Putting it All Together
Now that you’ve designed your graphic it’s time to make your sign!
Note: This process describes the construction of most basic signage such as aluminum signs and magnetic graphics, but does not describe how to create other signs such as banners and most lighted signs.
The first step is to print your design out on high quality vinyl, or a similar medium of choice. The higher quality your medium is the more durable your sign will be and the longer it will last.
After that you must trim a piece of the substrate you chose in the Logistics and Planning phase down to the size of your graphic. Take special care to make sure all the corners are 90 degree angles, or else you’ll have either extra substrate or extra medium and your sign won’t be straight.
Once you have your substrate trimmed down to size, it’s important to clean it. Any sort of debris between your print and your substrate will appear as unprofessional-looking bumps in the final product, and any sort of grease will weaken the bond of the adhesive, which directly affects the longevity of the signage.
Carefully remove the backing from the medium and start to slowly apply it to the substrate carefully. Use a soft squeegee to slowly remove any air bubbles that get trapped during application. These air bubbles will be easier to remove during the laying process, and can otherwise get permanently trapped under your print.
Take care while laying your print down to make sure you keep your print perfectly aligned with your substrate or you’ll have to carefully pull it up and try all over again!
After you’ve laid the print down, carefully trim away any extra substrate that might be hanging over the edge of the substrate. This gives your sign a more professional look than just letting it hang!
Drill any sort of holes, or do any other last steps necessary to install your sign. Make sure to use quality hardware when installing your sign, as this greatly affects the sturdiness and longevity of your sign.
Congratulations, you now have created your very own signage! Proudly step back and enjoy your handiwork. If you want to share the results of your sign-making adventures send them to us at firstname.lastname@example.org