midwaste

Stop wasting apptape on Coro Signs!

Recommended Posts

This is my $5.02 version of the SpeedPress.   I have a 20 18x24 double sided coro order coming up tomorrow and I was looking at my roll of Rtape AT-42 (only tape i use) and not looking forward to throwing a good portion of it in the garbage can doing the signs.   I have seen the SpeedPress before and it's a pretty good idea, but I like building shit and not buying it.

So I sketched up a quick design and went to Lowes.  $5.02 later (minus tax) I have below.

(1) 10' length of 3/4" Schedule 40 PVC - $1.78

(4) 3/4" PVC elbows - $0.96

(1) 5/8" x 48" dowel rod - $1.98 (I splurged and bought the poplar because they were straighter, lol)

(6) 1/4-20 x 1-1/2" carriage bolts

Other stuff I had that you might need to buy, depending on what you have lying around:

4 screws (black drywall screws in photo below, but just about any screw 1-1/4" or so will work)

4 eyescrews (I had some hooks that I bent closed)

Tools:

Drill and bits

Hacksaw or PVC pipe cutter (much, much nicer.  If you do any work at all with PVC, buy one now)

Tape measure

Sharpie, etc.

Optional, but recommended:

Bud Light

Note:  This is for a 18x24 version.  I cut some longer pieces for use with a 24x36 sign, more on that later.

First:  Cut two pieces of PVC 27.5" long.  (24" for apptape width + 2" for extra width + 1.5" for allowance of elbows).   Then, cut two pieces 21.5" long.   Assemble these with the elbows.  DO NOT GLUE THE JOINTS.  It will probably be a little out of whack, just put it under your feet and tweak it until it sits flat on your table.

Next:  Cut the dowel in half, drill small holes in all 4 resulting ends and screw the eyehooks in so they are oriented the same way.

At this point, it should look like this:

t9bajt.jpg

Next: Drill holes in the corners on the elbows.  These should be slightly smaller than the carriage bolts, so they thread in, rather than fall in.  If you dont have the right sized drill, you can glue them, but make sure the square part under the head of the bolt doesn't go in the hole.  You need the head and the square to set the gap from the table.

width=800 height=535http://i42.tinypic.com/svt9bb.jpg[/img]

Next:  Turn the unit over and center your dowel on the long pieces of PVC and mark below the eyebolts on the PVC OPPOSITE THE CARRIAGE SCREWS.   Drill a small hole to allow your screw in.   Screw the dowel to the PVC through the eyebolts LOOSELY.   The dowel needs to be able to move up and down about 1/8".

width=800 height=535http://i41.tinypic.com/1zf4jkn.jpg[/img]

width=800 height=535http://i42.tinypic.com/humxld.jpg[/img]

Loading it with apptape

Turn the unit over so the carriage bolts (bottom) is up.  Cut a piece of apptape sticky side up, leaving about 6" on each side of the legs:

width=800 height=535http://i42.tinypic.com/1z5lv2x.jpg[/img]

Turn the dowel side to face you and thread the app tape between the dowel and the PVC.  You can pull the dowel down to allow the tape to slide easier:

width=800 height=535http://i42.tinypic.com/wqow9h.jpg[/img]

Leave yourself enough tape hanging down to wrap it around the dowel and back onto the sticky bottom of the tape (ignore the lousy job I did, try to do better, but it isn't terribly critical, unless you really wrinkle it up):

width=800 height=535http://i42.tinypic.com/sgs8b8.jpg[/img]

Next, turn the unit around and do the same thing on the other side.  It's easier to get this side tight and straight.  Try to pull the tape fairly taught, you don't want it to sag in the middle.

width=800 height=535http://i42.tinypic.com/2vc9ms9.jpg[/img]

Now check your gap underneath between the table and the clear tape.  It should be a consistent 1/4" or so all the way.  I'll skip ahead to the tensioning screws at this point, because if it's sagging, you need to tighten it up.

