Expert tips for creating car wraps – without a knife.

November 17, 2016 3M Canada

Applying car wrapPhil Aquin

Professional advice from Phil Aquin, 3M™ Knifeless Tape Specialist.

Car wrapping is a meticulous process that depends heavily on the cut. How can you ensure each edge is clean and precise?

The first step is to ditch the blade.

Phil Aquin travels the world training graphic installers on how to wrap vehicles without touching a knife. Learn his tricks of the trade using his product of choice, 3M™ Knifeless Tape.

1. Know when to snap vs. pull

Knowing your wire is the first step in graphic installation, Phil explains.

“The wire in 3MTM Knifeless Tape acts as the ‘blade’,” he says. “It’s important to know what material your wire is made of because it will determine how you make the cut. In most cases, you want to snap the wire forward and then pull it through the film. But if you’re using 3M™ PPF Line Knifeless Tape, for example, it has a metal wire so you should skip the snap and go straight for the pull.”

Applying car wrap

2. Choose the right product for the right cut

Different products are better suited to different parts of the installation. Phil breaks the choice down into cutting for design or cutting for finish.

“It’s important to know the differences between the tapes,” he explains. “Design Line is used for any cuts you see. It has a smaller filament that slices through vinyl easier. Whereas Finish Line is used for cuts that are hidden.”

Applying car wrap

3. Know when to release the tension

Designs can have many swoops and curves that may disrupt the tape’s filament. To keep the design intact, Phil says it’s important to take the pressure off.

“It all about releasing the tension,” he explains. “When you’re turning the tape to create a design, you want to prevent the filament from popping out. To do this, only apply pressure on the outside half of the tape. The inside half will buckle and release the tension, giving you clean curves.”

Applying car wrap

Learn more.

Watch a video of Phil applying 3M™ Knifeless Tape in real-time at SignEXPO.

If you would like to speak to a sales rep about 3M™ Knifeless Tape, fill out the following form:


About the Author

3M Canada

[enBio=Across the globe, 3M helps companies and individuals succeed every day. All while contributing to true global sustainable development through environmental protection, corporate and social responsibility and economic progress. We are applying our science to make a real impact in every person's life around the world.],[enJob=Science. Applied to Life.],[frBio=Chaque jour, 3M aide les entreprises et les gens à réussir. Tout cela en contribuant au développement durable réel par le biais de la protection de l'environnement, la responsabilité sociale en entreprise et le progrès économique. Nous appliquons notre science afin de faire une différence réel dans la vie de chaque personne dans le monde.],[frJob=]

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