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.

Wind Slits (if you have to do them, whats the best way)

Discussion in 'General Signmaking Topics' started by LA Cameras, Jun 8, 2011.

  1. LA Cameras

    LA Cameras New Member

    Jun 9, 2008
    Chambersburg, PA
    I had a customer call me yesterday. He said that during the last storm we had, a banner we had made failed, "destroyed" in his words. (not that the storm system produced at least one tornado in the area and possibly more) The banner had wind slits and that is where he said the banner failed. Now I know the general opinion about wind slits (DON'T DO THEM!) With that in mind, if you have to make them what is the proper way to do them? I have read that doing the semi-circle is good and I've found two references to using a hole punch at each end of the cut to help reduce the occurrence of failure at those points. Is that correct and are there any other tips or tricks?
  2. ncpdfsb

    ncpdfsb Member

    Apr 5, 2007
    new york
    give him 10% off his next banner and sell him a thicker mill. banner, half circles work under windy conditions..storm winds will destroy anything you use. consider him a repeat customer. don't forget to state terms of normal wear and use for banners on your invoice. some people think they should last just as long as a permanent sign!
  3. jiarby

    jiarby Major Contributor

    Feb 11, 2007
    banners are not warranted against tornados! LOL!
  4. Si Allen

    Si Allen Very Active Member

    Jul 17, 2004
    Wind slits are a "Fail Point" .... don't do them! AND they make a banner look like crap!
  5. BigfishDM

    BigfishDM Merchant Member

    Jun 22, 2009
    All Over
    Why not just print mesh banner? That would be the right thing to do I think.
  6. rushworks graphics

    rushworks graphics Very Active Member

    Jun 29, 2010
    if the banner is outside and you get a tornado/bad storm and it gets "destroyed" then thats considered an "act of god" in insurance terms......in other words, nothing anyone can do about it! windslits won't help in those conditions.
    sell him a thicker banner and explain to him the pros and cons of outside banners etc.
  7. westpointsigns

    westpointsigns Member

    Jun 30, 2009
  8. Design4cnc

    Design4cnc New Member

    Jun 7, 2011
    Fellers sells a tool for them. But they do suck.
  9. animenick65

    animenick65 Very Active Member

    May 18, 2005
    Boston, MA
    There is a place and time for wind slits. When doing them, use rolls of tape to make semi cericles with a pencil. Then you need a good 1/2" punch to punch out the ends of the circle you just drew. This makes a nice round, small hole. This makes it so that when you cut the slit you drew, it doesn't keep tearing up the banner making it look awful. Then of course cut out the semi circle you drew with an exacto knife.

    Hanging the banner with bungee cords will also help. Yes the wind slits don't always look the best, but if a customer wants them then do them.
  10. Billct2

    Billct2 Major Contributor

    Mar 12, 2005
    New England
    The banner didn't fail.
    Banners aren't meant to take high winds, they're temporary in any case.
    Mesh is a good solution, though I don't like the way they look.
    A proper installation makes a huge difference.
    We do street banners that are installed with zip ties to a top cable, then the bottom two corners are bungeed to the poles. They also require wind slits.
    They are usually up for a month and we have had some of them reused for 3-5 years.
    Then again we had one last one day when a bad storm came thru.
  11. petepaz

    petepaz Major Contributor

    Feb 14, 2007
    and we did a 15ft x 50in and same thing but the customer realized it wasn't the our fault or a bad banner. he hung the banner (not the best and i did suggest a better way to do it) and we had 40+mph winds and failed so i just repaired the banner and he was ok with that

    also how can you say wind slits are a fail i think if they are done properly they are good see attached pic. we made a steel rule die that i use and if you notice the little holes at the top points of the half circle, that keeps the slits from ripping in the wind

    on a lighter note, have you ever seen a banner where the person put them on the banner upside down and they fold over/stay open all the time...funny stuff

    Attached Files:

  12. njshorts

    njshorts Active Member

    Mar 15, 2011
    Meadville, PA

    We never cut slits, and advise that modifying the banner voids what little warranty we give with them. We always advise to use bungee-style tie downs and have had pretty good success with em.
  13. BlueFishDesigns

    BlueFishDesigns Very Active Member

    Aug 21, 2006
    Huntsville, AL
    I absolutely despise wind slits! They're a myth, in my opinion. Use the correct material: mesh banners.
  14. Craig Sjoquist

    Craig Sjoquist Major Contributor

    Jun 18, 2004
    Here in Orlando .. I see many with out .. wind slits .. MOST FAIL.
  15. LA Cameras

    LA Cameras New Member

    Jun 9, 2008
    Chambersburg, PA
    Thanks, I know the debate will rage long into the future of their worthiness but it I think animenick65 and petepaz summed up what I was after there. If you do make wind slits, a semi-circle with a hole punched at the top is the proper technique.
  16. Sign-Man Signs

    Sign-Man Signs Member

    Oct 5, 2010
    It's not the banner. We do about 75 banners a year for our local football teams. We use those bungie balls. The one they use for portable tarp/canopy tents. Plastic ball on end of looped elastic band. Wind blows, banner gives, and snaps right back. We use 10oz. banners and have yet to have one rip.
    Here's a link. We buy our at the local flea market, 100 for $25.00 dollars.
  17. AUTO-FX

    AUTO-FX Very Active Member

    Feb 14, 2010
    i have always put the half circle cuts in. I have had very few problems, but I always used the 18oz banner material. That was the only weight i would use for free hanging banners. But hey, like mentioned above, banners are "temporary" by nature, and expectations should be expressed accordingly.
  18. GraphixUnlimited

    GraphixUnlimited Member

    Nov 16, 2010
    We just did 2 massive banners here ( one 55'x3' and the other 30'x3' ) and we are required by the bylaw here to have 16" wind slits cut in them for every yard of material... yep they look ugly as all hell but the city has and will take them down if they do not have them in there even though I do not believe they do the intended purpose enough to start cutting up a banner and giving it a reason to keep tearing.

    I use a custom made jig formed from an old salad bowl LOL to make half moon cuts.

    Cheers eh
  19. BlueFishDesigns

    BlueFishDesigns Very Active Member

    Aug 21, 2006
    Huntsville, AL
    Just to keep the debate going...

    just because you cut wind slits and the banner doesn't rip apart doesn't mean that the wind slits kept it from ripping apart. They might've been just fine without wind slits at all.

Share This Page