High Density Urethane

What are high-density urethane signs?

HighDensity Urethane is a strong, naturally waterproof material made for creating dimensional signs. HDU signs have a carved look, and they feature smooth or textured backgrounds. Sandblasting and routing are both viable methods of shaping your perfect sign.

What exactly is HDU?

High-Density-Urethane (HDU) is a rigid, “closed-cell” material. It is impervious to all petroleum-based solvents. Engineered specifically to make signs, HDU is waterproof and will not shrink or swell. As a result, it is easier to cut, route and manufacture, reducing the overall cost.

We create community entrance signs by sandblasting or routing this fantastic substrate. We finish these signs with exterior latex paint and gold leaf, which look great and long. Here is a detailed photo of a sandblasted community entrance sign for Cedar Ridge in Eastport, MD. We use a woodgrain frame to create that recessed texture that resembles traditional sandblasted cedar.

high density urethane sign for cedar ridge community entrance

A High-Density-Urethane Sign at Westbard Mews

We can route your sign with a smooth recessed background. Raised flat letters and trim require a covering of 23 karatgold leaf. Before gilding, we would prime the HDU and add exterior latex paint. Typically we will use a 1.5-inch thick sheet of 18 lb high-density urethane to make our custom dimensional signs. We sometimes use machine routing, but typically we prefer to sandblast with a woodgrain frame which adds a more natural texture to the background.

high density urethane - a routed sign for westbard mews bethesda maryland

V-cut incised letters in signfoam

Another option for creating dimensional signs is v-cutting, which resembles hand carving. However, finishing a v-cut letter with gold leaf requires more time and effort as the size can be tedious to apply. The photo below shows a v-cut letter in the gilding process. The loose excess gold still needs to be removed, and then our gilders would polish the letters gently with cotton.

incised letter in hdu finished with gold leaf

More About Sign•Foam4 (HDU)

The ultimate signboard for dimensional signage and displays. This next-generation material provides crisp, clean edges and detailed definition.  Signfoam accommodates virtually any design you envision, whether milled by machine, carved by hand, or sandblasted. It’s a superb board for CNC-machining finely detailed designs and lettering and nearly invisible surface textures. Sign•Foam4 sheets will not warp, twist or bow. And they retain their dimensional stability over the long haul.

Some Signage Application for HDU

  • Routed signs, smooth v-cut or with textured recessed backgrounds
  • Sandblasted signs, smooth recess, or with a woodgrain background
  • Sculptural elements to enhance any dimensional sign

Read more about this product at SignFoam.com

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