What are backlit cabinet signs?

Backlit Sign on Building

They can be called sign cans or lighted signs or box sign?  You may have seen them all over, typically they are a shallow box with fluorescent or LED tubes inside that have a translucent face where at night the sign glows.  Usually when a business moves into a leased space and they have a sign can there, we can either reuse the plastic or replace just the plastic (acrylic or polycarbonate) face.

Why can’t we reuse the acrylic?

Over time a few things happen. One is you can get ghosting on the plastic from the old logo, everyone has a different threshold of tolerance for that.  The other is any micro cracks or age can contribute to a less that professional sign.  Sometimes the cost of the labour to remove the sign, remove the vinyl and then glue is more than the cost of a new face.

Is it special vinyl?


Backlit face installed

Yes, translucent vinyl is special. It not only allows light to penetrate it and illuminate your logo at night properly when backlit, but it also has a special adhesive that when partnered with the right material makes installed and removing the vinyl easier.  If you do not use translucent vinyl you get a black shadow at night…even black translucent vinyl allows some light to penetrate and give the sign a proper illuminated look.

Why are some signs with printed images or shading often dull in comparison?

It really boils down to technology and color space. To keep it interesting think of how we make a printed picture, its a combination of CMYK  and the white in the color is provided by the vinyl. That white is less intense as its translucent, so any image on it may look a tad washed out. We compensate by overprinting the image to saturate the colors.  A standard sign is made of translucent colored vinyl and because its made from the factory that way it is 100% intense and will always be the same color no matter the lighting situation.

What are best practices when making/ designing a backlit sign can

If you look to the big brands, they know whats up. KISS  The most important component in a road side or building sign is legibility. When you start adding in shades and pictures you almost always will impact readability.  The big brands keep it simple and they also almost always reverse their logo so that  its a white logo on a colored background.  One or two colors max.  They do this because its proven to get the best response = foot traffic in the door.  When you try to do to much on your sign- lighted or not – you will risk reducing the traffic you should be getting.

Also remember that when you see the proof you can read it easily as you know what it says.  If you show someone that has never seen it before and ask them to read it and it takes a moment..imagine what happens when you make that 12 feet wide and it is still hard to read? You will have invested in a poorly performing asset.

How long does it take to get a new sign face for the backlit sign can?

From the time you approve the proof/ make payment arrangements your sign would be 8-10 business days.

Please contact our office at 780 538 2030 ex 0  or fill in this form to get a quote.  If you are not sure about the size let us come and do an onsite and we will measure it for you.

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