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Dale Salamacha

Wall Wraps Make Money Too

Our columnist finds them more lucrative than wrapping vehicles.




Wrap This printed and installed 3,000 sq. ft. of vinyl to brighten eight interior walls of a new Florida school. Wrap This printed and installed 3,000 sq. ft. of vinyl to brighten eight interior walls of a new Florida school.

A LOT OF TIMES we talk about vehicle wraps as one of our strongest segments here at Wrap This. Wrapping 70 vehicles every month, that’s an easy statement to make, but occasionally we get the opportunity to do some large wall wrap projects, and while they present their own set of challenges, all the money is in wall wraps! At least we think so.

Scan this code to watch an episode of the Media 1 Wrap This YouTube series in which Dale discusses the HP printers used for this project.

Recently, we received a call from Wharton-Smith, a large construction group right here in Sanford, FL, regarding a massive school they are building in Clermont, FL.

This new 100,000-plus-sq.-ft. facility that houses kindergarten through eighth grade only shows the incredible population growth in Central Florida, especially when Wharton-Smith is now beginning construction on an identical-size school just a few miles down the road from this one!

We were brought in to decorate eight interior walls. The artwork was provided to us by Artists Vision, an award-winning communication agency also based in Sanford specializing in business storytelling through print, digital and social media. The eye-catching artwork centers on bold, primary colors that feature photographic images, as well as fun animation, sure to excite those grade school kids.

The walls focus heavily on STEAM Education: an approach to learning that uses Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts and Mathematics as access points for guiding students’ inquiry, dialogue and critical thinking. The walls carry different STEAM themes, with corresponding artwork for each.

And these walls are large. Each STEAM wall measures approximately 9 x 26 ft., and one main feature wall is 12 ft. tall by 56 ft. long! So, overall we are talking roughly 3,000 sq. ft. of vinyl wrap to complete this project. All walls were drywall Level 5, a premium finish and the highest degree of quality for interior drywall. Picture the best drywall surface ever; then add an additional skim coat of joint compound covering the entire surface, creating a super-smooth and flat wall surface — so we knew our wraps were going to look great!

Rick and I traveled to the school to do the initial survey to determine actual wall sizes, as well as the finish on the walls. The GC had painted one of the walls, but not the others yet, so we did a standard 3M adhesion test on the painted wall. It passed with flying colors so we instructed them to have the other walls painted the same way to assure the best adhesion possible.

Our new HP Latex 800 machines printed flawlessly on 3,000 sq. ft. of 54-in.-wide 3M IJ180Cv3, protected with 3M Scotchcal Ultra-Matte Overlaminate 8915, and we sent a crew of five to the school for the application.

Once onsite they quickly realized the walls had been “painted,” but not completely… The GC had not cut into the ceiling, around outlets nor the floor. So now we had a 4-in. perimeter of dusty, uncoated drywall mud circumnavigating every wall. The guys grudgingly packed back up and came home. With a wasted total time of 20 man hours, no one was happy. The client had to finish their painting properly, then sit out the subsequent mandatory waiting period for the paint to fully cure.

Three weeks later we came back, laid down all prints and completed a great-looking project! And based on our SquareCoil software estimate, considering survey, design, print production and installation, we allowed a total of 169 man hours. All in? 101 to chalk this one up on the blackboard, making it a very successful project for the Wrap This team. On to the next school, please!





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