FAQ

Find answers to the most frequently asked questions.
Banners
Will my banner meet fire codes?

If your project is required to meet certain fire codes and specifications, we will certainly provide the necessary supporting documentation.

How do you measure for a boulevard or pole pocket banner?

We send a crew to survey the location of installation for the measurements and details needed to complete the job.

What types of banners do you offer?

We offer vinyl banners in a variety of thicknesses, Polyurethane banners, fabric banners and flexible PVC.

General
What is your turnaround?

Turnaround varies depending on the complexity of the project.  We can generally work within your time frame.

How do I place an order?

After reviewing the quote, you can contact our staff by calling
(210) 308-0222 or emailing orders@redsmithgs.com

How do I obtain a quote?

After reviewing the quote, you can contact our staff by calling
(210) 308-0222 or emailing orders@redsmithgs.com

What types of ink do you use?

We work with UV ink, that cures (dries) instantly when exposed to ultra-violet light, creating a strong and durable coating suitable for both indoor and outdoor use. Eco-solvent ink, a durable non-water based ink, works well for signage.

How long does a print last?

It depends on what system we use to produce your print, as some conventional inks contain solvents and some are ultra-violet (UV). We offer various laminates for different uses, including dry erase, anti-graffiti and UV.  We can advise you on what will create the greatest impact and last the longest.

How large can Redsmith Graphic Solutions print?

This depends on your specific project details and what substrates (base materials) are needed.  The only question is, “How big do you need?”

What services does Redsmith Graphic Solutions provide?

We strive to be a turnkey solution. Our services range from graphic design, using a multitude of substrates and textiles, to installation services across the U.S.  If needed, we provide expert consultation, event management, portals, storefronts, distribution and more.

Image & File Prep
What if I need assistance with design?

Red Smith Graphic Solutions has a dedicated team of professional designers available to complete your artwork. Call (210) 308-0222 or email us at design@redsmithgs.com, and we’ll work to match the vision you have for your project.

How does lamination affect color?

Some types of lamination may apply a slight shift in hue to a graphic, although this color difference is almost unnoticeable to the human eye. We can test the colors for review beforehand to ensure accurate color reproductions.

Where can I find high-resolution images?

Several online resources offer vast libraries of high-resolution, high-quality stock photography. Although we do not have a partnership with any specific company, some notable sources include shutterstock.com, istockphoto.com, pexels.com and gettyimages.com.

How can I enlarge a Raster Image?

Keep in mind that increasing the size of an image will lower the available pixels per inch of your image, reducing its quality. Each project has different parameters for acceptable quality. We can guide you in determining your specific needs.

How large does my file need to be?

Set the file at the actual dimensions of the project. For files that exceed 20 feet in width or height, set the file at half size, but be sure to set the resolution to double the final resolution.

Can I use my digital camera to take a high-resolution image?

Almost all dedicated camera devices can produce appropriate images for reproduction. Make sure the settings are set for the highest resolution. We can always make an image smaller if need be without compromising quality.

Why won't my image work?

The most common issue we encounter from customers is low resolution images, which results in an image that is pixelated (fuzzy) and low quality when printed. Other issues that may hinder a graphic are fonts that are not embedded correctly, un-layered files that cannot be edited and unspecified colors.

How do I upload files?

Visit our upload page and select one of the available options.

How do I prep my file for most accurate color representation?

Files should be set up in RGB color space, which offers a wider range of colors than CMYK.  It is best to provide specific color codes to ensure accurate printing results.

What file formats are supported?

Our preferred file type is an editable (layered) .pdf file. We also accept native .psd, .ai, .indd, and .tif files.

How should I setup my files?

Files should be layered and fully editable in case there are slight adjustments to be made during the printing process. Layers should be utilized as much as possible, and full-resolution images should accompany the file.

Installation
How do I prepare interior walls for graphics?

Make sure the wall is free of dust, dirt and debris, and is a flat, smooth surface, as any imperfections will show up through the graphics.  Certain paints are preferable for certain materials.  We highly recommend a survey by our team before the project begins to ensure a smooth process.

How do I apply and remove floor graphics?

Floor graphics are either an adhesive-backed material or a static cling.  Given the vast variety of floors and materials, it is best to consult a customer service representative for recommendations.

Large Format
What is the difference between cast and calendared vinyl?

Cast and calendared vinyl are comprised of roughly the same ingredients but produced by different processes. Cast vinyl is slightly more expensive, but made to last longer, and can also withstand extreme temperature changes, UV exposure and weathering.

What is a substrate?

A substrate is the base material −  either rigid or flexible – that we print to. Types of rigid substrates include, but are not limited to, PVC panels, foam core, corrugate plastic, gatorboard and die bond. Flexible substrates include, but are not limited to, poster paper, fabric, banner material and vinyl. Depending on your needs (indoor/outdoor, budget and other factors), we will recommend the substrate most appropriate for your project.

What is Dibond?

