How to Build Your Own LED Neon Signs - gindestarled

How to Build Your Own LED Neon Signs

A person holds up an LED neon light sign
Source: wiki.sgmk-ssam.ch

Neon signs are a cool, stylish, and versatile type of signage. They catch the eye with their colorful illuminated designs and stand out both during the day and the night.

LED neon signs are made using the same basic concept as neon signs. The difference is, they are made of LED neon flex lights. Nevertheless, they look just as good as ordinary neon signage. The best part? You can make an LED neon sign all on your own by following some quick and easy steps.

Curious? Here is everything you need to know about making an LED neon sign.

Table of Contents

What Are LED Neon Signs?

Pink 'aloha' LED neon light sign

Typical neon signs are made using glass tubes filled with inert gases such as neon or halogen. When an electric current passes through these gases, their atoms get activated and become illuminated.

Neon signs are great but they can be expensive. They can also be high-maintenance as glass is prone to breakage.

LED neon signs solve the design problems of typical neon lighting. As opposed to using glass tubes, they are made using LED neon flex lights which are more affordable, flexible, and durable. They also offer more consistent lighting unlike inert gas which can be more intense in some parts than others.

What Do You Need To Make an LED Neon Sign?

Led neon flex

The shopping list for an LED neon sign DIY project is much shorter than one would expect. You will need:

LED neon flex lights- there are RGB and RGBW neon flex lights. If you would like a wider selection of colors for your sign, the RGBW would be a great choice.

A base or substrate– this refers to the surface on which your signage will rest. It could be wood, expanded PVC, or a wall.

Wire cutters- to cut the LED neon flex lights to the size of your sign’s design.

Conductor wire – a 20 gauge thickness is ideal.

A spool of thread

A soldering iron

Hand-held drill

Adhesive

Designing the Sign

A person drawing
Source: Pinterest

Using bendable LED neon flex lights gives you creative latitude when choosing the design of your sign. They can be cut into various lengths to create whatever shape you hope to achieve.

You can draw your sign sketch on the substrate by hand or use other methods like CAD or illustrator applications. Be sure to space your letters sufficiently given as LED neon flex lights are jacketed and thus are slightly thick.

Additionally, for all the lights to work, they need to be in a circuit. Each cut section has to be connected to the next. Therefore, if your sign is a written message, it is best to use a cursive font.

Making the Sign

Once you have gathered everything that you need, it is finally time to bring your LED neon light sign to life. Below is a step-by-step guide to help do just that.

Place your sign sketch on a work surface

Use the thread to outline the sketch- this will help you know the approximate length of LED neon flex lights that you will need.

Using the estimate, cut a portion of the LED neon flex lights – you will likely find markings on the light strip to guide you on where you can cut. Misplaced cuts could damage the lights. 

Place the LED neon flex lights on the sketch – make a cut each time you run the length of a letter or shape.

Drill holes – the holes should be at the end of each strip; the point where it connects to the next.

Solder the conductor wire between each section of LED neon flex lights – each time you cut, an edge of wire in the light strip got exposed. Join the connecting wire to it and solder them together.

Conceal the connection – each time you solder a connection, guide the soldering wire to the back of the substrate and thread it back out at the next letter/shape. This keeps the connections concealed at the base/substrate

Glue the LED neon flex lights in place

Plug and play – once all sections are firmly and safely connected to the power source, turn on your sign, and enjoy.

Conclusion

The right LED flex neon lights are the secret to great LED neon flex signs. Once you find a top-notch LED neon flex lights supplier, everything else will fall into place. Your signs will be the envy of many.

Highly Cost-effective
LED Neon Flex for Your Project.

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