Business owners considering this option for their signage may have questions about the channel letter signage fabrication process. Standard channel letters feature a graphical sign or dimensional logo element. These elements are often manufactured from a type of thin gauge sheet metal. Often, this is aluminum. The purpose of this is to prevent the letters from rusting even when exposed to the elements.
In most cases, a computer-controlled CNC router is used for cutting the necessary shape from the sheet metal. This creates the base for the graphical element or dimensional letter. Known as the returns, the sides of the channel letter are then formed. A small strip of aluminum is bent to create this design. Once the return is cut from the metal, it can be fastened to the metal base or welded at the seam. This creates the final shape of the letter or dimensional element. Electrical components are then placed inside the formed element or letter.
Channel letters often feature a face manufactured from polycarbonate substrate or transparent acrylic that has been cut to fit over the shape of the logo element or letter in a precise manner. The border of the face is then topped off with trim cap material to present a finished appearance.
Numerous mounting options are available for channel letter signage. For instance, the finished channel letters can be mounted straight onto the face of a monument wall or a building façade. This is referred to as a flush mount. Other options include mounting them onto a raceway, which is a rectangular-shaped box. In this case, the raceway contains the electrical components for the sign, such as the transformer and power supply. As a result, the raceway serves a practical purpose along with acting as a mounting structure. Once complete, the raceway can be mounted onto a monument or building façade. In most cases, the raceway is then painted to match the surrounding elements.
In some cases, channel letter signage may feature a reverse-lit design. In this type of design, the lighting is actually directed to the back of the sign instead of the face. This makes it possible to flood the building or the wall faced with light, making it possible to display a negative space when it is dark.