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Design Development

Light Transmissive Acrylic Sign

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Developing Signage with Faux Light Transmissive Acrylic

Our deadline was met by creating our own recipe to emulate a popular maker’s brand of custom light transmissive acrylic plastic material.

With that obstacle out of the way, we met the next challenge: Handling a heavy susceptible material in large sizes destined to be installed onto walls missing internal blocking.

This was originally a sparsely decorated lobby that the client reconsidered, thereby leading to this project.

The client enamored of our result had high expectations of all vendors on the construction project.

One precondition was absence of blocking. A random screw issue would be problematic.

Not readily apparent was our being released to emulate an unavailable color of light transmissive acrylic. It worked.

We commenced the project with characters the client handed to us in hard copy. He explained how the characters promoted the ideals of the News Agency.

The left character has been scanned. The right is the same scan with centerline trace bearing matching stroke weight and round ends.

The left character shows editing into contiguous vectors. The right character shows proportional scaling needed to suit a square background.

Optically centering rules. The left is mechanically centered as furnished by software. The right is optical centering.

This is the lockup on all four characters having gone through the preceding steps.

As the graphic design emerged early on, we arrived at technique variations to run by the project architect. There were translucent and non-glare effects; sharp graphics versus defocused.

This is a portion of Techsign shop drawing, with detail acquired from site survey.

We soon arrived at a means to go with, and it presented 2 alternatives. Interior parts of the graphics, technically referred to as counters (like insides of English letter O, or the half round shape inside English lower case letter E) are separate components needing support in a floated background.

Options included support in the same material color, or support in clear acrylic. If it was clear acrylic, we felt shiny clear acrylic would reflect and cheapen. So we chose non-glare that matched the non-glare surface characteristic of the entire sign background.

This is a partial graphic intended to go full size, forming the basis of full size prototype portions.

Few approval examples are as clear and decisive as seeing actual size finished portions under the light conditions in the area of the work.

The presentation involved both methods of counter support, along with the hardware we chose for the completed full size signs

The client took part in the presentation.

Savas Kay pointed out how the non-glare clear support defocused the paint finish seen behind it. The client chose that technique for production.

Suffice to say that there was a lot to fabricating all the full size signage.

There are kinds of signs all sign companies produce where later techniques build upon prior ones. A mistake at any one point, even so much as a scratch, can relegate the product to to the recycle bin. This holds true, up to and including transport, and its final placement on the client’s walls.

Drawings on projects proliferate.

Client don't get to see most internal sketching. In this case, we felt one more sketch was necessary in order to ensure that the correct sign went into the correct spot. The client gave his input and it was replicated on this installation guide.

Here are a couple neat shots of individual signs.

Positioning and alignment relative to the existing light fixtures is spot on.

And guess what? All screws made it in securely. Even those few recalcitrant screws, care of the experience and professionalism of the lead installer.