Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 16

Thread: Laser Engraved ADA Door Signs for Saint Mary School

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
    Posts
    10,418

    Laser Engraved ADA Door Signs for Saint Mary School

    It's been awhile since I posted pictures of any sign projects. A will no longer be able to share any pictures of signs from CNU as the State has mandated that we must have permission before we can provide any information online.

    The pictures below are door signs for a school that I am retro-fitting with new ADA signs. The detailed logo is only possible to provide based on my laser engraving capability. It is very rare that I use logos as detailed as this one but I was a student at Saint Mary School a long time ago and I am happy to do some extra work to make the school's signs a bit more special.

    I still have to cut and glue the letters and numbers in each sign and to laser engrave the window inserts.
    .
    Attached Images Attached Images

  2. #2
    I have to ask.

    Why not put the 1/16" ADA material down first and simply laser cut it while on the Corian? Then you can weed it off afterwards. It's a bit more wasteful but there have to be major time savings there.
    Equipment: IS400, IS6000, VLS 6.60, LS100, HP4550, Ricoh GX e3300n, Hotronix STX20
    Software: Adobe Suite & Gravostyle 5
    Business: Trophy, Awards and Engraving

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
    Posts
    10,418
    Ross,

    There are a couple of reasons, the first is as you said the material costs are less using inlayed letters. The volume of door signs I make each year make it worth my while to use inlay letters and numbers.

    The second reason is that I install signs at schools mostly. Students are hard on door signs, they take them as souvenirs and pick at the letters and braille when they are bored or whatever. It is very easy to replace an inlay letter or number, the recess is always there as a guide. Since we started installing Corian signs and using two keyholes to mount them, plus a bit of adhesive in the dorms, we don't lose any signs anymore. The loss was very expensive and I have found out over the years that this is common in colleges and universities. I keep sandpaper in my tool bag to repair signs when they are covered with graffiti from black magic markers.

    A major selling point for Corian as a sign material is that they are easy to repair in place and loss goes down to just about zero. The annual savings are huge.
    .

  4. #4
    Keith

    Great looking signs! I assume you laid in the color and sanded to the white.
    Mike Null

    St. Louis Laser, Inc.

    Trotec Speedy 300 Newing Hall 350 Hot Stamping
    Woodworking shop CLTT and Laser Sublimation Sand Carving Graphtec CE5000-60
    Evolis Card Printer
    CorelDraw X5 , Engravlab

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
    Posts
    10,418
    Mike,

    The logo was flooded with paint and then I sand the sign which removes all of the paint that gets on the top surface. Because of the fine detail I had to use a very small artist paint brush to keep the paint out of areas that needed to remain white.

    Most logos are single color and the design allows me to swab the paint with a Q-Tip. These were much like making Fire Evacuation signs that have very detailed thin lines and require multiple colors.

    The pictures look like I missed painting a few areas but it is a light reflection. I checked the signs this morning to make sure.
    .

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    New Hampshire
    Posts
    99
    Very nice Keith. I'm still waiting for my Cobra X3 to be retrofitted and delivered so I can start making sign samples.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    299
    Very nice Keith, did you the laser or router on the text "Saint Mary Star of the sea school" I like your idea of using the laser to pocket were the text and numbers go.
    Hardware:
    CAMaster 508 ATC + Recoil
    2013 Trotec Speedy 100, 60 watt, rotary attachment, vector grid.
    Software:
    CoralDraw - Aspire 4.0 - EnRoute

    Custom Architectural Signage
    Mick Martin Woodworking

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
    Posts
    10,418
    Thanks Rich,

    The Cobra X3 is an excellent choice for sign work.
    If my shop workload increases I plan to add the Cobra X3 to my list of machines. If you cut a sheet of Corian into three pieces 30" wide by 48" tall you can get a full sheet on a 48" by 96" table at the same time. Three router bits are required to cut ADA blanks, not having to constantly change bits saves a lot of time. Even though I rarely fabricate large signs they do come along every now and then. I chose the Stinger over the Cobra because ADA signs are my bread and butter, if I lose a large sign job it isn't much of a loss to my bottom line.

    I remember now that I promised to send you some files, my schedule lately has been so busy I forgot to email them to you but I will try to get them to you later this week. They will be very helpful to you getting started. I probably should burn them on a CD and send them to you via snail mail, that way I could include all of the files you need.
    .

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
    Posts
    10,418
    Mick,

    I raster engrave the logo, text, numbers and the braille holes. I set the speed and power settings on the laser engraver so I get a depth of 0.032" of an inch. I vector cut the letters and numbers from 1/16" thick engravers plastic, when I glue them into the holes I get the 1/32" protrusion required by ADA. The same thing works for the 0.062" diameter braille spheres.

    A very fast and accurate laser engraver is preferred for this technique. Corian requires some power to engrave it because it is a solid plastic material. The solid signs I make like Restroom signs take about 25 minutes with a 35 watt machine and 12 minutes with a 60 watt machine. I'll have to let you know how fast my new 80 watt Trotec Speedy 300 is when it gets here in three weeks

    The large commercial building project sign packages require that you provide all of the specialty signs in addition to door signs. The large Fire Evacuation signs can take up to three hours each to laser engrave with a 60 watt Xenetech, I don't know any way they can be done on a CNC Router.

    I plan to bring samples of every sign style I produce in my sign shop to Jim McGrew's Aspire gathering in March. You will get a close up look at how I am able to produce every sign for a commercial project with just two primary machines. I can't duplicate the two day sessions I have been offering in my shop in a couple of hours but I will try to cover all of the most important topics.

    Every general contractor I have worked with has told me that Corian signs are the best quality signs they have ever seen. If you keep your price competitive with standard designs you can stay as busy as you want to be.
    .
    Last edited by Keith Outten; 12-28-2011 at 11:45 PM.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Outten View Post

    I remember now that I promised to send you some files, my schedule lately has been so busy I forgot to email them to you but I will try to get them to you later this week. They will be very helpful to you getting started. I probably should burn them on a CD and send them to you via snail mail, that way I could include all of the files you need.
    .
    Keith,

    I'm hoping to get a copy of those files as well, I'm just at the point where I am starting to make my Corian samples. If they are too big to email, I'm happy to come by CNU and pick them up if it isn't too much of an intrusion.

    Sotos

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
    Posts
    10,418
    Sotos,

    Let me see how large the files are and get back to you, the machining file is probably a meg so I could send it through email. The rest of the files will probably be to large.
    .

  12. #12
    Sounds good Keith, just let me know what works best for you.
    Thanks!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
    Posts
    10,418
    Sotos,

    I forgot to ask what file format you needed. I just pulled the latest file from my shop computer, I expect an eps would be the safest format to send. Check your email later this evening.
    .

  14. #14
    I can work with just about anything, eps, cdr, dxf, crv, stl, etc.....but not Aspire files. Still at VCarve and Cut3D here.

    Thanks Keith!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    New Hampshire
    Posts
    99
    It looks like BobCAD won't take eps. I could probably open up an eps file in Corel X5 and convert. I just bought Corel a few weeks ago and haven't played with it much yet. I'm thinking dxf would be my choice. Also Keith, if you happen to have an Excel sheet showing how you list and keep work status on your Corian signs, that would be helpful. You said that this accounting was a very critical part of the business.

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •