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Knowledge Base
Knowledge Base

Choosing the Right Film

What is Controltac adhesive?

3M’s unique Controltac pressure-activated adhesive contains microscopic glass beads, which lie on the surface of the adhesive. This feature allows for the films to be slid across the substrate and be repositioned until the exact registration is achieved. As soon as firm squeegee pressure is applied, the glass beads are pushed into the adhesive, giving an instant bond, which needs no curing time. Films with Controltac can help with application, making it quicker and easier.

What is an air channel adhesive?

Bubble free adhesive contain a channelled liner to create non-visible air channels to make application even easier. 3M Comply and Arlon Xscape adhesives can be useful for lesser skilled applicators to help prevent bubbles when applying vinyls. Use firm squeegee strokes when applying the film, working towards an edge to channel any trapped air to an exit point.

Which film should I use?

Try our wrap selector tool to help you choose the right film depending on which vehicle you want to wrap.

Why should I use a cast film for vehicle wrapping?

Cast films are more conformable but also offer a greater durability, to ensure the colour of your wrap will last for the lifetime of the vehicle. This is important when considering the lifetime of a colour car wrap – you wouldn’t want the vinyl to fade with UV exposure in the short term!

I want to wrap a van, which film should I use?

If you are in any doubt which digital print film to use we would recommend using 3M IJ380 Series. IJ380 Series is suitable where extreme conformability is required, such as in extreme U shaped recesses and complex curves found on the van models including:

  • Mercedes/Vauxhall Vito – Old and New
  • Mercedes Sprinter – Old and New
  • Toyota Hiace
  • Renault Master
  • Vauxhall Movano
  • LDV Maxus

For single step shallow recess vans, 3M IJ180Cv3 Series or 3M IJ170Cv3 Series films would be suitable. Arlon 6000 RP/XRP are other alternatives for van models for example:

  • Ford Transit
  • Renault Vivaro/Traffic and Primastar
  • Fiat Doblo
  • Peugeot Expert/Citroen Relay
  • Volkswagen Transporter