Reviving the Color
Wood sign restoration is what I love to do! I made Webber Payne’s sandblasted wood sign in the mid-1990’s, and he recently contacted me to restore the sign back to its original brightness that grabbed attention of shoppers in downtown Waynesboro, Virginia.
The process of restoring redwood and cedar signs is not difficult, it just requires multiple steps and knowledge about what materials work best and last the longest. First, me and my helper Marshall Carpenter took the sign down and transported it to my sign shop in Waynesboro. Next, I ordered the colors needed, which is getting harder all the time as hand-painted signs are becoming a lost art along with neon as digital sign techniques and LED technology take over the industry. While waiting for the paint to arrive I steel brshed and sanded the background, filling any major gaps with painters putty. Once the materials came in I mixed up a custom color purple stain to match the existing background color and coated out the entire sign. (I choose not to reveal my background stain recipe that I developed in the 1990’s…kind of like the Kentucky fried Chicken recipe, or McDonald’s Big Mac secret sauce.)
Next I primed the letters white and painted all the flat areas to complete the sign. I hung the sign and touched up any edges that needed it. (The photo of the sign hanging here in this feature was taken before final touch-ups, but it’s hard to see any issues from the distance in the picture.)
Mark Hackley owns and operates Augusta Sign Company, Waynesboro, VA 540-943-9818