Aluminium composite (also known by the trade names of Dibond, Alucobond and Alupanel) consists of two thin sheets of Aluminium enclosing a Polyethylene core. Suitable for a huge range of applications, they are lightweight but very strong and the extremely flat surface is great for printing high quality graphics or text.

What is laminate?

A laminate is a thin layer of film that covers a printed graphic for protection and a specific finish.

What kind of laminates are available?

Our laminates can add various finishes such as glossy, satin, frosted, textured, UV, Anti-Graffiti (scratch-resistant), dry erase and more.

What is large format printing?

Large format printing is the process in which we print large graphics without the need to tile images together.  It also means that, rather than using individual sheets, we can print on rolls, creating larger, continuous prints.

signs
What are the requirements for street signs?

Different cities have different requirements.

How big does text need to be so it's legible?

We always consider viewing distance when designing signage.

How to magnet signs stand up to weather?

Most inks will last years, but laminates will increase longevity as well as protection against fading and cracking.

How do I care for vehicle magnets?

Wash the magnet’s face with mild soap and water. Take care not to drop it, as the fall may demagnetize the backing.

trade show & events
Do you design and produce custom displays?

Yes! We start by rendering our proposed solution in 3D for your approval. Once the quote and rendering are approved, our next concentration is determining which graphics to apply.

How do I drive more traffic to my booth?

Color and motion will always attract the eye. A clever message will appeal to the reader, and bold vivid graphics will stop viewers in their tracks.

Which display systems are easiest to use?

Retractable banners, pop-up banners and silicone edge graphics.

What are the most effective methods for exhibiting at a tabletop expo?

A pop-up display is a retractable, lightweight frame that supports either fabric or flex-mounted graphics. These display units come with a rolling carrying case, and can be installed on a table, or floor-standing.

What are table skirts, throws and runners?

Table skirts, throws and runners are ideal for advertising your brand and purpose using only a table. Use the table as needed to conduct business, and store your materials under the throw to maintain a clean, professional appearance with visible branding.

Can I replace graphics in my retractable banner?

We are happy to replace retractable banner stand graphics. We’ll only need your original stand and the new graphic file to get started.

How does a retractable banner stand work?

Retractable banner stands are an easy, affordable and portable way to display information. They are lightweight, and include a carrying case for easy transport.  Setting up in seconds, they can be used as part of an existing display, or stand-alone.

How can I use a banner for a backdrop at my booth?

Banners typically work best as backdrops or foreground advertising in fabric, vinyl or a hard substrate.

Are inexpensive display items any good?

Yes and no. You get what you pay for, but keep in mind, we offer a range of solutions for all needs and budgets.

Are modular display systems an effective option?

Absolutely!  Versatile, flexible, lightweight and customizable, modular trade show displays are a cost-effective tool for making an impression on a budget. Let one of our customer service representatives talk to you about the best option for your needs.

wraps
What is a vehicle wrap?

A vehicle wrap is a semi-permanent printed vinyl sign that is applied to a vehicle for advertising purposes. The wrap can completely cover the vehicle, including the windows, or only partially. This is an economical option for showcasing your business name and contact information in strategic places to gain passive exposure.

How long will my vehicle wrap take?

We typically require a site survey to prepare an accurate price quote. Once we receive the artwork, allow five days for file set-up and printing, and an additional five days (depending on the vehicle) for installation.

How do I care for a wrap?

Wash the wrapped vehicle about once a week. Hand-washing is safer and more effective than automatic car washes. Use soft sponges and rags, as abrasives will damage the surface.

How are vehicle windows covered?

Windows are covered with a special perforated vinyl that allows the printed graphic to show on the outside without hampering driver and passenger visibility.

Can a wrap be repaired of partially changed?

After a print is exposed to weather, the color may alter slightly. If the wrap is still in good condition, it may be possible for us to match the existing color and apply a patch to certain parts of the wrap.

Are wrinkles in wraps normal?

On a full wrap, occasional wrinkles or bubbles can happen. There are many techniques that reduce imperfections when wrapping. Carbon fiber wraps are designed to better conform to curves, but even the most skilled wrapper can’t eliminate all wrinkles on severely concave or rounded surfaces. Normally, flat surfaces should be free of imperfections.

What do wraps cost?

It depends on the square footage of your specific vehicle make and model. We have had the pleasure of wrapping a variety of vehicles, from Smart Cars to full-size buses.

Can a leased vehicle be wrapped?

Typically, yes, as the wrap can be easily removed without causing damage. You would need permission from the owner of the vehicle.

What is the process for applying a wrap?

First, measure the space to be wrapped. Prepare the surface so that it is clean and smooth, and then apply the adhesive graphics.

Can I wrap a vehicle myself?

Highly trained and experienced technicians have the tools and capability to professionally wrap vehicles. Note that an improperly wrapped vehicle will degrade much faster.

Will a wrap hurt my paint?

Not if installed properly.

How long will a wrap last?

Typically, a wrap will last one to five years, depending on the level of exposure to pollutants, sun and moisture.