Exterior signs need to be very durable since they are exposed to the weather year-round. Since most of our signs are installed in the Los Angeles area, we know how to make a sign that will look great and hold up to the hot weather. Earlier this year we blogged about the ADA signs we made for Vaughn M.I.T.. Shortly after, we completed the exterior signage for the same building. The school was interested in putting up a logo sign for the building along with award seals. The logo sign was just one color while the award seals needed artwork printed so we used acrylic and aluminum, respectively, for the signs.
The ADA signs were made red to match the school colors, so naturally, the logo is also red. There are two main ways that we make colored acrylic signs. We can use pre-colored standard acrylic, or use a standard acrylic like black, white, or clear, and paint it. Vaughn wanted to use a standard red so we used a pre-colored acrylic. Standard acrylic also comes in dark blue, medium blue, brown, duranodic bronze, platinum, metallic silver, and metallic gold. But if need to use a very specific color based on your branding guidelines, we can custom paint the acrylic after the letters and logo are cut out. You can give us a specific paint color, or a Pantone color.
We used 3/8″ thick acrylic which is the minimum for exterior signs. The reason it is the minimum is because acrylic needs to be at least 3/8″ thick to be stud mounted, and exterior signs need to be stud mounted per permitting requirements. This sign is also very large, the letters are up to 61.6″ tall so using thinner material could also result in the letters being too fragile.
To make the award seal signs, we started with .080 aluminum. We made 54″ diameter circles and applied digitally printed vinyl to the faces. We have a large format printer, however, our laminator is limited to 52″ so the print needed to be made in two parts. As mentioned before, the signs need to hold up to the weather so the prints definitely needed to be laminated for UV protection. These signs were also stud mounted onto the exterior wall.