How Hydrographics Works

Often described as magic, hydrographics or water transfer printing is the process of applying a design to a 3D object by dipping it in liquid.


The team at Fluid Coatings first prepare the item to be coated with either chemicals, sanding or bead blasting. The item is then primed, sanded and base coated with the colour necessary to achieve the look that you want.

We next take the film (it looks like window tint film but with a pattern) cut to size and place it in the specialised water tank. We spray the film with an activator which activates the ink. The ink/pattern floats on top of the water in an oil like state.

The item is submerged into the ink which is etched into the base coat. When removed, the item is rinsed in our rinse station.

The part is then finished in matte, semi gloss or high gloss 2k clear coat. We carry numerous variations of 2k clear to suit the items end use.

Check out this video:

Hydrographics being applied to a rifle.

While Fluid Coatings specialises in coating automotive parts, basically anything that can be dipped in water can have hydrographics applied. Check out our gallery for inspiration and then get in touch for a free estimate.