Sign Materials Glossary

Alumalite: Painted aluminum surface (two sides) with a corrugated plastic core. It serves as a lightweight alternative to plywood for sign painting and vinyl graphic applications. Available in 1/4” only. It will not rust, swell, or delaminate and is impervious to water. These features make it perfect for all outdoor, or UV-exposed indoor applications.

Aluminum: .040 gauge aluminum painted on one side with flat white back. Extremely light weight for sign painting. Denting is possible. This product is discontinued. Limited to stock currently on-hand.

Celtec®: Rigid PVC expanded vinyl that offers an exceptional variety of usages (mostly sign-making). No priming is necessary and it will not rot or delaminate. Direct sunlight may cause panel to misshape. It is economical when compared to other sign materials. Also sold for such applications as shower enclosures and is FDA approved for use in commercial kitchens where food preparation is conducted.

D-Lite: 1/8" version of alumalite. It is painted aluminum surface with corrugated plastic core (good one-side) white aluminum face with a flat silver back. Great for wall mounts, photo mounting, billboard fascias and signs. Great alternative to traditional aluminum sheets and is 100x’s more rigid. Discontinued (see polymetal).

Duron: Tempered masonite (compressed pressed wood) hard throughout entire board. All that we carry is perforated (peg-board).

Hi-Way H.D.O: High density overlay panel designed for applications of reflective film for hi-way signs; it is ideal for state, county and municipal signage. Every veneer layer is solid and care is taken to minimize core gaps. There is no preparation before applying film or paint. Excellent for vinyl graphic applications.

Luster Board: Exterior fir plywood with 15 gauge white painted aluminum on both sides. Premium inner plies with smooth, tight, sanded veneers that are less likely to have gaps or voids in the inner-ply’s. Great for post and rail signs, signs that use cutout shapes, portable sidewalk displays, sandwich boards, hanging signs and a-frames. Edges must be end capped.

M.D.O. (Guardian): ExMedium density paper overlay on top of exterior fir plywood for sign painting, or exterior construction, has a nice paintable surface. This two-step process includes the plywood substrate being sanded before M.D.O. overlay is applied to minimize wood grain and patch show-through. This is our standard grade of M.D.O. and grain telegraphing is more prevalent than in our Signal board.

M.D.O. (Signal): Premium grade Medium density paper overlay, the core is exterior fir plywood with an outer layer of exterior luan on front and back (under paper overlay) to prevent grain telegraphing. The signal grade uses premium face veneers and a solid core. Offers fewer (and tighter) core gaps giving the least amount of edge voids for better machineability and weatherability in cut shape applications. Mostly used for applications where smooth painted surface is essential.

M.D.O. (Primed): M.D.O. primed (grey primer applied in anticipation of first layer of paint). High performance overlay impregnated with a thermoset acrylic primer. This helps reduce production time and provide a uniform prime coat. Available in Guardian and Signal.

Medex: Exterior MDF that will work well in applications where moisture is a concern. It can be used in the following non-structural applications; countertops, baseboard and decorative cap mouldings, windowsills, display cases, lawn ornaments, raised panel inserts, garage door panels and display exhibits. Medex is recommended for use in; schools, museums, day care centers, medical & dental facilities, retirement homes, laboratories and toys. It is formaldehyde free.

Poly-Metal: Aluminum covered composite board. Very rigid and lightweight with a solid core that stands up very well to weather. Used for signs or wall applications (Available in 1/8”). Available in 5 colors (white, almond, black, blue and brushed silver).

Sign Foam: Urethane foam board with closed cell construction used as alternative to red wood (very expensive). Sign Foam is used for carved signs, carved letters, and various other carved applications. Can be sandblasted and works well on C and C Routers.

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550 South Fifth Street | Reading, PA 19602
(610) 376-3343
FAX (610) 376-2256


85 West Charles Street | Lewistown, PA 17044
(717) 242-9663
FAX (717) 242-2299