Frequenting Asked Questions

We often are asked many questions on how we manufacture our signs or who we are so  we have provided below some answers to some of those that are frequently asked.

After more than a decade of providing the highest quality sandblasted signs, Capitol Design is a name you can trust. Hundreds of satisfied wholesale customers throughout the United States and abroad know and trust us for our high quality, quick turnaround, prompt quotations and outstanding customer service.
This is perhaps the most important of all questions. There are a number of grades of cedar. At Capitol Design, we use only the finest quality cedar available. First, it is a clear heart material, which means it has the fewest number of knots of any grade. Secondly, it is kiln-dried to assure a minimum moisture content within the wood. This is particularly important to guard against warping. Thirdly, our grain is continuous within the length of the board and not “finger jointed.”Cedar, HDU, High-density Urethane, Sign, Foam In finger jointed lumber, variances in grain within an individual length of lumber can create an undesirable “checkerboard” effect which looks as though the entire sign has been “pieced together. Finally, we use only a continuous vertical grain. This means that the grain runs perpendicular to the face of the sign. It creates not only the attractive, dimensional, “ridged” effect of a quality wood sign, but it also extends the life of the paint. A horizontal grain cedar tends to peel off in layers, hence the paint peels off with it. Many companies utilize a “construction grade” wood for their signs. This grade is more typically used to build decks and can exhibit any or all of the defects mentioned above when used for signage. It should be avoided at all costs.”
All cedar is nominal 2″ when we receive it. There is no true 2″ cedar being shipped today and most 2″ nominal is only 1 3/4″ thick. When possible we buy the wood in the rough and plane it in our shop for maximum thickness.  We have found our panels to be adequately thick for both single and double faced signs. We usually blast 3/8″ deep, depending on the hardness of the wood and width of the grain.
Expert Sandblasters utilize top quality exterior enamel and latex paints, and top quality stains, to insure maximum life and fade resistance. All signs are completely primed with Sherwin Williams “block out” prior to application of background colors unless a stained background is called for. Specialty lettering enamels are used for logos, copy and borders with 3 to 4 coats of paint applied.
All signs at Capitol Design are custom crafted by hand. A finished, painted sign typically takes 2 to 4 weeks. For our wholesale customers, blanks are typically shipped within a week and blasted only signs, within one to two weeks.

We have customers who have had their signs up over twenty years. Our cedar is naturally decay resistant and the new Sign-Foam(TM) is totally inert. Most signs need repainting in 3 to 5 years, depending on the climate extremes. We can either teach you how to repaint, or recommend someone in your area that can do it for you. In the interim, a good hosing down and brushing with soap and water will keep your sign clean.
Some installations are more difficult than others. For simple post installations, we can give you adequate instructions to complete the job yourself. For more complex jobs or multiple installations, we can likely set you up with a company in your area that can do the installation for you. We are happy to make recommendations for installation if you send us drawings.

Tell me more about Sign-Foam™ !

While nothing can ever replace the beauty of vertical grain cedar, and its unique grain characteristics, the new Sign-Foam™ is a remarkable product.Cedar, HDU, High-density Urethane, Sign, Foam When we first heard of Sign-Foam™ all we could think of was styrofoam coolers. Boy were we wrong! This new product, developed as part of the space program, comes in a variety of densities and can be sawed, sanded, drilled, blasted and painted just like wood. With the use of a special attachment, we can even duplicate the grain pattern of blasted wood. Sign-Foam™ is particularly useful for very complex graphics, where intricate detail is involved. We have used it for state and county seals and achieved a “cast metal” took for our clients at a fraction of the cost. In addition, Sign-Foam™ is much lighter than wood substrates, saving on shipping costs and making large signs easier to handle and install.