By Erik Sine
I haven't posted any jobs lately and I need to play catch up.
So I'll start with our latest projects and work myself backwards
As we've discussed so many times on the Sign Syndicate. There is a time to retrofit, and a time not too. Neon and Fluorescent lamps/systems should not in most cases be retrofitted to LEDs unless accessibility calls for it. Otherwise, it doesn't make financial sense for the consumer to do so, or....just so a shop can make a project sale on BS energy efficiency numbers and mythical saving $$$$
So here are some retrofit jobs that make REAL sense.
Here's a chain of Studio's that I've been doing since the early 2000's.
This particular sign is only partially mine, everything from the Logo and red letters.
This was the first job I did for them leading up to fabricating all new signs for their locations. The white is from the previous location and Neon has been in it's original form since the late 90's, and it's 6500K Snow White. The logo is 15mm Tri-phosphor, Elite 65D I believe. The Logo and Red was done in 2008. It's very hard to tell because red and white is hard to capture and a cell phone cam does no justice but the White lettering is dimmer than illustrated and is about 50% of it's original light output.
Not bad for 20+ plus year old lamps!!
So the owner called up and wanted a revamp. Had I been the average shop you bet the immediate response would have been LED! SAVINGS!!!!! BULLSHIT! BULLSHIT!
We're logical over here in SoCal, a land where 50¢ modules would have replaced the Lamp Art.
The logical choice, and more economical choice for the consumer?
Going from a single halo phosphate 6500K Snow White Neon lamp to a Tri-Phosphor EGL Designer 7100 Series Lamps.
When we moved and installed (2008) this sign we did so with Tecnolux Silicone GTO and Caps. All that was needed for this retrofit was new lamps, and leaving the awesome silicone GTO and transformers in place!
Now, I owe you a night shot, the iphone pic I took was garbage, so I'll update that soon. But the Logo and White letters match up well, and even with the old faces, the sign illuminates like a new sign at night.
Forgot to mention, the white faces are also from the 90's and they've held up quite well, the Trim Cap is Plasco, also held up quite well for 20+ years old. During the day, the ace look good, so no need to replace.
So a new client...
They called, they were moving and wanted to know if they needed a new sign or whether to fabricate a whole new on because the current was lit up like crap. Had hot spots, dim a places, and just crazy outages in sections of letters.
It would have been better had I taken night pics, BUT...I didn't know I would be posting and writing about it here so
Had this been some other shop, I'm sure the nightmare would have continued
Yes, two different LED manufacturers in the same sign Woohoo, the electric sign industry in it's finest form right here! It made me SO proud!
If you're familiar with Gaverieli Plastics, I need say no more, let alone Chinese JS LED's....well, their both China and their both crap.
They don't last, they fail, they cause companies problems with having to go back and replace and most importantly...They cost the consumer, YOUR client.
The second sign which they had, made at a different time and by another company was US LED, also garbage. Illumination was just as bad. Sorry, didn't get pics of that sign because again, it wasn't my plan to make a post here
If this wonderful, thoughtful sign package doesn't make you cry, I don't know what will.
The original plastic was green vinyl over white acrylic and in such a short time this sign was beat, and probably why they called a new contractor for the work for their sign move.
Well, a new sign made no sense.
They were just moving a few suites over and they weren't going to get a larger sign so the original would do. New faces with 3M Lime Green over White acrylic.
The most important aspect of this Sign....
NC Reckless-3 LEDs. Top Tier Samsung Diodes running on a Constant Current system...NOT Constant Voltage. 1.2 watt modules. Most important detail about our NC Reckless LEDs? Their made in Korea NOT CHINA!!!
Check out that crazy light meter reading! That's almost 300 surface Foot Candles, which is about the equivalent light output to a 13mm Tri-phosphor white Neon Lamp behind white acrylic.
If that is not simply utterly gross and disgusting, and you're not just sickened by that number, you have no stomach
These Reckless-3 LEDs will NOT be powered up by their low budget power supplies but rather our Union LED Power Supplies made in KOREA, not CHINA!!!
It's usually best to retrofit out with what was already in a sign, and not change one light source to another. It's makes more financial sense in MOST cases, not all, but most.
By Erik Sine
NC LED Get's Better and Better $69.99!
Introducing the NEW NC LED "White Horse" Wide Angle Constant Current Series.
The White Horse CC series is a diffused lens LED module to better spread the light for shallow electric sign applications like 2" push thru architectural cabinets and channel letters available in 2, 3, and 4 chip diode configurations.
The module is the same as the NC Reckless series discussed here
• 5 Year 50,000 Hour Warranty
• 160˙ Wide Angle Diffused Lens
• Constant Current, NOT Constant Voltage
• High Brightness LED Module
• Made in Korea NOT made in CHINA!!!
• ONLY $69.99 per 100 WH2 Modules 42' Linear Feet
NC LED DOWNLOADABLE SPEC SHEETS: NC-SS-0416-Brochure.pdf
This White Horse series is a 160˙ degree light disbursement LED module and is the same chip for brightness as our Reckless series but because of the diffused lens the light is spread better for even lighting for shallow based sign faces for channel letters, dimensional letters or cabinets.
As you know diffused wide angle modules won't be as effective for standard channel letter illumination as the Reckless series but great for shallow depth channel letters BUT, with the sick brightness of the NC Reckless LED series you can probably use this for both applications.
Two great modules with the same makeup mixed with high Korean standards, with these standards think high, over engineered Japanese standards.... lastly..........say it with me.......NOT made in CHINA!!!
For orders use our online shopping cart or to contact us call or email
(858) 880-1400 / email@example.com
By Erik Sine
I'm quite impressed....
So I'd like to introduce our newest addition to our family. The NC White Horse Nano!
These lil suckers are BRIGHT as hell. Their about .4 watts each, True White high quality tier/grade 6500K Samsung Diodes.
Their approx 5 mini modules per foot, they come in 100 module strings and you get about 25' per string....and as you can see, 3 diodes per module, and just like it's bigger brother "The White Horse" their 160˙ wide angle modules.
But, because their so small, these only come in constant voltage NOT constant current. The upside is, these are lower wattage modules.
So many possibilities with these high quality modules that are small, yet pack a BIG punch of light...DAMN!
The good news is, their only $82.99 per string of 25'......The bad news is, there was a miscommunication and they only sent us 20 bags, but more are on the way.
P.S.- NOT made in CHINA!!!
NC LED 's are generally pretty small anyway, especially the Reckless-2, but as a visual the White Horse Mini is significantly smaller!!!
With Great Channel Letter Benders like the SDS/AdamsTech Machines out there creating some small 8" to 5" Letters, below are a few LED moduldes for visual layout purposes. Tot he far Left we have our NC White Horse Nano, and NC Reckless-2 to the right of it. The Reckless-2 can work as well but imagine if this letter just just a little bit smaller. Visualize the other components needed for in conjunction with the poly-carbonate backs. The tab support for the aluminum pan letters, the peg stand-offs and well as the secondary wiring hole.
Larger modules don't make sense for these small tight letters. With the White Horse Nano's, having that extra room to move modules around makes more sense along with more even lighting than using long or larger modules. With the White Horse Mini's you won't struggle with letter assembly.
Everything you would expect from our NC Reckless & White Horse LED Line
You can purchase these from our online shopping cart