The Vision Behind the Insight I-Beam Sign

Coastal Enterprises, manufacturers of Precision Board HDU, is proud to host guest blogs written by some of the signage industry’s biggest movers and shakers, posted to the Precision Board Blog.  This guest blog is written by Jim Dawson with Synergy Sign & Graphics, based in Strasburg, Ohio.  Jim shows us how he fabricated the double Precision Board signs and then mounted them on a steel frame.


In Jim’s own words…

Insight Vision Care approached us to design a multi-tenant sign for their new location in late 2019.  The key features were to be single post and easy to switch out tenants on the sign.  Having just returned from Chicago and Pittsburgh over the recent months, I had some ideas about which direction I wanted this sign to go.  I have always had a fascination with heavy metal architectural details on bridges and overpasses in big cities.  I love the steel lattice work and functional rivet details that you see on these early 1900’s pieces.  Knowing I wanted to use these, I settled on an 8” x 8” i-beam as the post for mounting the signs.

Once the i-beam was cut to size, I went about designing the changeable signs that would mount to the i-beam.  The boxes were designed with the same trellis designs that I saw when visiting the cities.  Once designed, the steel plates were cut on our Multicam V series plasma.  We welded the flat plates together to make the sign boxes and even welded in some old school hot rivets to finish the look.  Rounding out the metal on the design were stainless steel allen drive button head bolts that matched the look of the rivets.

Once the steel fabrication was finished, we started the carving on the PBLT-30 Precision Board HDU.  Each sign was designed with wood grain backgrounds and sent to our Multicam 3000 series router via Enroute Pro software.  Our X-Edge Tools tapered ball nose bit carved the Precision Board to perfection.  The panels were then massaged a little by hand and cleaned as they were ready for paint.

The sign panels were base coated with several layers of exterior grade latex paint.   Once those coats were dry, we moved on to painting the logo colors and the metallic straps on the signs with our Novacolor artists acrylics.  After allowing the signs to dry for 24 hours, we bolted everything together.

While we were working on the Precision Board signs in our shop, we dropped the steel parts off to be sandblasted and painted by a local contractor.   We chose a two tone look to make the brackets and the i-beam show more details through color separation.  Now we were ready for final assembly.

Everything bolted together without any issues.  A little extra time during the mock up phase of the project paid off.   The customer was very excited with the final results.

We could not be happier with the results.

Synergy Sign & Graphics was started in my basement 16 years ago. After losing my job as a design engineer at a local cabinet and display manufacturer, I decided I wanted to try my hand at graphics and POP displays. From modest beginnings with a laptop, digital printer, and a small laminator, we gradually grew according to customer needs over the years. 12 years ago, we discovered an affordable CNC router that was within our reach, and Precision Board shortly thereafter. We have been building and sculpting world class signs ever since. Synergy has been featured in multiple sign publications over the years and has won 8 international sign design and fabrication awards. We take great pride in offering the best of the best in the sign industry and providing our customers with one of a kind signs that stop people in their tracks.

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!

Coastal Enterprises offers free samples of Precision Board HDU.  Already have a project in mind for our material?  Request a quote and get started today.  Sign up for our monthly blog roundup so you don’t miss any of our informative blogs.  Have a special project fabricated with Precision Board HDU and want to know if it could be featured in a blog on our website?  Give us a call at 800-845-0745 or drop us an email with details.  We’d love to hear from you!