The right materials are essential to ensure that your customers receive signs that stand up to the elements and last for a long time. It’s also important to consider what the character will be used for.
For example, a sign displayed at a trade show might need to be made with a more durable material than a sign placed in a client’s building lobby.
The materials from which a sign is made are an important part of its overall design. It can affect how durable and visible it is and how much it costs.
For example, aluminum is a popular choice for signs that will be used outdoors as it matches various weather conditions. It can withstand heat, rain, freezing temperatures, and more.
Another outdoor option is acrylic or Plexiglas, which manufacturers create from cast polymer and often resemble glass. This signage material offers high transparency, perfecting back-lit signs or 3D lettering and printing. It can also be molded into custom shapes and hold raised text with raster-fit braille insertion, making it a good choice for ADA signs.
Whether you need a sign for an office, warehouse, or outdoor location, the materials used to make it affect how long the movement lasts. In wet environments, you’ll want signs that can withstand wash downs without fading or discoloration.
Corollas, vinyl, and Sentra board (rigid PVC) are ideal for outdoor signage that can withstand harsh conditions. Choosing materials that are waterproof will also reduce maintenance costs down the road.
Aluminum is an excellent material for indoor and outdoor signs, especially when it’s powder-coated in color to match the environment. Deboned is another durable, metal-based option with a polyethylene core that can be laminated on both sides for a sleek, polished look. Stainless steel is another popular option for signage that requires an extra level of durability or offers a more industrial appearance.
While you may be thinking about design and size when choosing a sign, the material of your signage is equally important. Different materials provide different benefits and will impact how the final product looks and performs over time.
Some signs are sturdier than others and can withstand extreme temperatures. For example, an aluminum sign would hold up better to weather conditions than a vinyl or fabric sign and a corrugated plastic one.
Fabric is another popular sign-making material that digitally printed graphics look great on. It can be sculpted into 3-D shapes and is often used for interior and exterior banners, flags and pennants. Another durable option is photopolymer, which provides raised text and braille that can be difficult to remove by vandals.
4. Corrugated Plastic
When it comes to signs, design and price are often more important than what the character is made of. However, the material used to create a symbol can greatly impact how long and sturdy it lasts.
One of the most common and affordable materials for signage is corrugated plastic, also known as “Coroplast.” This nifty product is durable and customizable on both sides, making it perfect for indoor or outdoor use. It’s also a great choice for temporary or short-term signage.
For more durable products, consider a metal like aluminum or an aluminum composite product like Deboned panels or Alum lite. These products can withstand extreme conditions like direct sunlight, chemical exposure and high-pressure wash downs.
When you need signage that isn’t in place for very long (like a sign advertising a sale at your storefront), the material your signage is made out of probably won’t play a big part in the decision-making process. However, you may want to ensure that your sign can withstand a few rough incidents like weather or vandalism before ordering it.
A popular option for this type of situation is aluminum. This material can be brushed, polished or anodized to create a beautiful, lasting shine. It’s also easy to work with for those who need a creative touch, like screen printing or applying colored vinyl decals or letters. It can even be mounted with screws if you need to attach it to a wall or post.