How to properly do a hydro dip? Is a question you’ll ask yourself at least twice when doing hydrographic dipping or doing water transfer printing. Well, you’ve come to the right place amigo…
Read the entire instruction manual or ensure you are able to access the video before starting your project.
It is important to properly prepare your hydrographic dipping project before even starting. Preparation is the key to a good hydrographic dip.
Before we begin, below is the what we will cover for the Hydro Dipping Process.
So now that you know what you’re in for, lets get into it right away.
Preparation of your project
Please make sure that the item you are wishing to dip can be submerged into water for at least 10 seconds. DO NOT dip any electrical parts or items that can’t be completely submerged into water for 10 seconds. DO NOT dip any items that absorb water.
It is important to properly prepare your project before the dipping process. Use the enclosed scuff pad to make certain that you have a grease-free, clean and dulled surface so that the paint will adhere to it. Some customers have found success using a grease/wax remover, alcohol or other cleaners to remove stubborn grime. Before painting, wash and wipe all of your items to be dipped.
Choose your Dipping container
Please choose the right size Dipping container.
The size of the container used to dip your project has a direct correlation to the size of the object you are going to dip. Your container must be deep enough to completely submerge the item during the dipping process. Please make sure there is ample space between the sides so that you can move the item freely. Also, consider water displacement to ensure water does not spill over during the dipping process. Please protect the surrounding area from damage due to water displacement. You will be able to find a variety of plastic containers at your local Hardware store.
Taping your project
Any area that you don’t want to be dipped will need to be masked off. In large areas, a newspaper can be used to cover it. It is also a good idea to tape the inside area of the item so that all the removed parts will fit as the original.
Painting your project
First, apply the Hydro Primer and leave it to dry. If you find that a run in paint occurs, flatten it with the scuff pad in the required area and touch up with primer. Once the primer has dried, use the HYDRO DIP KIT Base Coat Paint (Specially formulated and packaged for HYDRO DIP KIT TM ) to spray your item until all exposed areas you wish to dip are completely covered.
Preparing the film for your project
Keep water away from your film. All hydrographic film is water-soluble and should be kept dry and away from high humidity environments. If the film gets wet before dipping, the film will not process properly.
Once the size of your project has been determined, measure the amount of film you will need for your project. Make sure to take into account any curvature, round shapes, three-dimensional shapes, unique angles and hard to reach areas such as hinges.
Use additional film if you are not sure. Using masking tape, outline your measurements with tape. Once you have applied masking tape around your measurement, cut the outside perimeter of the masking tape so the tape is part of your dipping project. Make diagonal cuts every 80mm through the masking tape just touching into the pattern.
You are now ready to dip 😃
You can use normal municipal residential water to dip our hydrographic film products, make sure your water is between the temperatures of 23- 27 degrees Celcius( Luke-warm water) and fill your chosen container with enough water to submerge your project entirely.
Dipping an item into Hydrographic Film
Placing your prepared film
Place your prepared film in a floating manner on the water with the proper side down. If you are not sure, wet your thumb and index finger and hold the film, the sticky side will go face down in the water.
** It is important that you place the film on TOP of the water and do not submerge any part of the film under the water at this time. **
Using the Activator Spray
Let the film float on the water for about one and a half minutes. Spray a nice even coat of HYDRO FILM SPRAY (Specially formulated and packaged for HYDRO DIP KIT); directly on top (not at an angle) of the film using several passes and different spray patterns about 400mm from the surface of the film, to ensure an equal amount is covering the entire film. Once the FILM SPRAY has been applied, you will notice that the film will expand and then stop. Don’ worry this is normal. When the film is completely activated; the film will have a glassy look. Dip immediately after applying the film spray.
Dipping into Hydrographic Film
DO NOT HOLD AN AREA ON YOUR PROJECT THAT NEEDS TO BE DIPPED. The paint can not reach an area that is covered by any part of your hand. There are several ways to avoid this, you can make tape handles in a place that will not be dipped, or you can become very creative in this process.
As you dip your project, submerge it at a 30-45 degree angle to avoid air pockets. Keep your project at the same angle as you submerge it. Once the project is completely submerged, slowly shake the project to dissolve the excess film in the dipping container. Remove your project from the water.
You will notice that your project will have a slimy milky residue on it. DO NOT rub it at this time. After about 60 seconds, rinse your project in clean running water. Periodically gently touch the project while under running water and rinse until the slimy feeling is gone. Let your project air dry completely before moving to the next step.
Clear Coating your project
With your project completely dry, prepare a dust-free area where you can apply your clear coat. Apply your HYDRO CLEARCOAT (Specially formulated and packaged for HYDRO DIP KIT) as you did the paint, as evenly as possible. You can apply as many coats of clear as you like. Just let each coat dry before each additional application. Once you are done clear coating, let the item cure before use. Clearcoat can take several days to fully harden….don’ rush this process or you will see finger smudges on your project.
Congratulations on your finished project! We hope you enjoyed learning how to use the HYDRO DIY DIP KIT process. Please post your projects on our website or Facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/pages/Hydro-Dip-Kit/558507137598957
Or watch a few of our youtube tutorials at HydroDipKit
Touch Up Instructions
Even the professionals have blemishes on their projects when they dip. It can be for many reasons, such as too much activator (little spots), dirt or just areas that were not taped properly. There is an easy correction to any imperfections in your work.
Using the can of activator that comes with your HYDRO DIP KIT, spray a small amount into the can lid. Cut a piece or use a scrap piece of the film that you were using for your project and place it on your workspace as you would place it in water. If you are not sure which way the film should lay, lick your finger and thumb and hold the edge of the film….sticky side goes downward.
Using your Touch Up brush, dip the tip into the HYDRO FILM SPRAY and then onto the area of the film that has the same colour that you need. As you rub the film, the image paint will rub off onto your brush tip. Apply the paint to the areas necessary until all imperfections are corrected. Let dry.
Once your project meets your satisfaction, proceed to the clear coat process.
Important Storage Information
- Do not fold, crumple, crush or wet this film.
- Do not open until ready to use.
- Always keep the hydrographic film stored in a tube.
- Prevent needless contact with the air.
- Avoid direct sunlight.
- Do not store near water or areas that have high humidity
- Keep film in a cool and dry location.
You will know that if the hydrographic film is accidentally exposed to humidity; it will appear to have rolled back on to itself or have curled up. If you suspect the film was exposed to undue humidity; unroll only the required amount you will use for your project, secure the edges with masking tape so it doesn’t roll back and place a high wattage light above it, this should remove any excess moisture in the film.
Do not expose the film to direct sunlight for long periods.
- Always spray in a well-ventilated area.
- Keep out of reach of children.
- Do not spray contents near an open flame.
- Never pierce or incinerate the can.