Graphics - Scam or reality?

I recently purchased a set of graphics from a local dealer which are red white and blue, they are on a 2001 - YZ426. I cleaned the tank and shroud with softscrub then with denatured alcohol to remove any residue. They looked great and were super until after the first ride. While filling the tank it splashed the graphics, they turned yellow by the end of the day. The next day the adhesive started to peel back. I took them off and returned them to the dealer and here's what I was told:

ALL graphics are NOT resistant to gas and any graphics that have "white" will turn yellow either through gas being spilled on them. A tank as old as mine.. (2-yrs old) is porous and gas breathes through the tank and will yellow the entire graphics kit.

The dealer did replace them with a new set and I used the new ones this weekend and the exact same thing happened again. All yellow ...

I have never had this problem but never had white aftermarket graphics..

Anyone ever hear of this before or am I getting the run around from the dealer?


Maybe they turned yellow from falling in the dirt too much! Or it could be exhaust from the bikes in front of you!

Whatever the case. Don't let that dealer get the best of you. Especially over some cheap graphics! I would take them back for a refund.


Rooster, I hate to say this, but the dealer was VERY kind when they replaced them the first time. I don't think they have any obligation at this point because they did explain the nature of the problem to you. I would however contact the company that made the graphics ( not sure which graphics you chose)and explain to them the problems you have experienced. My family owns a company that manufactures fluids for pre-cleaning, positioning/applying, and removing vinyl graphics. I will tell you that the dealer told you the absolute truth about them. Fuel Tanks are made of poly ethelyne plastic ( a hydrocarbon ) and since fuel is also a hydrocarbon the fuel will migrate (vent) to some degree through the fuel tank. There really isn't a whole lot you can do to stop this short of florinating it (an ugly and ezpensive coating process). Some people have sprayed clear paint designed for plastic on the tank and after it has dried and cured then applied their graphics, but I don't know to what degree their success was, but it also does nothing for the gas spillage and yellowing problems your experiencing. My personal bike has One industries graphics on it and I used our products to clean the tank, and apply the graphics. Not one problem, and there is a little white in the graphic. If you want some free samples I'd be more than happy to send them to you, and I'd also reccomend graphics from One Industries. They have a quality product, and are very good to deal with.


I know what the problem is:

First You did not pay humble tribute to the graphics god

By doing this you pissed her off hence the yellow stain on the graphcs.

Next time let that be a lesson :)

Ahole, you're not funny. Spudking

i agree that One INDus decals are great. i had last years motoworld one on there for a year and besides being scraped and worn from me crashing they held up really well. i ride about once a week and normal wear and tear will make the stickers look bad. i plan on just changing them once a year to keep the bike loooking nice. plus i know guys at moto world and get them for way cheap but thats besides the point.


Sorry ya didnt like my responce......

No I am not Sorry

What did you not like the yellow tainted remark

or the fact that the graphics god is a she :)

No worries, cant make evry one laugh

Rooster, I've had some good luck with graphic kits in the past from Factory Effex that have lasted but my last set I got from IMS just peeled off. I scrubbed a new tank with alcohol in a clean enviroment and carefully placed the graphics on with soapy water and they look great for a few rides. But give it time they'll just fall off. I've givin up on tank graphics but the shroud graphics seem to hold up. I wonder if gas actually permiates through the plastic and eventually eats away and the adhesive?

yes dan it does

my original YZF tank was dreadfull for it

the new clarke transparent tank i have doesnt seem to have this problem

Dan, this might be a stupid question, but are the tank graphics you put on perforated? I had an 1985 Yamaha IT200 before I got my 426- the tank stickers were not perforated and would bubble up from the tank breathing. If your graphics aren't perforated, you may want to try to poking small holes in them with a pin before you install them. The holes let the gas fumes escape and keep graphics from bubbling/yellowing.

P.S.- Ego is right. Never mess with the graphics god. NEVER! :)

[ April 24, 2002: Message edited by: cowboyona426 ]

Cowboy, Yes they are perferated. Check em out!

I love the look of graphics but for me they just don't last as long as I need them to. If I were sponsered I'de have em on all the time. But they're expencive and nobody really sees my bike in the desert.

PS, I have always been really good at graphics and seat covers and I do a great job. Some graphics though just fall off....

DL :)

Well, there really hasn't been any real proof that the holes in the gas tank decals prevent bubbling. Fact is, there is still a lot of surface area with out holes that could or will bubble with time.

I'm currently running the One Industries stuff on my bike and it seems to hold up very well to all the crashing I seem to do lately.

