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’73 Torino stripe

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OleDutchD View Drop Down
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    Posted: 20-November-2003 at 5:19PM
The following is a little question and answer that I've pieced together from another thread on this bulletin board. I'll post a summary below.
Kevin Dohner
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Kevin, I believe you have stated, in past, that you are working on an alternative design to replace those stripes. I guess these would be good for the resto mods. I kind of lean towards originality, myself. Although, I feel free to add options, as long as it can be done in such a manner as to make it appear to be 'factory' original.

JSTurner
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James, concerning the stripes, allow me to explain a little and give you some background on what/why I'm doing.
To try and make a very looong story short, the material and set-up costs would be horrendous (easily $3000+), if you were going to make a SINGLE, OEM equivalent, silk-screened set, starting from scratch. Trust me. And the capital required to set-up for a limited production run (including special equipment) could EASILY pass $15K. Again, trust me on this one. Been there,... nearly did that. Now, even if all the above HAD come to pass, my sole purpose was to have had a way to make an OEM equivalent Laser stripe in non-OEM color combinations! However, it's amazing what a little unexpected illness and 4 months off of work can do to the best laid plans.

So here I am again, sort of. Within the week, we'll start the digital pattern work to cut paint masks and/or vinyl, painstakingly patterned from the '73 Laser stripe. As I've said before, I make no pretense that it/they will, in any way, be an OEM reproduction. The goal, however, is to be "dead nuts" on the shapes, lines and sizes. From there, the ability will exist for me (or anyone) to either "mimic" the OEM stripe, or do their own thing.

I wish I had a half-dozen Torinos to play with when this is ready, because the possibilities are tremendous..... OEM style stripes, reverse fade stripes (darker in front, lighter in back), non-stock color combinations, solid color reflective (black reflective stripes on a black car)..... or just use the stencils to paint the stripe on the car in candy colors or pearls.

As much fun as the fiberglass work with the bumper and stuff has been, this could be a little "funner"!

Kevin
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Thanks, Kevin, for the info on your Stripe Kit.

OK, it sounds good, what you are doing. I'm a little confused, though. Are you making tape masks to use in painting on a stripe or is your final product going to be an actual Stripe Kit that will be applied on top of the paint? If a kit, then, it sounds like it can be had in most any color configuration.

JSTurner
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jstur Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-November-2003 at 7:20PM

Alright, Kevin!

Hey, that'll work for me.  Sounds like you can make any combo I want, too.  Great, I can stop looking for those OEM Stripe Kits.  They were hard to put on, anyway. 

Another question or two, though.  How much money are we talking?  Will your kit apply using soap & water to slide them into place before final placement or will it be a direct stick-on kit, like OEM?  Also, a few months back I was talking with Trevor Berge from Dearborn Classics about a reproduction stripe kit they were considering making.  Were you associated with that venture or is your effort completely independant of theirs?

Thanks for your help.

JSTurner
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote OleDutchD Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-November-2003 at 9:05PM
James,
Since the stripe patterns will be in a digital format the 'kits" would be made one-at-a-time, and can be juggled around supplied in nearly any cinfuguration to suit the end user's needs. They can even be stretched to fit a Ranchero (or station wagon), if you want something a little more sleek/elegant than the large solid color panels used on the Ranchero GT stripes. If the desire is to truly mimic an "OEM" Laser stripe, the kit would consist of precision cut blanks of 3M Scotchlite reflective material and sets of paint masks (stencils) to then selectively lay down the various layers of paint (translucent/opaque acrylic urethane) over them. Not a simple one-step project, but then you need to understand how the OEM stripes were made by 3M, for Ford, in order to appreciate them for what they were:

First, all the stripes, regardless of final color combination, started out with the same color of 3M vinyl ......... an obsolete color formulation called "silver". More "white" in actual appearance, with a faint greenish caste to it. All the color coats were then silk-screened over that in multiple stages using multiple screens. In the instance of a yellow/red stripe, the first screen laid down the translucent yellow ink over the entire width and length of the vinyl. The next screen laid down the gradient fade of red translucent ink, in the form of a dot matrix, to the center of the stripe panel. The third screen laid down the opaque black pinstripes as well as a fine gradient dot matrix over the last one-third of the stripe. The red dye was apparently insufficient, in and of itself, to achieve the desired effect on its' own (it's interesting to note, that the yellow/red stripe was, it seems, the only one to use the black dot matrix inside the colored panel). So you see, in order to make an honest attempt to replicate an OEM Laser stripe it would require the base color reflective vinyl blanks and three different sets of masks. You'll also need a painter who has a good eye for color values, since you'll be dealing with translucent shades over a base color. It would be directly comparable to the process of shooting candy colors over a metallic candy base.

