Welcome to the Arcade Skins FAQ section! In this section I will try to answer as many questions as we can that are frequently asked about arcade skins, skin installation, etc. We’ve tried to put these in the order of the most commonly asked questions first to the least asked questions towards the end.

If you are looking to purchase arcade skins, go here.

Arcade Skins FAQ

Q: How long does it take to receive my arcade skin?
A: It depends on the skin. Our most popular skins may have a production batch meaning they are always in stock and will ship same day if ordered before 12PM CST. For all other skins they will go through our production cycle in will ship on 24-72 hours depending on the current production schedule. During the holidays it could take an addition day or two.

Q: Why can’t my arcade skin ship with my existing order? It is requiring me to pay separate shipping!
A: Arcade skins ship in a separate high-quality tube to prevent damage. And since we never fold our templates leaving creases in the vinyl we are unable to add them to an existing order’s box.

Q: How do I track my arcade skin?
A: You will receive an email with tracking information when your order ships.

Q: For my own artwork, how to I proceed?
A: Using your own artwork can be super exciting. Having something you created is very special indeed! We have some tips you should follow:

  • Please make sure to start with the PDF side panel templates in your plan files. Import those into your paint program and start from there. You will need to provide us both left and right side panels. This is especially important for panels that contain text or symbols.
  • If you’re already experienced with tools like Illustrator and Photoshop and want to go it on your own then you probably already know what to do! If you’re not you may want to start with some existing artwork, like these free vector files.
  • You should supply your artwork to us in vector format, preferably Adobe Illustrator, PSD, or PDF. Though we can work with other files if required. We do not recommend JPG or other compressed file formats!
  • If you choose to provide rasterized (non-vector) artwork, we need at least 200DPI, and we prefer 300DPI for the best results. Enlarging images you found on the web from 72DPI to 200DPI will not change them. They will still be blocky/blurry.
  • As a bonus If you opt to share your artwork with the arcade community and we decide to use it, we will send you $25!

Q: The instructions say I have to paint my arcade. Why do I need paint when I ordered skins?
A: Skins do not adhere well to bare MDF or plywood. If you don’t paint your cabinet it is likely the adhesion will fail.

Here are some recommendations:

  • Paint your cabinet with an oil based paint rather than latex if possible.
  • NEVER use paints with stain repellents in them such as “Behr Ultra Stain-Blocker”.
  • Let your paint “gas out” and cure for about 4-5 days before applying your skin. Failure to do this will almost definitely cause adhesion failure and bubbles to form that cannot be removed!
  • Before application clean the surface and make sure it is free of dust or other debris.
  • Make sure the surface is perfectly dry before beginning application.

Q: Any tips for installing the skins?
A: Sure! We have a ton of tips!

  • Do not use soap and water (or glass cleaner) to install the vinyl no matter what that YouTube video says!
  • Do not stretch the vinyl when applying it. Calendered vinyl will always return to its original size. This means if you stretch it to make it fit (because you didn’t align it properly), it is going to un-adhere at the corners as it returns to its correct shape.
  • NEVER use a heat gun on the skins!
  • NEVER use a credit card or other sharp object on the skin. It could leave scratch marks and damage your skin. We recommend using a vinyl applicator roller like this one.
  • The adhesive used in most vinyl is pressure activated. That means you need to apply solid consistent pressure for the most permanent bond.
  • We recommend peeling back a small section of the vinyl, applying that section first, and then slowing removing more of the backer as you go, a few inches at a time. This will prevent a disaster where the skin sticks somewhere when you are not ready.

Q: What material are your arcade skins printed on?
A: Arcade skins are printed on Premium “air release” vinyl in either matte or gloss.

Q: I chose to do my own artwork and I am not happy with it. Will you print a new one for me using my updated files?
A: We cannot refund or exchange custom prints. You can however order a new print with your updated files. Ink and vinyl are very expensive and it is not practical to offer replacements unless the product has a defect caused by manufacturing.

Q: I did one of the things you told me not to do. Can I get a replacement set of skins under warranty?
A: It is impractical for us to replace skins for mistakes. Our skins are of the highest quality and cost a lot to manufacture. It might surprise you that ink is more expensive than a blood transfusion by the mL!

If a skin is returned for a printing or other defect, we can tell if it was damaged by a heat gun, glass cleaner on the adhesive, or scratched with your credit card during install and we will not be able to honor the replacement (and we may choose to not accept future orders). Honesty is the best policy!

Do you feel like we missed a question on our Arcade Skins FAQ? If so, contact us here.