Fascia Signs

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Fascia Signs – From Inkjet Printer to Fascia…

by Charlie Comstock

Which way is east? Where am I? If you have a largish layout and invite guests over for formal operating sessions, chances are you’ve heard these questions more than once or twice.

I was looking for a way to install signage so the crewmen who can read might receive enlightenment without needing to track down the Superintendent of Nearly Everything.
But I also wanted the signs to look elegant, be easy to read, easy to make, and easily changed if I ever wanted to use different place names. I decided to try using my inkjet printer
to produce the sign text, laminating the signs on pieces of Masonite stuck to the fascia in strategic locations. I started by using my favorite word processing program to whip up some
signs (figure 1).

Fig1

I print them with my inkjet printer on photo paper and cut them out, leaving a border around them. I also cut some sign blanks from 3/16” Masonite.
I use non-solvent (water soluble) contact cement to laminate the sign to the Masonite sign blank.

Fig2

Figure 2 shows the sign, blank, and contact cement.

Fig3

I coat the surface of the Masonite sign blank with latex contact cement using a cheap paintbrush (figure 3), then do the same to the back of the sign. I let them dry until just tacky, then press them together and use a roller to get rid of any air bubbles  (figures 4 and 5).

Fig4-5-6

Figure 6 shows the sign after rough trimming with a bandsaw. I use a small belt sander to carefully sand all remaining white edges away (figure 7).

Fig7

Since the signs are black, I get rid of the Masonite color on the sides with an indelible black marker (figure 8).

Fig8

I first attached the signs to my fascias using a loop of masking tape. This proved less than satisfactory – over time the tape lost its grip and the sign pulled away from the fascia, becoming
easy for a passing arm to knock loose (figure 9).

Fig9

Velcro® to the rescue (figures 10a and 10b)! I started using self-stick Velcro® to attach fascia signs. It’s worked well for me so far. I stick the “furry” Velcro on the fascia,  and the “hooks” side on the back of the sign (figure 11).

Fig10a-10b

Fig11

 

Fig12

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Figure 12 shows the sign in place on the fascia. Now my operators know where they are – if they bother to read the signs……..

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