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Calling out size- height 1st, length 2nd?

Discussion in 'General Signmaking Topics' started by Andy D, Apr 6, 2021.

  1. Andy D

    Andy D Very Active Member

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    The rule used to be in the sign industry, when calling out size, you would list height 1st, length 2nd...
    Opposite of the small format printing industry, but it seems nobody does that anymore, including sign material suppliers and trade only printers.
    Does anyone else still keep to that rule, or am I the only one?
    I think I'm about to give up the fight, that rule only seems to add confusion &
    I can't think of one good reason not to switch to how the rest of the world seems to be doing it.
     
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  2. Saturn

    Saturn Member

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    I come from more of a print/design background and always go width first, but I have gotten into the habit of mentioning "width" or "w" when possible, like on proofs etc. Most of my clients wouldn't know a ruler if you hit them in the head with one, so it's never been an issue. If I was in a more technical field I would just go with the status quo for sure, whatever that may be.
     
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  3. myront

    myront CorelDRAW is best

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    I didn't exactly come from the sign industry but been doing it for nearly 17 years now. I never really caught on to numerical measurements alone. To me a label of 12 x 18 is the same as 18 x 12. I will always insist on the use of "w" and "h" no matter what numbers are used. Although "portrait" or "landscape" is acceptable too. Here's another crazy thing, I like to list the smaller number first no matter what. 12"w x 18"h and 12"h x 18"w. The use of the term "length" is not acceptable. A banner is not laid out as if to walk on it like carpet so "length" doesn't make sense to me. Still height & width only.
     
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  4. Notarealsignguy

    Notarealsignguy Very Active Member

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    I was always told width x height and that seems to carry across trades.
     
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  5. jwlllpl

    jwlllpl Member

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    w x h
     
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  6. TXFB.INS

    TXFB.INS Very Active Member

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    I was trained to do H x W, and only list inches.

    Not everyone does this, and I have taken to include the "w" and "h" behind any measurement, even if it is for in office usage.
    I still will only list the inch amount, and the decimal system for any partial measurement
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2021
  7. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

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    There are no standards anymore, because no one knows them anymore. Whether or not we as sign people know it, our customers don't know it and the people in the warehouses don't know it (or give a rat's butt), so in order to be careful, I don't even say height or width, cause someone will say.... Isn't that the length ?? So, are we talking 3D or 2D ?? Who cares. I just say..... left & right and up & down ??
     
  8. Johnny Best

    Johnny Best Very Active Member

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    So you go to Home Depot and pull out of the ben a 4x8 sheet of plywood, then you stand it up on the 4' end and it becomes an 8'x4'. Are you still confused? A 4x8 is still a 8x4 or a 3x4 is still a 4x3. Just add _' high and _' long to your conversation when dealing with people if you or they are not sure about it.
     
  9. Mosh

    Mosh Major Contributor

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    These days I say vertical and horizontal. That even confuses some customers. You know the ones that come to pick up a 4x8 sign in Honda Civic.
     
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  10. JBurton

    JBurton Signtologist

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    4x8, 8.5x11, 12x18, I guess I like the lower number to lead...
    But for the love of all things holy, don't tell me a "1 by 10 foot piece of aluminum" and expect me to realize you meant "1 inch by 10 feet", as if you saying feet on your second dimension has any impact on the other dimension!
     
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  11. MikePro

    MikePro Major Contributor

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    smallest by biggest has always felt right, as does "x by y" but that could just be algebra/geometry/calculus influence,
    Hit me with either, and its no biggie unless grains and landscapes need clarification BUT say 1x10 and I'll assume all-inches or a kick in the groin.

    ...possibly a preference towards the sequential?
    however, many of us Wisconsin-ites also appreciate the ability to recite the alphabet backwards.
     
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  12. GB2

    GB2 Very Active Member

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    Check any sign supply catalog, every one is the same Width x Height...that is the standard
     
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  13. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

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    So, you order an 8' × 4' of celtec and it'll come in different than if you order a 4'w8' piece ?? How 'bout a 24" × 24" which way will that get layed out ?? Telling ya, this sh!t makes no difference and you're playing with fire if you expect someone else to think like you do. Just play it safe and give some other description to help your own cause.
     
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  14. GB2

    GB2 Very Active Member

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    Obviously, in your examples there is no difference but if you order 18x24 coroplast and expect to put stakes in it you'll be very disappointed because the sign panels will be vertical 18W x 24H. If you order any aluminum sign blank with pre-drilled holes you'd better specify WxH. I could go on and on, and I imagine you can dream up crazy scenarios to sort of make a point but you know what.....it's not a guessing game just go look at any sign supply catalog instead.
     
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  15. GAC05

    GAC05 Major Contributor

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    When I buy pants they are always 40x32 and I'm not tall.....
     
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  16. GB2

    GB2 Very Active Member

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    Bet you won't find those pants in a sign supply catalog either!
    Now that I think about it....that scenario actually fits....WxH
     
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  17. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

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    Well, ya better tell these supply houses of their own stats. Over the years, when ordering such items, their own staff has trouble with such calculations/descriptions. As for my replies, I only responded to your comments.

    When conveying these kinda specs with customers, as I said before, it's always best to either describe, draw a picture or somehow make sure all involved are on the same page. Better safe, than sorry, instead of just holding onto some old fashioned notion of how it used to be.
     
  18. MJ-HGI

    MJ-HGI New Member

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    You call out all measurements only in inches? So, if you have a sign that is 15'-3" high, you call it out as 183" high - and your customers understand that their sign is 15'-3" high? If you had a 62'-11" long banner, would you still use only inches to notes it as 635"? And then to use decimals? I don't think many people in this country know what the decimal system equivalents are in the imperial system. Not to be insulting, but that's totally foreign to me and I'm just trying to understand where you're coming from. I know the greater majority of the clients I've had in 25 years would be totally confuzzled if I gave them measurements in inches w/ decimals - especially GC's. Plus, I bet more than half of the fabricators & installers I've worked with in my career couldn't tell you what 183" is in feet/inches w/o pulling out a calculator and they definitely wouldn't know that 0.313" equals 5/16" and, since their tape measures are imperial, it would be asking for trouble to use decimal.
     
  19. Stacey K

    Stacey K I like making signs

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    I usually do 18x24, 4x8, etc. (coro flutes! be careful!) I've learned many customers are confused by the words, height, length, width. A few have used length and width for measurements. They confuse width with height. I usually find drawing a picture with arrows and the measurements best when dealing with these kinds of people. Sometimes I use the words "across" and "up and down" to help them understand.

    Not to put women down (I am one) but it's not often a woman knows how to measure or uses the words correctly, but plenty of men don't either.
     
  20. Gino

    Gino Premium Subscriber

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    Yeah, we learned this when God told Eve to make Adams's banana stand and she had no idea what 6 inches was. Did that ever make for a messed up scene. She was a lousy carpenter.
     
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