Using EnRoute Software’s “Rapid Texture” on Signage

Are you up against the clock and need to deliver a quality sign on time and within budget?  Consider using the Rapid Texture process available with EnRoute Software.  Jim Dawson with Synergy Sign and Graphics recently applied this process to some 30 lb. Precision Board HDU to create an entrance sign for The Oaks Apartment Homes.  Rapid Texture allowed him to create a 3D texture in 2D time and deliver an amazing looking Precision Board HDU sign to his client.


rapid texture

Precision Board is an excellent signage substrate because it is easy to work with, gentle on the environment and durable.

“We used PBLT-30 because we knew we wanted the edges to be sharp.”  Jim added, “With the location of the sign at ground level and at the entryway to an apartment complex, we knew there would be less chance of damage using the higher density Precision Board.”

Dawson used the Rapid Texture process to carve the HDU sign.  It allowed him to create 3D textured surfaces in a fraction of the time it takes to create traditional textured surfaces. No bitmaps or 3D surfaces are required.  Simply select the contour on which the texture will be based, adjust a few parameters and produce a limitless selection of amazing surfaces using larger tools with bigger offsets.

“The process takes into account the diameter of the bit you’re using and generates 2.5D geometry,” says Dawson. “It’s faster because it’s not generating as many lines as a typical 3d toolpath and is way faster than traditional geometry.”

Jim tells us that a full 3D carve on a 4′ x 8′ sheet of Precision Board normally takes 12-14 hours for the background and another 2-3 for the design elements.

“We carved the background in an hour and 15 minutes, with another 90 minutes to two hours for the letters and leaf.” He added, “Using Rapid Texture we were able to reduce what should have been 30 hours of project time down to about five.”

Jim says that the process has been around for about four or five years, but he hasn’t seen it used for signage a lot.  “I’ve seen it used more for architectural purposes, like those lit up hotel walls you see sometimes.  This was the first time we used it on a sign.”   He added, “there were some budget concerns on the job, so we wanted to make sure it was done on time and within budget without sacrificing quality.”

Dawson has a pro tip for people considering trying out Rapid Texture.  “The big thing in Enroute 6 is that you can right-click on the buttons and it will give you tutorial videos, including Rapid Texture. You can get it to do just about anything.”

You can change up your bit size depending on the size of your sign.  Jim says that Rapid Texture generates some really great backgrounds on larger signs.  “The beauty of it is that you can carve some nice intricate textures that take bigger bits and fewer passes on a larger sign. Similarly, a smaller sign might use smaller bits and more passes.”

Check out this overview of Rapid Texture on the EnRoute YouTube channel.  You can also find more information on the EnRoute website.

We think that Jim Dawson and his team do some really excellent work. Synergy Sign & Graphics has a highly experienced staff whose backgrounds include graphic design, marketing, trade-show design, print media, branding, point of purchase design, fulfillment, and more. Check out their website or give them a call at (330) 878-7646 to see about your next project!

Precision Board comes in 8 sheet sizes all the way up to 5′ x 10′ and thicknesses up to 24″, in any increment.  We also offer custom bonded blocks.  Request a free sample, get a quote or give us a call.  We’d love to hear from you!