3D letters for an old building, 400mm high, 25mm thick, 15 degree bevel to the edge. The letters are made from a 19mm thick wood composite, a grade suitable for interior use only. The reason why we use the cheaper interior grade is because it is easier to cut and it absorbs liquids better. Once the letters are coated in resin they measure 25mm thick. The letters are cut with a combination of a large table saw with a circular wood blade fitted to cut the straight lines. The curves are cut with a scroll saw, jig saw and band saw.
After the letters are cut they are sandpapered to take off all the edged and make them slightly rounded to a 2mm radius. Next stage a mix of some resin with filler agent is made up and covered over the letters, in three layers for the front and three layers for the back, sanding between layers to make sure each layer will stick to the previous layer. The letters are now sealed in a thick layer of resin and will not rot or degrade.
Fixings are added to the back of the letters with either brass locators or stainless steel rod fixings.
The letters are then spray painted using acrylic spray paints and finally the letters have a layer of clear lacquer added for extra protection.
A paper template layout is made to show where the holes on the wall needs to go for fixing the letters, ‘x’ marks the spot.
The letters are then finally checked again and then packed and sent out for DIY fitting by the customer.
When we first made these letters we were worried about water penetration into the wood composite. We have kept a check on some of the letters supplied to local businesses and the only thing that needed doing to the letters over time was a new layer of paint to freshen the letters up or to change their color. Some letters have been on shops for twenty years. As long as the seal is not broken and the letters are not dropped when fitting, they should go on for many years to come.