Sign & Digital Graphics

November '18

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S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S • November 2018 • 27 Consider the Elements Wind load is another important con- sideration when it comes to choosing the right system, especially as so many customers want to incorporate digital signage, says Jason Hutty, marketing director of PAM. While digital signage can be used outside, some places may be too harsh for that type of signage. "It's certainly been the case in the past that digital has struggled outside, espe- cially in places like Florida," Hutty says. "Although digital hardware is becoming more adept at handling outdoor condi- tions, it's important to plan wayfinding signage in a way that not only gives users the best experience possible but to also be cognizant that sometimes a great loca- tion for signage won't work out because of the elements." Bar says monument signs are best for high-wind areas. Although frame systems can work well for outdoor wayfinding, they aren't the best solution when wind is a factor because they aren't heavy enough to withstand the elements. Wind load also affects the type of outdoor lighting system used to illumi- nate the wayfinding system, Bar says. Although many people prefer the look of using lights inside the sign, it doesn't work well in windy areas. Instead, Bar recommends using a spotlight to illumi- nate the sign when wind is an issue. Organization For Smooth Installation Before installation day, Curtis rec- ommends carefully surveying the spe- cific location for your signs. Given the environmental conditions, some signs may call for slightly different fabrication requirements, or you might need to prep the area prior to installation. "Sometimes the ground may be on a slope and thus one post needs to be longer than the other, or there may be obstructions or buried lines that need to be marked before digging occurs," Curtis says. "If the signs need to be mounted onto concrete, then the signs need to be fabricated accordingly and have base plates welded to the bottom of the posts for them to bolt to the concrete." For large projects, Curtis says it's helpful to even dig all of the post holes before the final installation. By taking care of this step beforehand, you can immediately set the signs in their footers and concrete into the ground, making for a more streamlined installation. As you're implementing an outdoor wayfinding system, Hutty says to make sure you record every sign you create for the area. Many facilities meticulously record their piping and electrical systems, but they fail to do so for their wayfinding signage. If the client needs to make any changes to the system in the future, hav- ing this information documented makes the process much more organized. "If a facility is looking at redevelop- ing a precinct's wayfinding system but doesn't have a database of every sign, it inevitably means you have to start all over again, and that will also affect other precincts," Hutty says. "It's important to have database because it affects wayfind- ing so much in terms of the user's journey throughout the facility." Creating an outdoor wayfinding sig- nage system is generally a huge under- taking, and sign shops are faced with many considerations when it comes to implementing a seamless, effective way- finding system. Despite the challenges, a sign shop can successfully execute a proj- ect of this stature with the right design partner, a proper system and when orga- nized planning is in place. SDG (Photos courtesy Component Signage)

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