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First 3D letter sign, How to attach?

Discussion in 'General Signmaking Topics' started by john1, Jul 11, 2012.

  1. john1

    john1 Guest

    Have a quote request for a flat panel sign with 3D letters popping off the sign a few inches.

    I applied for a Gemini account today but it has t been activated yet.

    What is the best way to attach the letters to let's say dibond substrate?

    I am guessing silicone or something?

    Sign size is 8x3.5' and is going into the side of a building.

  2. Jillbeans

    Jillbeans Major Contributor

    Dec 24, 2003
    Butler, PA
    If you get the letters from Gemini make sure the get a pattern from them too. I'd stud mount from the rear as well as use silicone.
    (not that I'm an expert, once was enough for me)
  3. PGSigns

    PGSigns Active Member

    Apr 1, 2005
    If you On Gemini's web site and under sign components you will find mounting supplies. Most everything is listed there. I would stud mount them through the Dibond if it does not have to be flush with the building. The template that Jill suggested is a huge help and a time saver.
  4. john1

    john1 Guest

    Thanks everyone, I have not a clue what stud mounting means or how to do it.

    The sign will go up against the side of the building so it would need to be flush in the back.
  5. PGSigns

    PGSigns Active Member

    Apr 1, 2005
    The Gemini letters (plastic) come with mounting points made into them for studs to go into. You can use the threaded rod from these points and go through the dibond and put a nut on it. The template we have mentioned will come with the letter shapes printed on it properly kerned and also have the location of the mounting points marked on it so you can put the holes in the correct place. If you look in the hardware section you will see pads with studs sticking out of them. These are used to bond the letters to substraights.
  6. DigitalSolutions

    DigitalSolutions Member

    May 23, 2011
    Attached is what you will want to use if you cant have any hardware on the rear of your sign. attach using a good quick set epoxy.

    You can find these under sign components and install supplies on the Gemini site.

    Attached is a rendition of stud mounting.


    Attached Files:

  7. Scott Reynolds

    Scott Reynolds Active Member

    Feb 5, 2005
  8. James Chrimes

    James Chrimes Very Active Member

    Jul 4, 2005
    it would depend on what type of letter you are installing. Gemini will have instructions. If you are making your own cut out letters it would depend in the material and size of what you are glueing together. Some materials expand and contract a lot more than others.
  9. Drip Dry

    Drip Dry Very Active Member

    Aug 11, 2004
    Long island NY
    Why use dibond. Why not just mount them directly to the wall.
    Looks a lot nicer. If you put it up with the dibond... it's going to look like you hung a big picture on the wall
    Please don't say that's what the customer wants. Most customers don't have a clue. If you explain why it looks better, they will almost always take your advice
  10. john1

    john1 Guest

    I think i'll be doing the pad mounting since it's a simple glue and stick.

    What brand/model adhesive should i use to attach it to the dibond? Reason i am not putting it into the wall is the letters are red and black and the wall is forest green.
  11. Kottwitz-Graphics

    Kottwitz-Graphics Very Active Member

    Sep 25, 2006
    Ridgely, MD
    I use pad mounting for all my Gemini installs. You will still want combo all pads, and drill for the stud. That way you have a center point to locate the pads, and they won't slide.

    I always use 100% silicone for installs
  12. visual800

    visual800 Very Active Member

    Aug 4, 2010
    montgomery, alabama
    GE silicone from lowes would suffice, thats all i have ever used
  13. john1

    john1 Guest

    Thanks all, I am hearing 3mm dibond wouldn't be the substrate of choice for this, Thoughts?

    No matter what anyone says, I really appreciate everyones advice here.
  14. john1

    john1 Guest

    Customer is installing, I really don't know how they are. I would guess screws in corners and then every so many feet around.

    Another novice question i guess but would installing the flush mount letters at the shop and then installing the sign to the wall be alright or should you install letters on site?

    Thanks Pat
  15. skyhigh

    skyhigh Major Contributor

    Jun 16, 2005
    Install them at your shop. The sign is only 8 x 3.5, so it won't be too heavy, if that is your concern.

    What type of letters have you decided to use......the formed plastic ones (the backs are hollow), or will they be a cut acrylic or metal? The type of letters (& the size) is always a factor to take into consideration. Seeing these will fit on a 8ft sign, the size really isn't a consideration.

    The best piece of advice I can give you...... Use the 6m material. If for no other reason, it will look much better with the dimensional letters!!! Second, it won't flex as much in transport & install......... especially since the customer is doing the install.
  16. john1

    john1 Guest

    Thanks Skyhigh, Yeah i decided to go with the plastic formed letters with the hollow backs. Gemini sent me a sample kit and i personally think these with the 2b flush mount pads will do just fine.

    I am really excited to get my first 3d letter sign started, A totally new market i have opened myself up to. It was always daunting but really the sample kit Gemini sent out and the customer service made it really something i am comfortable with offering now to a extent.

    My only downfall now and always has been is sign installs, I can install cut vinyl and digital prints but hanging signs to buildings and what not i am not experienced in.
  17. Bigdawg

    Bigdawg Just Me

    Jun 8, 2005
    Sunny Florida
    I understand your excitement. Haven't been in the sign world long enough to not remember the thrill of the sample kit :smile:

    But - and I say this as no slam, but as advice from someone who has been there, done that - hanging signs out in the world is not the same as slapping vinyl on something. I loved my Gemini kit - but we did NOT install any sign letters. We just didn't feel qualified... and in reality the customer I dealt with in TN wanted to do it themselves to save a buck. Although providing the sign to them to hang themselves is something we would have done.

    The reason we didn't install onto their buildings, walls, etc. was 2-fold. First and foremost was insurance. I know you work from home (I did too at one point), so I'm guessing you probably don't have any insurance to cover things like damage to buildings, the sign falling on someone's head... you know the things that will cause someone to sue you and take everything you own. That scared the heck out of me. I live by the "Just because you can, doesn't mean you should." rule.

    Secondly we made the decision (and it was probably a bad one) that we wanted to do only those things that we either A) Already knew how to do very well or B) Wouldn't hurt anyone if we screwed up. I was willing to take a chance I might have to pay for a paint job, but I wasn't willing to take on the liability of building repair or physical damage by my shop's actions (installing an outdoor sign on a building).

    That doesn't mean we didn't learn on the fly. Post and Panel ? No problem... Install that same sign on the side of your building - we weren't interested. That kind of learning has too high of a price tag.
  18. J Hill Designs

    J Hill Designs Major Contributor

    Sep 24, 2004
    I would use flathead machine screws to attach through back of dibond - they will be flush will back of sign panel, and yet still be a mechanical fastener - I believe most gemini letters are either 10-24 or 1/4-20
  19. john1

    john1 Guest

    Thanks for the advice, I do work from home still and have business insurance and all that. I do vehicle lettering and wanted to be covered on that for example because some can be picky about ghosting and other things once the graphics are taken off in the future or a set of mags that they left on forever and is now into their clear coat.

    There is another sign company locally my business partner is friends with and he recommends me use them for all installs since they have a few bucket trucks. I will go that route until i can do installs myself but at this time outsourcing is the best for installs unless the customer wants to do it themselves.


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