter used in making decals.


A little history- I purchased a vinyl cutter a couple years ago to make signs/decals. With that came the need for vinyl material to cut. In essence this is vinyl that is about 2.5 MM thick with an adhesive backing that is alcohol fast. After cutting some stickers and such, I started thinking about what else could be done with this huge adhesive plastic film. Now I'm using it all over the place.


What it is- This is a outdoor quality vinyl that can last up to seven years outdoors. It's tough and can take a fare amount of abuse and will stick like crazy until you want to take it off. the only negative is that it does not take heat well. the other caveat is that it needs to be stuck to a clean dry surface. Due to the amount of adhesion, this stuff could seriously hold on a body panel if called to. It's like having a big, solid sheet of duct tape. Usually a 1'x2' piece can fix most stuff on the road.


It comes in a variety of sizes and usually on rolls or 10 yards by "x" inches. The 24" wide stuff that I use will cost about $2.25 US per yard, so that's less than .40 cents a square foot if you buy it by the yard. It also comes in an amazing array of colors so there should be one to match your rig.



I've used Oracal 651 for most of my actual decal projects, but there are other cheaper brands. Oracal also makes some higher end vinyl that has much more stretch to it if you need that type of application. This could also be used for interior repair jobs on things like door cards or torn vinyl to a certain extent.


If you check around locally, you should be able to find a sign shop that would even give you some scraps as long as your not picky on color.

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