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Stenciling a Ms. Pac-man – Part 6

In the last part of the Ms. Pac-man tutorial we taped up the stencil, positioned it and then removed the backing and smoothed the stencil to the cabinet. You can repeat this step for the other two sides, I will try to show photos of this later. Today, we’re going to look at removing the pre-mask on the sideart stencil and then taping up your cabinet for the yellow coat, finally!

Consistent pulling pressure does the trick on premask

If you have done your job thoroughly, when you are pulling off the premask from the Ms. Pac-man stencil, all of the vinyl artwork should stay stuck to the cabinet. But my guess is that any time you are dealing with small floating parts, there is always the risk that they will pull up.

I was surprised how much force it took to pull premask off. The larger the piece you have going, the more force it takes. The only tips I have are pull fairly slow to check to make sure the artwork is staying stuck to the cabinet and smooth the artwork back down as you go with the squeegee.

Removing Pre-Mask

There isn’t a lot this step, kind of like walking, you just know what you have to do. Towards the end of applying these stencils I was ripping off chunks. I don’t know if there is an advantage either way. I had to do this because of the texture I ended up with in my paint meant the stencils weren’t sticking very nice, and pulling off chunks of pre-mask was the only way to go.

The only other insight I have is concerning the tape. I wanted to reuse tape as much as possible. Painters tape isn’t cheap, and for masking the cabinet you can reuse it to problem. When you are pulling up the mask, try to keep that tape handy to you can use it to recover the edges around the sides, which you will inevitably have space somewhere.

After you get all of the pre-mask off, your cabinet side should look like this;

Left Side Yellow Stencil Application Finished

Make note, at this point you’ll be able to clearly see the ‘registration’ marks that have been cut out of the stencil. (Kind of hard to see in photos, but marked with an ‘R’) Joymonkey make marks that look like a flattened angular hourglass.

Detail photo of the registration marks

After you have finished the one side, repeat part 5 of the Ms. Pac-man tutorial and apply the stencil artwork to the kickplate and other side. Expect that this can take a while, anywhere from 1-3 hours, maybe less if you are really good, maybe more if you are more picky than me.

Right Cabinet Sideart Stencil Taped UpKickplate Stencil Artwork Taped UpKickplate Stencil Artwork - Backing Removed

In the end it’s really cool to see the blue vinyl outline the shape of the artwork to come. Gets you foaming a little bit, I had to take some photos showing the cabinet with the art applied on all sides.

Kickplate Stencil Application FinishedFull Cabinet Ms. Pac-man All Stencils Applied

Mask off the cabinet for painting

Be thorough, don’t be thorough. I can’t say that I had paint floating around the outside of the cabinet to places I didn’t want it. My masking was fairly loose, I left the newspaper loose on the top and on the back. I felt like if I got a tiny bit of a dusting, it would be so hard to see that yellow. However, that wasn’t an issue, I masked it in such a way that I really didn’t think that would happen, and I had to work on some days with a wind. Still no issue.

Ms. Pac-man masked off for painting

You’ll go through at least one roll of painters tape through the whole project, so be prepared for that. There is just a lot of surface area to tape off.

Closing Remarks – The yellow stencil are applied

Very exciting stuff, you can start to envision what the cabinet will look like with the stenciled artwork. In the next part we will give you a review on how far to hold the gun away from the cabinet and talk about techniques for painting this color. I learned something later that could have made my life a ‘ton’ easier, and I hope to save you guys that trouble. Light yellow directly on blue = trouble.

Here are some similar arcade posts

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