TIP #5: How do I make the serif of a letter bigger, so the letter is easier to build?

There are two tricks that can be taken to make the serif of a letter bigger. For a step-by-step answer, go to

  1. To make the serif of a letter larger, use drawing software to perform an outline of the letter and then resize the letter.
  • Decide how much you want to increase the line length (stroke of the serif), divide the number by 2, and then perform the outline by that number.
  • Resizing will make it slightly smaller, but not that much.
  • The outline will make the entire artwork larger and easier to build. Resizing will satisfy the sign codes for permitting and not exceed the maximum square footage.
  1. You can select the serif points and use a nudge feature in the drawing software to create a longer serif.
  • If you have an ACE, ACE+, or Freedom machine, use a width of at least 1 inch and a length of 1.5 inches for the serifs. A width of 1.1 inches or more is even better!
  • If you have less than 1-inch width, the ½ inch flange on each side will overlap and it will need to be trimmed off. It is also hard to get your caulk and LEDs inside.
  • If you have a Model 26 with the small arm option, you can go down to a 5/8-inch width of a serif and at least a 1-inch length of the serif. Use the small flange option. The rest of the process, including caulking and placing LEDs, is still more difficult with narrower strokes.

Another bonus: Without bigger serifs, letters may look good up close, but your eyes do not see the serifs or narrow strokes well from a distance. With bigger serifs, letters will light properly.



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