Dodge Neon - SRT-4 Rear Lid Blackout Graphic 1 Installation Notes

 

While our precut kits appear to be "simple" to install, application techniques used in certain areas of the kit prove to make the project go smoother. Please review the notes below that we've compiled to assist in the installation.
By all means, if you do not feel comfortable with the thought of installing the graphic yourself, we suggest contacting a local graphics installer and/or automotive body shop in your area to assist. As noted in the ad for this item, this graphic is very difficult to install. It will be a challenge to the most experienced graphic installer and almost impossible for a novice. Thus, if you've never installed graphics and wish to try your hand at this, you might as well crumple up your money and throw it in the trash.
The Installation Notes below will serve as a reference as to how we got the graphic to fit.
In the event a new piece is required, don't fret. While it's frustrating that a little piece of vinyl can give us so much grief, just remember that the worst case scenario is the you just have to purchase another one - it's certainly not the end of the world. We suggest swearing a bit and moving on.

 

1)  Please review the general Custom Graphics Installation Instructions to become familiar with the preparation of the finished surfaces and methods of installation.
2)  Carefully cut the graphic piece so that approximately 1/8" (.64cm) of the excess backing and application paper is exposed.
3)  The graphic is manufactured to be installed from the center keyhole out. Thus, carefully cut the keyhole out as well.
Prior to setting the graphic you will need to remove any and all emblems. Removal can be performed with a heat gun. Adhesive residue, if any, can be treated with a gentle adhesive remover such as Goo Gone.
Illustrated Details
After all the emblems are removed and the Rear Lid is clean, place a tape line approximately 1.125" (28.58mm) from the bottom of the Lid. This will serve as a "leveling" gauge for you to go by for the installation. The top tape line shown is merely used as a guide.
Installation of this type of graphic requires the "Center Hinge" method. Thus, flip the graphic over and tear a small width of the backing paper down the center, exposing the adhesive side of the vinyl.

Note: Wearing a "metro-sexual" shirt such as shown may help the installation go along better.

When the backing is removed in the center as specified above, fold the backing paper onto itself approximately 1" (25.4mm) on each side as shown.

Leaving the balance of the backing paper as illustrated will allow you to place the graphic and slide it around into place.

As shown in the picture, set the graphic so that the keyhole is centered and so that the graphic is approximately 0.125" (3.175mm) above the bottom tape line at each end. The bottom center of the graphic should be located at the tape however.
When you feel the graphic is centered and leveled, place your thumb in the center so as to "anchor" it to the vehicle.
Once anchored, squeegee from the center to the end with small strokes. Remember to keep the graphic taught while working with it. Moreover, keep watch so that the bottom of the graphic lines up with the tape line as you squeegee it to the end.

Tip: Having another person hold the graphic at the end will allow you to concentrate on the art of squeegeeing. Make sure that the person keeps the bottom of the graphic in line with the tape line.

Working from the center out is the key to a successful installation.
After you squeegee down the center a ways, work the graphic up and down with your squeegee.

This is where firm - very firm - pressure is required.

It may appear as if creases will form, however we have found that the more the pressure with your squeegee the less likely creases will appear.

Tip: Squeegeeing all the way to the top or bottom is not necessary at this point. It's actually a little easier if you leave approximately 1" (25.4mm) or more to squeegee down at the end of the process.

This is where is gets rather sticky. On an egg shape, compound curved surface such as the Rear Lid, when you get to the end of the graphic, it tends to want to crease and form wrinkles.

At this point, strength, firm pressure and a couple of swear words (optional) will assist you to prevail.

Keeping the corners taught, work your squeegee with very firm, almost Superman-like, pressure into the corners.

If you find that the graphic has "dipped" a little below the bottom tape line, "snap" (DO NOT PULL - SNAP) the graphic up a bit and reposition.

When the graphic is down, have a drink and wipe the sweat off your forehead.
After your rest, carefully wrap the left and right edges with the excess material.
With an installation such as this, air bubbles may be evident when the application tape is removed. Simply take a needle and pierce the bubble(s) and carefully work the air out with your finger. If you have a crease, you may be able to work it out with your squeegee and a little heat. Take care not to use too much heat. Too much heat will push the vinyl around and ruin your installation.
Again, in the event a new piece is required, don't fret. While it's frustrating that a little piece of vinyl can give us so much grief, just remember that the worst case scenario is the you just have to purchase another one - it's certainly not the end of the world. We suggest swearing a bit and moving on.

 

 

As always, if you have any questions feel free to e-mail us. We're here to serve.

Thanks!


Need to contact us? Simply email us at customerservice@autotrimdesign.com.

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