Adding a little character to a sign

When working on larger projects it’s the little details that really make the difference for both the client and for us! Our current project is no different. We are creating a “themed” environment for the Fox Island Creamery & Café in Hewitt, NJ.  We’ve  created a nice little storyline and have developed some characters which should make the experience fun for both the kids and parents.

This sign is for a little beaver character that we created and his boat company. The Chubby Beaver Boat Building Co.

We started with a rough sketch, now I knew we would need a boat, a beaver and the back of the sign. So we started there.

Peter worked directly in Enroute Pro to create the shape and used some fun font styles for the carvings. We carved the sign out of 15# Precision Board HDU on our MultiCam 3000 CNC. Once the CNC was done with it’s job Peter hand carved the edges for the “beaver got to it” texture.

 

sketch

064

 

065

 

 

We sealed the foam with Aqua Resin, then primed and spray painted our base coat.

082

Using latex paint we painted two coats of a darker glaze to get a nice aged look on the wood.086090

Now are sign back is complete and its time to move on to our beaver!

I’ll carve the basics out of 15# Precison Board so I used Mudbox 3D Software to create the body and facial structure of the beaver. Once carved I used Magic Sculpt for the details.

067 069

beaver

Hmm, I think my little guy could use some glasses. I’ll use the 3D printer for this little detail. I printed  2 pairs different sizes, the larger ones look best.

007

We most definitely need a boat for this sign. This is a perfect task for our 3D Printer as well. I found a basic 3D boat online – downloaded the file and sized it perfectly to fit our beaver. 4 hours later we had our 3D printed boat. I love technology!

IMG_1423

075

A few more details and paint and we are all done – Can’t wait to hang it!

IMG_1438

Complete

I’ll take a Wrap and a Giant Hot Dog Please

This project allowed us to meld two of our skills, vehicle wraps and 3D Sign Making,  into one “unique” looking vehicle.  Our client Callahan’s Hot Dogs in Norwood was in need of a new vehicle wrap to match their now famous Hot Dog Truck. So Nanette dove into the design then Dan called and asked… “Can you build a giant hot dog for the top of the van?”. Of course I said yes

This is how we did it.

First the new design was created for the wrap. As the guys are working on this we’ll have the guys in fabrication building the hot dog.

Callahans-Proof Small

 

We started with the logo and converted it into a 3D file in Enroute Pro. Then sized it up and split it into two parts. We’ll cut the hot dog in slices so we can build a “skeleton” inside of it. This is important – we need this to be strong and solid as it cruises down the highway.

282

Peter has the foam pieces laid out and will begin building the aluminum structure that will hold this all together.

286

 

 

Meanwhile…. back in the “wrap room” Rad and Greg are cranking out the install.

297

292

296 293

We are really customizing this one – all lettering has been removed from the van and we’ll replace them with the name of the van “Minibeast”. we also removed the Ford emblems and fabricated custom emblems that tread “Since 1950″. we cut the letters of out PVC and will paint them metallic with our PPG Paint System.

294

The emblems are cut from PVC then painted metallic. We then printed the graphic directly to the emblem plate.   Once printed we clear coated them.299 300 303

329

Peter has the basics done and he’s ready to test the sizing of the hot dog. 309 318

I’m in the paint room customizing the hubcaps!

328

331

332

334

 

Dan stopped by for an inspection of the wrap – He’s a little anxious to get that Callahan’s hot dog on there! Don’t worry – it’s coming.

345

Holin and Peter have the dog coated with AquaResin, sanded and ready for paint.  We’ll spray prime it and paint the base color then hand paint the details.

377

391

400

 

403

410

Uh oh – can’t get it out the door…. No we got it.

417

Time for the install.        433 442 All good.  (now we have to light it up). And again – I’m hungry.

551

543

– Steve

bfree Sign: A Dimensional Sign of Metal and Wood (or maybe not)

I am lucky enough to live in the great town of Warwick, NY – we have wonderful restaurants and shops and its a destination for many people on weekend getaways. There is a new trendy shop opening, bfree and we were lucky enough to be called to help with her “new” look.

The clients logo needed some tweaking and unfortunately wouldn’t work on the sign.  We started by taking the logo and reformatting it to match the “feel” of the store and to better represent what you would see inside.