Couple of notes. It is important to allow for adequate time for the graphics to seat on the plastic. I left mine on the bike for 4 days outside but not in direct sun light before riding. I put all but the shroud graphics on dry. And even then I used a 1:100 ration of soap and water when I did the wet application on the shrouds. You want wet, but you don't want so much soap that it begins to break down the adhesive.

Also, there are lots of different types of vinyl products with different application capabilities. Same goes for adhesives.

I'm currently developing graphics kits for TT and I'm learning a lot about this stuff in the process. I don't pretend to be an expert, but I do trust what my printer is telling me. I gave him a full set of One Industries graphics so I could ensure he gives me the same quality of materials and adhesive.

Check out my thread about Development ideas needed for TT graphic kit.



SHUT UP!!!!!!

Your messages are nothing but wastes of space!

I don't think you even have a bike. It seems you spend all your time coming up with stupid S#!t. If you had a bike you would probably spend less time on TT.

So, do yourself a favor and go ride!


Amen!! For a guy that has only been registered for a couple of months and already has over 400 entries, he can't be able to ride enough!! Beside, what he has to say almost never contains any useful info.

Amen again, Spudking


Amen!! For a guy that has only been registered for a couple of months and already has over 400 entries, he can't be able to ride enough!! Beside, what he has to say almost never contains any useful info.

Amen again, Spudking


I bought my 01 used and the dude I bought it from slapped a set of N-Style graphics on it when he put it up for sale. The only "problem" is he was too lazy to peel off the factory graphics and put the n-styles right over the top of the OEM ones. But guess what? The area of the tank graphics that covers (overlaps) the old OEM ones is still snow white; the area that is directly in contact with the tank plastic is yellow as can be.

Now, would I do what he did, probably not, but those graphics are not bubbling anywhere and I've got 9 months of hard riding on them, plus like I said, the the part sitting over the OEM ones is white as can be.

Weird but true.

Dan, and everyone else for that matter, here is the best advice I can offer.

Avoid soap and water for applying your graphics. Soap and water alone only aids in positioning and removing trapped air from beneaththe graphic. What it does effectively is slow down the bonding process and cause you frustration and wasted time. I know this is a shamelss plug of my own products, but we make a graphic application fluid called Rapid Tac II that works amazingly well with motorcycle graphics. If you email me your address I will do my best to get you a free sample pack of our stuff.

Also, not all graphics are created equal. I've had great luck with One Industries, ( and yes, the guys at MotoWorld are very good people and a pleasure to deal with) but here is soe helpful information regarding graphics.

There are 2 basic types of film adhesives used on thick vinyls such as motorcycle graphics. acrylic adhesive and water based latex adhesives. Most companies use 3M Scotch, or 3M VHB vinyl film to produce their graphics, but there are still some poor quality graphics circulating out there. If you have the option of seeing the graphic kits in hand before you purchase I'd try to avoid any that aren't printed on 3M vinyl. The adhesive is very strong (acrylic) and resists fuel vapors better than most others. If you are getting bubbles on any other plastic part ( fuel tanks don't count here) then your application is the cause. Avoid using windex, or anything containing amonia, degreasers, and definitly don't use shop rags to whipe with even if they have just come back from the linen service. You're rags will always have hydrocarbon residues that will contaminate the plastic you are applying the graphics to. Cheap paper towels are the safest option here.

Clean the Surface thoroughly with Isopropyl alcohol ( we reccomend using Rapid Tac II to clean ) and carefully apply your graphic. Again, contact me for some free samples.

Also, the perforated Vinyl for Fuel tanks really does work well. I notice that I get a few small bubbles in the graphic once in a while, so I just push them to the nearest perforation and they escape easily and the vinyl re-bonds to the plastic.

Here is my website. you are more than welcome to read about the products we have so you knwo what I'll be sending you for free.

Good luck everyone.

Oh by the way, if you apply graphics with Rapid Tac II the wait time is usually no more than about 5 minutes before you have an absolute bond.


I drink the alchohol

Windex works 100% I still have stickies stuck to my tool box from 25 years ago using windex

Oh Buy the way, I am the err to the WIndex Fortune :)

If you cheep like I am windex will last longer then the Graphics themselvs. Not trying to knock you buisness just playing the devils advocate again,,, No No Make the the EgoAhole again.

personally you product probably works real well,

but why pay 10 + bucks for a product when you can apply the stickers with stuff aorund the house.

Eventually your gonna crash and markup those pretty new stickies anyway :D

Sorry Jeff Not tring to rain on your parade

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now