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gvidas last won the day on June 20 2016

gvidas had the most liked content!

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About gvidas

  • Rank

Profile Information

  • Name
    George Vidas
  • Company
    Signifier Signs
  • Job Title
  • Location
    Detroit, MI
  • Gender

Previous Fields

  • Company Type
    Vinyl & Digital Shop

Quick Company Info

  • Contact Number
    313 831 9060
  • Address
    2914 Cass Ave, Detroit MI 48201
  • Equipment
    neon shop + misc fabrication
  1. Neon Cannon Jets (Nat)

    http://www.agfburner.com/ Pretty sure they made a large chunk of the neon torches that are kicking around the US. Might be easier to find a used 5-point.
  2. I don't know you; I have no idea if you're homophobic or hate gays. That isn't the point. The point is that making laws limiting which bathroom a person can use based on their genitalia has a tangible negative effect on trans and queer people, who are already an astonishingly marginalized group. The prevalence of suicide attempts among transgender people is almost 10x that of the general population. We have the chance to make a very minor concession -- to rethink how we assign gender exclusivity to public spaces -- that will improve the lives of some of your fellow Americans. One cool thing about public bathrooms is that there is usually a communal area, with sinks and mirrors and a baby-changing station, and then a bunch of private stalls. I don't especially want anybody in the same bathroom stall with me. I prefer not to have anybody in the stalls next to me, even. But in my experience, people are just about as clothed and composed in the communal area as they are in the hallway outside. Furthermore, if the communal area were unisex, you could escort your children and female loved ones to their private stalls personally. In smaller establishments, like mom-n-pop restaurants and gas stations, where you're confronted with a choice of two private rooms, one with a toilet in it, and another with a urinal and a toilet, who the hell cares what sign is on the door, or what shape your genitals are? Do your business, don't make a mess, and get on with life.
  3. Strangers who are trans are no more dangerous than any other stranger, and it turns strangers are a lot less dangerous than we tend to think they are. Especially if you're talking about sexual assault of children. From a 1997 summary of the DoJ stats: "For nearly 90% of the youngest victims of rape, those younger than 12, the offender was someone known to them." (page 20) I think the signs should just say "BATHROOM." Or perhaps "URINALS" vs "TOILETS." But this whole kerfluffle isn't about bathrooms, or protecting our children, or where LGBTQ individuals relieve themselves. It's about holding onto power by mobilizing people with fear, anger, and resentment. I think the transition is going to take a little time and work, but we're going to look back and say "what the hell was the big deal, anyway?" In the long run, we'll end up with more efficient bathrooms that have more privacy all around. Designing public spaces to be universally accessible generally makes them better for everyone -- sidewalk ramps, anyone?
  4. Quoting installs

    I mostly make interior neon signs for the end user -- business owners, artists, or homeowners. So I deal with a lot of people who are on the far ends of their comfort zone in terms of the work that they're asking me to do. They also usually have a vague idea of what they want, but no clear expectations of what it will cost. So my sales conversion rate is pretty low (I'm happy to pass on the "make this crazy thing for $200" customers). As a result, I've put a lot of thought into getting quotes out the door really fast. My solution on the installation front is to ask questions, and if the answers get vague I just tell them: here's a firm quote for the neon fabrication, but the actual installation is going to be time + materials. Here's a rough estimate: $xxx, based on my hourly rate for on-site work ($xx) and the following assumptions: xxx. Here's a few obstacles that, if present, will increase the price.
  5. Transco, Ventex & Principal LED Merge?

    Anybody care to prognosticate on future production of federal bushings and other relatively more obscure neon components? It seemed like Transco was doing a great job holding up the thin end of the neon supply chain. I'd hate for this shuffling of ownership to change that for the worse.
  6. Coil is usually loaded by hand. Standard coils are 5.3" x 270' and 3.5' x 270'. I don't know what I was looking at last night that made me think 500' coils are common. 270' x 5.3" x .040" alum ~= 60lbs each. 270' x 3.5" x .040" alum ~= 40lb I'd shoot for 50lb/coil. Here's your weight per square foot chart: http://www.greenheck.com/library/articles/68
  7. I wonder if the obstacle is buying coil stock in the right dimension and material. Out here sign supply houses only sell aluminum, and only in 5.3" and 3.5" wide coils. For it to be worth feeding through a CNC bender, you need coil stock. Which means you might have to work with a steel yard to get the material you want slit down to size and recoiled at manageable weights, which might in turn require a surprisingly large minimum order. 20ga mild steel weighs about 3 times as much per square foot as .040 aluminum. 500' roll of 3.5" x 040 alum ~= 82lbs. To hit the same weight in 4" wide 20ga steel you're looking at 165' rolls.
  8. Neon Glass Search

