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Guest tomcowe

Lettering panels

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Hi,There are a number of options depending on how the panel is made. If not back lit you can use dry transfer lettering frmo a drafting supply or art store. Spray it with a thin layer of clear coat to protect it or it will rub off pretty easily.You can use a drawing program in to produce sections of your panel. Makes it easier to place boundary lines around groups of switches. You can also put the panel color on this way. Laminate, protect with clear spray, or cover with thin clear plastic sheet.If your base panel is clear plastic, you can back light through color lettering printed on white paper. You can make a mask to back up the paper to limit light from coming through areas that should be dark.For real money, you can have lettering engraved by a sign making shop.Years ago we used to silkscreen panels. Haven't seen anyone doing it here though.Mikewww.mikesflightdeck.com

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One thing NOT to forget as an option is a LABEL PRINTER.It's is relatively cheep and specially if you live near other cockpit builders it sure is an option to buy 1 and share it with the others when you're done or even sell it to someone else.You have to look for one that can print on transparent tapes.I have LabelPoint 100 which I bought recently from Brother. Though I don't want to advertise them. Check also Dymo for the options they have.I chose Brother cuz of price and simply cuz Dymo does sell printers & tape (white on transparant) but just not here in Belgium :(Either way, you first look for the tape. Then you chose a printer that can use that tape. That's the trick.If your white on transp. tape is e.g. 9mm or 11mm, you need to find any label printer from that brand that can do 9mm tape or 11mm tape.I got my cockpit partially labeled now (throttle quad) and I have to say, it doesn't look bad at all.Sure this ain't backlight, but it sure is a whole lot less messy than the press-trough-letters that I tried before ...

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Just spotted this in this months Sporty's catalogue....http://www.sportys.com/acb/basket/editdetl...CurrentPage%3D1If all that lot won't take, just go to www.sportys.com and enter item # 3890A."Instrument Panel Placard Set. Over 250 pressure-sensitive (stick-on) paper labels for all cockpit switches, circuit breakers, systems, amps, volts, arrows, blanks, numbers, etc. Most common are repeated several times. Covers all single- and multi-engine systems. Sheet measures 8 1/2

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I am actualy thinking about buying a printer, I saw some of them can print on CDRom directly, not on transfer paper.I thought about replacing CDRom by plastic panels, this could work with small panels...have any of you try this solution ?Ben

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You can try the solution I'm doing, which is using printed one-side-laminated paper (put two sheets of printed paper back to back, laminate them, cut the edges and separate) for the front of the panel, with a clear plastic sheet as a mask behind the panel, negative print (ie only the lettering is not printed) with a laserjet preferably. You can buy these as OHP sheets which you can print on. Any plastic sheet which is thick, yet thin enough to go through a printer is ideal. The great thing about using plastic sheeting is that you can use it to cover 7 segment display windows as well, without giving you a lumpy panel :)

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