Nothing is simple.

Take for instance when someone calls up and asks: "How much for a sign with our name on it that is about 20" wide?"

That generally translates into 2 hours of discussion through multiple phone calls and emails, and a budget of $50. No disrespect intended to potential house name customers, but we just can't make a sign for $50 that will be outdoor durable, look exactly the way you imagine it, consult for a couple of hours and meet your budget constraints.

A couple of weeks ago a gentleman called and said that he needed a house sign, looked at examples of signs we had previously made, considered the cost of those signs and offered a couple of things that he would like to see on the sign, then said "Go ahead". That was it.

I emailed a layout for his review the next week, he made one change: make it 2" smaller, and the sign went into production.

Sometimes the simplest concepts are the hardest, and the potentially difficult projects turn out to flow the smoothest.

We have a handful of house signs in the works right now, so we don't think they are evil, as long as customers come in with realistic expectations... Maybe I'm just getting older and don't want to rout a single line of text on a plain piece of pine then slap a coat of polyurethane on the face to 'keep it nice'. 

I think we're safe to say we just want to make nice signs, and go with that plan.

Our Multicam CNC router is the perfect employee: works long hours, doesn't make mistakes on it's own (those are my programming mistakes when they happen), and doesn't take breaks. This view is after the rough pass that begins to reveal the shape of the dimensional house sign that I mentioned above. Setup and rough cutting took about 45 minutes so far.

...after the finish pass (and 6 hours later) the sign is ready to be glued up with the sides and backer that will give us a place to attach the welded bracket. From raw material to a paintable sign (thanks to the CNC router) can be accomplished in about 2 days with drying time.