When Jim Dawson from Synergy Sign & Graphics got the call from his friend Steve at Liquid 3D Design about collaborating on chrome coating of signs, he was intrigued. Steve asked him to carve a 3D sign out of Precision Board PBLT-30 so that he could practice his chrome spraying technique. Jim decided to make two signs- one for his own shop and one for his friend’s shop. After a lot of trial and error, they are now offering their own line of chrome signs. We asked Jim for some design tips and lessons learned from his experience.
Chrome spray really highlights the surface details of your sign substrate, so you have to prep your material ahead of time.
“The higher the density of the Precision Board, the smoother the surface and the better to handle the chrome coating,” Dawson stated. “Because it’s a silver nitrate, the chrome pours onto the HDU smooth, like liquid, and has almost zero texture once the hardcoat dries.”
Jim says that because it’s not a plating process, but rather a spray process, you have more flexibility. You can do a lot with how the chrome is applied, whether in stages or using different inlays. There is definitely an art form to creating chrome signs and Jim and Steve seem to have figured it out.
In partnering with Liquid 3D Designs, Synergy Sign & Graphics can create 3D signs with complete chrome finishes or just small chrome accents. Combine this with lighting and traditional sign techniques, and you have a real showstopper! Check out their website or give them a call at (330) 878-7646 to see about your next project!
You can request a sample of Precision Board HDU on our website, get how-to tips, watch training videos and search our distributor directory to find a supplier near you.