Best Boat Name Decals 2022 | 100% Customizable

Custom Boat Name Decals | #1 Online Personalized Graphics and Lettering Shop

Like personalizing your plate number, you'll need to customize your boat with a name. However, with boats you won't need a plate number, you'll need a vinyl sticker. Vinyl stickers have been used to customize boats and other things like shop windows, car glass, and other surfaces that work with adhesive. If you own a boat, chances are you already have a name for it, and you're eager to just put the name on. Several online stores provide you with the opportunity to name your boat with vinyl stickers. You'll also get the chance to customize the sticker whichever way you wish, but you'll have to keep scrolling to find out.

What Is Vinyl Lettering?

Vinyl letters are individually cut solid-colored vinyl designs. They come in different forms such as letters, numbers, shapes or a company logo. Vinyl letters are not printed, they are cut from rolls of colored vinyl, and although they are separate, they are applied together with transfer tape. Vinyl letters have three layers. The top layer is the transfer tape that holds the properly spaced letters and characters together on the non-adhesive side. The middle layer is the vinyl letters with one side coated in adhesive. The bottom layer is a plastic or waxed paper backing. This protects the adhesive until its time to install.

boat name decal

How to Design A Vinyl Decal

It is quite easy to get a vinyl decal online. However, if you own a Cricut machine, you can create your own hand made boat decal at home. The steps are quite easy if you’ve used a Cricut machine before and have software. Here’s what you’ll need;

  • Cricut Maker
  • Cricut Design Space
  • Vinyl
  • Hand lettering SVG file
  • X-Acto
  • Weeder tool
  • Transfer Tape
boat name decals


  • Upload the SVG file to Cricut Design Space to create a new project
  • Resize the design so that its larger for space. Cricut typically cuts 11.5"X11.5."
  • Use a small square of about ½” and turn it 45 degrees to make it a diamond shape and put at the top of the image
  • Copy and paste the shape, then move it to the bottom of the image. Align the shape to the middle of the other diamond and group them.
  • Copy and paste the diamonds and rotate them 45 degrees.
  • Align the diamonds to the center of the image, then WELD them together. The diamonds can be used as a guide
  • Copy and paste the original image 4 times, click on the eye to make it invisible, and align all the images
  • Create a square with the shape tool and resize it to its 11.5X11.5”. Paste this repeatedly depending on how many squares you need.
  • Move the squares to the corners of the image, to make sure they overlap in the middle.
  • Click on one square and the original image, then click on SLICE
  • Once you click slice, you’ll have four new images. Two images will be identical but with different colors. Cut out one of these and delete the others.
  • Repeat for each square, then click the green MAKE IT button in the top right corner.

Cut each of them with Circuit with Vinyl as your setting, then use a weeder tool to weed the vinyl from the backing. Cut the ½" edge of the Vinyl sheets with an X-Acto knife. Keep the images in place with tape and align all the images. Apply transfer tape to the top of the image. And finally, remove the backing from the Vinyl.

How to Install Boat Lettering

If you're ordering online, you can ask the company to install the lettering for you. This is because the lettering might be delicate and if you've never used vinyl lettering before it might be difficult. If your design has multiple color layers and is cut from permanent adhesion vinyl, you might want professional help. However, if you must install it on your own, you’ll need;

  • A Non-Abrasive Rag
  • Mild Cleanser
  • A Ruler
  • Tape
  • Squeegee
  • Patience
large boat in ocean


  1. Clean the surface with a non-abrasive rag and a mild cleanser and make sure it is oil-free, non-porous, and smooth. Leave the surface to dry before installation.
  2. Measure the surface you'll be applying it. Make sure its leveled, spaced, and aligned.
  3. Hold the lettering in place with the backing and transfer tape still on. Place the backing side on the surface.
  4. Use masking tape to hold down the lettering.
  5. Remove the corner tape from one side. Pull away the backing slowly at a 45 angle to prevent stretching or tearing.
  6. Do not let the baking touch anything. Carefully flip the lettering back down so that the adhesive side is facing the surface.
  7. Squeegee the lettering firmly vertically and horizontally.
  8. If there are any air bubbles, lift the problem area and try again.
  9. Remove the top left corner of the transfer tape and slowly peel it away from the graphic.
  10. If any of the letterings lifts with it, use a squeegee to press it back into place. Continue peeling off the tape.
  11. If any air bubbles show up, use the backing liner. Lay it over the air bubbles with the shiny side upwards. Grab a squeegee to apply hard pressure and remove the air bubbles
  12. If you have more colors, repeat this process with each of the sheets.

How to Maintain Boat Lettering

Vinyl is low-maintenance; just like your skin, you'll need to protect it from the sun. Hence, the best place to apply vinyl lettering is on the side of the boat that has a little bit of shed. For cleaning, use a damp, non-abrasive cloth. Do not use harsh chemical cleaners for cleaning; they can damage the vinyl and adhesive faster.

Alligator boat name decal

Other Use Cases

Boat lettering is just one way to apply custom vinyl stickers or decals. Here are other popular ways:

Frequently asked Questions

Where do you put a boat name decal?

Traditionally boat name decals are put on the sides and rear of the boat to display the vessel's name and the boat registration numbers.

What size should boat lettering be?

Boat lettering sizes range from 2" to 20" in font height; the font styles and quantity of characters determine the length.

What are the decals on boats?

The decals on boats are rugged outdoor 3.4 mil vinyl, perfect for long-term use on the open seas.

Can you put stickers on a boat?

Yes, you can put stickers on boats. As long as the ship's surface has been thoroughly cleaned before installation, stickers can last years on board a vessel without losing quality.

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