[Tutorial] Add vinyl graphics to a bin...the 'Robo-bin'

Discuss training options at the Roland Academy & elsewhere, and keep in touch afterwards
Post Reply
User avatar
Joe Wigzell
Gold Member
Posts: 904
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2012 9:07 am
Location: Clevedon, North Somerset

[Tutorial] Add vinyl graphics to a bin...the 'Robo-bin'

Post by Joe Wigzell » Thu Apr 26, 2012 3:35 pm

Hello ello,

I am going to run through a step-by-step tutorial on creating and applying print and cut vinyl graphics to a regular waste bin.
It is a fun way of changing a regular and dull house/office bin into something a bit quirky- be it a bit of a joke in the office or an addition to a child’s bedroom.
The tutorial will talk through the steps with some images to help you along the way.

The principle can be used for just about any type of bin, and with a range of different graphics. For this example I have chosen to transform my bin into a ‘Roland Rubbish Muncher’ robot :P . The flip top bin resembled a mouth to me and so I thought I would play on that idea/shape!
So here we go...

Choose your bin and sketch up your ideas

The bin that I used for this tutorial is an Addis 24l flip top silver waste bin (it was one that we had in the Creative Centre!).
I found a picture online of the bin and printed out a couple of the images so that I could use them as a template for my designs. Here you can see 4 of my quick sketches and a picture of the bin:
I considered the idea of having a monster bin but decided on a robo-bin as the metallic colour would suit my design.


You may wish to create your own artwork for your bin, perhaps even re-create a famous character or one of your children’s lovely pictures that are up on the fridge door! However I chose to get a royalty-free image from an image bank (http://www.isignstock.com) and manipulate it to fit my needs.
I searched for robots on the site, and then chose the one that I liked the most and downloaded an .EPS version:
Editing your artwork

The next step will be to open your .EPS file into a suitable programme and make any changes you need. For this example I used Adobe Illustrator.
The image below shows the original image open in Illustrator (left) and the image once I had made the changes I wanted (right).
The image came broken down into groups of parts which I then deleted or moved around accordingly until I was happy with it. I now have a front, 2 sides and a head. I left out making a back as this bin always sits against a wall!


To ensure that the graphics that you produced are going to match up to the panels of the bin you will need to take some measurements. I took rough dimensions as I wasn’t too fussy about the panels being an exact fit.
Note: you can be as picky as you like at this stage or even choose to wrap the entire bin!
Back in Illustrator I created 5 different artboards:
Document Setup > Edit Artboards
These represent the front, 2 sides, and lid panels along with another for the arms and extra bits. They were made to scale so that I could be sure my graphics would fit ok.
Cut Contour

The next step is to create a cut contour that will tie up with the outlines of your artwork.
In the Layers pane create a new layer and call it something along the lines of ‘Cut Contours’. As you can see in the first image below I now have 2 layers, the other consisting of the entire artwork that I called ‘Robot’.
Copy the outlines from the ‘Robot’ layer and paste them in place (Edit > Past In Front) in the new ‘Cut Contours’ layer.
Select all of the outlines and change the Fill to No Fill, and the Stroke to the CutContour Swatch from your Roland VersaWorks Swatches Tab with a Stroke Weight of 0.25 pt. as shown:
(If you are having troubles locating your Roland Swatches have a look here:
http://www.rolanddg.co.uk/content/publi ... eHome.aspx
in the Help files)
Save then Print & Cut

If you are happy with your artwork and wish to proceed, make sure that your layers are turned on and save the project ready for Roland VersaWorks.
I saved as an .EPS file, then opened in RVW and checked through the options ensuring that it was a Print and Cut job and that the media was set up correctly.
RIP the job and depending on your machine and setting you may have time to stick the kettle on!
Weed and Prep.

You will now need to weed out the unwanted parts from your design and add application tape (optional depending on design and vinyl type. Lamination is also an option should you wish).
Be sure to clean the surfaces of the bin before application.
Apply and finish!

Apply the graphics using a soft squeegee and place in your desired location!
That’s it for your step-by-step tutorial on creating and applying print and cut vinyl graphics to a regular waste bin!
The principles of this tutorial could be applied to any household object that needs a bit of decoration, think wheelie bins, bed frames, cupboards, desk drawers...it’s up to you! Once you have the artwork and sizes etc you require you could prepare a number of these at a time and sell them as a decoration pack to customers!
If any of you create a bin-monster of your own I would love to see them so upload if you can!

Hope you found my tutorial helpful. Any questions!?

Joe Wigzell
Academy and Creative Centre Manager
Roland DG UK Ltd

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest