It is hard to believe that it was almost ten years ago I witnessed a CNC router in action for the very first time. I was fascinated and simply had to have one! Although I had been in the creative end of the three dimensional sign business for most of my life I didn't really know what I would do with one of these machines - but I just knew it could do fantastic stuff.

Along with the CNC router I discovered the wonderful material called Precision Board and the glues, primers and other companion products they offer. Since then we have gone through many tons of the material using it in most signs and projects we tackle. This journal will chronicle our many adventures both past, present and future. I'll talk from the perspective of someone who pushes these products to the creative limit on a daily basis. I'll be adding to the stories two or three times each week. -dan

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Primed for success

Coastal Enterprises FSC-88 WB primer is the coolest stuff! It's not like the paint you can buy in stores. This is thick like cream. It goes on smooth and stays right where you put it. It doesn't flow out like normal paint. For those who want smooth it is a sand-able finish. We like to go in the opposite direction and this paint is perfect for that purpose! I first put a coat of rimer over the whole sign. This is allowed to dry well. I even read the directions on the can. the info sheet and on their website. They insist you use a shop fan to dry the work... for at least an hour no matter how long it has been applied.
It has worked so well we use our big shop fans to dry all our paint. With acrylic paints it speeds up the process a lot. Best of all the paints don't merely skin over. It seems to help them dry all the way through in a hurry. Our fans are three speed models with 18" blades. They move air in a hurry!
Onc the base coat of primer was done I went over the letters one more time with primer. Only this time I used a small brush and loaded the primer on leaving random brush strokes in my wake. Because I had designed the router files with raised layers on each level it makes cutting in a snap. While I've been practicing painting for better than four decades it doesn't take a whole lot of skill to cut a clean line when you are painting up to an edge. It's fast too!
I left the fan on over night so I could start in on the paint first thing in the morning. Next post we start in on the paint and glazes...