Channel letters are the large, individual letters frequently seen as signage on storefronts. They can be individually mounted or raceway mounted. These letters are three-dimensional and are illuminated. Their counterpart, known as the dimensional letter, is a non-illuminated. Channel letter signs are bold and eye-catching. Most channel letter signage is outdoors but can also be seen in some store displays as well.

The major components of a channel letter are the return, the face, the back, and the lighting element. The returns, which are the sides of the letters, are made of sheet metal. The face of the letters may be acrylic, aluminum, or nonexistent, and the same goes for the back. It all depends on how you want your channel letters to be lit: do you want the lighting element to be exposed? Then leave the face open. Do you want the letters to glow from the back? Then leave the back open. There are four main types of channel letters: reverse lit, front lit, front/back lit, and open lit. Most channel letters are LED lit, however, there are other options but LED is the most cost effective and energy efficient option.

Fabricating channel letters requires heavy-duty equipment. Any aluminum, whether it’s being used for the returns, back, or face, needs to be cut with a router. The aluminum returns are bent into shape using a channel letter bending machine. Ultimately, how your channel letters are made depends on the type and the materials used. CNC manufacturing guarantees much more precise results than hand tools, and if channel letters are improperly assembled, water can sneak inside them and damage the lighting element.
Like there are multiple types of channel letters, there are multiple ways to mount a channel letter. The main ways are raceway mounting and direct mounting. Direct mounted channel letters are mounted directly to the surface of a wall. They’re wired to a power supply that is completely hidden inside the wall. Raceway mounted channel letters are attached to an aluminum box that contains the wiring and power supply. The aluminum box is known as a raceway, is not hidden, but it can be incorporated into your design by matching the color of the wall it is being mounted to. Direct mounting may be prohibited in some zoning areas and some buildings, making it necessary to use raceway mounting. Back lit channel letters are raised from the wall so the light can create a glow. This is another option based on the type of channel letter you decide will best suit your business.

A signage expert at Adams Signs can answer any further questions you have about channel letters and provide direction for what type of channel letter sign will be the most beneficial and effective for your business. Soon the knowledgeable sales staff at Adams will be able to help you start reaping all the benefits of having bright, bold channel letters on your building.