We often get asked, "what is the best material..." for a type of signage. In this case, most our channel letter prospects want to know:
"Is aluminum the best material for channel letter signs?"
There is no one answer for the question, other than, "it depends." We love using aluminum for channel letters. There almost isn't anything they can't do, but you can't give one broad-brush sweeping answer.
It would be like saying, "Jimi Hendrix is the greatest guitarist of all time." You would find many who would believe it. But, you would also find many, many more music fans from different walks of life who would argue it, intensely. Jimi never recorded bluegrass, or classical music, or jazz. Each genre has their heroes.
And every sign has their purpose.
Find out what that sign's opportunity, location, market conditions, and weather patterns, and you start to find what materials will support that sign.
It's what we do. Let's start with a few of the conditions we look to determine before we figure out what materials, designs, and colors will work best for channel letter signs. It will also tell us what type of channel letter signs and lighting to go with
If the sign is for a store in an indoor mall, then, typically, it will need some of its own lighting, unless there's a theme within the mall that lights the signage on their own. If the sign is for within a store location, then there's a better than average chance that the existing lighting will illuminate signage.
And, if the signage is indoor, then there isn't as much of a need for aluminum sheet metal signage – unless you like the look. Softer, cheaper materials would work.
If the location is already well-lit, be it the sun or artificial lighting, then any extra lighting would be ancillary and could be used solely for design enhancement.
If the location is less than well-let, then lighting will a crucial part of the design. This starts to shape which design direction we should take.
Is the location windy? Such as in a place known for being The Windy City, then any outdoor channel letter signage must be installed firmly and securely. This will typically require reinforcements and heavier materials, such as aluminum and other like-materials.
If the location has little weather to worry about, then this frees up the choice of material.
Some industries are sugar and spice and everything nice, others are worms and snails and puppy-dog tails, or something like that. Some industries will need softer colors with delicate textures. Others will require a show of durability and strength. Most will fill somewhere in between. With primer and paint aside, the softer-texture looks will either require a lot of treatment to aluminum, or a choice of other materials.
Is it the only sign in the area? Is it competing with other signs? Is it the only sign for your location?
The more competition you face for eyeballs, the more you'll have to stand out.
For more information on picking the best channel letter signage, contact us today.