SMC: How large is the facility?
CB: We have a small 232 m2 (2500-sf) shop. We also have an offsite warehouse for larger vehicles like cube trucks and transport trailers.
SMC: What type of signage does your shop primarily make?
CB: Our primary focus is vehicle wraps and graphics, but we are a well-rounded sign shop. We make everything except sign boxes and channel letters. That said, when it comes to something we cannot do, we have a network of affiliates that help us get the job done.
SMC: What type of projects have you been working on recently?
CB: This past year has been tough. One of our major clients is the Winnipeg Blue Bombers in the Canadian Football League (CFL). With the CFL cancelling its 2020 season, we had to get creative and shift gears to making social distancing signage and decals, counter shields, and barriers to keep the business running.
SMC: How much of the signmaking process is handled in-house? What tools/equipment do you currently use to complete your sign projects?
CB: Nearly 75 per cent of everything we do is fabricated in-house.
The shop has two large-format, eco-solvent devices—a Roland SP-540i and a Mimaki CJV30-130—both of which are print and cut. In our peak season, both the printers run anywhere between 16 and 20 hours a day. The facility is also equipped with a Summa D75 vinyl cutter and a GBC Spire III laminator. We use a Digi-Dri infrared print dryer for the curing process, and a homemade media dryer that consists of a heavy-duty fan attached to a vented platform for off-gassing.
We keep up on most industry-specific hand tools and equipment to help with the fabrication and installation process. My favourite website for learning about these is www.signmakertools.ca, which offers a wide range of professional signmaking tools for purchase.