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Thread: Is this the right material for exterior signs?

  1. #1
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    Is this the right material for exterior signs?

    I need to make a number of wayfinding exterior signs that measure approximately 20" x 5.5" that will be mounted on a post in the ground. See attached photo for a portion of the sign post.

    I was going to use 13mm white Sintra and V-Carve the letter with a black color fill.

    My sign supplier only has one 4' x 8' sheet of the Sintra and they are offering an "economy" version as a substitue for the additional sheets that I need. I would like more than a 5 year life out of the signs.

    My question to signmakers is - is Sintra the best material for this job or can you suggest another product?

    Thanks,

    Pete
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  2. #2
    Sintra is not the best material for the job. There are PVC products that are more outdoor friendly. Komacell or Komatex (can't remember which one is inside, which one is outside) is probably a better choice than the Sintra.

    Wood is always an option (probably the best option here).

    Just my opinion.
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  3. #3
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  4. #4
    Duh, forgot all about Corian, as I had to step over a pile of it to get into my office......go figure.....

    There are also marine grade materials available too, from King.
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  5. #5
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    Scott,

    Your right about the King Color Core, its a great choice for exterior signs and is probably the toughest material on the market. I would use it for signs that were located on a beach over any other product because of the sand blasting signs receive from the wind and storms. Color Core is also easy to machine and a product you can install fast because there is no painting required. The sheets are a bit expensive but the labor savings more than make up for the material costs.
    .

  6. #6
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    Scott & Keith, thanks for the replies.

    According to Kommerling, Komacel is the better product for exterior use - but they didn't sound too convincing on either product for my intended use.

    Corian would be a good choice – but shipping costs to my location would probably be too much. I have not checked on that – actually, I don’t really know of a source for Corian…
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  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Peter Meacham View Post
    Scott & Keith, thanks for the replies.

    According to Kommerling, Komacel is the better product for exterior use - but they didn't sound too convincing on either product for my intended use.

    Corian would be a good choice – but shipping costs to my location would probably be too much. I have not checked on that – actually, I don’t really know of a source for Corian…
    Try one of these people if you only need a small amount :

    Duracite - Arroyo Grande
    1185 E. Grand Ave
    Arroyo Grande, CA 93420
    Phone: (805) 474-5887

    Or

    Phillips Floor to Ceiling
    911 Oak Park Road
    Pismo Beach, CA 93449
    Phone: (805) 779-7000
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  8. #8
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    If the Corian doesn't work for you, I have found all of the PVC materials (Sintra, Komatex, Komacell) to be best outdoors in the 6mm thickness. The 3mm or less and 10mm or more tend to warp easily from the heat, and all of them fade in the sun. The best outdoor longevity is black for some reason, white yellows well before it deteriorates. For this application I'd suggest white 4mm Alumalite or the equivalent, which is PVC with aluminum on both sides. Then cut the letters and borders from black 1/8" PVC and stick on. The Corian would be best, though, if you can get it.



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  9. #9
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    Peter,

    Look in your phone book for local counter top shops. You can probably find one that will give you scraps of Corian or charge a minimal fee. I have given away over 14,000 pounds of Corian scraps lately.

    You should also have a local Corian Distributor in your area. Sign companies can purchase half inch thick Corian without having to get certified. Anyone can purchase quarter inch Corian over the counter.
    .

  10. #10
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    Thanks for the inputs

    Keith, what should I expect to pay for a sheet of Glacier White Corian?
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  11. #11
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    Peter,

    A full sheet of Glacier White Corian (144" by 30") runs between $265.00 and $365.00 depending on your distributor. These are the numbers that various Members here have reported to me. I recently had a conversation with my distributor concerning the wide range of prices, he said that each distributor can set their own price list as they see fit.

    Most distributors will offer discounts based on the volume of Corian you purchase.
    .

  12. #12
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    I pay $319 for a 1/2" sheet of Glacier White - Seattle area
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  13. #13
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    Well, thanks for the inputs.

    However, It appears that a HDPE two color product such as ColorCore, Signboard or PolyCarve is going to be the most suitable based on cost and a couple of other factors.

    Trouble is, I am unable to locate any of that material.

    I am looking for .5" material in a White-Black-White configuration

    Does anyone have any leads on who stock, or can get quickly, any of those products on the West coast.
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  14. #14
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    hi Keith
    I've been having trouble finding Corian in my region , do you know any US companies that export to Canada.
    My local area Contractors don't use a lot of corian materials so almost imposable to find even a sink sized piece.
    Thanks
    John
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  15. #15
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    John,

    Sorry but I am unable to keep up with the list of companies that ship to Canada but i can tell you that only an authorized Corian Dealer can sell Corian. The folks at Solid Surface.com sell drops, there maybe other companies but I am not aware of them. You should be able to find another acrylic solid surface supplier in your area other then Dupont. Many of them sell almost identical material to Corian these days and are a bit less expensive with no restrictions against hobby engravers.

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