Triathalon Part 2- VINYL

I’m definitely not going to say I am a graphic designer. I have had to figure things out as I go, (video editing, graphics, web design, etc) and while I love Photoshop to death, every time I do a project (whether a poster or a sticker) I learn something new. And by the time I am done, I want to start all over again and apply all that new found wisdom. No time on this one. You have all seen the mockups and that excitement. Those are like 3 inch images that were placed on a photo of an excursion limo with big wheels and drivelines drawn in. Converting that into a 35’long image is a little tricky. You know. I should take a class or something. It would probably save a lot of time in my life. Maybe next time.
Anyway, thanks to all you voters on the design of the truck (what like a year ago) I had to redo ALL the graphics because it ended up being a blend of the designs. Not a big deal, except I wasn’t anticipating Derrick, owner of Las Vegas Car Wraps stepping in and joining the old BTR team. So the most awesome thing, suddenly became my worst nightmare, and when Photoshop failed me and corrupted my open files (which was all of them) it became the worst possible scenario. Sure, sure, there might have been some procrastination involved, buuuuuuuuuuuuut the sides were mostly done prior to that point.
Nothing like a do-over, when you really have no idea what you are doing in the first place. I just know a lot of clicking takes place, that I can drag images from Illustrator to Photoshop sometimes, but not always and that I don’t understand 99% of the jargon on the program. Someday…..but for now, time to get the Hustler some skin.
Also, side note, don’t use two year old lap tops for graphic design. I’m impressed mine help up as much as it did, but I’m not gonna lie, there were moments of the laptop nearly being airborne, shot, driven over, thrown in a tub of water, and tarred and feathered. Yeah. And as you all know…my battery likes to fall out when I move the computer…so, that probably accounts for half of the time I spent on this thing.
As promised, the truck was measured last Saturday, and Tuesday was the big day. Derrick, Ryan, and Ryan came out and knocked that bad boy out. It was poetry in motion. We watched a good portion of it, and I didn’t even pretend to be working. Vinyl is just so dang cool, and these guys are fantabutastic. Of course I stalked them, taking lots of pictures, but they were used to the stardom. Nope, the limelight didn’t get these guys. They showed up, scaffolding together faster than I could grab my phone, and before I knew it, the first panel was being laid down.

Prepping for vinyl

Prepping for vinyl

 

Setting the vinyl in place

Setting the vinyl in place

Situating

Situating

See how cool is this stuff???

See how cool is this stuff???

The plan was get the solid vinyl on Tuesday, then come back and do the perforated vinyl and the top on Wednesday. Two ginormous monster truck sides and one hood later, they were packed up and ready to come back the next day. Everything went flawlessly as far as I could tell, and they even improvised by doing a drop look on the bottom of the truck so the image wouldn’t look distorted by wrapping the underside and then the lowest panel. Freaking genius if you ask this girl. Picture below.

See the gap?

See the gap?

And now see how the picture flows better?

And now see how the picture flows better?

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I knew eventually the top of the truck would prove useful for a shot

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Ok so if I thought starting the motor was life changing, vinyl was pretty much ten times past that. I don’t know what it is, but like I told Melissa, its like you can have a cake, and it might be the most difficult, best tasting cake out there, but it still just looks like a cake. Now, you stick some fancy pants frosting on it and BOOM, you have magic. That was exactly what the vinyl did. Magic. The truck transcended from “project” into reality. It now looked like the energy drinks, like the images I was sending to sponsors…..but better.
So yesterday, the crew, whittled to two, came back out to finish up. We opted to do the roof in White plain vinyl so that it would keep the truck cooler. WHICH I forgot to mention required a few hours of DAing the roof to get off all the surface rust and weird welding beads. What a mess. But, the vinyl probably wouldn’t have cooperated without, so I’m just going to say it was worth it. Oh and we had to paint the underside of the hood before they wrapped it too, so that required some additional work. I taped and then brad sanded the inside to scuff it up, carefully blowing the dust in my direction. HENCE my voice went to crap and I sound like the cell reception between here and Vegas. Everyone here seems to think it is hilarious. So far I have been told I should go on American Idol (thanks Steve) that I sound like a 16 year old (thanks Alex) and that I should just quit talking. Fine. If that is the case, then you make the phone calls. –that’s what I thought.

A last minute thought, looks pretty awesome though!

A last minute thought, looks pretty awesome though!

