Channel letters is a three-dimensional sign element. Letters are mostly fabricated with aluminum since it will not rust. A flat sheet of aluminum is typically cut on a table by a computer-controlled CNC router. This create the back of the channel and is the basis for the letter shape. The sides of the channel letter, called the returns, are then formed by bending a 3 to 5-inch-wide strip of aluminum sheet around the aluminum back. This return can be welded at the seam or flanged and riveted, clinched or, stapled to the back to create a solid channel in the shape of the letter. Return is usually pre-finished stock of .040 thickness. Based on customers requirement, size of letters and location of installation, returns thickness is increased and they can also be custom painted as well. Letters are then fitted with lighting components such as neon or LED modules. A translucent plastic face usually 3/16″ thick sheet acrylic or polycarbonate is cut to fit the open face of the letter. A trim cap border is applied to its edges which gives the letter face a finished appearance and creates a fastening surface to attach it to the channel letter. Channel letter is now ready to be mounted on to a race way, wire way or to be installed directly to a wall / sign band.
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