The Lowdown on Wakeboard Boat Wraps

Once just for pro riders, wakeboard boat wraps are now available to all of us. Get the inside track on one of the most popular wakeboard boat accessories

Colorful boat wrap
Colorful boat wrap.
Unique black and white wrap
Unique black and white boat wrap.
Japanese influenced boat wrap
Japanese influenced boat wrap.
Green and white boat wrap
Green and white boat wrap.
Closer look boat wrap
Closer look boat wrap.
Asian influence boat wrap
Asian influence boat wrap.
Simple text boat wrap
Simple text boat wrap.
Simple text boat wrap
Simple text boat wrap.

Once available just for pro riders or on a limited basis, wakeboard boat wraps are now a growing trend and available to all of us. Whether a pre-designed boat wrap or a custom-tailored original design, numerous boat manufacturers, dealerships and aftermarket companies offer a variety of jaw-dropping options to personalize just about any wakeboard boat (new or old). From full wraps and partial wraps to speaker wraps, transom wraps and more, most of a wakeboard boat's surface is now game for customization. There are also many alternatives to wrapping your boat, such as custom gelcoats and metallics, decals and die-cut graphics, special-edition packages, etc. Between all your boat wrap options and the plentiful non-wrap options, you should consider your boat's surface as a canvas for your imagination. — Brian Wheeler

BOAT WRAP FACTS

What is a boat wrap? "A wrap is a vinyl film with printed graphics that conforms and adheres to the boat's curved surface," says Nick West, owner of ZDecals. The vinyl is opaque, meaning that the original boat color underneath will not show through.

How much does a boat wrap cost? Depending on what you want exactly (full or partial wrap, pre-designed graphics or original artwork), wraps can range from about $1,400 to upwards of $5K. Check with your local dealer for details.

How long does a boat wrap last? "There are a million factors that can drive this: material, installation, user care, weather, abuse to the boat, kept in the water versus out of the water, etc.," says Josh Sirlin, owner and art director of Sirlin Wraps. "The more you baby your boat the longer it lasts." After consulting with Wake Graphics, Sirlin and ZDecals, we determined a wrap's lifespan might range from two years to upwards of eight years, depending on the degree of care that went into protecting the wrap.

Can I install a boat wrap myself? "We would not recommend it," Sirlin says. "I'd strongly recommend that only 3M-certified installers do a project this technical." In short, it's extremely difficult to do, and if you mess up you'd end up buying a second wrap. Ouch!

Are boat wraps removable? Yes.

Where can I get a boat wrap? Primarily, wraps are offered through boat dealerships, for both new and used boats. Some special-edition boats come from the factory wrapped. And for boats that don't have dealer-direct wrapping, aftermarket specialists are the way to go. See "Wrap Options" and "Wrap Specialists" for details.

Do boat wraps affect resale value? Possibly. A nice wrap on an older boat could make it look newer than it actually is and therefore more enticing to buy. Plus, as West of ZDecals commented, "If you have a good, sound gelcoat, a wrap will protect your gelcoat, so after the wrap is removed you are left with a gelcoat in nearly brand-new condition." Not a bad selling point! Plus, some people may be willing to pay a little more for a boat with a sick one-of-a-kind wrap.

Can I wrap a used wakeboard boat? Yes.

What can damage a boat wrap? A variety of things: running the boat into a guide pole while putting it on a trailer, improperly buoying up to other boats, weather, leaving the boat in the water. Mario Perez of Wake Graphics equated a boat with a wrap to "a Porsche with a brand-new paint job. You might want to park your car away from other cars," he says. However, with some loving care, a boat wrap can stay damage-free and last a long time.

Wrap Options

2010 boats: Vandall Edition Axis A22 comes stock with a special-edition half-wrap. Contact local dealer for details.

Used boats: Aftermarket options available

2010 boats: Contact your local Centurion dealer for wrap options.

Used boats: Contact your local Centurion dealer for availability on older models.

2010 boats: Aftermarket options available. Contact your local Malibu dealer for nonwrap graphic options.

Used boats: Aftermarket options available

2010 boats: Twenty-five-plus wrap options available from Sirlin Wraps at your local MasterCraft dealership.

Used boats: Contact your local dealer

2010 boats: Aftermarket options available. Contact your local MB dealer for nonwrap graphic options.

Used boats: Aftermarket options available

2010 boats and used boats: Contact your local Moomba dealership for ZDecal wrap options.

2010 boats and used boats: Aftermarket options available. Contact your local dealership for nonwrap graphic options.

2010 boats:Supra Launch 24V BROstock Edition. Contact a Supra dealer for ZDecal wrap options. Also check out the Worlds and Liquid Force editions.

Used boats: Contact your local Supra dealership for ZDecal wrap options.

2010 boats and used boats: Contact your local Supreme dealership for nonwrap graphic options.

2010 boats and used boats: Contact your local dealership for Wake Graphics wrap options.