FAQ


Q: What materials can I use to build my sign?

A: Sign materials vary by use and may include acrylic, aluminum, banner, corrugated plastic, fabric, PVC, magnetic, vinyl and wood.

Q: Is the color I see on my monitor accurate to what I’ll receive?

A: Because color is subjective and can be produced by many methods, there may be slight variations in the way color appears.

Q: Can I use copyrighted images in my signage?

A: Yes, but only with permission from the owner. If you are not an authorized agent of the images, then a release from the copyright owner is necessary.

Q: What kind of maintenance will my sign require?

A: Depending on the materials, signs may need to be cleaned over time, especially outdoor signage.  Use only a soap and water mixture and avoid any cleaning product that contains ammonia.

Q: What kind of deposit do you require?

A: We require 100% down on orders under $1000, and 50% down on all other orders.  Your payment and signature on a quote launches your order onto our job board and starts the design/production process.

Q: Can you make a sign from a digital photograph?

A: Yes, and we often do! The better quality the photograph, the better your digital image will turn out.

Q: If I have special color matching requirements, or need to have my letterhead and business cards matched can ABC Sign & Graphic meet my needs?

A: Yes. Depending on the type of sign and it’s uses, we can match according to your needs.

Q: Do I need a permit for my sign?

A: Possibly, but it depends on the municipality.

Q: If I am getting vehicle graphics installed, how long will my car/truck/van be out of service?

A: Most vehicles can be lettering and logos installed in one business day and often just a couple hours.

Q: Why do I need a proof?

A: A visual proof is our way of ensuring that we have set your type accurately and that everything is positioned according to your requirements.

Q: You are responsible for making sure that spelling, sizes and quantities match your desired request.

A: We will email your proof to you within 48 hours of receving your order. If necessary it can be viewed in our store or e-mailed to you.
**Please note that if viewing your PDF proof on a smartphone or device with a small screen, be sure to zoom in so as not to miss any detail. **

Q: Why do I need to look at a proof if I’ve already given you everything I need to have done?

A: We employ human beings to produce your work and, last time we checked, humans are not perfect. Your approval on the final proof is assurance that you have looked over every aspect of our work and approve it as accurate.  It benefits everyone if errors re caught in the proofing process rather than after the job is completed and delivered.

Q: Do I still need to approve a proof if I bring my work in on disk?

A: YES. It may seem like a proof wouldn’t be needed in this case but it really is. Output devices process digital information using a variety of processing languages. Your approval of the proof we send you assures that the output device used has correctly interpreted and processed the information you have provided.

Q: What types of payment do you accept?

A: At this time, we accept Visa, Mastercard, and Discover credit cards.

Q: Are state taxes charged?

A: We charge MN state taxes for both labor and materials- in other words everything we do.

Q: My organization is tax exempt.

A: No problem. We’ll need a signed ST3 form with your ID number.

Q: Can you help with designing my sign?

A: Yes. In fact, we can help choosing color, fonts and even how the text should read.

Q: How do I decide what my sign should say?

A: Signage research shows that you should keep your message short, sweet and to the point if you want it to have a big impact.

Q: How long will my vinyl letters last?

A: Most vinyl has a 5 to 7 year life span. In our experience it has held up that long or longer.  However the surface it is applied to and the environmental conditions may cause it to have a shorter life.

Q: On what surfaces can I apply vinyl letters and decals?

A: Vinyl letters can be applied to most any surface that is clean, smooth, nonporous, and wax-free. Latex paint can be a problem- oil base is best.

Q: Will putting magnetic signs on my vehicle harm or damage it in any way?

A: The area where the sign will be applied should be clean and dry without any protrusions or dents.

Q: This will help the magnet lie flat and help to prevent rust. If moisture is trapped under the magnet, rust can occur.

A: A good coat of wax on your vehicle will also help prevent rust under a magnetic sign.

Q: How do remove old letters and decals?

A: Removing decals is a long tedious process. Don’t use sharp or hard objects to scrape letters off. This will scratch the surface. Vinyl is brittle in cold weather. It is better to wait for warm weather s that the vinyl will not break off in tiny pieces. It seems to work better, when removing vinyl, if you pull the vinyl SLOWLY and perpendicular to the surface. It is more likely to come off in one piece this way.  You can also use a heat gun assist in the vinyl removal, but special care must be taken not to over heat the area. A heat gun can cause paint to melt and bubble if held in one place too long.  There are special glue removers available to clean up glue residue after the vinyl is removed.

Q: How do I submit artwork / files?

A: We work with most professional design applications includingAdobe Photoshop / Illustrator, etc.  Vector Files are best, otherwise we can digitize (or Vectorize) the artwork you provide us in a JPEG, TIFF, PSD, GIF, etc. at an additional charge.  You can email us your “print ready” or “cut ready” artwork, mail us a CD-R, CD-RW, DVD or USB flash drive or upload your file to our website.  If you have questions concerning your artwork or need help uploading, feel free to contact us by phone or email.

Q: What resolution is acceptable for raster artwork submitted?

A: If sending your artwork in “real size”, please send your work 150 dpi.

Q: What is dpi?

A: Dpi is the standard of measurement for the resolution of images that describes the number of dots per inch (dpi) that are used to create an image. The higher the dpi, the higher the resolution which translates to better quality of your final product.

Q: What is the difference between vector and bitmap images and which is better?

A: Vector and bitmap images are the two major graphic types. Both types are made up of many individual objects, and both respond differently when enlarged and/or reduced to produce different sizes of images. We can use both types of files, however we prefer vector files and we can change sizes easily without sacrificing quality using original vector formats. Vector images can be output at the highest quality in any scale because they are made of lines and panels rather than pixels or dots. Vector images are resolution independent. Common vector formats are eps, ai and pdf. These formats are available in most graphics programs.  A bitmap image (also called a raster image) is made of pixels (sometimes referred to as dots). The number of pixels in one square inch of an image is called the dpi (dots per inch) and is known as the resolution of the image (Example: 150 dpi means that the image has 150 dots per square inch within that image). Quite simply, the larger number of dots you have in your image produces a higher quality of reproduction. Bitmap images loose quality when the are re-sized from their original size and must be created with consideration for their output use. Bitmap images should be built at 150 dpi if they are built at the actual finished size. You can build the bitmap files at a smaller proportional size than the final usage size, but you must increase the resolution accordingly. For instance, if you build your file at a ratio of 1 inch = 1 foot, you should build the file at 300 dpi. In this case, you would build a 2 inch x 2 inch file at 300 dpi to print a resulting 2 foot x 2 foot image at 150 dpi. Common bitmap-based formats are jpeg, jpg, gif, tiff, png, pict and bmp. Although vector image is the preferred format for submitting artwork, it is not as common for non- designers and bitmap image at the correct resolution can be substituted.