Our graphic designer Nanette jumped in and began creating a new logo which would incorporate wood, brushed metal and copper.

2015_bfree_sign01

Client loved it – now its time to make this baby!

We began with 15# Precisionboard HDU at a 1.5″ thickness. This will allow us to get all the elements, except the bfree letters on one panel.  We carved the brushed texture and branch into the background and the wood texture of the frame using our MultiCam 3000 CNC.

595 599We drilled holes and cut pockets for our lettering which we’ll make separately as a two part letter.  605 While the machine was working away Peter experimented with the some techniques to create a realistic copper finish.

603We’ve sealed the foam with a coat of AquaResin and and primed. ready for paint!

001

We are using Modern Masters metallic silver as the base coat for the brushed metal. we’ll then add several glaze coats of latex color over it. When the sun hits it during the day it will shine like real metal and at night the overhead goosenecks will really bring out the metal finish and texture.

003

011

While Peter is painting the silver Holin is in the paint booth painting the letters. We’ve carved the copper “swirl”  texture directly into the PVC cut letters for additional texture. We’ll then mount the 1/4″ Copper PVC textured face to 1/2″ black PVC for dimension and to also add some contrast.

006

 

013

017 018 023 024 The letters are done – we’ll take them off and focus on the wood frame.

The latex base coat of the wood frame goes down then two or three coats of darker glaze. We now have a nice contrast of colors against the copper and black letters.

026

 

028

All painted – ready to go on the truck for the install.

031

 

171Installed and lit and looks great! We wish bfree the best of luck with your new location.

-Steve

Custom Logo Sign

Oh how we love our friends at Jura! Not only are they wonderful people but they make the greatest coffee makers on the planet!

As they are building out their new headquarters they requested KDF to fabricate a large logo for the reception area.This logo is approximately 4’x8′.

We are making it out of 1 piece of 15# Precision Board HDU which is 2″ thick. We remove excess material from the back to reduce the weight. Once complete we’ll pin mount it to the wall.

After cutting the logo we spray a coating of AquaResin to give it a nice hard shell and to seal the foam. A quick sanding and we have the finish we need for painting.

099

098

Two coats our PPG waterborne primer.

108

And then color….

110  Once the color has dried we applied a satin clear coat.103  And we are ready to install!

20150720_125725

All done. Best of luck in your new headquarters!

(I need to go get some coffee)

-Steve

 

 

Vehicle Wrap Color Change

 

A complete vinyl color change on a vehicle is a great way to change things up without the huge expense of repainting. There are so many color and texture options to choose from making your combinations almost endless!

You can full wrap or just accent your vehicle with a huge assortment of colors, metallics, matte, carbon fiber, even chrome!

This wrap began as a red ford fusion sport. The materials chosen were the Avery SW 900 Supreme Cast Garnet Matte Red and Carbon Fiber as accents.

Once again great job to Rad and Greg!

– Steve

IMG_7824

WP_20150528_003

 

 

IMG_7809 IMG_7812  IMG_7826 IMG_7827 IMG_7832 IMG_7833 IMG_7989 IMG_7990 IMG_7991 IMG_7992 IMG_7993 IMG_7994

Let the Wrapping Begin! KDF Custom Wrap Sign

The shop is all abuzz with the news!

We’re very excited  to announce we have completed the construction of our new wrap area! We’ve tripled our capacity and we’re ready to wrap!

Of course now we need a sign for the 18′ walls and you know a small sign won’t do.  So… we went with a 6′ x 7′ footprint.  Nanette came up with a real nice design that we could work with to make a printable dimensional sign.

Here is the original design

Wraps Sign DesignOnce Rad setup the file for production it was time to cut the foam. We started by cutting the elements of the sign out of simple white gator foam of varying thicknesses. 2″, 1″ and 1/2″.
012 Into our new paint shop and all the elements are painted. this is a waterborne paint system so its quick dry – all the parts are back out to the printing department for flatbed printing on our Oce’ 350.

211212

Now its time for assembly. All the elements are on the table – screwed and glued.

213 218

This is basically one long day of work to get this cut, painted,  printed  and up on the wall.

This gives you a good idea of how big this bad boy is. Greg is ready to wrap!

IMG_9853 225