December '20

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G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M 2 0 2 0 D E C E M B E R G R A P H I C S P R O 2 7 Once the framework was finished, all of it was flipped over and the sign shape panel was secured to the frame using countersunk 1/8" thick rivets, inset flush so there would only be a smooth surface to attach the outer skin to. The .063 skin with its graphic would mostly be glued on, leaving the final monu- ment sign with almost no exposed fasten- ers. In the end, six well disguised counter- sunk rivets would be used to align the skin in the exact right place and hold while the glue dried. One of the face skins would not be adhered until the sign was installed and vertical, so having the six rivet holes already placed would be crucial to accurately align the face out in the field. This work took place at our small fab shop. Back at the sign shop, the faces, which were cut on the waterjet, were cleaned and prepped so about half of each face could be painted with dark blue sign enamel. I seldom spray anything, and using a foam roller and the right technique, I can paint a background that once dry, looks virtu- ally sprayed on. This method of painting produces a thicker and more durable paint coating than I could spray. At the fab shop, the two halves of the sign's framework were joined, and the side skins were riveted in place. These were not glued, but instead we used more 1/8" diameter riv- ets, countersunk flush and painted in place. No more rivets were used than necessary, and they were spaced in an accurate and consistent way, not just randomly riveted in place. These flathead rivets, once coun- ter sunk in place, are pretty insignificant visually, and because of the tension on the curve of the metal over those radius corners, I did not feel good about gluing these side covers in place. Also, if adhesive had been used, the side trim would be unremovable. A simple way to make the .063 white aluminum trim conform to the radius edge without arm-wrestling it was to use a tie down strap to hold it firmly in place until the rivets were inserted. This made the job easy and required no helper to accomplish. Another bit of fabrication that had to be done for this project was to weld up a base and pole framework. This structure would provide posts to go in the ground, uprights that would protrude up into the sign itself, as well as a boxed-in framework that would be covered with more .063 aluminum and then painted dark blue. This was a fairly simple project, but the true-and-square na- ture of it was important. ON THE JOBSITE Once all fabrication was done, and the faces were completed graphically, it was time to

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