Creating the decals for this project was really the fun part. I lucked out in finding the decal sheet for the tobacco conversion and then all I really had to do was the "normal" sponsors. I think that I really goofed up now that I look at it on the Honda logo and stripes on the back end of the car. I really need to find a high resolution Honda logo to start from and then I need to make the whole bit back there a little larger to be more accurate with the actual car.
Finding images to start from that were high enough in resolution was a bit of a task but thanks to google for implementing their image search since that was the lifesaver. Most of the pictures were found through searches for backgrounds and desktop wallpaper since those come in usually fairly high resolutions compared to images that might appear on someone's web site.
I did purchase both the clear and the white water transfer paper from Bel Inc. In this case you need the white paper if you want to do white lettering since most printers will not print out a white ink. I needed this for the rear wing endplates. When I purchased the paper from them I ordered their laser paper since they said that it worked for both color laser printers as well as the Alps printers. What I did find out is that the Alps printer (which I have) prints out color in 4 passes, one each for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow and Black. In doing this it put too much pressure on the paper and caused the decal material to actually raise off of the backing material and then when it printed the next color the registration was off.
I ended up using a friends laser printer and all worked well. I think the inkjet version of the paper would work well with the exception of having to spray the finished print with a clear coat to keep the colors from running when you immerse it in water. I just didn't want to deal with that.
Other issues that I had to ... or will have to address in the next project is the decals that go on the drivers helmet. When I scaled the tobacco decals that I found above I didn't take into account the much smaller head of the driver of the mini z. So in the future I will need to make a decal that is much more rounded to start with. I think that I will also apply it prior to painting the helmet since I painted a larger area then the decal covers for the visor opening. When I applied the decal it kind of looks goofy. I also had to make a couple of cuts in it to allow it to bend around the drivers head. All in all it turned out ok but could be much better.
Decal application was pretty straight forward. I need to pay a little closer attention to my reference photos since I swapped sides with the 555 logo on the air intake. I also had to make some minor positioning changes since the body style was fairly different. The main difference to work around was the exhaust ports. The McLaren has exhaust towers and the BAR has the exhaust ported out the back of the engine cover.
The one thing that I found really interesting when I was studying the photos of the cars at all of the circuits throughout the year was how much the car changed/evolved. Some of the evolution was aerodynamic changes that were implemented to try and increase speed/quickness of the car. The more obvious changes were to the sponsors and their placement and the variance of this from race to race. Kind of interesting and it would be fun to look back and read the news and see what politics may have been involved in their placement.
Well that is about all I have to say and about all the time I have. If you have any questions please email me and I'll do my best to get back to you.
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