    Since the glass itself is yellow, FMS only sells one option -- noviol gold. I would probably go with that, because it's going to be the cheaper option (since I order from them more than Tecnolux), and anyway it's never going to get a 100% perfect color match. But I'm sort of a fatalist like that (or a hack, I guess you could say.) If you scrape some of the phosphor out of the tube and compare it to white tubes that you have around, you might be able to get a better answer out of someone else. I.e., if it's a yellow glass coated with a 4500° white phosphor, then you could email David Ablon and ask for his recommendation. Looking at the picture again, are the white/silver stripes up and down the left parts of the tube reflections, or part of the glass? If it's a tube with yellow paint from a beer sign, then all of this is just hot air and it really doesn't matter.
  9. Neon Glass Search

    If you shine a UV light on the phosphor on the inside, and look at it thru the end, you might be able to make an educated guess based on what color the phosphor is. There's probably only one choice out there really, in terms of what the colored glass itself is, but a few subtle choices in terms of the coating inside it. In terms of getting the glass, you can either: - buy from FMS, 1 pound increments on colored glass, 5lb increments on everything else: http://www.brillite.com/products.php or - buy from Ablon Technologies, nee Tecnolux, in 1 stick increments: http://tecnoluxglass.com/ If you call Ablon/Tecnolux with part #s and quantities, they'll mix and match a box for you; the best deal on shipping seems to be around 30 lbs, or three triangular boxes, but they'll ship tiny orders too.
  10. UL Component Yes or No

    Just spent half an hour on the phone with my insurance co. I have product and completed work liability coverage thru The Hartford. My policy is contingent on exclusively using UL listed components. They refuse to make any exceptions, or to define the difference between a critical and non-critical component, because they don't want to set a precedent. The underwriter basically said that if there were a claim, and if they refused to cover it, the technicalities would be settled in court. I was an insomniac before I got into this line of work. I'll keep buying the UL parts.
  11. Pattern Paper

    That roll of 40# butcher paper arrived. It's pretty much your standard butcher paper. I was hoping that since there's 20# and 40# butcher paper, this stuff would be notably thicker. I called around to three or four paper & packaging co's. None of them carry anything thicker than 40# butcher paper, in terms of a roll paper that is white. It seems like "butcher paper" as a category taps out at 40lb. Is there another common term for "thick white paper on a roll"?
  12. Pattern Paper

    I've been looking for the same thing. Local sign supply sells some expensive (~15c/sqft) heavy white papers, the brown lined paper (10c/sqft), and some 20lb bond white paper (6c/sqft). The best (simple, available, seemed to be the thickest) that I had found was 40lb white butcher paper. I just bought a roll from Staples, 48" x 1000', $60, free shipping. = 1.5c/sqft. THey hooked me with a 23%-off-if-you-buy-it-in-the-next-20-minutes deal. I'll let you know in a week how it holds up to hot glass.
  13. Class II Power Supply Plug in Cord

    Digikey.com or mouser.com
  14. The pictures at the end of that spec file are worth a look. It looks ilke they did a mockup of the apostrophe with new neon vs new LEDs. They also have a bunch of photos showing the current state of the sign. Note the geometry of the original neon within the lettering. Phosphor coated tubing following the contors, and a more geometric pattern of clear glass filling in the strokes. I don't know why they didn't do this for the apostrophe mockup (maybe it was the oddball). But it seems like a significant aesthetic detail to me.
  15. Race & Gender of The Sign Industry

    I think a person should be free to say: "being in the position I am in, and having been there for 36 years, is radical; but the decisions I make on a daily basis are very normal, and no more radical than those made daily by everyone else in the country who has my job. Still, I'm proud of it." If there happens to be a certification that sums that up, then all the better.