Waterslide decals differ from stickers in the way that they are applied. There are also 2 types of waterslide decals: clear and white, each have their advantages and disadvantages.
-- good if you need white in your design
-- adhesive seems better with white wateslides
-- edges may lose color if left in water too long or if not sealed properly.
-- works well on darker colored lego
-- don't need to cut as close to edge of shapes which eliminates worry of losing color on edges
-- good for face decals
-- applies nice details on lighter colored lego
-- cannot be applied on darker colors as details will disappear
Now let's begin:
First off, waterslide decals need to be sealed using an acrylic sealant such as Kylon Crystal Clear or something similar. These are usually found in craft stores such as Michaels.
When sealing your decals. it's important to use at least 3 coats (personally i prefer 4) to ensure they are sealed properly.
Once they are sealed, you may begin application to your minifigs. Using a sharp pair of scissors (kids may need help with this) cut out the shapes and put them to the side until you are ready to dip the figs in water.
It's recommended but not necessary to use distilled water. Use what works best for you.
Your water temperature should be warm before dipping your decals in the water, getting from the tap is nice but kind of wasteful, i suggest microwaving the water to get it to temp. Warm water allows the backing to be loosened a bit quicker.
Dip you decals in the water, do not submerge just the back should be in the water. allow 30 to 60 sec. for the backing to loosen. Using tweezers, go under the decal and remove from the water and place on a towel.
After that, pick up your decal and slide the decal onto your figure, the backing should easily come off. line up your decal on the fig and then gently using your finger gently press decal onto figure. Once on, use a Q-tip in a rolling motion to remove air bubbles. Be gentle with it or you will wreck the decal.
Once these step are done, allow your decal to dry and set in place. Once dry and set, varnish your decal with a minimum of 2 coats depending on what you plan to use it for.
I hope this guide helps.
Cover your parts and Pieces
Applying Waterslide Decals on Lego minifigs
October 27, 2009
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