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By whatknot
Hi all

I have an order for a house sign

Lettering cut from 6mm ply which will be glued to a teak? base board about 12" wide

Customer wants to paint it herself, but the lettering being ply and with small gaps in the lettering (inside a's, e's etc) anyone got any ideas what I can use to seal it for her prior to painting?

Just thinking of trying to preserve its life as long as possible

Our weather in Cornwall is not the kindest in the winter months ;-)
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By Droogs
because of the material and the use it is going to be put to, I would refuse to make this unless i was doing the whole thing as you can not guarantee in any way how it will stand up if she is going to muck about with it. That said you need to really seal the edges of the lettering or it will fall apoart inside a week. lots of poly or a resin coat
By whatknot
That was a bit spooky ;-)

I just thought, thats odd I haven't had a reply to my post and the sound of incoming message

Anyway, thanks for yours but I think you have the wrong impression

Firstly its made ;-)

But its for a neighbour not an unknown outside customer

And I am doing it for her on a budget

As she is going to paint it I just wanted to try and give it a bit more longevity

Any raised letters are going to hold moisture, so anything to try and waterproof the lettering before assembly

I might suggest after painting a flood of varnish to seal
By phil.p
I think you'd do better to fill it and flood it with something before you paint - I did some shutters for a neighbour that had sentimental value (they should have been firewood) and I filled the larger gaps in the ends with a two part filler (Everbuild) then painted them with D4 before primer, two undercoats and gloss. Hopefully they'll outlast the guy they were done for. A soak first in Cuprinol or something wouldn't hurt.
By whatknot
Good thought, I will have to have a dig to see if I still have some Cuprinol

Its not going to last forever, nothing down here does, but if I can give it a little longer life all to the good
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By ColeyS1
I've never had much success using ply outside. I recently made something from a left over piece of buffalo board and despite sealing the edges with 3 coats of marine varnish it still lasted just over a year before it delaminated at the edges.

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By MikeG.
I'd fibreglass it, with a clear resin, no gel coat, much as they do with cedar strip canoes. Then you have to use a varnish over the top as f/g isn't UV resistant. Other than that, or building a roof over it, you've basically got no hope.
By Doug71
I always think that aluminium primer seals stuff really well, I use it on all my outdoor painted stuff these days.

Thing with ply is once you get the slightest gap that water can get in it's down hill very quickly.
By AJB Temple
I think Mike's idea is the best. However, You know, I know and everyone knows that ply lettering for an outdoor house sign is a really bad idea as there is a huge amount of exposure to the glued edges. The teak backing board will last forever, the ply will be in bits in a year.
By whatknot
Thanks all

Yes I fully understand that ply letting is not going to last that long unless protected in some fashion, that much is obvious and even then its susceptible to the weather

So thanks for the advice

But thats not really what I asked

It was just to try and preserve it as best I could

I shall see if I have some cuprinol and give that a go

But thanks for all the feedback
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By MikeG.
Goodness, whatnot, I don't know what machine you are posting from but couldn't you do something with the formatting so that every single sentence isn't a new paragraph? It makes for extremely tedious reading.

As to your've been given good advice. If you just want people to suggest some gunk to apply to this badly designed sign, and people say "there is no gunk you can apply which will save the sign" then don't tell people the answers they are giving don't suit you. You should not have put yourself or your neighbour in this position to start with. You should have advised her that ply was unsuitable for the job and wouldn't last 5 minutes, and if she insisted you should have gently suggested that she should get someone else to make it. It's not our fault that we can't fix an unfixable situation for you.