Private Profiles - an update on how they will be changing here
We've partnered up with to offer a space where you can talk directly to Peter from and get an exclusive discount code for a free job listing. If you are recruiting or know anyone else who is please check out the forum here.

Construction of 'amsterdam'-like letters

  • 07-05-2017 6:45pm
    Registered Users Posts: 2 Giller96

    I want to make giant 3D letters for a design feature for an event, taking inspiration from the famous Amsterdam sign. I plan on them being a height of around 1.5-2m.

    So my initial thought on how to actually construct them is to use 2x1"or 3x2" lengths of timber to create the frame of each letter, and then screw plywood or a thin mdf into it to create the finished letter.

    This should work for the letters with straight edges, but I'm a bit stumped for how to do the curved letters like O's or U's. Does anyone have any ideas or advice on how to approach them? Thanks in advance!


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,827 ✭✭✭ RobAMerc

    ok, I am not entirely sure I;ve got what you are trying to create but I have one idea that might work for you.

    Cut the 2 of each of the letters out of 18mm MDF
    Cross brace the 2 facias using 3*2 - making your letter "3d"
    Use beauty board or similarly flexible materials cut into strips the width of your letters to cover the void between the letters. Run the beauty board along the 18mm edges of the 2 facias. you could bend it round a full O no problem.

    voila - 3D lettering

    I am fairly sure you could probably do a better job with big blocks of polystyrene as the ones I just described would weight a ton !

  • Moderators, Social & Fun Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 25,069 Mod ✭✭✭✭ looksee

    How long do they have to last? Will they be indoors or outdoors? Have you a budget/help? How many letters do you have to make? Do you have any sort of studio facilities? I have made single letters half the size you are proposing and it is very time consuming, tricky work that can easily end up looking a mess.

    Firstly you have to figure out how to scale up the letters. If they are not accurate they will look terrible. If you have access to a graphics package you can scale them up (as outlines, not as solid print) then print them off A3 if possible, tiled, then join them together.

    Or you could go to a graphics/signmaker and ask them to make them out of something like that corrugated plastic card that election posters are made from, two of each and assemble them yourself. This would be way the best solution.

    The bigger the letters the stronger they have to be if they are to be outdoors, as even a slight breeze will stress them and you will have to have a secure way o fixing them upright. They will need a 2x1 timber structure inside and you will need enough equipment to hold the letters in place while you fix the 'edging' on to create the 3D effect.