Perforated Vinyl over the windows

Perforated Vinyl over the windows

ahh so pretty with no surface crud

ahh so pretty with no surface crud

 
So bloody nose, raspy voice, and weird puberty sounding squeaks aside, we trucked on, juggling the three ring circus in the shop, and last night they finished the wrap. I know Brad was beyond stoked, I was ecstatic, and Steve was in awe. The only parts left are just to drop in the website into the bumper inserts, and Steve already made his contribution by wrapping the emblem. It was a tough debate between putting Hulkster on it and the company…but in the end the company won out. Sorry bulldog. I’ll put you on the roof next time.

Steve hard at work after hours

Steve hard at work after hours

So I would like to give a HUGE, nay GINORMOUS shout out to Derrick and the guys at Las Vegas Car Wraps. They were freaking amazing, and knocked the job out with a fluidity you rarely find! Stay tuned on their endeavors with us, because we will be wrapping the novelty/ticket trailer, the Vanborghini, and probably an assortment of other things. Excited to have them on board with us! If you need wrapping you can see their website at http://www.LasVegasCarWraps.com . They do some amazing stuff. Love it!

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The Posting Triathalon- Part Uno!

Preface: Some of this is kiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiinda old because I started it only to get interrupted with something else. So follow along and I will try to keep it chronological.

UUUUUUUUUUUUUGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHhhhhhhh. Blogging is about the last thing I want to do (I say about because the last thing I want to do is read the technical specs on high temp thermo coating) It’s not that I dislike writing, cuz I don’t. I love it, but not when I am burnt out on it, and have so much , yet so little to write about. Secretly, I held back on posting, because I was just hoping that the truck would be finished and I could just type “THE END” Alas, that is not the case. We still have a couple weeks left , and since it’s been more than that since my last post, I can’t ignore it any longer.
The days are truly starting to blur together. After Enoch left, we had a week, and then Brad’s Dad and his dad’s girlfriend, Karen came to visit. Fortunately, they are pretty good at entertaining themselves, so it didn’t lag us much. Like I said before, company is company, so it’s not like you operating 100%, but we didn’t dip too far down in production. Plus it was nice to see them and for them to see the progress from their last trip.
Something I would really like to clarify is that I don’t just sit inside shopping online for purses or watch soap operas. For some reason people seem to think I just lay around all day in the lap of luxury. I don’t. In fact I hate being inside. I hate being on the computer. I hate looking for parts that literally do not exist or finding a product that is close enough to the unicorn Brad needs for the truck. I don’t have ample free time to just do whatever. If I did, my hair would always look pretty, I wouldn’t finally get dressed around noon, and I would exercise EVERY single day. When I am not working on truck stuff, I am doing everything else to keep our lives in motion, and start other ventures. I may not get to work outside, and I do not need a gold star, but I definitely have not been on vacation for a year.
Mini-vent complete. Ok. Well as you know the truck is getting more truck-like every day. Brad has been wiring like a mad man. I you ever saw our race trucks, then you are familiar with the wiring Brad likes-simple. Everything is excessive, over complicated, and ill-assembled. To us, the simpler the better. Easier to work on, less problems, and it just makes sense. There is no need for making yellow wires go into brown, then into green…just yellow. Don’t splice unless required, just one wire, one color- done. In the game of electronic equipment, sometimes it just isn’t so simple. I can’t even begin to count the hours of problem solving (thanks Steve for your tech support), making ends that are pretty (each one gets measured, cut, an end soldered on, and shrink tube around it) As much as I would love nothing more than to go count how many wires that has been done with….I’m going to pass for the sake of the greater good (getting this actually done) There is still more wiring to do, but at least the bulk of it is complete.
For all of the boring, wish you were anywhere but here moments, there are greats that just make it all worthwhile. Thursday the 10th, we primed the motor, tested all the parts, and flipped the “start” switch (which I wanted to be one of those giant red “EASY” buttons, but no one values my opinion around here. That and I don’t think it fit on the dash. Oh well. The first two attempts ended in giant mini explosions out the carb (nothing exciting, but for our spectators it was hilarious) Then on the third try, the Sin City Hustler fired up in all her Big Block Ford Glory! I was in the driver’s seat, and to feel her spring to life was amazing. This was real, and it was awesome.
Of course after the initial startup, there has been several runs since. Testing gauges (which all work flawlessly) making sure the heat wasn’t an issue, and tuning the motor. It idles like a champ and sounds like the behemoth it is. Although I think the guys were secretly a little sad about the sound of the exhaust, but honestly, it’s loud and it sounds good….so I could care less about their whining.
I have attached the start up video for your viewing. So make sure you have it plugged in to your surround sound to get a better, more authentic effect.

In the midst of the motor and electrical I had to crack down on my graphics. So moving on to post 2. See how thoughtful I am. Most of you don’t want to read super long posts so I am being so considerate to give you an intermission….yes, you’re welcome.