What's the Difference between ORACAL® 631 and 651 Vinyl?
If you're like most of us, you've probably never given a thought to the
difference between two types of craft vinyl film — especially when you're
talking about something as seemingly insignificant as series' numbers. Still,
when it comes to the difference between ORACAL® 631 and 651 vinyl, the
differences are striking and have real consequences for your intended
applications. Let's take a quick look at what this means in real life.
Matte versus Gloss
One of the first things you notice if you compare ORACAL® 651craft vinyl to
631 film is their finish. The former has a high-gloss finish which means it
shines in the light whereas the latter has a flat, low-gloss finish. Why the
difference? Well, as we'll see, 631 Exhibition Cal is intended for application
on rougher surfaces like walls, unfinished wood and drywall. Since a matte
finish hides imperfections better than glossy finishes it only makes sense that
631 would have a lower shine surface.
Same Same. Different Different.
ORACAL® 651 is a calendered vinyl that's meant for outdoor use so it is made
with permanent adhesives. While this is an excellent thing if you're using it to
make a sign for your shop window or a decal for your car, truck or SUV, it's not
so great if you're applying it to a painted interior wall. ORACAL® 631, on the
other hand, is ideal for short and medium-term interior use like wall art and window décor, as well as
for glass, photo frames, signage, scrapbooks, and home décor that won’t get wet.
Another difference is the thickness of the film: most likely because the 631 is
intended for use on more irregular surfaces, it is 3 mil thick which is a full
500/1000ths of an inch thicker than 651.
In addition to these differences, one of the most important is the different
in life span. 651 Exhibition Cal film is rated for 3 years of indoor use. After
that time you can begin to notice a slight degradation in color, adhesion and
performance. 651 Intermediate Cal vinyl, however, has double the life span and
is made for both indoor and exterior use. In short, here are some ideal
applications for each of the series:
631 Exhibition Calendered Vinyl
- Wall Art
- Interior Window Decals
- Photo Frames
- Home Décor
651 Intermediate Calendered Vinyl
- Vehicle Graphics
Make the Right Choice
As you can see, making the right choice between ORACAL® 651 and 631 is more a
question if how you intend to use it than anything else. Naturally, there are
dozens of other films offered by ORACAL®, Avery™, 3M™ and Rwraps™ that you can
use for a variety of projects and applications and if you want to learn all
about them be sure to check our (really long) article on all of the
different types of adhesive vinyl