Sign & Digital Graphics

March '20

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2 8 • M A R C H 2 0 2 0 • S I G N & D I G I T A L G R A P H I C S Inc. "I would utilize them in interior applications and in residential areas, like residential community entrance signs because of their subtle light broadcast." These signs don't have to be visually grandiose to make a difference. Much like the soothing voice of a story's narrator, you know the lighting is there without trying too hard to be the central focus. "Halo-lit letters are best for a classic subtly lit option for a richer look," says Kip Husk, President, Husk Signs, a divi- sion of Husk Companies, Inc. "They are best viewed in low light situations." Husk continues by stating that national outfits are great targets for halo- lit signage, those that have continuous orders of the same signage on a weekly basis. Once you are able to "spec" the sign to the customer's requirements and deliver on quality and accuracy, the orders will flow. However, delivering on quality is sometimes easier said than done. Sign makers should concentrate on what's important in these types of projects. "Even lighting is more critical than brightness," cites Husk as an example. "Less spacing of LEDs can assure this. But the smaller the letter, the more dif- ficult this is." In some cases, though, smaller letters may be preferred. According to Camp, halo-lit jobs "have allowed the intro- duction of very small letters and they're much easier to install and service." Much of the conversation about letter installation will come back to how com- fortable the sign maker is in handling different sizes and styles. The component being used in tandem with the letter—the LED—is also an asset with many derivatives. For instance, "Typically blue LEDs are strongly dis- couraged for face lit letters because the letters/signs become almost impossible to read at night," shares James Cross, VP of the signage division at SDS Automation. "However blue light can work well for halo. Since blue lights are almost never used for face-lit signs, a blue halo-lit sign really stands out and gets noticed." Husk recalls when, "We have used color-changing LEDs, as well as front- lit and halo-lit on the same letters, for a very cool look for character." A Better Letter Looking again at channel letters, this time more in more detail, there are ele- ments to consider when applying this product to a halo-lit job. Obviously, sign makers have a number of different choices they can make when assembling and installing signs for customers. While completing more of these halo-lit signs they will determine what letters work best within their skillsets. Size Channel letters can be fabricated in a variety of sizes, from under a foot to over several feet. Placing these letters in the right position will have an impact on how the light is displayed. Manufacturers can be a great reference when trying to determine what size and placement is best for a particular project. "Halo lighting works well for a wide range of letters but especially smaller, shallower, more intricate letters because it's more forgiving to light, small serifs and tight stroke widths as halo versus face-lit," suggests Cross. In many instances, the size and width of the letters will not only have an impact on all of the other sign components, but also the labor that goes into it. "(Use) ones with a wider stroke width. If the letter is too thin, it makes it dif- ficult to get your fingers into and some- times the LEDs won't fit well," explains Here is an example of how halo-lit letters can transform a sign, literally with a day and night appearance. Image courtesy of Royal Signs.

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