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The basic 'Hinge' Method

If you're new to applying stickers you may be wondering what the heck is a “hinge method”?

Simply put, a hinge is a narrow piece of application tape (masking tape or painters tape) that is used to attach a vinyl graphic to the substrate and keep it straight during installation.

This method can be used for applying the smallest sticker all the way up to large vehicle decals.

You can choose to position your tape at one end or the middle. The middle hinge tends to work better for longer decal. The end hinge works well for smaller decals, as above in the video.

Middle Hinge:

End Hinge:

Step 1

PREP YOUR SURFACE. Use degreaser with a lint-free cloth. Please see our other post for the do's and don't's for surface prep.

Step 2

Position your decal where you want it to be. Once you're happy with the position, apply masking tape through the centre of the decal (or the end, depending on the size of it)

Step 3

End hinge: Make slits* into the masking tape to allow the vinyl to "open like a door". Lift the graphic up and over and remove the backing paper. Discard backing paper.

Middle hinge: Lift that half of the decal up and remove the backing paper. Cut the liner with scissors or a scalpel*, and discard it.

*Take extreme care - do not apply so much pressure that you cut straight into your vehicle bodywork, wall etc. Clare/Keith have been doing this many many years and can apply the correct pressure to only cut through the masking tape and not right through. If you are nervous, you should be able to instead rip the masking tape gently if you hold onto the decal. You can also fold the backing liner in and under itself to avoid making any cuts at all.

Step 4 Holding the decal away from the surface you're applying to, use the squeegee to press the vinyl to the surface, working from the masking tape toward the edge. Remove all other masking tape. Repeat for other side if using a middle hinge.

Happy fitting!

Much love, the Graphics team at GKs.

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