Business Signs by Gibbs Graphics


Gibbs Graphics cracks the code for memorable HDU business signs

Gibbs Graphics is a full-service marketing team based out of Leavenworth, Washington. With a talented team of artists and designers on their roster, they can tackle the marketing needs of a company from top to bottom. This includes designing and building some very cool dimensional business signs with Precision Board HDU! Check out some of their weatherproof creations from last winter.

This time around, the job was to fabricate a sign for the Nutcracker Museum in Leavenworth, something fun and engaging to draw curious patrons from off the street. They designed a friendly-looking Bavarian nutcracker figure (affectionately nicknamed Karl) to hang above the heads of passersby. The nutcracker and its faux-wood mounting bracket would be made from Precision Board PBLT-18, then attached to steel frames for additional support.


The initial shapes for Karl the Nutcracker, the mounting bracket, and a secondary sign were carved on the shop’s AXYZ CNC router. The Gibbs Graphics crew routed out a front and back face for the nutcracker and the mounting brackets, then used hand tools for the detail carving. Both high-tech CNC routers and basic hand carving tools are equally effective on Precision Board, giving sign makers a lot of freedom in their tool selection. 


Next, the team primed their creations with our FSC-88 WB Primer. For painting, they used a bright color palette for Karl the Nutcracker and a faux-wood stain for the mounting bracket. You can see that the mounting bracket now closely resembles a long-handled nutcracker, right down to the acorn between the teeth! It’s this high level of detail work that really sets the piece apart and gives it personality.


The final step was to mount the two signs over the Nutcracker Museum itself. The two pieces provide some great atmosphere for the museum, and will definitely generate a lot of foot traffic. Another job well done by Gibbs Graphics! Be sure to check out their website for more of their handcrafted designs. And if you’re in the Pacific Northwest, give them a call at 509-548-1226 to commission some eye-catching dimensional signage of your own!

Fast shipping tooling board: Don’t settle for long lead times!

Fast shipping tooling board: Check out our 52-second video to see how we do it!

We understand how important it is to get the material you need, exactly when you need it. That’s why Coastal Enterprises maintains such a large inventory: It’s fast and easy to ship Precision Board that we already have in stock! We excel at rush jobs, short timelines, last-minute orders, and unexpected complications. If your back is against the wall, give us a call! Precision Board is fast shipping tooling board, so click here for free Precision Board samples.

fast shipping tooling board

Large custom-bonded Precision Board step tool

Coastal Enterprises sustains a comprehensive inventory of Precision Board HDU at all times, to ensure that we can meet your needs at a moment’s notice. We make it a point to keep high stock levels of all material: fifteen different densities of High Density Urethane in eight standard sheet sizes, all with thicknesses up to 24”. This makes us extremely versatile in the way we can fulfill orders, since we have such a large stockpile of Precision Board on hand. And since we understand the tight schedule of a typical composites manufacturing or sign-making project, we can work around your timeline to make sure you’re fully supplied with the material you need.

fast shipping tooling board

Custom-bonded blocks in various sizes

Fast shipping tooling board

CNC-routing Precision Board








On top of that, our highly skilled production team can perform in-house cutting for custom-sized sheets, as well as custom-bonded blocks, step tools, and filament-winding mandrels. Thanks to our experience and technical knowledge, we have specialized production capabilities that allow us to really think outside the box! Give us your craziest idea and we’ll give you a way to make it happen, and fast. Get your free Precision Board samples today, and find out what Coastal Enterprises can do to make your project happen! 

Suffolk University – 3D Design with Precision Board

Suffolk University HDU DesignSuffolk-University-HDU-Design

Suffolk University Students Design with Precision Board HDU

Precision Board is a truly user-friendly medium for art and design. It allows even the most entry-level artists, architects, and designers to create a tangible object from just an idea and some rudimentary tools. Whether the objective is structural, architectural, or abstract, anyone can design with Precision Board! Creating with Precision Board doesn’t require woodcarving expertise, CAD programming experience, or any other special talents. It’s easy to work with, and all it takes is a little inspiration, as students from Suffolk University found out recently.

