Foam boards can be used in a variety of applications in multiple settings. They’re made of an extruded polystyrene foam core with a two-clay-coated paper face on both sides.
Their core is about 95% air, so they’re very lightweight yet sturdy enough to be propped up without any support. They’re also very receptive to direct digital printing; you can use them to print photos using UV, solvent, eco-solvent, and aqueous inks, among others. Their material also makes them very easy to cut. You can use anything from a simple utility knife for small projects or a large flatbed cutter, like the Summa Flatbed Die-Cutter from AirMark, for large-volume jobs.
Benefits of Using Foam Boards for Signages
Foam boards are great to use for signages because they’re cheap and versatile. Here are some of the benefits of utilizing them for your signs:
Foam boards are very lightweight, offering amazing versatility and transport options. They’re very easy to bring around, which is helpful if you’re using signage multiple times in different locations.
The cost of foam boards is generally cheap, so you can create a large number of signages without breaking the bank. Because they’re lightweight, they’re also not too expensive to transport when you’re shipping large volumes.
With foam boards, you can print large-scale imagery directly onto the material—up to the very edge of the foam. This allows you to display any prints that you’d like in a way that makes it look like it’s on a display screen. It’s an effective way to catch people’s attention!
Due to their lightweight nature, foam boards are easy to secure on surfaces. You can simply use removable adhesives, such as tape or tacks, to display them.
Tools to Cut Foam Boards
Cutting a foam board correctly is vital to producing clean and beautiful signage. There are multiple ways to do it in a DIY capacity. Here are the most common options:
For large-scale signmakers, a flatbed die-cutter, like the Summa Flatbed Die-Cutter from AirMark, is the best solution for all of your foam cutting projects. The machine is designed to handle the material, and produce clean results made with great accuracy and precision. In terms of rotary versus flatbed die-cutting, the latter is better for foam boards as they’re suited for materials in sheets. It’s even versatile enough to handle other jobs, such as if you need to cut acrylic sheets!
A hot knife allows you to cut foam boards with great precision, freely moving the blade along the material. It’s great to use for those who need a handy, portable tool; it’s small and can be used with just a battery pack (some may need to be plugged into a wall). It can take a bit of an effort to use, and it can get a bit finicky if you don’t find one that stays hot for long periods, but they’re still one of the best options for signmakers.
Foam Cutting Saw
If you’re working with large amounts of thick foam, you may want to invest in a foam cutting saw. This electric device will spare you countless hours of manual labor. It features a long and thin serrated blade that moves through foam boards like butter, allowing for consistent cuts done quickly. That said, foam-cutting saws can be expensive, and they can leave you with a messy workspace after each use.
For sign-makers that only need to cut foam boards in straightforward shapes (i.e. no intricate designs), a table saw is a great tool to use. You can attach specialized blades that can handle the material while reducing the amount of mess that’s left during the process.
A good utility knife can be used for most foam thicknesses, and it’s an affordable option for those who don’t cut foam boards that often. Just make sure to choose one with a long, sharp, and smooth blade angled at forty-five degrees when slicing, and to put some weight on the material to prevent it from moving. This will allow you to make clean cuts.
Summa Flatbed Die-Cutters from AirMark
If you’re serious about sign-making or are in the business of having to deal with cutting large amounts of foam boards, investing in a Summa Flatbed Die-Cutter is a smart decision. You will increase your productivity while enjoying pristine results—and get great ROI at the same time. Get a quote for a Summa Flatbed Die-Cutter from AirMark today!