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Clear Acrylic vs. Lexan

Discussion in 'General Signmaking Topics' started by nikdoobs, Jan 13, 2014.

  1. nikdoobs

    nikdoobs Active Member

    Jun 4, 2013
    lafayette, la
    I have a job that requires a digitally printed logo on channel letters. I'm trying to decide whether to use clear acrylic or Lexan. I'm going to do two second surface prints. One on clear vinyl and one on translucent white vinyl. Most things I read say to use lexan. Is this because it protects the prints from the sun better than acrylic?

    Does anyone have experience doing second surface prints on acrylic? If so how well did it last in the sun?

    My issue with lexan is attaching the trim cap to it and yellowing over time. If you do use lexan for channel letters, what product do you use to attach the trim cap?

  2. J Hill Designs

    J Hill Designs Major Contributor

    Sep 24, 2004
    channel letters, use acrylic, since the T/C is acrylic.

    edit: I would just use white acrylic. no reason for clear, still print on trans first surface, and mirror print on clear second surface (if budget allows)
  3. 2B

    2B Very Active Member

    May 5, 2011

    knock on wood has not failed us yet with this combo
  4. Mosh

    Mosh Major Contributor

    Oct 19, 2009
    +2 white acrylic and printed first surface. Have you ever made chan letters before?
    Only reason I would ever print something second surface is if it was down low and the customer was worried about people messing with them, even then I wouldn't worried about it. Prints aren't as likely to be messed with like vinyl cut letters are.

    Lexan yellows, but keep in mind most prints are made to last only 7 or so years so....
    and printed second surface you would have to glue them from the front? Weld 3 will mess up prints, and I doubt you would want to apply the print after the trim cap was on.
  5. MikePro

    MikePro Major Contributor

    Feb 3, 2010
    Racine, WI
    +1 white acrylic, much easier to trim cap.
    if you absolutely need to trim cap lexan, you'll need to beef-up your glue to an epoxy. simply using weld-on just won't cut it.
  6. nikdoobs

    nikdoobs Active Member

    Jun 4, 2013
    lafayette, la
    We do channel letters all the time, just not often with digital prints. I just want to make sure I'm making these the best way possible.
  7. J Hill Designs

    J Hill Designs Major Contributor

    Sep 24, 2004
    basically treat your first surface prints like regular trans vinyl - 2nd surface will be to keep the color density when backlit
  8. Westcoast Sign Guy

    Westcoast Sign Guy Very Active Member

    Jan 3, 2005
    San Diego, CA
    There is going to be a lot of times where you will need/required to make small to large channel letter faces out polycarbonate or Lexan. In such a case you have a couple of options, mainly a two part system where you will need to buy the special gun, mixing nozzle tips, and small 11mm cartridges and it when you're done applying anything unused gets wasted, this process if you have gone as you know is expensive.

    CHANNEL BOND is the one part system that you just simply pour pack in the container when your done, it's as thick as your weld-on 16 and goes on just as easy.

    We sell a lot of Channel Bond to a lot of large national sign companies. If you have used it and can't find it anymore you'll be glad to know we have it. If you've never used it before, it's an awesome kick *** product that works and lasts REAL well.

    You can use Channel bond for:
    • Polycarbonate to Polycarbonate
    • Polycarbonate to Acrylic
    • Polycarbonate to Plasco Trim Cap
    • Polycarbonate to Modified Acrylic
    • Channel Letters and Sign Faces

    Right now you can buy Channel Bond from us in Quarts or Gallons, but we also have a combo special where we can include a Gallon or Quart of Resin Bond. Resin Bond is the equivalent to Weld-On 3, 4. Buying the Resin Bond you get an equivalent product at a lesser cost. We bundle these together because shipping Channel Bond there is a FedEx HAZMAT charge of $28 that comes along with shipping no matter if you purchase a quart or 10 gallons. So because of this we decided to also offer a bundle package to save on a product as well as the FedEx HAZMAT Charge.

    If you have nay questions please feel free to contact us by phone (858) 880-1400 or email orders@thesignsyndicate.com


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