Professor Bebe Beard of the New England School of Art and Design at Suffolk University contacted us a few months ago with a unique project idea for her 3D Design class. She wanted to offer her students the opportunity to create something from scratch, coming up with the design and assembling the final product all on their own. The plan was for students to start with an intact block of foam, cut it into individual components, and then reassemble the pieces to create a new and distinctly different shape. This is a valuable exercise in spatial awareness and the architectural mindset, allowing students to put theory into practice in short order.

Suffolk University HDU Design Suffolk University HDU Design

The students all started out with equal sized cubes of Precision Board, either PBLT-12 or PBLT-15. This density range is a good choice for design products like this, as our 12-20 PCF (pounds per cubic foot) Precision Board strikes a perfect balance between low weight and high durability. The students used a band saw to make six separate cuts through their Precision Board cube, ending up with seven individual pieces of HDU. If assembled together in the order they were cut, the pieces could be used to reform the cube. But the point of the project was to branch out and create something personal, so the students set to work. First, they sanded their cut pieces to create a smooth surface for painting and bonding. Using  Formula 560 canopy glue, the students bonded the HDU pieces together in a variety of unique patterns. The students painted their small statues with acrylic paint, either before or after they assembled the pieces together. Another aspect of the project was to examine the effects of lighting on their completed statue, and the students’ paint jobs really accentuate the different ways light falls across the structures.

Suffolk University HDU Design

As you can see, the assignment was a resounding success, and the students turned out some really impressive miniature display pieces. This project showcases how easy it is it design and create with Precision Board HDU foam, even without much prior experience in artistic design. We’d like to thank Bebe Beard for coming up with such a fresh and constructive way to use Precision Board. Be sure to check out her website to see some of the personal projects she’s worked on. Also, don’t forget to check out the New England School of Design at Suffolk University, an art school and university rolled into one.

Suffolk University HDU Design Suffolk University HDU Design

Suffolk University HDU Design

SAMPE Long Beach 2016: Free Passes!

SAMPE long beach

Get your FREE PASSES to SAMPE Long Beach 2016!
Visit us at Booth O41

In less than two weeks, the Coastal Enterprises team will be setting up shop at SAMPE Long Beach 2016, to rub elbows with some of the country’s top-notch companies and individuals in the advanced materials industries. SAMPE is the only conference and exhibition that is entirely geared toward advanced materials and processes, making it one of the most valuable events of the year for composites industry professionals. In fact, over 200 different companies are going to be showcasing their products and services over the course of the 2-day exhibition, which runs from May 24-25. The Conference itself, which runs from May 23-26, features leading industry experts and researchers giving lectures, leading discussions, and offering tutorials to attendees.

Coastal Enterprises will be stationed at Booth O41, a corner booth that borders the food and beverage area and the exhibitor lounge. Visitors to our booth will be able to receive free samples of Precision Board PU tooling board and get a first hand look at some of Coastal’s industrial soft tooling capabilities. A few highly experienced members of our technical sales team will be on hand, answering any and all questions about polyurethane applications in composite tooling, for both OOA and autoclave processes. There’s no better way to enhance your understanding of soft tooling than to speak to the undisputed urethane professionals, people with unparalleled knowledge of Precision Board and the industries it’s used in. The best way to further understanding of a concept is to immerse yourself in it entirely.

There’s no question that this is going to be another banner year for SAMPE, a meeting of some of the top minds of the composite tooling and advanced materials industries. Don’t forget to print out your FREE PASSES to the SAMPE Long Beach Exhibition, compliments of Coastal Enterprises.

Hi-Perf. Composites Article Discusses Metal Vs. Soft Tooling

Much-respected composites publication Hi-Performance Composites featured Coastal Enterprises in their July issue. The article, written by Sarah Black, examines the cost-savings polyurethane foam blocks can provide for certain layup tooling applications, referencing the famous Nemesis Air Racing plane of which many parts were produced from Precision Board molds.

Also discussed:

  • Time-saving benefits of custom, pre-bonded Precision Board blocks
  • Why metal tooling can increase cost, weight and lead time
  • Reducing witness lines when bonding tooling board
  • Temperature ramp up/down procedures for PBLT (up to 200˚F) and PBHT (up to 300˚F)

See the article in its entirety here.

Screen Shot 2014-07-25 at 1.42.25 PM