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What Makes the Best Sign Material?

If you are thinking of having a sign made for your business, one of the first things you need to consider is the materials that will be used for your signs. There are many sign companies that use Oriented Strand Board (OSB), and while this material has its advantages, it also has its disadvantages.


Oriented Strand Board, also known as OSB, and plywood can both be used when making signs, but there are some differences between them. The Ontario building code allows the use of OSB on roof decks and floors, but continued saturation and exposure to water will cause OSB to swell and lose its strength.


Water Test

If you want to check this for yourself, you may perform a simple experiment. What you need to do is leave a 6” square piece of OSB and crezon fir plywood in a bucket of water for one week. You will see for yourself that the OSB will be swollen and unusable – it will eventually fall apart. The crezon fir plywood, on the other hand, will remain unaffected.


Here at Corporate Signs, we use crezon fir plywood instead of OSB. Just imagine, if your sign is left outside to endure the different elements of weather for extended periods of time (based in our previous clients’ experiences, typically for about one year), the OSB must be scrapped.


A sheet of OSB topped with a 4mm coroplast substrate is about 15% less in terms of cost than a sheet of crezon, so you might think that you will be saving more money. However, when a factor of three for re-use is taken into account, the crezon plywood is a more economical option for sign substrates.


Plywood vs. Hi-Core

You might have also heard about the Hi-Core. This is a more cost-effective product but it has a tendency to expand and shrink, depending on the temperature as well as its exposure to sunlight. Thus, it can produce a ripple effect. Hi-Core is better used in shorter terms or interior applications.


½” MDO crezon plywood is what we use here at Corporate Signs as it has a longer life expectancy and you can rest assured that it is able to maintain its flat shape. How, you might ask? Fir plywood is one of the most resilient and strongest softwoods in the industry and it is the component of crezon plywood. Waterproof epoxy glue is also used in its construction.


So, if you are thinking of having a sign for your business made, then we are the right experts to help you! Visit our website today or simply give us a call. We hope to hear from you soon!

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