Saturday, January 15, 2011

Cast Signs & Plaques – Prices too high? Maybe not.

Have you ever wanted to create a memorial for a loved one, in a private garden, local park or in a church yard, but didn’t feel like you could afford the cost of a heavy cast memorial plaque? Let me just say that cast signage has come a long way in the last decade and you shouldn't write it off as being too expensive. There are a lot of alternative choices in the casting industry now that can give you a rich classic look that will last for many many years. I would like to introduce you to some of the available options: Blank Insert Plaques (BIP), Economical Multipurpose Plaques and Custom Dedication Plaques.

For those on a strict budget who want to memorialize a loved one, or honor a special individual the best type of plaque would be a Blank Insert Plaque. This unique design consists of a solid cast aluminum backer, a double line raised border with a brushed finish and a recessed background area that is painted your choice of an available stock color. A thin piece of aluminum, called metalphoto, is imprinted and set into the recessed area of the backer finishing your plaque. The metalphoto insert can include text and logos, as well as artwork or photographs for an added charge. These plaques can be very budget friendly starting at around $75.00 for a 6"x6" finished wall mounted BIP. Other stock sizes are available as well as a Holly Bronze finish option if you prefer a gold look.

If your budget is even smaller, there is also a smaller version of the BIP called a cast photo plaque that is 4"x6" and consists of a cast backer (with a black background) and a 3"x5" metalphoto insert. This item runs around $40 for a wall mounted plaque.

Now if you want the traditional look of raised letters on your cast plaque, a budget friendly option would be to choose from the economical line of plaques which although limited in letter size and style, can give you that rich ageless look that a custom cast plaque is known for. These plaques are made to last a lifetime and hold up to the outdoor elements very well. The are made from the same material and by the same process as the custom aluminum dedication plaques, but usually cost less because of the limited options. For example, economy plaques have only predetermined sizes to choose from, there are only two font choices, and letter size is more limited. These plaques work best with a limited amounts of text and standard thickness is approx 3/8".

If you have a larger budget to work with you may be able to consider a more customizable option. What better way to honor, memorialize and pay tribute to deserving individuals than with a custom cast dedication or memorial plaque. Made to last a lifetime, these beautiful pieces are available in a wide range of sizes and shapes and have several different finish options. Dedication and memorial plaques are priced per square inch and available with only simple text or you can add custom shapes, logos, colors and dimensional busts for an added charge. There is also an option for placing a ghost image in the background.

There are so many options available to customize your plaque that I couldn't begin to list them all here, but rest assured that within those options a beautiful plaque can be found that works for you and your budget.

For more photo examples and information on cast plaques you can visit Grandview Aluminum Products is a family owned casting foundry that has been manufacturing and supplying cast plaques to dealers for over 40 years. I have worked for Grandview Aluminum Products in the art department for over 10 years, and I am also a licensed dealer of their products.

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