August '21

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G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M 2 0 2 1 A U G U S T G R A P H I C S P R O 6 1 steel screw, countersunk, screwed in each one. Each piece of our logo weighed very little and was fitted with only two to four of these studs. These small squares of aluminum lami- nate were drilled with extra holes and scuffed up with sandpaper before gluing, and so were the backs of the logo parts where these pads would be glued in place. Regular 100% silicone was used as an adhe- sive and allowed to dry overnight. The next day, our two paper patterns were drawn with our large-format printer onto regular white paper, though sometimes we use a plotter equipped with a pen or marker for this. The patterns were placed on a worktable and perforated with the exact hole placement by aligning the logo parts over the pattern and pressing down, leav- ing pierce marks where all the holes would need to be drilled. One pattern was marked "A," and the other "B," and so were the sets of parts. Out on the job, the installation of each of the two logos was only about a 30-minute affair each. Careful attention was used in placing the patterns on the wall perfectly level, and exactly where the client wanted the logo to be. Then 3/16" holes were drilled following the pierce marks shown on the patterns. A total of 11 holes was all that was re- quired to secure each logo to the client's office wall. A small amount of clear sili- cone was forced into each hole, and the parts were pressed into place. They weigh almost nothing, so there was no tendency for them to move and after an hour or two, the silicone would set up and make them permanent. The final product was a handsome metal- lic display, with painted black edges, stud- mounted into the wall and completed in almost record time. Even though we seldom make dimensional letters or logos completely by hand, it is still something that is practical and profitable to do. With the right material, and with nothing more than a sign shop plotter for stencils and patterns, plus a $200 scroll saw, any commercial sign shop can make hand- some, custom metal-faced letters and logos for clients of all kinds. And it is likely that they will become repeat customers, which of course is the best kind. GP RICK WILLIAMS owns Rick's Sign Company, a com- mercial sign shop in Longview, Texas. He has been in the sign industry since 1973 and has been a contributing editor to Sign Business and Sign & Digital Graphics since 1986. Contact Rick via email at Pieces are pre-fitted in place while the pattern is still taped to the wall. Only a few studs were required as all the parts are very light. The glue is allowed to dry overnight. The final step is removing the transfer tape protective sheet, making sure the finish is perfectly clean. Patterns were drawn on paper with a printer or plotter and then pierce marked by pressing down on each logo part. This photo shows one of two custom logos, hand cut from 1"-thick sheet, and then stud-mounted into the wall in about 30 minutes' work onsite. In the field, the patterns are carefully set in place, and small 3/16"-diameter holes are drilled.

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