Cutting the PVC board We nested other letters around the main panel to save material. A separate sheet was used to cut pieces for the border, the bone panel and the eight parts to make the custom post skirts.
Sanding the letter edges We use a tabletop belt sander to dress the outer edges of the letters we cut and an oscillating spindle sander to do the inside edges. Letters too small for the spindle to fit into have to be sanded by hand.
Sanding the letter edges We use a tabletop belt sander to dress the outer edges of the letters we cut and an oscillating spindle sander to do the inside edges. Letters too small for the spindle to fit into have to be sanded by hand.
Gluing up the post skirts The PVC is permanently bonded together with standard PVC pipefitting glue.
Texturing the background A nylon brush in a drill is used to sand and clean up the faux woodgrain areas. Small carving tools come in handy for removing stubborn particles.
Making the mounting bracket A welded aluminum mounting frame and brackets were used to mount the sign to the posts.
Here you can see how the mounting frame and posts are attached.
Close-up of puppy graphic

What’s it cost to produce this 4-by-5-ft. freestanding sign?

All-PVC construction delivers the durability

By Larry Elliott

Posted on Wednesday, October 23rd, 2019

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Materials (at retail prices):
4x8x¾-in. PVC board: $235
4x6x¾-in. PVC board: $170
12x24x½-in. PVC: $12
12 ft. 1½-in. alum. angle: $40
Two 5-by-5-in. 8-ft. PVC post covers: $120
Two 5-by-5-in. flat PVC post caps: $25
Two 5-by-5-in. PVC post skirts: $40
Stainless steel screws: $20
Two quarts exterior acrylic latex paint: $40
Misc. consumables: $15
Total materials: $717

Labor:
Sales/rough drafts: 1.25 hours
Finished art: 1.5 hours
Production files: .5 hours
Material handling: 1 hour
Routing setups: .5 hour
CNC machine time: 3.5 hours
Sanding, cleaning, prep: 4 hours
Prime, coat, finish: .5 hours
Assemble panels, border and letters: 1 hour

Post sleeve/skirts (hours):
Assemble: 1 hour
Prime, coat: .5 hour

Mounting frame (hours):
Cutting: 3 hour
Drilling: .25 hour
Welding: .5 hour
Prime, coat: 4 hour

Assemble posts/frame: 2 hours
Delivery, load/unload: 1 hr
Total time: 24.2 hours

This custom PVC sign was produced for a local municipality for their new dog park. The sign face and posts are all PVC with an aluminum frame on the back spanning between the posts as support and mounting.

Jill Holland, mayor of McKenzie, Tennessee, contacted us to create another custom sign for their parks department. The only directions were to keep it in the style of the main sign we had constructed at the city park a few years ago—any other design elements were up to us. I made a couple rough layouts of what I had in mind and presented them to the mayor. She and the board agreed on one—which happened to be my favorite also—and we were told to proceed.


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