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Safety Effects FAQ

What settings should I use for Heat Applied Transfer Films?

Within the 3M line of Transfer Films, there are a few different heat ranges depending on the specific product. These specific settings can be found on the Technical Data Sheets from the top menu bar.

Several of the more popular products 8710, 8725 8786, 8787 and 5807 share the same recommended application settings of: 325-350°F for 10-20 seconds using firm pressure. We have found over the years that 350°F for 18 seconds with firm pressure works well for most cottons, polyesters and blends. Due to variances in fabrics and equipment, it is important to test prior to production.

Are there any special tips for plotter cutting 5807?

3M 5807 should work great on any sign cutter / plotter that is friction fed ( i.e. not requiring pin hole on the side of the media).

A few basic tips to get you started…

  1. Load the material into the cutter with the clear plastic side down. 5807 is designed to cut from the green adhesive side down to the clear carrier.
  2. Use a standard 45° blade. Note: Make sure the blade holder does not drag on the film. This will make it more difficult to remove the waste around the letters referred to as “weeding”.
  3. Adjust the down force. We have found that 145 grams works well on our machines. However, every machine is different and the condition of the blade can also make a difference. The down force is generally more than standard calendared vinyl, but less than reflective vehicle vinyl. Use the test plot function of the cutter to fine tune the down force to cut though the 5807 leaving a mark on the clear sheet below.
  4. Since 5807 is cut from the adhesive side, remember to mirror the image prior to cutting.

For additional details, refer to 5807 Technical Data Sheet or 5807 Technical Bulletin located from the Technical Information tab on the top menu.

Can I use a household iron for Heat Applied Transfer Films?

In short, no. 3M Heat Applied Transfer Films are designed to be applied with a commercial heat press. A household iron does not consistently produce enough heat and pressure to ensure a good bond. An iron may appear to create a significant bond of the reflective material to the fabric. However, after a wash cycle or two, there is a good chance the reflective material will pull away from the fabric.

Can I use Heat Applied Transfer Films on Nylon fabric?

Nylons and fabrics treated with a durable water repellent (DWR) finish are not recommended since it is difficult to obtain a good adhesion. Some customers have found tricks to increase the adhesion, but the same trick may not work on the next order due to variances from lot to lot with the substrate.

Can I print on reflective material?

We generally do not recommend printing on beaded reflective material. The top surface of these products contains thousands, if not millions, of tiny glass beads which can be difficult to obtain good ink adhesion. If you have a specific application that requires printing, please contact us to discuss potential options.

What is retroflection?

Scotchlite reflective material products use a technology known as retroreflection. It helps the eye perceive light in low-light conditions. In more scientific terms, retroreflection occurs when light rays are returned in the direction from which they came. A large amount of reflected light is returned directly to the original light source, such as a car’s headlights. Since very little light is scattered when the light is returned, retroreflective materials appear brightest to an observer located near the original light source.



scattered reflection

Scattered Reflection

Why buy from Safety Effects?

We are both an Authorized Distributor and a Converter of 3M™ Scotchlite™ Reflective Materials. As a distributor, we strongly believe in maintaining proper inventory levels to support the needs of our customers. In many cases, we are able to ship the next business day from our inventory. As a converter, we have years of experience working with 3M™ Scotchlite™ Reflective Materials which allows us to make knowledgeable recommendations.

What is ANSI?

ANSI is an acronym for the American National Standards Institute. When ANSI is mentioned in conjunction with reflective materials, it is referring to one of the specific standards for High-Visibility Safety Apparel and Headwear. One of the most common standards is ANSI 107-2004 Class 2 or 3. These standards have been adopted by many governmental agencies and private industries for High-Visibly work wear. An overview of this standard can be found under Technical Information “ANSI made easy”.

When will my order ship?

Most retail orders from our website ship in 2-3 business days. If you have not received a tracking number within this time period, please include the confirmation number in the subject line of your email to ensure the quickest response.

Why are only certain products available for sale on the website?

Safety Effects is primarily focused on wholesale sales of reflective materials to garment manufacturers and distributors. Many of the products we sell are designed for specific applications or to meet industry standards and are sold by the case or pallet.

Over the years, we have received feedback from consumers that they can not find our products at any of their local stores. In an effort to better supply products to consumers, we have added a retail area to our new website with several of the the more common products. We have purposely limited the selection to limit confusion and provide more efficiency.

If you are interested in a product not on the retail site and have a need for a full roll (generally 100 meters) or a case, please contact us. We can discuss the requirements of the application in detail, including any standards such as UL, NFPA or ANSI, that the product needs to meet.

What if want to purchase larger rolls or quantities?

You have come to the right place. A large portion of our business is supplying case and pallet quantities to garment manufacturers and distributors. In order to assure we are supplying the correct product for the application and providing the best value, we work with these customers on an individual basis. Please contact us at your convenience, either by phone or e-mail. We look forward to hearing from you.

Can I order custom reflective products?

Absolutely, custom printed and/or cut reflective products is a large part of our business. In fact, Safety Effects is one of the key suppliers of these products to the garment industry. Please email or give us a call so we can select and design the right product for you.