Identification: A quick way to identify an Acrylic Sign with Appliqué is by looking at the raised type and braille of the sign you are identifying. First, ensure it is an Appliqué method. All Appliqué methods will be able to be removed from the face plate of the sign itself. If you can pick the lettering off, then this is your production method. Nine times out of ten, the edges of the raised lettering will be the same color as the face of the raised lettering, where this is not usually the case for other methods. Acrylic will also be very smooth across the face plate of the sign, where as other materials will have much more of a textured look.
Production: Acrylic is supplied in several varieties, such as clear, non-glare, white, black, and frosted. All of these varieties are precision laser cut to ensure the smoothest of edges. Apart from Non-Glare and the frosted varieties, these must be painted with a satin or matte paint to reduce the glare for ADA compliancy. The material can be painted on the surface (front), or the subsurface (back). Surface painting shows the true flat color and includes the edges being painted, but is more susceptible to scratching. Subsurface is a more protective way of painting, and looking through a Non-Glare or Frosted Acrylic can be a neat dimensional look, which many opaque materials can not offer! However, the edges are not usually painted. After being painted, an “Appliqué” or applied graphics are added to the face, and precision cut to the letters/pictograms needed. The sign also goes through an engraving process, in which holes are drilled, and Braille “Raster Beads” are inserted. If the sign is surface painted, the beads are typically inserted before painting, and get painted the same color as the face plate. If the sign is subsurface painted, the beads will be inserted after painting, and will be clear to show the color beneath.
Advantages: Acrylic with Appliqué is the fastest to produce, most cost effective way to produce interior signage. It offers many easy-to-produce “add-ons” keeping customizing costs low. You can even have radius corners at no extra cost!
Disadvantages: Because the Appliqué is not actually part of the sign itself, it can be picked off. This means that you may want to consider opting against an Appliqué method in an environment where the signs may be around the youth or behavior centers.
Add-ons: VHB Tape for mounting, Holes Drilled/Countersunk for Mounting, Radius Corners, Beveled Edges, Accent Bars, Back Plates, Cubicle Hangers, Window Areas for Paper Inserts, Conference Sliders, Screen Printed Logos, Wood Laminates, Metal Laminates, Inserted in Frames, and many more!