It is that time of the year when every snowmobiler is itching for the upcoming snowmobile season. The overnight temps start to drop, snow shows are scheduled, sled videos are being released, and you start to get back into day dreaming about shredding the POW while at work… it is inevitable… snowmobile season is just around the corner! I have been in a vicious cycle every since 2010. I buy a new snowmobile and ride it for a year and I find that by the second season that I am already in the mood for another new snowmobile! Unfortunately my financial planner (AKA, My wife) informed me that unless we plan on selling our children, a new snowmobile is not in the budget every year! So how do I get to “feel” like I have a new snowmobile every year but not spend the $10,000+? Wrap it of course!!! Or better yet…. Braap wrap it!
I met Wes Rieff, the owner of www.Braapwraps.com back in 2011 when I ordered my first wrap kit from him for my 2011 Ski-doo Summit Freeride. Wes has done a great job taking care of my wrap needs with his great quality product, variety of designs and great customer service that I have purchased a total of 3 wraps from him over the last 6 years. Now that I have been writing for www.Sled360.net, I was more diligent about documenting the process during my most recent project so I could show all of you how easy and rewarding adding a wrap to your favorite sled can be! Below I will cover some important info that will help you during your upcoming sled wrap!
Tools Needed: Heat gun, razor blade, www.Braapwraps.com tool kit that includes a felt squeegee, two plastic scrapers, adhesive remover, cleaner, application fluid. It is recommended that you complete the kit installation in a dry area with ambient temperatures over 60* Fahrenheit. You will want to set aside the better part of a day to complete the process from start to finish. The wraps have taken me anywhere from 6-8 hours to complete when taking my time to do a quality job.
Fist step in any sled wrap is to peel off all of your existing decals: Use the heat gun on a low setting to warm the current stickers and after the first couple of stickers, you will find the perfect balance between not to warm or too cold and the stickers will easily lift with your fingernail or the plastic scraper. You will be able to slowly peel the stickers from the sled one by one until you have all of the decals removed from the machine. Note, all stickers including reflectors on the front and back of the sled all must be removed. Now that you have all of the stickers off of the sled you will need to make sure that the adhesive from the old stickers is completely removed. You can use the supplied adhesive remover and a rag or shop towels to wipe the residue off of the sled as you work. Next you need to wipe the entire sled down with denatured or rubbing alcohol to make sure that the sled is completely clean and that the new wrap will have a purified surface to adhere to. It is ideal if you are able to lay out the wrap kit from it’s rolled shipping tube for a day or two so that the wrap has time to flatten out and it is easy to work with. You also have two options on how to install your wrap. Wet or Dry: If this is your first or even second wrap install, I recommend using the wet method. This allows you to remove the section that you are working on (potentially several times) and then reposition it so that it aligns correctly on the sled. My personal opinion is that unless you wrap sleds for a living, you are likely going to want to stick with the wet application method. Now that you are ready to start applying your wrap, you will want to use the www.Braapwraps.com supplied application fluid to spray the section of the sled that you are going to apply the graphic to. As you use the fluid you will continue to dilute it with more water when the bottle is approximately half empty. You can use pure water, but the special application fluid still works well even as you continue to dilute the formula. As you start to apply the sections of the wrap to the sled you will want to be conscience of several things. The wrap will get air bubbles behind it, but you can reduce the air bubbles if you are conscience of this before you start. It is best to start on one edge of small sections and work your way across the it from one side to the other or on larger sections you can lay it in place and start to press and rub the wrap from the center and work you way out to the edges to work out any water and air bubbles out. The razor blade also works great to poke some small holes in the wrap in places that you were not able to completely remove your air bubbles after the wrap is completely mounted on your sled. The felt squeegee that is supplied in your www.Braapwraps.com tool kit works great for helping to squish out the air and water bubbles. As you work on the installation, you will be using your heat gun constantly as you apply the multiple sections of the wrap. The heat gun helps the wrap become more pliable to mold the flat wrap to your curvy sled! The heat gun also helps the adhesive on the wrap kick in to action to make it stick to the sled in the best possible way. After you are done with the wrap I recommend letting it sit for several days to a week in your garage and let the wrap dry and settle. As the wrap starts to set up and hold you will likely notice some sections of the wrap that need to be treated a second time with your heat gun to remold and stick the wrap down in places it might be starting to lift. You will find a few more air/water bubbles in the wrap that you will need to make small punctures in and squeegee the bubbles out again. Once you have given the wrap a second pass and all looks good, you are all set to start shredding the slopes in style with your incredible looking sled wrap! In addition to looking incredible, the wrap adds a protective shield to your sled to help prevent any scuffs and scraps that you sled will inevitably get as you use it. Also for resale value you have the best of both worlds… if your potential buyer loves the new look you are golden, but if they hate it you are also able to remove the wrap with a heat gun and the sled will look virtually like new underneath the protective wrap! Either way you are making an investment to protect your favorite toy while making a statement!
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