Drill two holes on the ends of the PVC where it meets the elbow and thread in some bolts.   See the picture for a better explanation, but you can hold the elbows and twist upwards on the bolts to wrap up some of the tape and tighten the sag up:  This is why we didn't glue the joints.

width=800 height=535http://i43.tinypic.com/oq9cfm.jpg[/img]

Now place your vinyl on the table (it needs to be laying flat, not curled up) and place the unit over the top of it.  Get it centered and squeegee the apptape down from the center out, lifting the vinyl up:

width=800 height=535http://i40.tinypic.com/2ymy6uc.jpg[/img]

Flip it over and peel the backer off:

width=800 height=535http://i41.tinypic.com/do5lbo.jpg[/img]

This is with the backer peeled off and flipped back over, you can see the gap to the table that will allow you to position the coro:

width=800 height=535http://i40.tinypic.com/8ye26t.jpg[/img]

width=800 height=535http://i43.tinypic.com/3308xp5.jpg[/img]

Depending on your tape, it is AWESOME lining up coro below using this tool.  Before, I would cut the backer paper/apptape close to the vinyl to get a good measurement from the edges of the substrate to the lettering.   Using this method, you can almost eyeball it all the way.  My job this week is on the house-shaped signs, so it will be a cakewalk lining up the stroked border with the edges.

Do the same thing as before: Start in the middle and squeegee outwards to apply the vinyl to the coro (or whatever).

Flip the unit over:

width=800 height=535http://i40.tinypic.com/2v12kcm.jpg[/img]

Now comes the tricky part: Peel the sign away from the tape without pulling it too loose.  A combination of quick snaps and slow pulling seemed to work best.  Remember, you can retighten the tape if it sags.   I'll probably figure this out a bit better after doing the sign job this week.   Any input is welcome!

width=800 height=535http://i39.tinypic.com/2j280us.jpg[/img]

Lastly, you can make the cross pieces any size you want.  I cut some pieces 39.5" long to make a frame for a 24x36 sign, all you have to do is swap the non-dowel pieces out:

width=800 height=535http://i41.tinypic.com/2nvde.jpg[/img]

You will most likely need to put some carriage bolts in the center of the longer pieces to keep it from sagging, I haven't tried it yet though.

Hope this helps somebody, and if nothing else, I hope it saves some apptape!

Any questions, please put them in this thread so everyone will get the benefit.

**Edit**:  Put a piece of backer paper on the tape to keep it clean between uses.  I am interested in finding out how many signs this will do before the tape needs replaced.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest manwayvan

Wow looks great! Great Work :thumbsup:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest kenya

Awesome idea midwaste....... I agree, I hate throwing that much tape away doing coro.

I know it's all part of it, but your idea is more than a money saver.... it looks like a great time saver.  :thumbsup:;D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've re-used clear app tape on corosigns in the past, just peeling it off and reapplying.  This a GREAT idea, and it keeps the tape flat and smooth!

Awesome! :thumbsup:;D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest manwayvan

*Results may vary depending on amount of bud light consumption...Love it..only way to work!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To be fair, its not my idea, a company called Speedpress sells them for $300 or so, I just made a cheaper version..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very nice, but I do have one question.  Is it possible to make this with Miller Lite?

Yes, but it will be inferior in almost every way.

:thumbsup:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very nice, but I do have one question.  Is it possible to make this with Miller Lite?

Yes, but it will be inferior in almost every way.

:thumbsup:

HA!  I'm not so sure about that!!! 

Have you tried multiple colors with this?  I just found out that I have to do 8 double sided signs for a fundraiser.  I thought they were only going to be single sided and after just getting into this business, it's going to put a hurt on my finances.  I already had to make 2 different orders for vinyl and get them shipped overnight so I'm looking to save as much $$$ as i can.

Jay

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest YHC

Thanks midwaste,

I to like to make my own tools sometimes and this will be a fun quick project :thumbsup:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very nice, but I do have one question.  Is it possible to make this with Miller Lite?

Yes, but it will be inferior in almost every way.

:thumbsup:

HA!  I'm not so sure about that!!! 

Have you tried multiple colors with this?  I just found out that I have to do 8 double sided signs for a fundraiser.  I thought they were only going to be single sided and after just getting into this business, it's going to put a hurt on my finances.  I already had to make 2 different orders for vinyl and get them shipped overnight so I'm looking to save as much $$$ as i can.

Jay

I havent done multiple colors, but I did screw up those house signs a little and had to redo the backs with the house outline mirrored.. ;D    That is basically the same thing as multiple color.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Cool vid, whats up with the putty knife? lol!

  She referred to it as a burnishing tool.  LOL

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey, Midwaste, want to sell one of those things?Sandy

Where is the fun in that?  Besides, it would cost more to ship than to build it!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Awesome tutorial midwaste !!!

I want to thank you because you're a member who is always contributing and helping others, I can speak from my own experience.

This stuff can be done by anyone, but not everybody would take the time to walk us through the process, take pictures, provide a list of materials, etc, etc. Keep up the good work !  :thumbsup:

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now