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best way to handle this

Discussion in 'Digital Printing' started by signguy 55, Aug 6, 2012.

  1. signguy 55

    signguy 55 Member

    Sep 28, 2009
    I have to do a lighted sign, 2' x 12' single faced. The face needs to be a digital print of the business name. I have done all kinds of signs but this will be my first full digital print with a black background on a lighted face.

    I'm thinking of using clear lexan and get the print done on translucent and then apply to the clear lexan. (The logo is a black background with yellows and orange for the art and lettering.)

    Am I on the right track? One vendor said they could apply a print to the face and then backspray it (I didn't mention to the vendor at that time the colors involved). That kind of makes me nervous about the final product, I think I would rather do the artwork myself and make sure I do it right.

    Thanks for any advice.
  2. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

    Jun 7, 2006
    Black is about the oddest of all colors for a background on a backlit illuminated signs.

    First of all, it will look black during the day, but at night when lit up, what percentage is going to be black vs. all the other colors ?? Why have an electric sign, if you're going to blacken out all but the copy ??

    To me, that's like during the night, turning on one light in a room with a completely black lampshade and then wanting to read next to it.

    The second thing is... is it crucial that the black be jet black and still be translucent.... or are they making it opaque black ?? Another brilliant brainstorm.
  3. signguy 55

    signguy 55 Member

    Sep 28, 2009
    Thanks Gino, now you've really got me nervous!!

    That part about the black lampshade cracked me up!!
  4. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

    Jun 7, 2006
    Don't get scared, people do it all the time. It's just that in most cases, it doesn't make sense.

    Think about it. many years ago, you could see a sign from as far away as you could see in daylight. Come along electricity and they made bulbs and neon pop to catch your attention at a great distance and at night, to boot.

    So the main idea is to see a lit up anything from a distance. You can see electric signs from 1/2 mile away under the right circumstances... you just can't read it yet, so to keep your sign in the on-comer's eye.... keep it well lit is my motto.

    Nowadays, these smart designers think it's clever to make a backlit not light up anything except the letters..... ahh, they're really called channels, but most people are too cheap to buy them, so they putter out and go for this clever idea of making an electric sign.... really not light up too much. Why not use reflective on a black piece of wood......:Big Laugh
  5. J Hill Designs

    J Hill Designs Major Contributor

    Sep 24, 2004
    Gino, in my city, we cant even make white backgrounds light up any more - if it has a white background component, it must be blocked out at night!

    and +1 pat white's solution
  6. john1

    john1 Guest

  7. signcrafters london

    signcrafters london Very Active Member

    May 22, 2010
    London KY
    Why doesn't California just get it over with an ban all signage?
  8. Craig Sjoquist

    Craig Sjoquist Major Contributor

    Jun 18, 2004
    Can not see the problem here,
    Lexan is a good choice.

    What ever way you do the black will work.

    In the past all graphics was painted on back last full coat of white. would well over 20 yrs.

    Light letter on dark background 10% seen & readable better then reverse, with a light backdrop.
  9. Moze

    Moze Very Active Member

    Feb 27, 2012
    Dallas, TX
    Black should be fine...use blockout vinyl or backspray it. There are hundreds of Harley-Davidson signs done this way and they look great - day or night (although the following isn't the best example).

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  10. 300mphGraphics

    300mphGraphics Active Member

    Aug 15, 2006
    Our town codes are the same. Our dark skies ordinance was put in place to limit light pollution in our rural community. Personally I love it and appreciate it every time I look over the mountain to Phoenix. You can also tell the signs done by out of town companies that don't know the ordinance. Why the town lets them keep their signs up is beyond me, but that a whole different convo..
  11. signguy 55

    signguy 55 Member

    Sep 28, 2009
    Thanks for all the info. I think I've found my solution. Thanks to all.
  12. 401Graphics

    401Graphics Very Active Member

  13. visual800

    visual800 Very Active Member

    Aug 4, 2010
    montgomery, alabama
    Krystals logo is now done this way and it looks great at night and in the daytime. I dont see a problem with it. I would start out with a white face though and then cover all according colors with black and the logo

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