As you move away from the strict realm of trying to replicate OEM stripes, the process doesn't necessarily become less tedious, but it CERTAINLY becomes more personally satisfying as the possibilities are nearly limitless:
1) OEM-type fades over reflective vinyl, custom colors
2) Reverse fades over reflective vinyl, OEM or custom colors
3) Paint masks only, no reflective vinyl
    a) opaques
    b) candys
    c) pearls
   4) Reflective vinyl only
    a) reflective center panel / open space / one reflective pin-stripe around
    b) solid stripe panel, no pin-stripe

Some of my own ideas have been:
1) Black reflective stripe w/pinstripe on a black car. Almost invisible by day, blazes white under lights.
2) Green translucent faded over top of gold vinyl
3) "Ghost" stripes using pearls
4) Candy flame job inside of full panel mask w/ one pin stripe

I've never been much of a traditionalist (can ya tell?), but you get the idea.

Kevin

PS...... Oh yeah, we'll be working on a little fender badging, too. More on that later.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote OleDutchD Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20-November-2003 at 10:20PM
James,
I've exchanged e-mail with Mr. Berge on several occassions over the last several years concerning the stripes. At one time, we did discuss the possibility of my supplying Dearborn with a screened product, had that come to fruition. That was over 3 years ago, and even at that time he mentioned that they were looking into the feasibility of doing it in-house. As of a few weeks ago, they had not yet made the move but still expressed the intention of going forward with it, at some point in time. So, no, I'm not directly involved with that effort.

Whether or not the OEM stripes are EVER faithfully reproduced by ANYONE, my intention is to go ahead and maintain this particular project. As I've stated previously my own interests lie beyond, and outside, the norm...... and I hardly think I'm the only one who yearns to be a little different.
As to cost, that is yet to be determined, but will depend to some extent upon the complexity of what the individual needs in order to paint their own stripe. Again, these would be more or less made to order.
The paint-mask can be positioned with fluid, the 3M material has an adhesive formulation/feature that doesn't require it. It's repositionable until you have it "dead-nuts", then you press it into place for final adhesion. And you better be on the money when you do!! LOL!!

Kevin
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote OleDutchD Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02-January-2004 at 1:05AM
Well, it's taken quite awhile for me to get to this point, but the '73 stripes are now officially fully plotted and I have 3 different sets/versions of proofs sitting on the desk in front of me right now, one of which is stretched to fit a Ranchero. It would be an understatement to say that I am VERY pleased with them. They'll be leaving in the mail, in a day or so, to make the rounds to a couple of people for some independant scrutiny. If the feedback is everything that I expect, and all goes as well as I'm almost certain it will, the next step will be to cut several sets from various materials to do some further conceptual/development work. Then I'll get some pics up for all to see.
Also, the OEM '72 stripes that I'll be using as patterns will be here any day..... so that project is warming up in the bull pen right now, too.

Time to go clear my head.

Kevin "Dutch" Dohner
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10-January-2004 at 12:42PM
Wow! Now that is dedication to a project. I am not a professional painter by any stretch of the imagination, but my plan to recreate the stripe was with paint using first, the original laser stripe as a model recorded on digital camera with precision dimensioning. Next was to record the colors with a camera borrowed from my paint and body supply, then faithfully replicate the stripe using a touchup spray gun and an air brush. Your masking system seems much more authentic and far less prone to error than my idea and probably less expensive. Using my idea, each color has to be mixed, several, and I don't have a color mixer as I never before needed one. Bottom line, lots of small quantity special paints, great for the supply business, costly to the consumer. Thumbs up to you Kevin!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote OleDutchD Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23-January-2004 at 5:39PM
Just as a quick update, I recently bought a state-of-the-art vinyl graphics, printer/cutter capable, software package that is out of this world. In the last few days I've been able to successfully pull the "Gran Torino Sport" script off of a '72 Sport stripe and am pleased beyond words with the results! I'll start digitizing the rest of the '72 stripe outlines today. I plan on trying to tackle some "Ranchero" scripting, as well.

On a side note....... although the technology definitely exists to digitally print these stripes ('72 and '73), the opaque nature of the digital dyes makes their results second rate at best, especially at night, when trying to duplicate the gradient fades. The original inks used by 3M were translucent (except for the black.... it was opaque), which means that the full reflective capability of the underlying Scotchlite material was barely affected. There may be some limited roll for digital printing in this application, but (IMHO) the most faithful results will still come from using translucent paints over a base of reflective vinyl.

Back to work..................

Kevin
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