What Distinguishes 3D from 4D Number Plates?

Since there are now many different plate types on the market, people frequently ask us what the distinctions are between them all.

The most frequent query relates to the distinction between 3D and 4D plates, with uncertainty around the purported finding of the “fourth dimension.”

Read More: 4D Number Plates

We can affirm that no scientific advances have been achieved. We continue to employ the well-known proportions of height, breadth, and depth and conduct business in the same manner.

Nonetheless, the term “4D” is widely used in the automobile industry and has grown to be considered a standard.

We are thus here to explain the origin of the term, the meaning behind its design, and how it varies from 3D.

How Do 3D Plates Work?

An acrylic polyurethane gel is used to create 3D characters.

Their dome shape gives them a more rounded appearance.

In addition, the gel has a glossy appearance that gleams in the sunlight.

Why Do 4D Plates Exist?

However, 4D characters are composed of acrylic.

A laser is used to expertly cut the material, resulting in an incredibly precise finish.

This results in a more substantial appearance and a stronger style because of its deeper character depth (usually 3 or 5 mm).

What Distinctions Exist Between 4D and 3D Plates?

Both plate types are three-dimensional in theory.

Characters in 3D and 4D are lifted off the screen, but to differing degrees.

3D figures have a height of between 1.7 and 2 mm from base to peak. But because the borders are curved, the character’s height varies slightly because there isn’t a constant height throughout.

In contrast to 4D characters, these are elevated to the predetermined measurement (in our example, 3mm or 5mm) all the way across. This allows for a more robust, rigid design.

When distinguishing between the two, the usage of “3D” is insufficient because both sets of characters are lifted off the plate.

The gel resin characters were the first to arrive, therefore they assumed the 3D label by default.

Number plate producers had to come up with a new moniker when raised acrylic characters were brought to the market.

As a result, “4D,” the most recent standard used in the plate business, came into being.

So, What Exactly Are 4D Gel Plates?

It’s possible that you’ve seen 4D Gel plates for sale, available in 3mm and 5mm sizes.

The automobile world has shown a great deal of interest in this relatively new type.

In short, 4D Gel plates consist of acrylic 4D figures covered in 3D gel resin.

Thus, it’s a blend of 4D and 3D Gel.

4D Gel 3mm

The usual 3D Gel characters are layered above 4D 3mm characters in the 3mm variant.

4D Gel 5mm

Similarly, the 5mm version uses regular 3D Gel characters on top of 4D 5mm characters.

Result: 3D vs. 4D

3D plates and 4D plates are both three-dimensional, as was previously said.

Consequently, even if the “4” in “4D” could imply the existence of an additional dimension, this is plainly untrue.

Within the number plate business, solid acrylic characters are referred to as 4D and domed gel resin characters as 3D.

3D figures have rounded shapes and a shiny look.

Conversely, 4D characters have a bolder style and a more substantial appearance. They are lifted off the plate more visibly.

Are Number Plates with 4D Legal?

The short answer is that 4D number plates are allowed for use on public roads as long as the proper margins, spacing, character sizes, and color schemes are followed. The most current revision to the number plate regulations, which prohibits the use of any color other than black for the number plate digits, was released in September 2021 by the DVLA and BNMA.

Although we have already discussed this issue in another article at JDM Plates, we are pleased to revisit it! As long as 4D acrylic number plates adhere to the British Standard, they are perfectly acceptable in the UK (BS AU 145e). For our 4D acrylic plates, we adhere to all applicable legal standards, including those regarding stroke thickness and other pertinent measurements like 50 mm wide by 79 mm high characters. It should be mentioned, nevertheless, that colored license plates are in no manner road legal.

Motorcycle plates, however, can have somewhat smaller characters with a character height of 64mm, a character width of 44mm, and a lettering stroke of 10mm. Once more, our 4D motorbike number plates are fully road legal and include solid black acrylic text throughout! Contact us using the information on our contact page to learn more.

Contrary to what some police officers believe, 4D number plates are lawful for use on public roads. In addition to having case studies with proof that certain police officers are imposing penalties in accordance with section 59(1) of the Vehicle Excise and Registration Act of 1994, we at JDM Plates have firsthand experience with overruling fines pertaining to 4D number plates.

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