The sign comes together quick

The routing files for the Shmyer’s Harbor sign consisted of four pieces. I built each relief separately, then added textures to key pieces. Then I ‘floated’ them separately until things looked right rendered. Before I merged them I made duplicate copies of the scroll and sign, flipping them so they matched back to back. The lettering was also duplicated and applied to each so it read correctly. They were stacked to best fit on our piece of 1.5″ thick Precision Board. Tool-pathing took only seconds once we had everything arranged correctly.
The file was sent to our MultiCam and the machine was set into motion. While the machine was routing I started in on the welded steel brackets for the sign. It would have been ideal to simply cut some large angle iron for the corner pieces but I didn’t have any of that on the steel rack. Instead I cut two lengths of 4″ square tubing and then split it to give me the right angle pieces I needed. Some short lengths of 5/8″ steel bar was pushed through a hole I burned with the plasma cutter and then welded on. A hollow steel ball was welded onto the end of two of the rods. The other two were kept over length and would be finished off after the assembly and mounting of the sign.
Once the pieces came off the MultiCam I glued everything up. The sign was 6″ thick at it’s thickest point – more than enough to accommodate the little boat. It took a forest of clamps to hold everything in place while the glue set.
Stay tuned for final assembly and paint…

Published by

Dan Sawatzky

Dan Sawatzky is best described as a creative force in the sign industry. He and his wife Janis are owners of Sawatzky’s Imagination Corporation – a small family company that specializes in the design and creation of dimensional theme signs and environments. They tackle projects of any size from small signs to entire theme parks. Their work has garnered numerous international awards and Dan’s articles appear frequently in the sign trade publications. Dan and his crew also host Sign Magic and Sculpting Workshops in their studio a number of times each year with attendees coming from around the world. For more information please visit

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