Welcome To Signs101.com: Largest Forum for Signmaking Professionals

Signs101.com: Largest Forum for Signmaking Professionals is the LARGEST online community & discussion forum for professional sign-makers and graphic designers.


  1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Advise on my process....please.

Discussion in 'Newbie Forum' started by deanb444, Jul 8, 2012.

  1. deanb444

    deanb444 New Member

    Jul 8, 2012
    I would greatly appreciate any and all (sarcastic or not) comments on the process I am using to make HDU signs. I make small to med sized sandblasted & routed signs for mostly one time customers. (because they rarely fail). I am so interested to hear from pros, new and old, as to how I can better make these signs. By better I mean faster, cheaper or better quality. So here goes:}

    Start with 1 1/2" HDU brand varies 15#. Blow off dust with reverse vacuum.(I don't get too fussy) 3/8" nap foam roller to apply 2 water thinned coats of 123 primer or 1 heavy coat right out of the can. Depends on how much time the boss gives me. Dry 12-24 hours. Light sanding and apply cut rubber stencil Anchor aggressive adhesive. most stuff gets weeded & premasked ahead of time. Then to an off-site Blaster. a week later we vacuum up dust & remove rubber stencil. Most of the time (due to the industrial blaster we use) the rubber is really stuck. The primer does come up but that is taken care of by sanding down past the primer coat to flat letters.

    I also route signs on a Multicam 4400 on the same material down about 1/4"+.

    At this point I treat them both the same. Sand all 6 sides & break all hard edges with 220 grit. I then use the reverse vacuum to blow the dust away.
    For priming I use the 123 Primer with a cheap chip brush 2". Some times I use tinted primer that is a 50/50 grey color for darker finishes. I pounce all the primer into all cracks & crevasses until every surface is coated. I end the priming with a dry brush and pounce a texture in the background evening out the primer. After that dries I apply a Kelley Moore Exterior Semigloss paint (house paint) the same way. Some dark colors or other brands of paint take 2 coats. After drying for a day I very lightly scratch sand the raised parts. Then apply the same paint with a pounce technique. I take a block of wood & double face tape foam roller piece to the end & cut to the edges. Most paint takes 2 coats for the letters because they are contrasting.

    I install these all the time with or without frames, or supports. I have installed grips on the back, bolted thru the fronts, siliconed with studs, hung from chain & screwed directly to posts. Almost none have failed, some due to conditions, sprinklers, GARDENERS, vandals, have needed some "customer care". But were handled better after we saw the issue. You live & learn right.

    If you have read this far I Thank you up front. I would really appreciate all feedback in any part of the process. I love to pick stuff apart, so this is for all of you Boo-hoo's who like to esmack us newbies around.

    Thanks Dean
  2. visual800

    visual800 Very Active Member

    Aug 4, 2010
    montgomery, alabama
    if it aint broke.........