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Vehicle Wrap Companies Want More Innovation from Manufacturers

Incognito Wraps (Las Vegas) and Surf City Graphics (Huntington Beach, CA) throw down their wrap gloves to vinyl manufacturers — and to their own customers.

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“I WOULD JUST LIKE to see more innovation,” said Chris Kmit, owner of Incognito Wraps (Las Vegas), when asked what he’d like to change, if he could, among everything related to the wrap world. “There are small things that can be done so that manufacturers can set themselves apart,” the regional winner in Avery Dennison’s 2019 Wrap Like a King Challenge said.

“Vinyl consistency, quality control and reliability from manufacturers” made up the wish list of Michael Dmytrow, owner of Surf City Graphics (Huntington Beach, CA) and a category winner in Signs of the Times’ 2020 Signshop Competition. And while neither is complaining about the status quo, here they dare to dream a little.

Wanted

If he were a medieval knight, Kmit would throw his armored glove, or gauntlet, at his opponent. “We see time and time again the same colors and material types released by all the major manufacturers within 3-6 months of each other with no variation, nothing to set themselves apart,” he said. “Why not a 54-in. printable reflective or 65-in. roll of PPF (paint protection film)?” Little things like these can make a huge difference, he continued, and would make one company stand out. “The innovations run through the shops and the end result is customers excited about wraps,” he said.

In the next six months or so, Kmit expects “more of a marriage of PPF and vinyl.” He said Incognito Wraps has always offered both or combinations of these films, “but with companies like STEK USA and GSWF International pushing the boundaries of what PPF can be, I think this will be a nice way to give the higher-end consumer a way to accent their vehicle for a longer period of time.”

Seen and Heard

During the previous six months, Surf City has wrapped a lot of recreational (boats and RVs) as well as personal vehicles, Dmytrow said. “With more businesses opening up from COVID-19, we are expecting a lot more commercial vehicle wraps will be trending along with boat wrap/transom name graphics, with summer right around the corner.”

Incognito Wraps has been seeing a shift back toward gloss films, as far as color change films go, Kmit said. “For a good long time, satin films were reigning over most of what we were putting out. With Inozetek releasing a new line of high-gloss films onto the market, it’s pushed what wraps can be and how much like paint the end result can appear.”

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Kmit also suggests manufacturers take note of “some of the wild colors coming out of China,” as he referred to them, and start making higher-quality versions of some of these best-selling colors. “I have actually had a ton of calls about chameleon and holo chrome vinyls, but there isn’t a solid company producing them,” he said.

Client-Tell

Back at Surf City, Dmytrow would love to challenge his customers: More info from clients’ wrap-quote requests would be greatly appreciated and would make for more accurate quotations, he said.

Also, Dmytrow thinks it’s important to remember our recent context. “Since COVID-19, we have noticed that a majority of our clients have been stressed and on edge,” he said before issuing one final challenge, but this one to his own staff: “Friendlier attitudes and more efficient communication with our clients would be appreciated,” he said. Challenge accepted.

Mark Kissling is ST’s Editor-in-Chief. Contact him at [email protected]

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