outdoor blasde sign MPLS tours

Historic building blade sign

A long-time friend and owner of a local Segway touring company asked us to make a custom blade sign for his new store location. In addition to moving, he had recently rebranded the business and created a logo but wasn’t sure how to produce or hang a sign in front of the store. He was also looking for some ideas to hang smaller signs from the main sign and to be able to change out promotional messaging.

A big holiday weekend was approaching and he wanted the sign up in time to greet the anticipated crowd of tourists. The storefront is located in a historic area along the Mississippi River in Minneapolis which of course has many sign regulations too.

We presented design options and decided on an oval-shaped blade sign with a decorative bracket. The combination of bold colors, modern graphics, and traditional framing was a nice way to fit in with the neighbors as well as be easily seen from the street.

Sign Production

The bracket was a special order, and once it arrived we used it to line up the eyelets to match the blade sign design. KORT created a sign template based on the customer’s logo design and the allowed sign size; we sent that to the router and cut it out of polymetal (plastic sandwiched between two pieces of aluminum) to create the oval shape. The graphics were printed on 3M IJ35C and laminated, then applied to both sides of the polymetal material.

Blade Sign

Because we couldn’t run electrical wiring into the historical building, we found some inexpensive solar lights that are typically used in residential lawn & garden displays. We attached a pipe to the lights on each end, then secured the pipe to the blade sign with a conduit tube strap. The finishing touch was to paint it all black to match the decorative bracket.

Another creative challenge was how to hang the smaller signs so they wouldn’t spin in the wind. We decided to use carabiner hooks on two chains for ease of installation as well as sturdiness. As the weekend approached the customer decided to save some time and money by installing the sign himself. The three smaller pieces will be added later after he decides on the variable copy and number of versions. In the meantime, this custom blade sign is attracting tourists and local thrill seekers alike.

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