Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Weatherproofing exterior wooden sign

  1. #1

    Weatherproofing exterior wooden sign

    Hello everyone,

    I have a project coming up to make an exterior sign for a restaurant. Im planning to make it either engraved and colorfilled on a wooden board or a 3d sign woth the letters cnc'd out of wood and mounted on a wooden board.

    My concern is how to make it weatherproof. We are in eastern canada where it gets hot and really cold during the winter. The type of wood to be used is not chosen yet.

    Thanks in advance for any advice.
    Epilog Mini 60 Watt
    Trotec Speedy 300 60 Watt

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Carrollton, Georgia
    Posts
    1,191
    Sterling, here's your chance for a 3-for. Make the restaurant owner a deal on three signs because, unless it's under a good shelter, a wooden outdoor sign in Canada would likely have to be replaced in a couple of years no matter what wood or finish is used, unless the owner likes the weather-beaten look. Putting it inside a waterproof frame would help. So would painting it with a good exterior paint. If it's made out of white oak, it could probably be refinished a couple of times. The 3-for idea might be worthwhile as a high number of new restaurants don't make it past their 2nd year.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    37
    You could put metal letters on a plain wooden panel but Yonak is right.

  4. #4
    There's always the old practice of building a little roof over a two sided hanging sign. Hogarth showed a bunch of them in his street scene prints. Diners always see unusual signs as signs of good food!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Sammamish, WA
    Posts
    7,534
    I just passed by a couple of large sandblasted cedar signs that I made and installed 16 years ago. The smaller letters are showing a need for cleaning or repaint, but generally they are in great shape for being so old. I just used a high quality (25 years exterior) paint, we get down to 10-20f in winter, but only 80s in summer here. Clear dry cedar will do a lot better than plywood or MDO. This was taken last winter when we got a 6" snowfall.
    Attached Images Attached Images



    Sammamish, WA

    Epilog Legend 24TT 45W, had a sign business for 17 years, now just doing laser work on the side.

    "One only needs two tools in life: WD-40 to make things go, and duct tape to make them stop." G. Weilacher

    "The handyman's secret weapon - Duct Tape" R. Green

  6. #6
    I've been making wooden signs here in southern Ontario for over 20 years, & most of them are still doing just fine.
    Use good materials & you'll be fine. If you try to do it cheaply, neither you nor your customer will be happy within a few years.
    Western Redcedar is the best choice, generally. Vertical grain is optimum, although hard to source.
    2 coats of acrylic primer, & then a high quality acrylic housepaint, 2 coats minimum depending on the colour, & you should be fine.
    Do NOT use clear/ natural finishes. They rarely last over 5 years & urethanes, polyurethanes & varnishes, even less.
    If you mount it without allowing for expansion due to moisture migration, it will crack.
    I'm refinishing signs now that I did in 2005 or so.

    The sign attached was done in October1999, The original Sikkens Cetol border & back lasted 6 years. In 2005 it was repainted with Para Acrylics, & the lettering in Leaded 1-shot. That lasted until April 2017, when it got a complete refinish again, which you see here. If I'm still alive & able, in 2028 I expect to have to do it again.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    North Yorkshire, UK
    Posts
    460
    Quote Originally Posted by Rodger MacMunn View Post
    ......
    Western Redcedar is the best choice, generally. Vertical grain is optimum, although hard to source.
    2 coats of acrylic primer, & then a high quality acrylic housepaint, 2 coats minimum depending on the colour, & you should be fine.
    Do NOT use clear/ natural finishes. They rarely last over 5 years & urethanes, polyurethanes & varnishes, even less.
    HI Roger, may I ask what wood preservative you use on your bare wood, as in the border of the “Pineoaks” sign above? Is it also acrylic based?
    Thanks very much, John
    60w EFI 6090 & 100w Z4 Reci 6090 G Weike Lasers, 4 X 4 CNC Router
    CLTT using Oki C822dn & Adkins Press
    Glass Sandblasting, Woodwork Shop, etc...
    V Carve Pro v8 & Photo V Carve, Lasercut 5.3, Corel Draw 2017 on Windows 7 and iMac (via Parallels), etc

  8. #8
    John ... no preservative.... just some tinted acrylic primer. The woodgrain you see on there is painted on. Using a "faux finish" graining tool, with a little practice, it can look very "real",

Posting Permissions

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